(WASHINGTON) -- New York City's top cop says he's favors universal background checks, a key element of President Obama's wide-ranging proposal to curb gun violence in America.
Appearing on CBS' Face the Nation Sunday, New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says closing loopholes that allow criminal elements to acquire firearms is an important step in stopping violent crime.
As for New York, Kelly argues it's not assault weapons that are as prevalent as handguns, which he says are responsible for 60 percent of homicides in the city.
The commissioner also defended the proposed use of a kind of body-scanning device that would allow cops to check if someone is carrying a gun without patting them down. Kelly acknowledged 4th Amendment concerns by civil liberties groups who oppose such an effort.
Meanwhile, Tennessee Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn, another guest on Face the Nation, complained that an assault weapons ban would not protect children, contending that the administration should be more concerned with the root causes of violence that include mental health issues.
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