A loophole in gun control laws apparently exploited by the Virginia Tech killer could be closed under a bill moving through the legislature.
House debate argued various aspects of the Castle Doctrine, which would allow Missourians to use deadly force if someone breaks into their house or car. Then, an amendment came to the floor to ensure that records of a court finding of mental illness would be sent to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).
Rep. Brian Munzlinger (R-Williamstown) explained to colleagues that the State Highway Patrol receives court records on mental illness, but isn’t allowed to share it with the national database which would keep guns out of the hands of persons declared mentally ill by a court. Federal law prohibits the mentally ill from buying weapons. Munzlinger said the Virginia governor has acted since the tragedy to close the loophole.
A court had found Virginia Tech shooter, Seung Hui Cho, to be mentally ill. That information wasn’t relayed to NICS. If it had been, Cho’s application to purchase his Glock 19 and Walther .22-caliber guns he used in the killing likely would have been denied. Instead, Cho legally purchase the guns he used to kill 32 people before he killed himself.
The bill is HCS SCS SBs 62&41 .