Perth killer of mother and daughter would have had fewer guns under proposed laws | Perth

A gunman who fatally shot two women in their residence would not have had access to the weapon used in the crime under the proposed firearm regulations currently under discussion in the Western Australian legislature.Mark Bombara, 63, could still have had access to up to five firearms as a recreational shooter and ten if he were a farmer or gun club member, even with the new laws in place.

Bombara killed Jennifer Petelczyc, 59, and her 18-year-old daughter, Gretl, at their Floreat residence on Friday in an act described by Premier Roger Cook as “horrifying” and “pointless.”

He was reportedly searching for his former spouse when he arrived at the residence, fatally shot the victims, and subsequently took his own life as police arrived at the scene. Bombara possessed 11 firearms under a recreational shooter’s permit and two pistols under a collector’s licence; one of these handguns was used in the killings.

WA’s Police Minister, Paul Papalia, stated that the proposed regulations would be the most stringent in the nation, preventing Bombara from acquiring the collector’s licence and limiting him to five firearms. “This individual, regrettably, was deemed fit and appropriate until he committed this act, and he abided by the firearm ownership laws until he did not,” he remarked on Monday. “Under current legislation, this is what occurs, and it underscores why we aim to strengthen the laws.”

Bombara would have also been required to undergo a health evaluation with a mental health component. The government is now contemplating additional measures to fortify the legislation, including granting police the authority to confiscate firearms after incidents of family and domestic violence.

A firearms control expert, Prof Charles Watson of Curtin University, indicated that WA’s proposed firearm laws were remarkable and progressive. “In global terms, it will easily represent the most robust set of gun laws worldwide, surpassing those of other states here. I believe other states will be compelled to examine what WA has instituted,” Watson stated.

Bombara was known to law enforcement because his former spouse requested assistance moving out of their shared residence in late March following several family and domestic violence-related incidents. Cook described the horrifying and repugnant crime as driven by domestic violence. “Every resident of Western Australia is still coming to grips with Friday’s senseless act of violence,” he remarked.

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The University of Western Australia remarked that Gretl was a dedicated student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in science and a skilled member of the university’s water polo team. “We are profoundly shocked and saddened by the loss of such a young life,” UWA Vice-Chancellor Amit Chakma communicated to staff and students on Monday.

The water polo club paid tribute to the mother and daughter, who had been affiliated with it since Gretl joined a junior program in 2014. “Jenny was a significant supporter of the club and her daughter Gretl,” the club stated.

Similar sentiments were echoed by Gretl’s former school, St Hilda’s Anglican School For Girls. “The Petelczyc family was highly regarded within the school community,” Principal Fiona Johnston noted. Law enforcement was called to the residence in Perth’s upscale western suburbs around 4.30 p.m. on Friday following reports of gunfire, arriving as the final shot was discharged. Officers transported the younger victim to Royal Perth Hospital, but she could not be saved.

In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline can be reached at 13 11 14, and the national family violence counselling service can be contacted at 1800 737 732.

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