When guns are recovered at crime scenes, officials can trace them back through the chain of custody using the federal system. But a lack of consistent requirements across the country undermines this critical tool to help stop gun trafficking. These 12 states require law enforcement to trace every crime gun they recover; Delaware, Illinois, and New Jersey also require that ballistics evidence be entered into a separate federal database.
Between 2015 and 2019, the United States recovered over 1 million crime guns—with over 300,000 of those guns having crossed state lines after they were purchased.
Source: Cal. Penal Code §§ 11108.3, 11108.10; Conn. Gen. Stat. § 54-36n; 2015 DE HB 217; 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/24-8; Md. Code Ann., Pub. Safety § 5-146(c); Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 140, § 131Q; N.J. Stat. Ann. §§ 52:17B-9.18, 52:17B-5.3(c); N.Y. Exec. Law § 230; N.C. Gen. Stat. § 143B-902; Or. Executive Order No 16-12, signed July 15, 2016; 18 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 6127; Va. Code Ann. § 52-25.1.
Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund. (2021, May 24). The crime gun dashboard. Everytown Research & Policy. Retrieved January 19, 2022, from https://everytownresearch.org/report/gun-trafficking-in-america/.