Skip to comments.N.H. gun law has controversial loophole(uber barf alert)
Posted on 04/28/2012 11:53:28 AM PDT by marktwain
According to New Hampshire law enforcement officials, Brittany Tibbetts bought a Ruger .357 revolver at a gun show in Manchester during the weekend of Jan. 14-15.
Three months later, the weapon was one of two handguns recovered by police in the home of Cullen Mutrie following the April 12 shooting death of Greenland Police Chief Michael Maloney and the wounding of four other officers. Investigators have said Mutrie shot the officers and killed Tibbetts before taking his own life.
Associate Attorney General Jane Young didn't say how officials discovered Tibbetts purchased the weapon at that gun show or whether the dealer from whom she purchased it was licensed. Ballistics tests have not been completed on the Ruger or the 9 mm pistol found in Mutrie's home to determine which weapon he used to kill Maloney and wound the other officers who came to his house to execute a drug-related search warrant.
Officials have alleged in court documents that Tibbetts was a drug-dealing accomplice of Mutrie, but Young said investigators have yet to fully determine whether Tibbetts had a criminal record of any type that would have prevented her from passing a background check to buy a handgun or get a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Mutrie was barred from possessing weapons after a domestic violence conviction. Police confiscated multiple weapons from Mutrie in 2010, when he was subject to a domestic violence restraining order.
Even if she had a criminal record, Tibbetts could have purchased one or multiple weapons from an unlicensed dealer at a gun show such as the one in Manchester. Only Federal Firearm Licensed dealers are required to conduct a background check to determine whether a person is on a list of people prohibited from buying guns. Reasons a person would be on the list include having been convicted of a felony, being under a domestic violence restraining order or being mentally incompetent.
New Hampshire is one of 39 states that have a gun show "loophole," which means there is no federally mandated background check requirement for any weapon sold by an unlicensed dealer. The only identification required must show the purchaser is a state resident and over age 21. If FFL dealers sell at gun shows, they still must conduct a background check.
The 300-table January gun show at the National Guard Armory in Manchester was one of nine scheduled in 2012 by the Bow-based firm DiPrete Promotions Inc. DiPrete is also sponsoring a gun show April 28-29 at the ice arena in Biddeford, Maine. According to the company's Web site, there is room for as many as 300 eight-foot tables for vendors in Biddeford, and tickets are $8, with children under age 12 admitted free if accompanied by an adult.
DiPrete is also sponsoring gun shows scheduled for September in Concord and Manchester. It is not known what the ratio of licensed to unlicensed dealers was at the Manchester show. Unlicensed dealers are not required to file sales paperwork and licensed dealers are required only to hold sales records. DiPrete did not respond to phone and e-mail messages requesting comment for this story.
Under New Hampshire law, no permit is required to purchase a handgun. A permit is required to carry a concealed weapon.
Licensed firearm dealers have been required to use the National Instant Background Check System since 1994, when the Brady Handgun Violence Protection Act was enacted. The law was named after James Brady, the press secretary to President Ronald Reagan. In March 1981, Brady and Reagan were shot by attempted assassin John Hinkley Jr., who had been treated for severe psychiatric issues and had been arrested months earlier trying to carry three guns onto a passenger airplane.
The law does not cover "firearms transfers" by unlicensed gun dealers, which is considered a private sale. Eleven states have either closed down all firearms or handgun sales at gun shows since the Brady law went into effect. According to a recent report on gun show sales by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, "about 40 percent of gun sales nationwide are made without a background check to see if the purchaser is a criminal or otherwise prohibited from buying guns. In effect, we have two gun markets: A regulated one, where buyers are checked to see if they can legally buy guns, and an unregulated one, where they are not."
The National Rifle Association, the nation's largest pro-gun organization, has opposed legislative attempts to close the gun show loophole because, the organization says, unlicensed or "kitchen table" dealers are a minority of sellers at gun shows and they are following the law.
The N.H. attorney general's office did not say how much it cost Tibbetts to buy the revolver at the Manchester gun show. According to Guninternational.com, the cost for the online sale of a Ruger .357 ranges from $450 to $835.
The concept that the government could or should only allow certain people to buy guns stands the very concept of American jurisprudence on its head. It presumes that the government knows all, controls all, and should be doing so. It is wrong and ineffective. It is the opposite of preventing criminals from possessing guns.
It is crazy to set up a huge expensive bureaucratic system, require everyone to jump though hoops and prove that they are *not* criminals in order to try, ineffectively, to prevent the few individuals who are not responsible, from having legal access to guns. This is a failed paradigm, and it should be abandoned. To accept the idea that the all gun sales should be monitored by the government, and only allowed to those it deems satisfactory is fundamentally wrong.
The entire idea of the enterprise has always been the death of a thousand cuts, where the restrictions on who can buy, and where, and how and what are continually increased until the number of gun owners is reduced to political insignificance.
Meaningless drivel. Maybe they should have concentrated on this Mutrie bad guy and how he wasn’t allowed to have weapons in the first place but had them anyway.
Some writer trying to make something out of nothing.
You need to go back to school and learn how to research your subject before you write. Facts can be a pain in the ass for someone who got by in life by receiving participation trophies into adulthood...Public schools in New England suck! that is why I left when I did.
Can anyone list the eleven states that have the gaul to require government permission?
Rhode Island, Maryland, and California do not allow private sales at all.
Massachusetts, New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, Michigan, Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska, and Hawaii ban private sales of handguns.
Connecticut, New York, Illinois, Colorado, and Oregon also ban the private sale of long guns at gun shows.
Eyes, I hope that when that POS Lynch is gone and we get an American as Gov, we can pass Constitutional Carry.
There is no such thing as an unlicensed dealer.
It’s like saying the reporter is an unlicensed hooker because they had sex at some point in their life.
Because you’ve sold a gun doesn’t mean you’re a dealer.
In the Leftist Lexicon, a loophole is any freedom they dont like.
Bill, I’m not very optimistic about what might happen come November. Yes, Lynch will be gone but will we have anything better?
And we sure are not going to have 3 to 1 and 2 to 1 majorities in the House and Senate like we do now. The Repubs in Concord are eating each other alive. The situation is very bad, especially between the House and the Senate.
Yep, I'll be there.