New Background Check Law, School Shooting Push Record Gun Sales in Colorado

| by Michael Allen

Coloradans have set a new record in their state for gun purchases.

According to numbers from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI), there were 354,880 background checks from January to November, breaking the previous record of 335,940 of 2012.

“January through November 2013 have passed all of 2012, so we’re definitely higher than we were in 2012,” CBI spokesperson Susan Medina told NBC 11 News.

This past weekend saw over 2,000 background checks; just days after the Dec. 13 shooting at Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colo.

Starting tomorrow, Jan. 1, 2014, a new state law will require private gun sales to include a background check via CBI database checks.

“In the past, a seller in a private transaction just had to have a general knowledge that the person they were selling the firearm to could legally possess the firearm,” added Medina. “Now it’s a new law and they need to take part in that background check process.”

The surge of gun sales may be because of the paranoia of government gun confiscation.

“After the tragic school shooting when everybody started trying to hoard, then we had a great influx of people trying to purchase firearms,” says local gun dealer Brian Langfitt. “Because I think they were afraid that the government was going to step in and regulate a certain segment of the firearms, so what they were doing was rushing to do that.”

The background check takes all of 4 minutes, but pro-gun groups still oppose it.

"There are now ridiculous hurdles to obtaining a firearm," Tony Fabian, president of the Colorado State Shooting Association, told the Daily Camera. "And now gun owners are walking on eggshells, because the lawful transfer of their property is no longer permitted, unless they go through the state."

However, California State Rep. Mike Foote countered, "The bottom line is, background checks work. It keeps guns out of the hands of felons and domestic violence offenders."

Sources: Daily Camera and NBC 11 News