By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Around the corner from where a three-year-old girl was shot and killed by a stray bullet in the Grays Ferry section of Philadelphia, prosecutors, police and lawmakers renewed their call for legislation that mandates hard time in jail for carrying illegal guns.

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Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams says in New York City, there was political will for swift and harsh punishment for those who are caught carrying a gun without a proper license.

He says New York’s homicide rate dropped from 2,400 in the early 1990’s to 334 murders last year:

“They impose a three-and-a-half year mandatory minimum for those that unlawfully possess firearms.”

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A bill sponsored by State Representative John Taylor has passed the Judiciary Committee which would mandate minimum two-year prison terms for anyone convicted of illegal gun possession in Philadelphia. It awaits a vote in the full house before that measure or a companion bill by State Senator Larry Farnese moves to the senate:

“We have the opportunity to return to Harrisburg in september and move this bill.”

Senator Larry Farnese (Credit: Steve Tawa)

Senator Larry Farnese (Credit: Steve Tawa)

They say the man accused of killing three-year old Tynirah Borum, a convicted felon, would have been behind bars at the time, if a mandatory minimum sentence for illegally carrying a firearm in Philadelphia had been enacted.


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