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Biden Announces Executive Actions To Curb Gun Violence 'Epidemic'

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President Joe Biden unveiled his first attempts to curb gun violence on Thursday, announcing a set of modest moves designed to begin revamping federal gun policy.

Video Transcript

SERENE BRANSON: One person is dead and five others are injured, some critically tonight after another mass shooting.

PAT HARVEY: Yes, this time in Texas, Serene. The gunman unleashed his terrifying rampage inside a business. And not long after that, President Biden announced new gun control executive actions today. KCAL 9 political reporter Tom Wait is here with the latest on the shooting and Mr. Biden's gun proposal, Tom.

TOM WAIT: Yeah, we have this proposal. We also have some breaking news on the shooting tonight, Pat. Tonight, we're learning new details about the accused gunman in this latest shooting.

Authorities say the alleged killer is a 27-year-old Texas man who worked at the company where the shooting happened. This is just one in a string of mass shootings in recent weeks. President Biden tonight is hoping executive action will encourage new gun control legislation.

- One [? that ?] one EMS, one active shooter.

TOM WAIT: In Bryan, Texas, police and paramedics scrambled to respond to yet another mass shooting, one person is dead five injured, four of them critically.

ERIC BUSKE: We're processing the crime scene to preserve all the evidence that we need to preserve. We're also working on notifying next of kin, and we're still interviewing any witnesses that have not been interviewed yet.

TOM WAIT: The gunman started shooting at around 2:30 in the afternoon inside a custom cabinet business. Amelia Rodriguez says she is a painter at the company Kentmore Cabinets.

AMELIA RODRIGUEZ: I was painting with my co-worker and I heard-- I heard, like, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. I said, oh, the machine got messed up again. So I tried to walk to figure out which one. And when I start walking, somebody grabbed me. He's like, no, no, no, we need to run because it's a shooting going on.

TOM WAIT: The alleged gunman was captured in a neighboring county. Police say the suspect shot a state trooper before he was arrested. That trooper is now in critical condition.

JOE BIDEN: They've offered plenty of thoughts and prayers, members of Congress, but they passed not a single new federal law to reduce gun violence.

TOM WAIT: Just hours before the Texas shooting President Biden and Vise President Harris announced new executive action on gun control.

JOE BIDEN: Gun violence in this country is an epidemic.

[APPLAUSE]

And it's an international embarrassment.

KAMALA HARRIS: Real people on both sides of the aisle want action.

TOM WAIT: With quick congressional action to seriously address gun safety unlikely, Biden used executive action to target stabilizing braces that can be added to pistols and so-called ghost guns. Those are firearms without serial numbers that are sold in kits and could be assembled at home.

JOE BIDEN: Anyone from a criminal to a terrorist can buy this kit, and as little as 30 minutes, put together a weapon.

TOM WAIT: So-called ghost guns are very much on law enforcement radar here in the Southland. In February, the LA City attorney announced a lawsuit against a Nevada-based company called Polymer 80, claiming the company is helping put ghost guns on the streets of LA.

MIKE FEUER: Polymer 80 has made it easy for anyone, including a felon to easily obtain these components that could be made into weapons that are posing a major public safety threat.

TOM WAIT: Ghost guns have been used in a number of high-profile crimes here in the Southland, including this shooting ambush of two LA County Sheriff's deputies in September who were shot at close range as they sat in their Cruiser outside a Metro Blue Line station. Both survived, and the suspect was ultimately arrested.

A ghost gun was also used in the Saugus High School mass shooting in 2019. Two students were killed-- 14-year-old Dominic Blackwell and 15-year-old Gracie Muehlberger.

BRIAN MUEHLBERGER: It's a step and it's a start.

TOM WAIT: Brian Muehlberger is Gracie's father. He says Mr. Biden's changes could have saved his daughter's life. He says Washington needs to work faster, believing that gun violence will intensify as the pandemic ends.

BRIAN MUEHLBERGER: I'm worried that this is going to be a really, really bad year, and I think I'm most worried about the children, you know, the schools. Last year was the first year where there wasn't a mass shooting at a high school. The only difference was there was nobody at a high school.

TOM WAIT: Mr. Biden today also called on Congress to pass stalled Democratic legislation, expanding the gun background check system. And he wants the federal ban on assault weapons renewed, both unlikely, given staunch Republican opposition.

And two of the five people wounded at the Texas cabinet business are in critical condition tonight. The three others and the trooper are in serious but stable condition. Pat, back to you.

PAT HARVEY: All right, thanks for that, Tom.