CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – The FBI says it recorded the highest number of firearm background checks this year. The agency processed more than 185,000 checks on Black Friday alone, and gun store owners say terror attacks are what’s driving those numbers up.
At Centennial Gun Club they offer training classes to new gun buyers. Managers say in the last couple weeks both the number of guns sold and those enrolling in classes have been going up.
For the first time in his life Shawn Wallace is considering buying a gun.
“Just getting some training before I make a decision,” Wallace said. “The Paris attacks kind of probably piqued my interest a little more.”
He is one of thousands across the country. A record 185,345 background checks were performed on Black Friday. That’s roughly two per second.
“A record for us, we had almost 1,000 people come in,” Centennial Gun Club Manager Paul Stanley said.
Stanley described at least 80 percent of their newest customers as first-time gun buyers.
“We’ve had people that talk about Paris, that talk about Colorado Springs, they talk about kind of just global concerns that they have,” he said.
In Colorado this Black Friday, 4,115 background checks were performed, about the same as last year.
Stanley says they encourage all their first-time gun buyers to get proper training.
“We don’t think everyone should have a gun, we think people should have a gun if they’re trained and they know how to use it,” he said.
“Obviously due to world events it’s been on the forefront of my mind,” Wallace said.
But Wallace says ultimately it’s what’s right for his family.
“I’m not pro or anti-gun, it’s more I just want to take a look and see if I enjoy it and whether it’s something that might be advantageous to our family,” he said.
A background check doesn’t mean a gun was purchased, however, manufacturers rely on those check numbers as a measurement for the industry.