Gun Permit Reform

By WBNG News

July 22, 2010 Updated Jun 20, 2013 at 1:22 PM EST

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) In the months leading up to the ACA shooting, Jiverly Wong wasn't fit to own a weapon.

But legally, he had every right to.

Broome County District Attorney Gerald Mollen says there are some cracks in our gun laws and they need to be fixed, before tragedy strikes again.

"It just seems to make sense that if we're going to have people be able to possess and carry weapons at least we should have some regular check to just see if they're not having a psychotic breakdown," said Gerald Mollen, Broome County District Attorney.

To possess a gun in New York, you need a permit.

Mollen says that requires an application, references and background check.

Whether you're approved is at the discretion of your County Court Judge.

But in Upstate New York, you never have to renew your gun permit.

Just update it every 10 years...

Listing any new guns you may have purchased, or a change of address.

Mollen says a renewal, is a must.

'Create a system where at least once every 5-years you have to reapply," he said.

That's the law on Long Island and Westchester County.

In New York City, permits must be renewed every 3 years.

"They're finding it useful in recovering weapons and getting guns back from people who may be unstable," said Mollen.

ACA Shooter Jiverly Wong was issued his pistol permit in 1997 in Broome County.

Mollen says there's no telling whether a renewal in 2007, 2 years before the shooting, would have set off any red flags.

But checking more frequently to see if a person is fit to carry a weapon, could stop someone else in the future.

"And the family member says well, he's depressed over the past month the judge might flag it and say lets go get those weapons until we take a closer look at this," said Mollen.

Gun permit laws are set by the state.

Mollen plans to speak with our local representatives in the state Senate and Assembly about reforming them.

Again, he wants to see permit renewals required at least every 5 years in Upstate New york.

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