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Adams calls ghost guns a ‘river’ fueling violence in wake of fatal teen shooting in the Bronx

Mayor Eric Adams blamed “ghost guns” — untraceable firearms assembled from kits — on Monday for helping fuel a new wave of violence on the Big Apple’s streets after one of the homemade weapons was used in the horrifying slay of a Bronx high school student.

“Ghost guns are one of the biggest threats to public safety that we face today,” the mayor declared during the roughly 20-minute briefing. “No one should be able to build a gun in their home in 30 minutes. Unacceptable!

“We can not only clamp down on the illegal ghost guns, but we can also focus the guns that are manufactured in legal ways but distributed illegally,” Adams said.

“We must face this issue head-on. This is one of the most important rivers that feeds the sea of violence in our city and our country.”

Adams’ remarks quickly followed — and lauded — President Biden’s announcement he would expand federal gun regulations to include parts frequently found “ghost gun” kits and nominated his second candidate, Steve Dettelbach, to head the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

But Biden failed to mention other factors fueling violence on streets of major cities like New York, including bail reform laws that handcuffed judges from discretion in imposing bail to hold suspects with lengthy rap sheets or violent pasts.

And City Hall has come under increasing pressure to tackle rising crime in New York City as stats revealed that several critical measures of violence are up 40 percent or more so far this year.

Those cries grew louder after a 16-year-old, straight-A-student from The Bronx, Angellyh Yambo, was fatally shot Friday a block from her high school, caught in the crossfire when a dispute erupted nearby as she walked home from school.

Mayor Eric Adams said that “ghost guns are one of the biggest threats to public safety that we face today.”

A 17-year-old, Jeremiah Ryan, was arrested after allegedly attempting to hide the gun by putting it in a trash bag, which he then threw out of the window of a fourth-story apartment.

The ghost gun recovered there, which police sources believe was used in the fatal shooting, is among the 163 seized by the NYPD so far this year. That’s a staggering 462 percent increase from the 29 recovered over the same time period last year.

Still, guns assembled from kits accounted for fewer than 10 percent of the 1,800-plus firearms recovered by cops in the five boroughs so far this year.

Ryan and Yambo photos
Jeremiah Ryan was arrested for fatally shooting Angellyh Yambo with a ghost gun.
A polymer 80 ghost gun recovered during the investigation into murder suspect Jeremiah Ryan. Ryan allegedly shot and killed 16-year-old Angellyh Yambo with a stray bullet he fired.
Ryan tried to hide the polymer 80 ghost gun in a trash bag, which he then threw out of the window of a fourth-story apartment, police said.

“Ten percent is a percentage too much,” Adams responded when pressed on that issue. “Ten percent of a number of 1,800 guns, that’s 180 guns. One hundred and eighty guns. One of those 180 took the life of a 16-year-old child.”

He added: “That’s a crisis for me. One illegal gun is a crisis.”

Police officials have warned — which Adams echoed — that ‘ghost guns’ present a new complication to their crime-fighting effort because they can be easily assembled in homes, meaning firearms no longer need to be smuggled in from other states.

U.S. President Joe Biden holds up a ghost gun kit during an event about gun violence in the Rose Garden of the White House April 11, 2022.
Earlier Monday, President Biden announced he would expand federal gun regulations to include parts frequently found “ghost gun” kits.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Additionally, the weapons have no serial numbers or other identification, making it much harder to track ownership and chains of distribution.

An audibly raspy Adams held the virtual press conference at Gracie Mansion, where he is quarantining, just a day after disclosing he had tested positive for the coronavirus.

The mayor said the sore throat was the only major symptom that he has experienced — and credited being inoculated and boosted for avoiding the crippling fevers, pneumonia, exhaustion and fatigue that often plague the unvaccinated.

– Additional reporting by Craig McCarthy and the Associated Press

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