DuPage County sheriff initiates plan to take more guns off the street

DUPAGE COUNTY (WLS) -- The pile of guns in the DuPage County evidence room represents weapons that are no longer on the street, capable of being used for violence.

And after the workplace shooting in Aurora that killed five people earlier this month, Sheriff James Mendrick said he wants to add many more guns to this collection.

"Being proactive. I want to make sure what happened out there in Aurora doesn't happen in DuPage," Mendrick said.

State police had revoked the FOID card from the Aurora gunman, Gary Martin, several years ago after learning of a previous felony conviction for attacking his girlfriend.

But Aurora police say they have no record of it and they never acted on it.

DuPage County officials say they want to make sure that doesn't happen here.

"A felon should never have had a weapon or a FOID card to begin with, and was later revoked, still had a weapon. Still had a FOID card. That shouldn't happen," said Pete DiCianni, DuPage County Board member.

Gun owners whose FOID or conceal-carry licenses are suspended or revoked get a letter from the county. They have 48 hours to turn in their card and guns or face an arrest warrant.

Now the sheriff will have officers follow up immediately.

"For me to be able to sleep at night as DuPage County Sheriff I want to be able to say I exhausted every possibility to get as many guns off the street as I can," Mendrick said.

The sheriff is also reaching out to companies in the county to get blueprints of facilities, so in the event of violence officers can respond more quickly and effectively.

Sheriff Mendrick is offering to make officers available to sit in on meetings where an employee is facing termination, as Gary Martin was, before he opened fire in the Aurora plant.
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