Representative Adriano Espaillat Supports New Tech Start-Up to Reduce Gun Violence

New York, New York (June 22, 2022) – Gun violence is a past and present problem across the United States that deserves full attention and thanks to some advanced technology and the support of U.S. Representatives like Adriano Espaillat from New York, the country could possess a brighter future with a proper solution. 

Tech entrepreneur and CEO of GunMARK, Sephida Artis-Mills, has partnered with Bill Lynch Associated Networks (BLA) to develop disruptive technology regarding the public health of gun violence in communities. Aiming to curb gun-related fatalities and injuries in the United States, the GunMARK technology can affix a unique individual marking similar to a fingerprint onto firearms. Ultimately, this technology could lower accidental gun deaths in homes by electronically alerting gun owners of their firearm being moved. 

“We are creating ways to address the recent events of gun fatalities and injuries,” said Bill Lynch, who heads BLA. “We all have a civic responsibility to use our talents for the betterment of this world. The societal impact of firearm injury is well-documented. If tech entrepreneurs can use their know-how to save lives without overstepping fundamental freedoms, then they should join this important conversation.”

Over 39,000 people in the United States die as a result of gun violence each year with 10,000 more suffering non-fatal gun injuries. Gun violence affects people of all ages and races in the U.S., but has a disproportionate impact on young adults, males and racial/ethnic minorities. Among U.S. residents ages 15-24, homicide is the fourth leading cause of death for non-Hispanic whites, the second leading cause of death for Hispanics, and the leading cause of death for non-Hispanic blacks.

Congressman Adriano Espaillat (NY-13) who represents Harlem, Washington Heights, The Bronx, and portions of the Upper West Side acknowledged the need for innovative ideas to address gun violence. 

“Gun violence is an epidemic in the United States, and every day 30 people are killed by someone using a gun. We have witnessed far too many Black and Brown Americans die senselessly due to gun violence, and we need everyone to pitch in to help address this issue that has taken a toll on each of us,” said Representative Espaillat, the first Dominican-American congressman in history.

“I commend tech entrepreneurs Ms. Artis-Mills and Dr. Lafontaine for their willingness to offer ideas to help address the gun violence crisis, and I encourage others throughout the business community to join the conversation as well to help keep our communities safe,” Rep. Espaillat noted.

Dr. Kamea Lafontaine is the co-owner of GunMARK and founder of iNTELLiNetwork, the company that developed the initial technology. A longtime leader using tech to address public safety and awareness for citizens, Dr. Lafontaine is a software developer who serves as a director with Crime Stoppers, and is an active representative of the Government Blockchain Association and the Canadian BlockChain Consortium.

He hopes this technology will create more dialogue among government agencies, advocates like the National Rifle Association, and community groups to find middle ground.

“This technology could address several concerns in the gun debate,” Dr. Lafontaine explained. 

“We know the importance of protecting information and the risk of exposure in the wrong hands. The technology is designed to keep gun owners personal and private information safe, as well as conceal their identity. Using Blockchain affords us the world’s first platform for shared information and safety reporting that is completely anonymous.”

GunMARK intends to provide pseudonymous tracking capabilities using a Blockchain network, which will address many of the 2nd Amendment privacy concerns associated with electronic tracking of firearms. They are also testing technology such as a pseudonymous system to create electronic geofences around schools, churches, hospitals and other public places to alert security personnels when unauthorized guns breach the perimeter. 

Taking a stand against gun violence and raising awareness about gun violence prevention is an area Ballin 4 Peace knows first-hand. With Ballin 4 Peace Founder, Haron Hargrave, losing his childhood friend, Mark Arrington, to a senseless act of violence in Hollis, Queens in 2007, Ballin 4 Peace was created as a 501c3 non-profit organization to spread peace through sports and help raise gun violence prevention awareness with inner-city youth throughout New York City and across the United States. 

Ballin 4 Peace is proud to support Congressman Adriano Espaillat, GunMark, and Bill Lynch in their important efforts to end gun violence.

“I believe that tech is the future and stopping gun violence is very important so we can let our youth today and future generations know that we can impact our communities through peace,” said Haron Hargrave.

“What Representative Adriano Espaillat and tech start-up GunMARK are doing to reduce gun deaths in the U.S. by repurposing technology for a good cause is something we should all get behind.”