Pennyslvania bill inspired by ‘road rage’ killing would ban loaded guns in cars

People gather for 18-year-old Bianca Roberson's viewing and funeral at St. Paul's Baptist Church in West Chester, Pa., Friday, July 7, 2017. A man driving down a Pennsylvania highway shot the recent high school graduate in the head, killing her, as the two tried to merge into a single lane, authorities said. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

People gather for 18-year-old Bianca Roberson's viewing and funeral at St. Paul's Baptist Church in West Chester, Pa., Friday, July 7, 2017. A man driving down a Pennsylvania highway shot the recent high school graduate in the head, killing her, as the two tried to merge into a single lane, authorities said. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A deadly 2017 “road rage” incident has given birth to a bill that could reduce the number of gun-toting drivers in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania state Rep. Carolyn Comitta says her bill would bar people from carrying a loaded firearm in the car. She says that could have prevented the road rage killing of 18-year old Bianca Roberson in 2017.

“On June 28, 2017, a driver fatally shot her with a semi-automatic handgun when she was on her way home from buying college supplies,” she said.

Comitta said since the killing, Roberson’s mother has been a crusader to make sure someone else doesn’t lose a family member like she did.

“Bianca’s death has spurred Michelle Roberson to create the Bianca Nikol Merge with Mercy Foundation that fights against gun violence and racism in our communities.”

The bill would prohibit carrying a loaded gun in any vehicle, but offers exceptions for hunters, law enforcement, military personnel or security drivers. The National Rifle Association did not reply to our request for comment.

The change would be a big departure for Pennsylvania.  If passed into law, it would be more like the gun laws in neighboring New Jersey.  There have been many incidents when gun owners driving through New Jersey were unaware of that state’s strict laws governing firearms in vehicles.  Former Gov. Chris Christie even pardoned some people who had said they violated the Garden State’s gun regulations without knowing what they were.

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