Gun regulations to change next week
Reporter: Jessica Chapin
TUCSON (KGUN9- TV) - Arizona gun dealers will have to abide by some new rules starting next week. After a controversial investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, store-owners in the Southern border states will now be required to submit reports for anyone who buys more than two semi-automatic rifles, .22 caliber or greater with detachable magazines.
Black Weapon Armory owner Tommy Rompel is already required to submit reports for anyone buying multiple handguns, but he says these new changes are unfair.
"For a citizen buying a firearm that's legal to buy a firearm, it puts a spotlight on them already for the multiple handgun form it does the same thing with long guns so they're not doing anything to break the law but now all of a sudden the ATF is looking at them," he said, "when they haven't done anything to break the law."
Rompel says he rarely sees anyone buying more than one gun at a time, and he takes it upon himself to report any suspicious behavior. While he hasn't had a problem with customers asking to purchase and arsenal, he's not surprised to hear it's happened in other stores.
In an indictment from the ATF's controversial gun-running investigation, several suspects purchased 10, 20, even 30 AK47 rifles from one store in one day. Many of the same weapons were later found wrapped, stacked and ready to be picked up near the border on the Tohono O'Odham reservation. Others were discovered in Douglas on their way to Mexico, and two of them turned up where Border Patrol agent Brian Terry was gunned down.
But, Rompel says the new ruling won't make a difference.
"Those restrictions wouldn't prevent those from happening," he said, "the ATF created this situation and they made it happen. Even with the multiple long gun form we'd be filling the form out but this would still be happening regardless of it."
He says gun-runners will simply change their tactics and buy one gun from 10 stores, or go to a state without the regulations because they're not nation-wide.
Border Sheriff Tony Estrada agrees that the regulations shouldn't single out border states, but he says they are a step in the right direction.
"I think it's a sensible approach to having some type of control over these multiple sales of firearms," he said, "It will put some type of a brake on this runaway train."
The NRA and other organizations and gun dealers are filing suit against the administration to put an injunction on these rules. They are set to take effect August 14.