For Immediate Release: July 8, 2016
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov | Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security: Nicky Zamostny, (804) 225-3800, nicky.zamostny@governor.virginia.gov

Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Attends Richmond Gun Show to Promote New Background Check Law

 

RICHMOND – Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran will attend a gun show at the Richmond International Raceway on Saturday, July 9th from 10:00am -12:00pm to promote a new law that took effect July 1, 2016 expanding access to background checks in Virginia for non-federally licensed sellers. Governor McAuliffe signed the new background check law as part of the historic bipartisan firearms agreement in late February.

Under the new law, the Virginia State Police have the authority to perform background checks on behalf of private sellers who feel it is their civic duty to ensure they are safely selling or transferring firearms. Additionally, there is funding in the budget to provide a trooper at every gun show in the Commonwealth, which will strengthen enforcement efforts and deter illegal sales.

“Expanding access to background checks and bolstering enforcement efforts will keep guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals and save lives in Virginia,” said Governor McAuliffe. “Furthermore, because of this new law, sellers not availing themselves of the opportunity to submit a background check on a potential purchaser could now face liability if a gun sold without a check is used to commit a crime.”

Since the law was signed, Secretary Moran has worked with the Virginia State Police to ensure a thorough implementation of this law. On Saturday, Secretary Moran will work with troopers to educate attendees of the gun show about the new law and urge those selling or transferring firearms to utilize the new system.

“The Virginia State Police report that in 2015, 278 prohibited individuals attempted to illegally purchase firearms at gun shows from federal firearms dealers, resulting in 130 on-site arrests,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran. “I am confident that expanding access to background checks and enhancing enforcement efforts will curb illegal gun sales and make our communities safer.”

 

###