Gun control laws don't control guns, just law-abiding people
There is a new effort under way to keep deadly weapons out of the hands of children. City Council is launching an effort to find out how guns are getting into the hands of teenagers, reported 5 On Your Side's Tony Gaskins. If you are young and want a gun in Cleveland, it's usually just a matter of asking around. One teen NewsChannel5 spoke with said it doesn't take long for a child to get a hold of a gun. Police and city leaders have seen gun violence take the lives of two teenagers in the past two months on Cleveland's east side. They now want to know where the guns are coming from. One concerned resident said the problem is not where to find a gun, but rather where they get the money to buy them. "I think it's very easy to get guns around here because they're on the black market, and for the kids to be at the age they are, they have the money because they sell drugs," said Nanette Pendergrass.
At Monday evening's City Council meeting, Council President Frank Jackson will introduce a measure to request the help of the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to help determine where kids are getting guns. "It's a major concern that we want to get to the bottom of," said Jackson. "Who is supplying guns to children, and if we find out who they are, we're going to ask that they be prosecuted to the full extent of the law." An ATF spokesman said there are many ways guns can end up in the wrong hands. Many are stolen, some are purchased by people with clean records for criminals, and some are obtained from parents who don't keep their guns secure. Council's finance committee approved Tuesday the spending of $18,000 in police overtime, which will be used to document all weapons used in crimes to help ATF agents track the history of guns in Cleveland.
A Boardman High School student is facing serious charges after school administrators searched his car this week. They were looking for cigarettes but found much more than that. Police arrested 18 year old Stephen Suszczynski on several charges including possession of marijuana , underage possession of alcohol and having a deadly weapon in a school safety zone. Authorities say teachers smelled cigarettes on Suszczynski when he came to school and searched his car, finding a loaded semi-automatic hand gun in the glove compartment. They say he cooperated with police and said he only had the gun because he had been in a dangerous part of Youngstown the night before. Suszczynski is being arraigned in Boardman court this evening, but he could also face federal charges. Local ATF agents say they are talking to the U.S. Attorney's office about his case, since having a loaded gun in a school zone is now prohibited under federal law. If convicted he could land in prison for up to 5 years.