Ferguson, Inslee seek ban on sale of assault-weapons

Ferguson, Inslee seek ban on sale of assault-weapons
Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson speaks at a news conference announcing legislation to combat mass shootings in the state, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2019, in Seattle. Gov. Jay Inslee is joining Ferguson to propose limits to magazine capacity and a ban on the sale of assault weapons. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson) (Elaine Thompson/AP)

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson say they want to make mass shootings less likely in the state by banning the sale of high-capacity gun magazines and assault weapons.

The Democrats on Thursday announced plans for legislation that would limit magazine capacities to 10 rounds and that would ban the sale of assault weapons, defined as semi-automatic weapons that have at least one military-style feature.

Both measures contain exceptions for law enforcement, military personnel and recreational shooting ranges, and they would allow people to keep high-capacity magazines and assault weapons they already own.

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The weapons and high-capacity magazines have often been used in mass shootings around the U.S., including two in Washington in the last four years.

Ferguson has requested bills to ban the sale of assault weapons the last four legislative sessions. This is the first time Inslee has joined him in requesting such a measure.

The attorney general is also seeking legislation that would require background checks for ammunition sales and prohibit violent offenders or others barred from owning guns from buying or possessing ammo. Several states have similar restrictions.