In 2010 a Justice Department study looked at the efficacy of the Brady Background Check, the one that requires all purchasers of firearms from Federally licensed dealers to undergo an FBI (or State law enforcement) background check prior to purchase. The purchaser fills out BATFE form 4473 stating that they are not a prohibited person for a myriad of reasons. If they check one box wrong, the background check does not happen and the sale is denied. If they do check all the boxes correctly and they are a prohibited person, they just signed a confession to a Federal felony that carries a five year sentence.
In the 2010 study,(PDF) the report noted that of the 76,000 firearms purchase denials in that year – some 47% of which were for “a record of a felony indictment or conviction” – a grand total of 62 cases were referred for prosecution.
Things have NOT improved. The General Accounting Office released a report,
The takeaway from this study?
In fiscal 2017, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives referred about 12,700 denied purchases to its field divisions for investigation. As of June 2018, U.S. Attorney’s Offices prosecuted 12 of these cases.
2010, 35,000 denials due to felony conviction or indictment, 62 referrals for prosecution. 2017, 12,700 denials, 12 prosecutions.
If they’re not going to USE the law, what’s it for?
Oh, and the law didn’t work, so we need to DO IT HARDER!!