A motion to request an ordinance prohibiting the possession, purchase, sale, receipt and transportation of “ghost guns” in Los Angeles was introduced Tuesday by Los Angeles City Councilmen Paul Koretz and Paul Krekorian.
Ghost guns, also known as kit guns or 80-percent guns, are virtually untraceable weapons that can be made at home using legally purchased parts to complete the 80% already assembled. They are sold at gun shows and online.
The unfinished parts are not required under federal law to have serial numbers or a background check to purchase.
More than 40% of guns confiscated by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and one-third of crime guns recovered by the Los Angeles Police Department in Los Angeles in 2020 were ghost guns, according to Koretz.
Ghost guns were used during the 2013 shooting at Santa Monica College, in which six people, including the shooter, died; a series of shootings in Tehama County in 2017, in which five people died; the 2019 shooting at Saugus High School in 2019, in which three students, including the shooter, were killed and three others were injured.
The ATF recovered 10,000 ghost guns in the U.S. in 2019, 2,700 of which were in California.
“Ghost guns are deliberately designed to avoid tracing, and when sold without background checks, end up in the possession of felons,” Krekorian said.
“In Los Angeles, ghost guns were a factor in the sharp rise in homicides in 2020. This motion enables the city to move aggressively to significantly reduce the number of non-serialized firearms in our communities.”
Krekorian introduced a motion approved in February to authorize City Attorney Mike Feuer to negotiate contracts with Everytown Law and Quinn Emmanuel Urquhart and Sullivan to receive their pro bono services to develop and implement legal strategies to combat ghost guns in Los Angeles.