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article imageAmerican politics: A gun tale

By Robert Weller     Dec 14, 2013 in Crime
Denver - In Colorado’s state capitol building, a Democrat was being sworn in as the newest state senator. A few miles to the south, a teen gunman wounded two people with a shotgun before blowing his brains out.
More than 1,000 miles away, on the East Coast, families and victims were preparing to commemorate the first anniversary of the Sandy Hook shootings in Newtown, Conn.
What do three stories have in common? More than originally known.
Late Saturday it was reported that the student gunman was reported to police in September for threatening to kill the debate coach he was hunting when he entered the school Friday. The coach, who had argued with him earlier, escaped after the gunman fired at him once.
It also was revealed that he meant to kill more than one school teacher. He carried a machete and three incidendiary devices as well as a shotgun, the New York Times reported.
As in most of the nation's gun massacres the gunman or gunmen had been reported to police before the shootings.
Rachel Zenzinger, 38, gave up her post on the Arvada City Council to replace another Democrat who was facing a recall vote for supporting tighter gun controls, the Denver Post reported.
A senior at Arapahoe High School, reportedly angry for being kicked off the high school debate team, wounded two students Friday. KMGH said.
Asked to comment on the latest shootings, Zenzinger said: “I think our thoughts and prayers should be with the students who experienced this tragedy, and with their families.”
Only one of the two victims was seriously wounded. She was identified as Claire Davis, 17, by her father, who said she was not doing well, according to KMGH.
The NRA and other gun advocates had successfully recalled two other members of the Colorado Legislature, according to a statement.
That left Democrats, who passed the gun control measures, in charge of the Senate, but by only one vote. With State Sen. Evie Hudak facing a possible recall, Hudak resigned and Democrat Gov. John Hickenlooper appointed Zenzinger to replace her.
The NRA issued a statement: “The appointment of Zenzinger is bad news for gun owners and sportsmen in the Centennial State. Zenzinger is no friend of the Second Amendment, and has made clear she is in full support of the irresponsible legislation passed and enacted this year. Now is the time to begin preparing to unseat her next November.
“Your NRA-ILA is preparing for the 2014 elections to ensure that state legislators who ignored the rights of responsible gun owners are held accountable, and will continue to fight for your Second Amendment rights in Denver.”
Westword reported the shooter was wearing tactical gear when he entered the school, had set off one Molotov cocktail and planted a second but it was found and defused.
The two new Colorado gun laws were passed in reaction to the murder of 12 people at a suburban Denver theater during the opening of the new Batman movie. Fifty-eight people were wounded.
One law requires universal background checks on gun purchases; the other limits most ammunition clips to 15 rounds. Gun checks had not been required on sales at gun shows.
In Newtown, bells tolled as the first anniversary of the slaughter of 26 was commemorated Saturday.
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