Justice Department: Missouri gun law undercuts public safety

Missouri

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri law enforcement officers are pulling out of federal task forces because of a new state gun law.

The U.S. Department of Justice in a Wednesday court filing said at least 12 Missouri officers dropped out of federal partnerships because of the law barring state and local authorities from enforcing federal gun laws. The new law hasn’t even taken effect yet.

Several Missouri police departments also no longer are sharing evidence with the Justice Department’s firearms bureau. St. Louis and adjoining St. Louis County are suing to block the new law.

O’Fallon Missouri’s police chief resigned over the law earlier this year. He said it puts a chill on peacekeeping duties.

St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones said the new law takes tools away that could prevent gun violence.

A hearing on motions in the case is scheduled for Thursday.

The Associated Press contributed information for this story.

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