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New Background Check Law Likely Stopped Prohibited Buyer At Washington Gun Show

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Washington’s new voter-approved background check law appears to have prevented the sale of a rifle to a man with a warrant out for his arrest.

It could be the first time the new law was put to the test.

Paul Snider organized the Lewis Clark Trader Gun Show at the Spokane County Fair & Expo the first weekend in December. He said because Washington’s new background check law had taken effect a couple of days earlier, he recruited three federally-licensed gun dealers to conduct background checks for person-to-person sales.

On Saturday, Dec. 6, one of those checks came back with a denial.

“There was a person that tried to buy a firearm and he was refused only to find out later that the person there was a warrant out for his arrest,” Snider said.

Snider said he’s no fan of the new law. But he added, “The law did work in this case.”

Snider said he hopes the man is arrested, but he still thinks the new background check law is an unnecessary burden on law abiding gun owners.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy as well as the Washington State legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia." Prior to joining the Northwest News Network, Austin worked as a television reporter in Seattle, Portland and Boise. Austin is a graduate of Garfield High School in Seattle and Connecticut College in New London, Connecticut. Austin’s reporting has been recognized with awards from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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