Sarasota asks for stricter gun laws after resident dies in Pulse shooting

- Less than a week after 34-year-old Sarasota resident Edward Sotomayor was killed in the Orlando massacre, the City of Sarasota is taking up a resolution that would ask the federal and state government to pass tighter controls on assault weapons.

"It affects the family of Sarasota," said Mayor Willie Shaw. "It is speaking not only for him, but it is speaking for all of us, in the City of Sarasota, a place we want to make safe."

The resolution calls on state and federal lawmakers to, "Prevent mass shootings and large scale loss of life by limiting the availability and use of military grade assault weapons to law enforcement. It cites Orlando, San Bernardino, Aurora and Sandy Hook."

"We are charged to keep this place safe, the community safe, law enforcement officers safe so they can come home at night," said city manager Tom Barwin. "There's no need for these weapons."

Guy Lemakos is setting up for a previously-scheduled weekend gun show at Sarasota's Robarts Arena.

"I have had two death threats this week," he said.

He organizes shows mostly in florida, and says the reaction of Sarasota officials to Orlando is knee-jerk.

"It is an emotionally driven issue but there is a real serious confusion between gun owning, law abiding citizens and people who don't like guns."

Although congress has seldom passed tighter gun measures after mass shootings, he worries this time there is enough momentum.

"You can make all the laws you want," said Lemakos. "But only law-abiding citizens are going to abide by the law."

The resolution is non-binding, and does not impact any of the rules in Sarasota, as cities in Florida are generally prohibited from enacting their own gun laws.

Will sarasota help convince congress to act?

"I leave that upon the coscience of the Congress," said Shaw.

The city commission is scheduled to take up the resolution on Monday at 6PM.

The public will have an opportunity to weigh in at the meeting.

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