Democrats representing Loudoun in the state legislature are urging the county Board of Supervisors to broaden firearms restrictions following a recent incident in which rounds from a backyard firing range struck homes in a nearby subdivision.
The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the shootings, which were reported Sunday afternoon. Rounds from the firing range struck homes on Indigo Run Place, Virginia Gold Lane and Foxtail Fields Drive in the Willowsford neighborhood. Investigators traced the source to a Lenah Road property, where individuals had been firing into a berm. The initial investigation determined the property was in compliance with state and local laws, the Sheriff’s Office reported. The case is under review by the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.
On Thursday, eight members of Loudoun’s General Assembly delegation called on the Board of Supervisors to outlaw the use of firearms in the Transition Policy Area. Local laws already prohibit the discharge of firearms in the Suburban Policy Area that includes most of eastern Loudoun. The transition area covers 22,813 acres, stretching from south of Leesburg to along the Prince William County border and is intended for low-density residential development.
The letter seeking the gun restrictions was signed by Senators Jennifer Wexton (D-33) Barbara Favola (D-31) and Delegates Jennifer Boysko and Delegates John Bell (D- 87),Karrie Delaney (D-67), Wendy Gooditis (D-10), Kathleen Murphy (D- 34) and David Reid (D-32).
They called on Board of Supervisors to take emergency action to prohibit the discharge of weapons in developed areas.
“While the Virginia code addresses the use of firearms and destruction of property, state code provisions are primarily designed to remedy injuries or damages after they have already occurred,” the letter states. “It is our opinion that the local zoning code better provides a mechanism to proactively reduce the likelihood of injuries or damages from stray gunfire occurring in the first place.”
“It is fortunate that no one was injured during this incident, but given that current rules do not prohibit this activity we believe immediate action by the Board of Supervisors is necessary,” the letter states.