SALEM, Ore. – Legislators have brought guns into the Oregon State Capitol for personal protection. Protesters have carried semi-automatic rifles onto the grounds and into the building.
Later this year, doing so will be outlawed under a bill signed Tuesday by Gov. Kate Brown that was earlier passed by the Legislature, with Democrats in favor and minority Republicans opposed. The new law also mandates the safe storage of guns.
“Today, I am signing SB 554 with the hope that we can take another step forward to help spare more Oregon families from the grief of losing a loved one to gun violence,” Brown said on Twitter.
The bill was named for Cindy Yuille and Steve Forsyth, who were slain in a shooting at a Portland-area shopping mall in 2012 by a man who stole a friend's AR-15 rifle. A third person was seriously wounded.
Among those who testified in favor of the measure was Paul Kemp, Forsyth’s brother-in-law.
“I will never forget the screams I heard when we had to tell my teenage nephew that his father had been killed at the mall,” Kemp said.
Backers of the new law, which takes effect three months after the Legislature adjourns this summer, said it will prevent accidental shootings by children, suicides and mass shootings.
It requires that firearms be secured with a trigger or cable lock, in a locked container or gun room.