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Rep. Stansbury Praises Bennie Hargrove At Committee Hearing

New Mexico US Rep. Melanie Stansbury
Kevin Meerschaert via Zoom
US House of Representatives
New Mexico US Rep. Melanie Stansbury

Congresswoman Melanie Stansbury paid tribute to Bennie Hargrove during a House Committee meeting last week, while asking her colleagues to take more action to keep guns out of the hands of children.

During a House Committee on Oversight and Accountability Stansbury told the story of Bennie, who was shot to death in 2021 at Washington Middle School in Albuquerque while coming to the defense of a fellow student who was being bullied.

He was trying to defuse the situation when he was shot and killed by fellow student Juan Saucado Jr. who obtained the gun from home because it was not properly secured.

It led to the passage of the Bennie Hargrove Actin New Mexico. Stansbury told the committee it’s the kind of legislation that needs to be approved across the country.

“People across the country are begging us to take action because our children are literally afraid to go to school. I've heard a lot of testimony this morning from my friends across the aisle, calling into question the Second Amendment, and the right to freedom and law-abiding citizens. That is not what we are talking about this morning,” she said.

We're talking about the safety of our children and our communities, and about taking meaningful action in this body to stem the tide of violence that is affecting every single community across the country.”

         Stansbury helped pass the bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the first comprehensive gun safety legislation that Congress has passed in over 30 years. The legislation, which includes investments in behavioral health care and violence intervention programs, also cracks down on gun trafficking and straw purchasing to reduce unregulated arms sales in New Mexico communities. The state legislature also passed a bill to close the straw purchase loophole in New Mexico law.

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