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Violent Pa. Gun Crimes on the Rise

With an increase in crime locally and statewide, lawmakers are struggling to come together on a solution.

In the last year of FBI data available in Pennsylvania, 2020, the state’s violent crime rate went up 27.1% the homicide rate, 49%. It’s a situation that isn’t getting any better and it’s why all sides are seeking a solution, but finding it? Well, that’s been a long drawn out debate without much agreement yet.

Gov. Tom Wolf Tuesday standing in front of the Capitol with anti-gun advocates, battling a drenching downpour and profane protestors, calling for more to be done to prevent gun violence.

The Democrat called on the Republican led legislature to pass initiatives he’s called on for years, mandatory reporting for lost and stolen guns, background checks on all gun sales, requiring safe storage of firearms, and creating so called Red Flag laws temporarily removing firearms from someone who may present a danger to others or themselves.

“These are common-sense measures. These are things people all across the Commonwealth support.”

Republicans in the Senate say they are seeking solutions for the spike in crime.

The Senate majority Policy Committee’s Crime and Public Safety holding what they say is the first of several field meetings on crime at the Cambria County Courthouse Monday.

Local police and judicial leaders told the committee the problems are more varied than just the guns themselves: it’s drugs lagging police funding and morale, and a need for better mental healthcare…that’s led to a trickle down effect that’s enveloped all walks of life

“Nothing is sacred anymore…It’s unfathomable what’s happened in this region.”

“Everybody hates you, low pay, and you stand a chance to get killed. I do feel we have a target on our back anymore.”

Another issue discussed at the Cambria County hearing, sentencing guidelines. President Judge Norman Krumenacker saying judge’s need to be given back more discretion in sentencing, so that those who need a break can get it, and when somebody needs a harsher sentence, it can happen.


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