News →

Richmond Mayor Wants Mandatory Reporting Of Lost Or Stolen Guns

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney announcing the two public safety ordinances he plans to introduce in the lobby of city hall on Wednesday.
Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney announcing the two public safety ordinances he plans to introduce in the lobby of city hall on Wednesday. (Roberto Roldan/VPM)

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney says he’ll introduce an ordinance requiring residents to report a lost or stolen firearm within 24 hours. 

During a press conference at City Hall on Wednesday, Stoney said over 200 people in Richmond have been harmed by firearms so far this year. His ordinance would make it a civil infraction to not report a lost or stolen firearm to police in a timely manner. A similar piece of legislation was introduced at a special session of the state General Assembly earlier this year but was never voted on.

“The majority party in the Virginia General Assembly has been spineless when it comes to gun violence reform,” Stoney said. “I’m not willing to wait any longer to protect our residents.”

Richmond Police Chief Will Smith said his department has received reports of more than 350 lost or stolen guns in 2019. He said Stoney’s proposed ordinance will allow them to create strategies around recovering recently reported guns and reduce illegal firearm purchases.

“We continue to seize firearms that have never been reported stolen, that are involved in illegal activity, that are involved in illegal possession,” Smith said. “It’s those guns that we really need to address.”

Stoney also announced Wednesday he’ll introduce an ordinance making texting while driving a primary offense, punishable by a minimum fine of $125 dollars and $250 after that.

Both ordinances will need to be approved by Richmond City Council.