Washington, D.C., October 4, 2018 – Last night, seven law enforcement officers were shot in the line of duty, and one of them was killed. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence honored the officers’ service and sacrifice, calling for national and local officials to take action to ensure that dangerous people do not have access to guns.
Kris Brown and Avery Gardiner, co-presidents of the Brady Campaign, stated:
“Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Officer Terrence Carraway, and our sincere thanks go to the entire Florence police department and Florence County Sheriff's Office. The men and women who put their lives on the line to protect their communities on a daily basis are heroes. Just because officers are willing to risk their well-being on our behalf does not mean that they should have to. Stronger gun laws would better protect and save law enforcement officers’ lives. As we have done too many times before, we call on our elected officials to listen to law enforcement leaders and take action to safeguard our police and our citizens to ensure that we are doing everything we can to keep them safe from unnecessary violence.”
Law enforcement leaders and their professional associations have consistently urged Congress to ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines since the previous law sunset in 2004, including the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, the Police Executive Research Forum and the Police Foundation.
According to the FBI, Officer Carraway, who had just received his 30-year pin from the department, is the 45th law enforcement officer killed non-accidentally this year; the 42nd from a shooting. Florence County sheriff Kenney Boone stated at a press conference that "Officers went there unknowing the firepower the suspect had.” It remains unknown what guns the suspect used, but South Carolina does not currently ban assault weaponsor high-capacity magazines. Additionally, South Carolina does not:
- Require a background check on all gun sales;
- Require gun owners to obtain a license, register their guns, or report lost or stolen firearms;
- Limit the number of guns or amount of ammunition sold at one time; or
- Allow local governments to regulate guns or ammunition.
In 1989, Lt. Richard Walters Gould was shot and killed while on duty with the Florence, SC police department. His widow, Cathy Gould, became a tireless advocate for safer gun laws, partnering with Sarah Brady, whose husband Jim was also shot serving his country. When President Clinton signed the Brady bill into law in 1993, he noted that Ms. Gould - who attended the bill signing - would not be a widow had the Brady bill been in effect earlier.
Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.