For Immediate Release: March 20, 2017
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov

Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Bill Allowing Unrestricted Furnishing of Lethal Weapons to Minors

 

Governor Terry McAuliffe today vetoed Senate Bill 865, which would provide minors with easy and unrestricted access to lethal weapons. The Governor’s full statement is below:

 

March 20, 2017

 

Pursuant to Article V, Section 6, of the Constitution of Virginia, I veto Senate Bill 865, which would provide an exemption to the prohibition against furnishing specified types of knives to minors. Under the bill, such a transfer would be permissible if between family members or “for the purpose of engaging in a sporting event or activity.” The term “sporting event or activity” is undefined.

Encouraging minors to possess weapons that can be used to maim, injure, or cause death is contrary to the welfare of our youth and Commonwealth. Senate Bill 865 also would pose difficulties for law enforcement, in that there would be no way for a law enforcement officer to determine whether a minor met the criteria of the bill’s exceptions and thus was lawfully in possession of such a weapon.

Accordingly, I veto this bill.

 

Sincerely,

Terence R. McAuliffe

 

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