Gun Tracing Case Study

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Firearms tracing is the systematic tracking of the movement of a firearms recovered by law enforcement officials from its first sale by the manufacturer or importer through the distribution chain (wholesaler/retailer) to the first retail purchaser. (ATF: National Tracing Center, 2016) Comprehensive firearms tracing is the routine tracing of every crime gun recovered within a geographic area or specific law enforcement jurisdiction. Questions arise if we are able to accurately analyze the data collected by gun tracing. If outliers can be identified, how might they play a role in legislation? Previous studies imply strong correlations between the distance, cost of living, and strictness of gun laws (Trace the Guns: The Link Between Gun Laws and …show more content…
Gun laws are largely decentralized across the country. Though federal laws are in place, they serve as a minimum while state legislations are allowed to enforce laws at the state level. Demand for guns has led to a black market to allow guns to be owned by those barred from purchasing weapons through the system. This secondary market is substantial in size, with ATF investigations into trafficking between July 1996 and December 1998 identifying over 84,000 firearms that were diverted from the primary market into this secondary market. (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms 2000) If the interstate flow of guns responds to differences in state-level regulations, then regulations may have significant cross-state externalities.4Sub-theme – narrow but grouped findings related to the theme. (Knight, …show more content…
A straw purchaser is defined by falsely stating on the required paperwork that he or she is the buyer of the firearm, when they are actually purchasing for someone else. Only nine states have enacted laws enabling local prosecution and incarceration of straw purchasers. The 41 states that do not enable local prosecution and incarceration of straw purchasers have an export rate of 15.6 crime guns per 100,000 inhabitants, 64% greater than the rate of states that do. (Trace the Guns: The Link Between Gun Laws and Interstate Gun Trafficking, 2010) Falsifying Purchaser Information is a felony when an individual provides false information while purchasing a firearm. Twenty-seven states have enacted laws enabling local prosecution of buyers who provide false information during a firearm purchase. The twenty-three states that do not enable local prosecution and incarceration of gun buyers who falsify purchaser information have an export rate of 19.9 crime guns per 100,000 inhabitants, 83% greater than the rate of states that do. (Trace the Guns: The Link Between Gun Laws and Interstate Gun Trafficking, 2010) Failing to Conduct Dealer Background Checks occurs when a dealer purposefully fails to conduct a background check on a gun buyer. Twenty-five states have enacted laws enabling local prosecution and

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