How guns can get into the wrong hands

Less than 1% of gun applications have been denied by the NICS

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A lapse in the system allowed the South Carolina church shooter, to buy a gun. 22News got a behind the scenes look at how gun checks are processed here in Massachusetts.

Dylan Roof, the man accused of killing 9 black parishioners in South Carolina, should’ve never been sold a gun. FBI officials said inaccurate paperwork allowed the sale to take place. Roof had been arrested weeks before the shooting, and admitted to possessing illegal drugs. That should have disqualified him, but an FBI examiner, never saw the report.

“The criminals will go and get guns,” Hamid Mahdavy of Wilbraham told 22News. “They’re hell-bent on having a gun and they’ll go get it. It’s the law-abiding citizens who then can’t get guns. They’re deprived of their rights.”

22News investigated what how the gun-buying process works.

Mike Meunier of Guns Inc. in West Springfield told 22News all applicants fill out a federal government form, asking for basic personal information. Then, there’s a criminal background form. The forms are sent to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for processing.

Over the last decade, the NICS office has reviewed about 100-million applications, and only less than 1% of them have been denied.

“I’m a firm believer in the 2nd Amendment, the right to carry guns, so I’m not in favor of reducing that in the process of making sure that it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands,” says John Murray of Agawam.

The federal government has no ability to force states to report those who should not be able to buy a gun.

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