TULSA - During a public forum held Thursday to discuss the topic of gun violence, a proposal was made to ban all gun shows in the city of Tulsa.
The meeting, attended by a number of law enforcement and faith leaders, including Tulsa County District Attorney Tim Harris, Deputy U.S. Attorney Tim Faber, Deputy Polcie Chief Dennis Larsen, was organized by Tulsa Metropolitan Ministry.
As part of the program, all in attendance were invited to step to the podium and share their thoughts, and one woman created a stir when she voiced her opinion.
"I would really like to propose that the city of Tulsa become a gun show free city," Elizabeth Arnett said, "and that we go to the fairgrounds committee and we say, 'you know, it's more important for this show not to happen in our city than for the hotels to make money. It's more important to not have this show in our city than to have the restaurants make money."
Arnett added, "we all know there was a gun show two weeks ago, and there's a gun show next week. We seem to be the United States (of) America host city for gun shows. I think we could just really do something powerful there."
Among those in attendance, TPD Sgt. Matt McCord, who patrols north Tulsa and deals with gun violence on a regular basis.
He also spoke about gun shows during his brief remarks, and he does see an issue with gun shows. He said the problem is people "being able to get them (high-powered weapons) without a background check, or a very minimal background check. Very, very dangerous for the wrong type of people to get those in their hands."
"I think most of you have seen the media story in Oklahoma City, where the gang unit...went in plain clothes undercover to a gun show and watched three documented, known gang members purchase high-capacity assault weapons and were able to arrest them as they were leaving because it's a felony to possess a weapon if you are a convicted felon. A pretty good illustration of how easy it is to get that (weapons)."
Sgt. McCord spoke with KRMG after the meeting, and was directly asked if he'd favor a ban on gun shows.
He made it clear that he is a private gun owner, as well as a police officer, and strongly defended 2nd Amendment rights, and that he was not speaking for the police department, but only for himself.
With those caveats, he said he thinks some limits would help.
"I agree with the concept of much, much stricter background checks," he told KRMG, "and if a gun show can't survive without that, then I would be in favor of that."