New gun reform laws give more resources to gun stores and pawn shops
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - With new gun reform laws now in effect nationwide, local police departments say time will tell if they start making a difference on crime in Alabama.
The new gun reform laws include background checks for younger gun buyers, changes to domestic violence criteria and red flag laws. But, it also gives federal resources to gun shops that officials said could help keep firearms in responsible hands.
Federal Firearm Licensees, or FFLs, now have access to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System and they can use it to run background checks on employees to ensure that they are not prohibited from owning firearms themselves.
Former local US Attorney Jay Town said in Alabama, many FFLs are also pawn shops. They can now also use the NICKS system to determine if a firearm is stolen before buying it back.
Town said this should help keep illegal guns off the streets and promote legal and safe gun buying.
“Making it easier for Federal Firearm Licensees to preform background checks on these employees that have access to all these firearms,” Town said. “And also, these weapons coming to the shop, making sure those aren’t stolen weapons. That’s a good thing. It is exactly what our laws should promote.”
Before this new law went into effect, Town said gun shops and pawn shops would have to pay for their own system to run checks on employees’ backgrounds or checks to see if guns were stolen.
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