On the weekend of February 12, Maksim Gelman, a 23-year-old Ukranian immigrant with a history of drug arrests, went on a rampage in Brooklyn, NY that left him charged with four murders, two assaults, and two robberies. His weapon of choice was an 8-inch kitchen knife. Four other kitchen knives were found in his car. On February 14, New York City’s Mayor for Life Michael Bloomberg released the following statement:
“This tragic event demands that America inject some sanity, some kind of reasonable controls, into its kitchen-knife laws. No one but a professional chef needs an 8-inch kitchen knife. No one but a professional chef needs an entire collection of kitchen knives. Why was this person, who had a criminal record, able to buy kitchen knives with no sort of background check? Because anyone can walk into a hardware or kitchen-supply store and buy any knife they want as easily as they can buy a blender or a colander.
“Unlike guns, knives do not have to be reloaded, which increases their lethal potential. They are easily concealable and quiet. No civilian should have access to weapons this deadly. Kitchen-knife dealers should be required to conduct background checks and report multiple sales. It is time to stand up to the kitchen-knife lobby. I call upon my fellow mayors to join me in the effort to place reasonable controls upon kitchen knives and end this madness.”