Oklahoma Hands Out Gunlocks

Saturday, May 13th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Oklahomans stood in line Saturday to do their part to keep children safe by picking up free gunlocks. Ice cream cones weren't the hottest items at Braums stores Saturday morning it was gunlocks.

So many people want to lock their guns away that even the supply ran out after just two hours.

"We've got guns in the house we've got a new baby and it's important to keep the guns locked up," says Chris Burnhan, gun owner.

Lieutenant Governor Mary Fallin is hoping the locks will keep children from getting shot accidentally.

"We find that Oklahomans are responsible gun owners and we've seen that today by all of the people who have some out to get free gun locks," says Fallin.

The locks are free thanks to the National Shooting Sports Foundation in Washington, D.C., which responded to a request by Fallin. This time around 25,000 locks went out from Braum's parking lots across the state. In the next few months that number is expected to hit 100,000. These are free, but they normally cost about $10 each. But as many parents have tragically learned, gunlocks are worth it at any price.

Claudia Phillips' son, Nicholos, was shot at the age of four. Sixteen years later she's preparing to celebrate his birthday alone, again.

"A lady had a loaded gun in her son's bedroom floor and my little boy picked up the gun and put a cowboy hat on and handed it to a 15-year-old girl and bent over to pick up a toy hat for her and when he did she shot him," says Phillips. "She didn't know it was loaded she'd never been around guns and neither had he."

She hopes her loss will make gunowners think twice about leaving their guns unlocked.