Stats show Virginia gun background checks effective

Virginia’s background check system could potentially serve as a national model due to it’s mental health adjudications. Stats this week showed that it is indeed a system to be advocated, having prevented more than 16,000 felons from buying guns since it began in 1989. State police records show a total 54,260 transactions have been denied during the past 24 years. The total also includes drug abusers, the mentally ill and domestic assault offenders. Virginia Commonwealth University criminal justice assistant professor Thomas R. Baker says the state’s background checks help to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them. “I think that we can take a lot of lessons from what Virginia did and put it in place at the federal level, because there are a lot of states that aren’t doing what Virginia is doing to try and beef up the database for the background checks to make sure that we actually can do something that does have a chance at reducing the likelihood and hopefully eliminating it from happening again,” said Cantor, about the background check system last week. “There are many aspects of the Virginia background check system that are superb,” Senator Tim Kaine added. “We are the best state in the country in introducing mental health adjudications into the national database. Nineteen states don’t put any mental health adjudications into the national database, and some states just do a few here and there, but Virginia’s the best state in the country in doing that, so there are aspects of the way we do the background check system in Virginia that really are a national model.”    ]]>

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