On November 3rd, authorities said they believe accused LAX shooter Paul Anthony Ciancia purchased his rifle “legally” from a licensed gun dealer in Los Angeles. This means he went through a background check and it means the Senate’s failed gun bill would not have stopped him from getting his gun.
According to WTOP 103.5, officials said Ciancia purchased a rifle and two handguns and the purchases “appeared legal.” They added: “He didn’t buy them on the street, he didn’t buy them on the Internet–he bought them from a licensed gun dealer.”
This is crucial as proponents of gun control claim expanding background checks will make Americans safer. However, the expanded background checks will be the same checks performed now, only they will be done on every purchase instead of just some.
Over time the background checks would change as more mental health information was accessible to those doing the checks, but that will require information sharing between agencies, state and federal sharing, and a mechanism for sharing/accessing that information that’s not in place now.
Even after a mechanism for sharing/accessing that information is place, persons with no recorded mental health conditions or prior criminal record will still pass background checks.
During an April 14 appearance on Face The Nation, Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) admitted his expanded background check proposal would not have prevented the heinous crime at Sandy Hook Elementary.
One of Manchin’s staunchest fellow gun control supporters, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), also said expanded background check would not have made a difference in Newtown because Adam Lanza, although “disturbed …had no criminal record or record of mental illness.” Thus, no indicators “would have been caught in a background check.”
The FBI says they have “not found any evidence of previous crimes or run-ins with the TSA” in Ciancia’s past.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins.