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The measure would also bar people subject to restraining orders from having guns.

House panel votes to strip abusers of guns

A measure to bar domestic abusers from having guns passed a Minnesota House committee last week as supporters testified it would make victims safer.

The House public safety committee approved the measure on a voice vote. Rep. Dan Schoen, the Cottage Grove Democrat sponsoring it, said anyone who beats women and children doesn’t deserve to have a gun.

Schoen was careful to say the measure isn’t aimed at “law-abiding gun owners.”

It would also bar people subject to restraining orders from having guns.

Advocates cited statistics they said showed the chances of an abuse victim dying from domestic violence rise when a gun is present.

Sara Grewing, the St. Paul city attorney, testified that victims are six times more likely to be killed if a weapon exists at the home.

Support wasn’t universal.

Julie Zappa of Grey Cloud Island testified she survived a physically abusive relationship, but is a gun owner and sees Schoen’s bill as a potential infringement of her right to carry a gun. She said a piece of paper won’t keep battered women safe.

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