Fingerprinting gun owners approved by Illinois lawmakers

The Illinois Senate still must approve the bill passed by the House.

May 30, 2019, 2:22 AM

A bill passed on Wednesday by the Illinois House would require gun owners to be fingerprinted and pay more for identification cards.

The state Senate still must approve the bill before it could be signed into law.

Democratic Rep. Kathleen Willis of Addison, citing deficiencies in the state's current Firearm Owner's Identification system, said the bill comes in response to a shooting at a factory in Aurora where six people, including the gunman, were killed, according to The Associated Press.

Gary Martin, 45, killed five coworkers before dying in a firefight with police in February. A convicted felon, Martin never should have obtained the FOID card he used to purchase a .40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun used in the attack, police said.

The casket of slain Chicago Police Officer Samuel Jimenez is carried by fellow officers to the Chapel of St Joseph at Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Nov. 26, 2018 in Des Plaines, Ill.
Kamil Krzaczynski/Getty Images

FOID cards currently cost $10 and last for 10 years. The new bill would require cards cost $20 and instead last five years, and that card owners be fingerprinted.

Tim Butler, a Republican representing Springfield, said supporters of the bill "are creating a police state" by creating a database of fingerprints that could be used for other purposes, the AP reported.

In the U.S., according to data compiled by FiveThirtyEight, more than 33,000 people die every year from gunfire.

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