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Guns at Home: An Ohio Lawmaker Pushes to Lock Them Up

CINCINNATI (Mike Kallmeyer) -- An Ohio lawmaker wants to prevent kids getting their hands on guns inside their homes.

State Representative Bill Patmon authored House Bill 31, which would require gun owners to keep their firearms locked up inside their own homes.

The Cleveland Democrat's district is home to Chardon High School, the scene of a February, 2012 school shooting that left three students dead.

Patmon believes the improper storage of guns are a root cause of many accidental and intentional shootings involving children.

"The guns come from home, and they weren't safely stored," Patmon said. "Don't we see the correlation? Don't we see what's going on in our society?"

While Patmon pushes House Bill 31, opponents of the proposal push back.

Buckeye Firearms President Jim Irvine says resources would be better spent on education, not more legislation and litigation.  

"At the end of the day, we've already got laws on child endangerment that are used against people who leave a gun in a reckless situation where a child gets hurt," Irvine said. "The harder you make it to get that firearm, the less likely a homeowner will be able to defend themselves."

A recent poll conducted by the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Cincinnati found that 35.9 percent of respondents said they keep firearms inside their homes, while 6.6 percent said they keep their guns loaded and unlocked.
 
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