A question (well, a few) form Colby:
Just ran across your site tonight, and looks like you all are doing a bang-up job. I’m very pro-2nd Amendment, but have only recently started purchasing guns myself. Hoping you pros could give a little insight here to a new enthusiast. My friends and I are all planning to go to our first gun show in a few days and had the same worry about used guns . . .
My understanding of gun show laws is that while you have to show documentation that you live in the state in which you are buying the gun, that’s all the documentation required when buying from another individual. After that, you hand them the cash and they hand you a gun. End of transaction. While I can appreciate the need for privacy some gun owners feel, I worry about what the guns might have been used for previously.
Say, for instance, that a gun’s first owner uses it in a murder, then sells it to buyer #2. I buy it from buyer #2 some years after the crime, and buyer #2 has no idea, so feels no need to make any record of the transaction. Some time later, for some unrelated reason, if my gun was ever examined by the police and found to be the original murder weapon I would obviously want to be able to prove that I wasn’t in possession of the weapon until years after it was involved in a crime. (I realize that this whole situation in fanciful and that possessing a weapon used in a crime isn’t near enough to get any kind of jury verdict unless there’s plenty of other evidence, but just chalk it up to being paranoid)
Is there some kind of way to document the date that I bought it? I mean technically I know that I could get the two of us to write out some kind of receipt and get it notarized, but I doubt a seller would be willing to leave the show and do that, and I assume (maybe wrongly) that there isn’t a notary at these type of events.
Is there anything I can do to protect myself from situations like this? And if there is, is there also some way I could do so unilaterally without the assistance of the seller (though I realize that a seller who wouldn’t be willing to do something might be a red flag to buy a gun from someone else instead)?