Background checks debated after latest shooting
by Harvest Prude
Posted 9/04/19, 11:19 am
The gunman in a West Texas shooting spree avoided a background check by buying his weapon privately. Authorities said Seth Ator, who died in a shootout with police Saturday, had previously failed a background check and would have been flagged as a “prohibited person” because of a mental illness diagnosis. Ator killed seven people and wounded 23 during an angry rampage after his employer fired him from his job.
What are the rules on background checks? Sellers may not transfer a firearm to someone they know is barred from possessing one. But some states do not require sellers to ask or to do a background check. Democrats in Congress have renewed calls for requiring universal background checks for gun purchases. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday he would bring gun control legislation to the floor only with President Donald Trump’s support. Congress reconvenes on Monday.
Dig deeper: Read my report in The Stew about lawmakers’ struggle to find consensus on gun control legislation.
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Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.