Tags: Gun Control | Gun Rights | Mass Shootings | mental illness | school shooting | tim scott | nics

Sen. Scott: Focus on NICS, Mental Illness Could Prevent Shootings

(Fox News' "America's Newsroom")

By    |   Friday, 16 February 2018 03:24 PM

An increased focus on mental illness and ensuring the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is working could help prevent mass shootings such as the one that killed 17 teens and teachers Wednesday in Parkland, Florida, Sen. Tim Scott, who has had to deal with the aftermath of a horrific shooting in his own state of South Carolina, said Friday.

"Make sure that the NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) works," the Republican lawmaker told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" co-host Bill Hemmer.

"It could have prevented the legal purchase of the gun that caused the atrocity in South Carolina . . . a second thing that we can do is [make] a laser focus on the most pervasive, consistent issue in these mass shootings, which has been mental illness. We must figure out how to address that issue."

Scott said he has been reflecting since Wednesday on the June 2015 killings inside the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. The killer, Dylann Roof, 21, has been sentenced to death for killing nine African-American church members while they were participating in a Bible study group meeting.

"I certainly have been reflecting on the atrocity that occurred at a church where my uncle attends for more than 50 years," the Republican lawmaker said. "It was one of, if not the worst church shootings, in the history of South Carolina."

Scott pointed out accused Florida shooter Nikolas Cruz left many "crumbs" that should have been detected earlier.

"You can look through the social media of Mr. Cruz and you see crumbs everywhere," said Scott. "We have to find a way to make sure that all those crumbs are exposed so that our law enforcement agencies can do all that is possible to stop these atrocities from occurring."

Cruz left many warning signs, including that he wanted to do school and church shootings, said Scott, and over a year ago he stopped his mental health treatments.

"Unfortunately, all the signs do not bring back a single life," Scott said. "We have to make sure that our agencies are equipped with all the resources necessary to do their jobs and information is a part of the resource that is necessary for our folks to do the job at hand."

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Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said there needs to be a focus on fixing the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and addressing mental illness as two paths to preventing mass shootings in America.
mental illness, school shooting, tim scott, nics
Friday, 16 February 2018 03:24 PM
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