Michigan Senator Proposes Background Checks for Gun Range Rental
You may or may not remember last March 26th, when a man rented a gun at a Mason Michigan gun range and after shooting at the range walked out the door with the gun.
Obviously whatever procedures they had in place to prevent that from happening were not followed.
According to a Lansing State Journal article earlier that month this same man attempted to purchase a gun at a Lansing pawn store and was rejected when a check through the National Instant Criminal Background System, or NICS, turned up his history of mental health problems and the personal protection order filed by his ex-girlfriend.
The man took the guy he stole from the Mason gun store and killed his ex-girlfriend.
In order to purchase a handgun in Michigan, the buyer must either pass the NICS federal background check, or already have a state-issued permit that includes a NICS check as part of the application process. The problem as Senator Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge stated is that no background check is required to simply rent a gun.
Senator Jones now wants to change that.
Senator Jones has written a package of bills to prevent anyone who can’t legally own a gun from renting them in Michigan. Anyone who does not already have some form of firearm license would have to pass a NICS check before renting a gun. He stated that in his bills exemptions for people who are taking training classes or who otherwise will be under direct supervision at the gun range would be in the law.
Also any firearm dealer would be required by these laws to notify the Michigan State Police whenever someone tries to buy or rent a gun and fails the background check.
In the article the co-owner of Peacemakers Gun Range in Howell, Matt Balla, said the proposed legislation could have unforeseen consequences when he was quoted stating:
Are we supposed to do a background check every time that person comes in…or do they get approved and then we keep some sort of status on them here? If so, that doesn't mean they didn't go out and commit a felony between the time they were here last.
He certainly has a point there, but if we can stop some of these incidents from happening is this NICS background check necessary.