California Unable to Disarm 19,700 Felons and Mentally Ill People
California authorities are empowered to seize weapons owned by convicted felons and people with mental illness, but staff shortages and funding cuts have left a backlog of more than 19,700 people to disarm, a law enforcement official said Tuesday.
Those gun owners have roughly 39,000 firearms, said Stephen Lindley, chief of the Bureau of Firearms for the state Department of Justice, testifying at a joint legislative hearing. His office lacks enough staff to confiscate all the weapons, which are recorded in the state’s Armed Prohibited Persons database, he said.
There is no argument that the State of California needs to get it’s financial house in order. There should also be no doubt that drastic budget cuts do have an effect. Hopefully this one will get some attention and some things can be shifted around to address this issue.