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Some years back I took a job as a pawn shop manager in a small Midwest city and that shop dealt heavily in firearms.


In the first week I was there a fellow bought a Raven .25 cal. semiauto pistol, leaving a deposit so he could pick up the firearm on his payday. On payday he paid the balance, filled out the 4473 and left with the firearm and a single box of ammunition.


The next morning as I was opening the shop I was visited by an investigator from the parole board of the state in which the shop was located who asked me to give her the 4473 of the sale. I refused to do so as she lacked law enforcement credentials and I was right.


Shortly thereafter an agent of the state investigation bureau showed up and I cooperated fully.


Seems the fellow who had purchased the firearm had kidnapped a local taxi driver, killed him with a shot to the head and wounded a police officer who had tried to intervene. The perp was captured an ensconced in the local hooscow facing kidnapping, first degree murder, assault on a police officer, attempted murder of a police office and parole violation!


"PAROLE VIOLATION!", I thought and was then informed by the agent that the perp was on parole for a long series of felonies and living in the local halfway house.


The address he gave on the 4473 struck me as familiar but as a new resident of the town it didn't register with me that it was the address of the halfway house.


Needless to say, I was devastated and it took me some time to reach the conclusion that I was not responsible for the tragedy by selling the firearm but had been failed by the law.


The taxi driver left a disabled wife and three children behind and I spent some time helping them get assistance from both the state and federal governments.


A background check would have stopped the sale in its tracks and gotten the perp immediately locked up and facing charges of a felon attempting to purchase a firearm.


All rights have limitations; one cannot shout "FIRE!" in a crowded theater when there is no fire without facing consequences. one cannot vote more than once in a single election, one cannot take the property of others except in due course of law and one can't roller skate in a buffalo herd.


The perp is locked up for the rest of his miserable life.


Background checks are a good thing.
 
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