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Family of Kansas City mass shooting victim pursuing legislation for stricter gun laws in Missouri

'Jasity's Law' would amend conceal and carry laws for public gatherings
Jasity Strong's family
Posted at 9:59 PM, Jul 31, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-01 06:19:46-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo — Those who drive past east 57th Street and Prospect Avenue in Kansas City, Missouri, will see names in chalk marking the sidewalk and fence — like Jasity.

"She called me momma, auntie, twin," said Trish Mitchell, Jasity Strong's aunt.

Jasity "Jas" Strong was turning 28 years old.

"She was celebrating her birthday," said Tamika Jenkins, Strong's mother.

And on that night one month ago, Strong did what they would expect.

"She FaceTimed me and I answered and you don't know how happy I am that I answered, she said, 'Momma, where's your shot at?'" Jenkins said.

Jenkins never expected what the next call would be.

"They saying Jas is dead," Jenkins said. "We said, 'You lying.'"

They realized she was caught in the crossfire of a mass shooting off east 57th Street and Prospect Avenue, leaving behind people who loved her the most, including her two children.

"There's never any action behind thoughts and prayers," Mitchell said. "My Bible says faith without works is dead."

Strong's family took their pain and their plan to Missouri Rep. Richard Brown, a democrat from Kansas City.

"What we're doing right now is not working, we got to do something," Brown said. The people of Missouri are sick and tired of being sick and tired, so if the legislature will not act, we need to let people use their power."

He's referring to a petition for a ballot initiative that's waiting for approval from the Missouri Secretary of State. It seeks local gun control and he hopes Missourians will be able to vote on it next year.

Strong's family is petitioning for Jasity's Law, which would amend conceal and carry laws at public events.

Brown said for years he's been fighting for gun-legislation that would raise the age limit and requirements to carry a concealed weapon.

"Many of the legislators in Jefferson City will not budge to change these gun laws no matter how many people die," he said.

Strong's family is spearheading a petition that's inching closer to 500 signatures, but they need thousands more. They said what didn't work in the past isn't stopping them now.

"Our legislators don't like the words 'gun control,'" Mitchell said. "It makes them feel like they don't have any power, and so we wanna change the vernacular to gun responsibility."