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Missouri Moms Demand Action, Everytown Applaud St. Louis for Requiring Gun Dealers to Alert Law Enforcement When Criminals Try to Purchase Guns

St. Louis is The First City in the U.S. to Pass Such an Ordinance

ST. LOUIS – Volunteers with the Missouri chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today applauded the St. Louis Board of Aldermen for approving an ordinance that requires gun dealers to report failed background checks to law enforcement– providing law enforcement with the information they need to investigate people who try to illegally purchase firearms. It is both a federal and Missouri crime for a person who is prohibited from possessing firearms to attempt to purchase a gun by lying to a gun dealer about their prohibited status on a background check form. A study commissioned by the Department of Justice found that people who lie to try to purchase guns had an 81% increase in firearm-related arrests in the five years after the background check denial than in the five years prior.

Although a number of states enforce similar policies — and the federal NICS Denials Notification Act would make a similar requirement the national standard— St. Louis is the first local government to enact one.

“When someone prohibited from owning guns tries to buy one anyway, that’s a crime, and a clear warning sign that they may pose a risk to others or to themselves,” said Kim Westerman, a volunteer with the Missouri chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “The measure passed today will alert St. Louis law enforcement officers to these serious situations, giving them crucial information that can help save lives.”