Barrett calls for changes in Internet gun purchase laws

Barrett calls for changes in Internet gun purchase laws

By Charles Benson. CREATED Oct 24, 2012

WEST ALLIS - Radcliffe Haughton shot seven people before killing himself at the Azana Spa and Salon on Sunday.

There's anger and frustration about how easy it was for him to get a gun.

Haughton was not supposed have any guns because of a restraining order against him.  But it looks like he bought a gun online legally by using a common loophole in the law.

Armslist is considered the Craigslist of websites for gun buyers and sellers.  It's there where Haughton allegedly purchased the weapon used in Sunday's killing spree, according to Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

"Until we close this loophole it's going to continue to happen," argues Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Mayor Barrett wants to close that loophole allowing guns to be sold between private citizens without a background check.

Ben Giese at the Shooters Shop explained a private gun sale.  The store does not allow private gun sales. 

Giese: "I hand you the gun, you hand me the cash, we part ways."
TODAY'S TMJ4's Charles Benson: "That's it?"
Giese: "It's that simple."
TODAY'S TMJ4's Charles Benson: "Do you have to know my name?"
Giese: "You do not."
TODAY'S TMJ4's Charles Benson: "Do you have to know anything about me?"
Giese: "Not a single thing."

The Shooters Shop agrees the loophole can be closed.

"Simply require all private sales to have a background done at a local federal firearms license holder," said Giese.

But if you buy a gun in his store, the law requires a valid state ID, a background check and 48-hour waiting period.  The mayor wants all gun sales to go through a background check.

"People who can not legally own a gun know that all they have to do is avoid going to federal gun store and then be able to purchase a gun and they will be able to kill people," says Barrett.

Wisconsin's Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says such a law change is unnecessary.

Charles Benson

Charles Benson

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Charles Benson is one of the most reliable, trusted and experienced reporters in southeast Wisconsin. If there's a big story going on, Charles is usually there leading the way.