Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Washington AG Seeks Legislation Banning Assault Weapons

Associated Press
Elaine Thompson
FILE - In this Sept. 2, 2015 file photo, Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson speaks at a news conference in Seattle.

The Washington attorney general announced Wednesday that he will propose new legislation to ban assault-style rifles in the state.

The proposal comes about five weeks after a gunman brandishing a semiautomatic rifle opened fire on a party in Mukilteo, killing Anna Bui, Jake Long and Jordan Eber and wounding 18-year-old Will Kramer.

State Attorney General Bob Ferguson said the bill would be constitutionally sound and modeled on similar laws in other states, such as New York and Connecticut.

"Those who suggest we have to choose between our Second Amendment rights and children being massacred in their schools, they're presenting a false choice," Ferguson said.

The bill would make it illegal to sell military-style semiautomatic weapons and magazines with more than 10 bullets. There would be no registration process for gun owners with existing weapons.

Will Kramer's father, Paul Kramer, spoke out in support of the proposed legislation during the attorney general's announcement.

"It is my hope that we can make Washington state safer and reduce the potential for mass shootings here," Paul Kramer said. "I have been heartbroken and shaken to the core of my being with grief and anguish by the recent tragedy in Mukilteo."

More than 50 other community leaders stood with the attorney general as he outlined what he hopes the new legislation will accomplish.

Ferguson will present the bill to state lawmakers in December, ahead of the next legislative session.

A Seattle native and former KNKX intern, Simone Alicea spent four years as a producer and reporter at KNKX. She earned her Bachelor's of Journalism from Northwestern University and covered breaking news for the Chicago Sun-Times. During her undergraduate career, she spent time in Cape Town, South Africa, covering metro news for the Cape Times.