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The video of a brazen shooting may have been hazy, but you could still feel the horror of the person facing the man with the gun.

In the urban Burnaby-Douglas riding, the shooting last month of a patron at a popular local pub was a sharp reminder of how close to home the gun violence issue has become in this election campaign. Security cameras captured two men fleeing the pub with guns in their hands after a shooting left two men critically injured.

That footage is still fresh on the minds of voters, say the three candidates of the major parties in the riding.

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Incumbent NDP MP Bill Siksay says residents he's talked to are worried about crime, but he's heard little enthusiasm for the Liberal promise to ban handguns.

"People are skeptical that this will solve the problem that is causing their concerns. They understand that handguns are illegal. Specifically, they're more concerned about what's happening at unstaffed border crossings. They understand that guns are coming across the border illegally."

Gary Mauser, who teaches political marketing at Burnaby's Simon Fraser University, says there is skepticism of the Liberal plan in both urban and rural settings. Prof. Mauser, who has researched gun violence for 25 years and became a hunter after being introduced to shooting as part of his academic work, says Conservatives are skeptical the ban will be effective, while NDP supporters believe more weapons should be banned.

Conservative candidate George Drazenovic says the residents he's met see the Liberals' plan as political opportunism. "Crime has always been an issue in Burnaby-Douglas. It's come to the forefront in recent months because of specific incidents. Gun registry is the huge issue for them and law enforcement. Everyone I've talked to says bureaucracy isn't going to reduce crime. They want more police officers on the street."

Liberal candidate Bill Cunningham says only a few people he's encountered on the campaign trail say the handgun pledge will be the deciding factor in how they cast their vote. But he says crime is on people's minds. "When you stack up the anecdotals of all the grow ops in neighbourhoods and home invasions and the video footage of that shooting, people are feeling apprehensive that maybe this could happen to them."

112: The number of handgun-related homicides in Canada in 2004 - 65 per cent of all firearm-related deaths.

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