willbird wrote:it is still VERY difficult to trace a gun even IF every time it is bought and sold that happens through an FFL. If I buy a new XD-45 from Gander Mtn there is a paper trail from the mfg, to a distro, to GM, to me...................if I take it to Clelands and sell it, and they sell it to Evan Price, who sells it to "Tons-O-Guns" in Ney Ohio, who sells it to RDigital, who sells it to another FFL, who sells it to another private party. Then the gun is recovered in a storm drain in Port Clinton the trace of who bought it when and where is going be very difficult to piece together, if it was used to shoot a federal Judge the ATF may put that effort in, but not for a case where a bullet was recovered in a no injury drive by in Toledo.
The only option they would have to trace it QUICKLY in a high profile case would be to call EVERY FFL and ask them if they sold an XD-45 serial #xxx-9876c and if so when and to whom.
Well, where's my XD45?
The BATFE can quickly trace a gun from manufacturer, to distributor, to wholesaler, to retailer, to original customer. From that point on, that's it. Anything more requires the co-operation of each sucessive owner. That includes FFLs. There is no central location to record gun transactions- it's all in the individual bound books of each individual FFL.
Let's use Bill's XD45. Springfield's distributor sends it to Target World. Target World sells it to me. I sell it to Aim HIgh! because I don't like it.
The BATFE can trace all the way to me- that's where the record ends. If I can remember what I did with it, they can continue the trace (and they go check Aim High!'s bound book to see who they sold it to). If I can't remember who I sold it to- then the trace ends. If I sold it to a private individual, if I choose to divulge who that is- and quite honestly, I make it a point to not remember who I sell stuff too or buy stuff from- they can then maybe go ask them what happened to the gun. And again, maybe they get an answer, maybe they don't.
A scheme of instantly tracing guns to who owns it NOW is only possible if we enact some form of national registration. God willing, that won't happen.
As to when I buy or sell a gun-
I prefer to meet in busy, populated, well-lit areas. Parking lots of large shopping centers are great. Gun stores or shooting ranges are the best. If the person is "known" to me, then money = gun. If they are not known to me, I usually ask to see a CCW. Other than that, I really don't care to make a paper trail. If the other party involved wants to, they can use my name and the date. Nothing else. If that's a problem, then no deal.