Too often, criminals are in possession of guns once legally purchased by ‘responsible’ gun owners.
Since the December massacre of schoolchildren at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., much has been said about how to keep guns from falling into the wrong hands. The debate has homed in on a hotly contested piece: closing the gun show loophole. Through this, people with criminal histories can skirt background checks by purchasing from unlicensed private sellers.
But there’s a more common manner in which illegal guns fall into criminal hands, a way not often raised in public debate: burglaries. The guns don’t start out illegal. Mostly they’re owned by good, law-abiding citizens who think of themselves as responsible gun owners and would shudder to think their possessions would turn into criminals’ tools.