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Thread: Voluntary Background Checks at Gun Shows

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Voluntary Background Checks at Gun Shows

    I thought there might have been a report on this already, but I couldn't find one. Today is August 7th, so we're one month and one week into the new law requiring the VSP to set up voluntary background checks at gun shows. I have read reports from an earlier show that there had been THREE checks during that particular weekend. (ETA: Further research reminded me that the news reports were from Saturday only, at a Richmond gun show on July 9th. I never did see the total from that show.)

    I stopped by the Fredericksburg gun show this afternoon, and spoke with the very nice young lady at the VSP table that was set up to conduct voluntary background checks.

    At 3:55, five minutes before the show ended, there had been ZERO voluntary checks conducted at the show this weekend.

    Interestingly, she told me that they had some how set up their computer system so that all the FFL background checks conducted during the show were routed to her, so, where before any problems would have been handled by e-mail or telephone to someone in Richmond, now there was a "background checker" on site to actually go talk to if anything came up. That seems like a good thing.

    She was optimistic that as time goes on, more people will become aware of the option and the numbers will go up. I guess we'll see. They certainly can't go down.

    TFred
    Last edited by TFred; 08-07-2016 at 10:04 PM.

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    Will they also do BR chks for folks to exercise their first amendment, 4th and 5th (etc) amendment rights too? How exciting.

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    I would think after awhile the VSP would get very tired of wasting funds for nothing.

    Easy duty for the person conducting the checks sit at a table all day getting paid.
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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firearms Iinstuctor View Post
    I would think after awhile the VSP would get very tired of wasting funds for nothing.

    Easy duty for the person conducting the checks sit at a table all day getting paid.
    The lady I spoke with was quick to point out that her being there running the local FFL checks was a great benefit, so therefore, no taxpayer dollars were being wasted.

    Seriously. That's where she took the conversation.

    ETA: And I suppose she would have been sitting at an office in Richmond, doing the same thing, if she had not been sitting at a table in Fredericksburg. So maybe travel costs were added?

    TFred
    Last edited by TFred; 08-08-2016 at 11:44 AM. Reason: Better word

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    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    I thought there might have been a report on this already, but I couldn't find one. Today is August 7th, so we're one month and one week into the new law requiring the VSP to set up voluntary background checks at gun shows.
    TFred
    I don't understand what this is about. A law requiring the Va State Police to do voluntary background checks?

    On pedestrians? On people buying T-shirts with Don't Tread on Me emblems? On people buying knives or beef jerky?

    What is the point? Is it people want to know if they have a record? Every gun show we have attended have -mandatory- background checks when buying firearms.

    Don't most people already know if they are felons? Or is this a way to sneak in and purchase a firearm by checking to see if a felony you know you have (perhaps elsewhere?) is on the books in Virginia. That sounds crazy.

    Please explain like I'm five.

    OK nevermind. Apparently the VSP and private sellers did not have access to the database

    Voluntary Background Checks at Firearms Shows:

    - Currently, only firearms dealers with a federal firearms license (FFL) can access the National Instant Checks System (NICS) to perform background checks on firearms purchases/transfers.

    - The Virginia State Police cannot access the system on behalf of private citizens selling or transferring firearms.

    - This bill would give the Virginia State Police statutory authority to perform background checks on behalf of private citizens at firearms shows, which is required by the FBI.

    - Private sellers feel it is their civic duty to obtain the results of a background check prior to selling or transferring a firearm and they currently do not have the ability to access background checks for this purpose. This would allow them access on voluntary cases.

    - This bill requires the Virginia State Police to be present at every firearms show in the Commonwealth to perform background checks on a voluntary basis.
    Last edited by Maverick9; 08-08-2016 at 11:43 AM.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    OK nevermind. Apparently the VSP and private sellers did not have access to the database
    Yep, this, with slight adjustment. VSP had the access, but not the authority to use it on behalf of private sales. Until the new law took effect.

    According to some people, there has been a large demand from private sellers to have a way to run background checks. So far, the actual numbers do not seem to support this claim.

    TFred

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    I wonder what the Virginia State Police capacity for conducting background checks at gun shows is? Gun shows are usually big events, but.... there could be a weekend where many small gun shows were held....
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

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    Regular Member 2a4all's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    I thought there might have been a report on this already, but I couldn't find one. Today is August 7th, so we're one month and one week into the new law requiring the VSP to set up voluntary background checks at gun shows. I have read reports from an earlier show that there had been THREE checks during that particular weekend. (ETA: Further research reminded me that the news reports were from Saturday only, at a Richmond gun show on July 9th. I never did see the total from that show.)

    I stopped by the Fredericksburg gun show this afternoon, and spoke with the very nice young lady at the VSP table that was set up to conduct voluntary background checks.

    At 3:55, five minutes before the show ended, there had been ZERO voluntary checks conducted at the show this weekend.

    Interestingly, she told me that they had some how set up their computer system so that all the FFL background checks conducted during the show were routed to her, so, where before any problems would have been handled by e-mail or telephone to someone in Richmond, now there was a "background checker" on site to actually go talk to if anything came up. That seems like a good thing.

    She was optimistic that as time goes on, more people will become aware of the option and the numbers will go up. I guess we'll see. They certainly can't go down.

    TFred
    Tfred:

    I think I'm the one who reported the three BG Checks (which happened the 1st day of the RIR Gun Show in early July) and was reported in the media (RTD I think).

    I also checked with (likely) the same young lady at the Hampton Gun Show in mid-July, and she admitted that the total was still THREE.

    While there may have been some checks run between then and your show, it does seem like the demand is far short of popular perception. Of course, the missing statistic is the actual number of private sales, which I strongly believe is much greater than THREE.

    Perhaps the VCDL Gun Show Coordinators could check with her at each of their shows for updates?
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