SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY, Calif- San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson recently wrote a letter to Vice President Joe Biden citing several issues with gun control proposals. Here is one statement made from the Sheriff in his letter, "I will not take firearms from law abiding citizens and turn law abiding citizens into criminals by enforcing gun control legislation that will not solve or prevent tragedy," said Sheriff Ian Parkinson in his letter to Vice President Joe Biden.
He goes onto talk about the countries mental health systems and how they're not adequately serving the mentally ill. It's an issue that is not getting a lot of attention in the gun control talks.
"In most of these school shootings and many of the tragedies we have had lately in this county and the homicides have been related to the mentally ill," said Sheriff Ian Parkinson of the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office.
For example, a high profile case in Paso Robles that took place last year. Sunni Jackson was a patient at a San Bernardino state mental hospital and was released. Last year in April she allegedly killed her mother. She is now back at that very same hospital she was before and has been ruled unfit to stand trial.
"We've had a number of homicides, we have a number of mentally ill in the county jail system where really they are not getting the treatment they really need," said Sheriff Parkinson. Cases with mentally ill people have risen over the past few years in SLO County according to both the Sheriff and the District Attorneys Office. "In addition to cuts I don't know if the services have grown yet the problem is growing and we are not keeping up with it," said Sheriff Parkinson.
So the Sheriff said instead of stricter regulations on guns, a different approach is needed to prevent tragedies. "We don't prevent them by simply regulating and taking away guns, we are really criminalizing or potentially criminalizing the honest citizen that has a weapon for sporting or personal protection," said Sheriff Parkinson.
Another key point the Sheriff wanted to make is that many of the gun control solutions that have been brought up in congress are already in place here in California. For example the ban on assault rifles and high capacity magazines.
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