Gun debate heats up in Virginia

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by Jonathan Costen, 13News

WVEC.com

Posted on December 18, 2012 at 7:46 PM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 18 at 8:01 PM

NORFOLK--  As the investigation into the Connecticut school shooting continues, the gun debate is heating up.

Today, Dick's Sporting Goods said it's pulling some semi-automatic rifles off their shelves nationwide.

The store is also removing all guns from its store nearest to Newtown Connecticut, explaining that it's suspending the sales as the nation mourns.

In the weeks to come the debate is expected to continue with a great deal of passion from both sides of the gun control issue.

Today Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell says policymakers should discuss allowing school officials to carry firearms on school campuses.

Local business owner Ron Hess has owned his gun store for nearly 40 years and says because of the recent media exposure sales are not going down, but up.

"I'm up thirty, thirty five percent and it is continuing to go up daily.  The product is hard to get on the market, when I order my merchandise I ordered 35 guns yesterday I got 12, so it's already out across the United States," Hess said.

Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who has been a strong proponent of the second amendment with an "A" grade rating from the NRA, says it's time to look strong and hard at gun control as well as mental illness.

"My daughters asked me Friday night, 'Dad you're in the senate. Why can't we put reasonable restrictions on assault weapons or those rapid fire ammunition clips?'  I didn't have a good enough answer for them," Warner explained.

Congressmen Scott Rigell and Bobby Scott have decided to publicly weigh in on the issue in the coming days.

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