Published: Thu, May 24, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Texas round table to include both sides of gun debate

Texas round table to include both sides of gun debate

The meetings at the state Capitol were organized after Friday's mass shooting at a high school in Santa Fe.

Police arrested Dimitrios Pagourtzis, 17, at the Santa Fe school following the rampage they said he committed with a shotgun and a.38-caliber pistol.

The attorney said the Santa Fe school issued a statement saying that they have examined the claims of harassment, but determined they were erroneous.

Abbott planned to talk Wednesday with gun-rights advocates and gun-control groups, followed Thursday by meetings with survivors of the school shooting and the November assault on a church in the rural village of Sutherland Springs that killed more than two dozen worshippers.

While Santa Fe grieves the deaths of eight students and two teachers, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott will host a second roundtable discussion Wednesday to find ways to help stop school violence.

- Santa Fe is Jack Williams' home.

Texas has more than 1.2 million licensed handgun owners who can openly carry their weapons in public.

"Every time there's a shooting, everyone wants to talk about what the problem is", Abbott said before the meeting was closed to the media. But critics say Texas isn't serious about changing its gun-loving culture.

After 17 people were shot dead at a Parkland, Florida high school in February, lawmakers in that southeastern state approved new, albeit limited, gun restrictions.

J.J. Watt visited with survivors of the Santa Fe High School shooting at Clear Lake Regional Medical Center
Kathy Garza

"I think they're heroes", the sheriff told reporters in Texas. Since 2013, Texas has reduced the cost and hours of training needed to be licensed to carry a handgun, allowed "open carry" for handgun license holders, and allowed concealed handguns in college classrooms and dorms.

Texas courts are supposed to tell law enforcement if a person taken in for a mental health evaluation has been ordered into a mental hospital.

And speaking from Karachi, Sabika's family told the LA Times they had been counting the days before she would return for the summer holiday.

Federal law prohibits an individual "adjudicated as a mental defective" or involuntarily committed to a psychiatric facility from owning or purchasing a firearm.

In fact, at a church service Sunday, Santa Fe High student Monica Bracknell, who survived the shooting, told the governor the attack should not be turned into a battle over gun control.

"I do ask the American government to make sure weapons will not be easily available in your country to anybody".

Alice Tripp, legislative director for the Texas Rifle Association, said that her group's 37,000 members were cautious about any attempt to expand laws that can be used to seize or deny guns.

"If you lose your right, especially one provided by the Constitution, is there some due process?" "And I can't give you that full until the autopsy". "There has got to be due process".

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