Allegheny County DA Zappala attending 'emergency summit' on gun legislation
Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr. will represent Pennsylvania this week in Washington, D.C., at a two-day meeting about proposed gun laws.
Zappala will join about two dozen prosecutors, all Democrats, at the event organized by the national group Prosecutors Against Gun Violence. The group is dubbing the event an emergency summit.
An unspecified number of law enforcement officers are also scheduled to attend.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. and Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer formed the group in September 2014 to look for ways to combat gun violence. It counts prosecuting attorneys from Seattle, Miami, Houston, Milwaukee and elsewhere among its members.
The group initially focused on issues such as gang violence, domestic violence involving weapons and gun trafficking, according to a USA Today article .
This week's emergency meeting will focus on specific gun legislation making recent headlines, including the Gun Violence Prevention Order Act and the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act.
The latter bill, backed by the National Rifle Association, would allow anyone who can legally carry a concealed firearm in their home state to carry one in any state.
The Gun Violence Prevention Order Act would allow states to use federal funding to establish a court process that would allow family members of a mentally ill person to petition the court to temporarily block that person from purchasing a weapon from a licensed dealer.
The bill would also urge states to develop a process that would allow family members to petition a court for a gun violence prevention warrant. It would allow police to temporarily remove weapons from people who are deemed mentally ill and a threat to themselves or others.
Originally introduced by former U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, the bill was reintroduced in May by U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. Feinstein is scheduled to attend this week's event.
Megan Guza is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 412-380-8519, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @meganguzaTrib.