Memphis Police Director working to change state gun laws

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis Police Director Mike Rallings is ready to go political to fix a public safety issue.

Director Rallings told FOX13 he’s drafting legislation to change the current state law which allows gun owners to keep their weapons in the car.

Rallings shared with FOX13 data show nearly 1300 guns were been stolen out of cars in 2018 and those weapons are in the hands of criminals.

It amounts to officers investigating three guns stolen out of vehicles every day.

Those stolen weapons end up in the hands of criminals, and Director Rallings wants the legislature to change current law.  Rallings said, "I am ready for it.  Protecting the lives of citizens that is what I hired to do."

Director Rallings showed FOX13 the data from his department.

In 2013, police reported 158 guns were stolen from cars. The state legislature changed the law in 2015 eliminating the carry permit for gun owners to keep a fire arm in their vehicles.

The number of weapons stolen out of vehicles climbed each year afterwards.

"That law has had some negative consequences and more guns are floating around on the streets," said Rallings.

Rallings will propose asking law makers to reinstate the clause that gun owners must have a carry permit to keep their guns in vehicles, and require a secure case to store the weapon because, "a lot of guns are stolen under a car seat or in the glove box, under the car and in a glove box is not secure."

Don't expect Rallings to fight this issue alone. He is promising to reach out to police department in Nashville, Chattanooga and Knoxville so they can let lawmakers know that it is happening in their communities as well.

"I think it is not asking to much as ask for a citizen not to let the guns fall into the hands of children and not let the gun fall into the hands of would be criminals," said Rallings.