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Virginia gun sales soared in December to the second-highest monthly total on record, fueled by the Democratic takeover of the General Assembly and growing fears of increased firearm restrictions backed by the governor and lawmaker allies, state gun dealers say.
Estimated firearm sales based on mandatory criminal background checks on Virginia gun buyers totaled 73,849 last month, a 47% increase over December 2018.
Data - December - Tally - December - Transactions
In tracking data that goes back to 1990, the December 2019 tally is second only to December 2012, when 75,120 transactions were recorded. Criminologists say that was triggered by the repeal of the state's one-handgun-per-month law and fears of increased gun restrictions following the Dec.14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that killed 20 students and six adults.
"If Virginians feel threatened that their rights are being curtailed, they're going to react just the way that you've seen," said Robert Marcus, the principal owner of Bob's Gun Shop in Norfolk, one of the state's largest commercial gun dealers. "Everyone down here is upset. I've never seen more customers antagonized by a situation."
Many of the...
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