York County Republican Seth Grove proposes gun control legislation
Dover Area High School junior Ethan Snyder protests gun violence and supports human rights on the square in Dover Friday, April 20, 2018. He will face a one-day suspension for his actions.
While Pennsylvania's Democratic governor has called for the Republican-controlled Legislature to pass comprehensive gun-control reforms, a York County Republican has introduced a bill that will close what he believes is a major loophole in current laws.
Rep. Seth Grove, R-Dover Township, recently introduced House Bill 2275 to update state laws that allow some convicted felons to carry firearms with impunity.
In a memo to House members, Grove and fellow sponsor Rep. Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery County, point out that someone convicted of murder, rape or burglary can be prosecuted for carrying a firearm but that state law does not allow that same prosecution for someone convicted of attempted rape, conspiracy to commit murder or solicitation to commit robbery.
“To be quite blunt; this makes no sense,” Grove said in a news release. “As shocking as this problem is, the legislative fix Rep. Briggs and I came up with is straightforward and simple, and will not affect any rights of any law-abiding individual to possess a firearm.”
Grove's bill would add “attempted,” “conspiracy to commit” and “solicitation to commit” to the same list of crimes that already prohibit a person from possessing a firearm under state law.
The bill has the backing of fellow York County Reps. Stan Saylor, R-Windsor Township; Kate Klunk, R-Hanover; and Carol Hill-Evans, D-York City, who all serve as co-sponsors.
The Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association also offered its support.
“I applaud the bipartisan approach that representatives Grove and Briggs have taken in drafting this commonsense legislation to correct this loophole in our laws,” York County District Attorney Dave Sunday said in the release.
“From a law enforcement and prosecutorial perspective, it is vital that we keep firearms out of the hands of those who have demonstrated a propensity for violence,” he added.
The bill currently sits in the House Judiciary Committee awaiting a vote.