New gun proposal less harsh for 1st offense

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Associated Press

Posted on November 4, 2013 at 6:03 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 4 at 6:03 PM

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — An Illinois House member is tweaking anti-gun legislation.

Rep. Michael Zalewski (zuh-LESS'-kee) proposed Monday that someone with a loaded, accessible gun and no license be sentenced to one to three years for a first offense.

Gang members or felons who break the gun law would serve three to 10 years.

But those convicted would serve 85 percent of their sentences instead of the 50 percent now required.

A previous version of the legislation required longer mandatory prison time for gun offenses. But the National Rifle Association feared it would inadvertently snag otherwise law-abiding gun owners.

An NRA spokesman says he is skeptical the new version will answer his concerns.

A spokesman says Zalewski hopes the bill can get a committee hearing Tuesday.

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The bill is SB1342

Online: http://www.ilga.gov

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