SCHUMER ASKS FBI TO OPEN FULL INVESTIGATION INTO HOW LAFAYETTE SHOOTER WAS ABLE TO GET HIS GUN, SAYING IT IS THE ONLY WAY TO GET TO BOTTOM OF TRAGIC SHOOTING; POTENTIAL FLAWS IN BACKGROUND CHECK SYSTEM REQUIRES FED OVERSIGHT AND MORE INFO COULD EXPOSE FLAWS, PREVENT THE NEXT TRAGIC SHOOTING
Senator Says The FBI Has The Resources To Determine Criminal Background Check Database Flaws That Allow Dangerous People To Get A Green Light To Buy Guns
Just Yesterday, On Capitol Hill, Schumer Stood With Gun Violence Survivors From Charleston, Aurora, Isla Vista & Georgia To Demand A Vote From Congress On Life-Saving Background Check Legislation – That Keeps Guns Out Of Dangerous Hands By Requiring A Completed Criminal Background Check On All Handgun Sales
Schumer: The FBI Must Step In Now & Investigate Louisiana Shooting
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, today, announced that he is calling on the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to immediately step in and open an investigation into the tragic Lafayette, Louisiana shooting that took the lives of two innocent victims and injured seven others. Schumer’s push comes after a press conference yesterday with legislative colleagues and the families of people murdered by gun violence in Charleston, Aurora, Isla Vista and Georgia, to demand a vote from Congress on life-saving background check legislation to keep guns out of dangerous hands by requiring a criminal background check on all handgun sales.
Schumer, today, said that getting to the bottom of these awful tragedies requires the most accurate and detailed information about both the shooters and their weapons; most importantly, how they were able to obtain them. Schumer said that only the FBI has the full resources to access information that involves more than one state, as in the case of the Louisiana shooter who had documented mental health issues when he was a Georgia resident. Schumer is publicly asking the FBI to open a formal investigation into the Lafayette movie theater shooting in hopes that the information will reveal where exactly additional holes in the national criminal background check system exist, so that they Congress can work to address the flaw(s).
“Today, I am urging the FBI to immediately open a formal investigation into the tragic Lafayette, Louisiana movie theater shooting,” said Schumer. “The way to identify the errors of the national criminal background check system—and then to hopefully address them—is with the FBI’s resources and expertise. The FBI can delve deep into John Houser’s Georgia, Alabama and Louisiana past to determine exactly how the background check system failed. Criminals, the mentally ill, domestic violence perpetrators and other dangerous people should not be able to purchase deadly firearms, but too often they can. Sadly, despite even the NRA’s support, Congress has failed to enhance the background check system on its own and until it does will risk the safety of millions of innocent Americans. My hope is that the information from a formal FBI investigation will provide Congress with more factual data to incent action on ensuring background checks prevent dangerous people from obtaining guns.”
It has been revealed that the Louisiana shooting suspect had a criminal history and documented mental-health issues when he was a Georgia resident in 2008. He had purchased a .40-caliber semiautomatic pistol from an Alabama pawn shop in February 2014.
Senator Schumer’s letter to FBI Director Comey appears below:
Dear Director Comey,
I write to you in sadness after another tragic mass shooting, this time in Lafayette, Louisiana, takes the lives of innocent victims. With 88 people killed every day by gun violence, this issue remains one of the most important social ills to confront.
You recently announced that an internal FBI investigation after the Charleston, South Carolina shooting revealed errors in the background check system which allowed for Dylan Roof to legally purchase a gun. I understand that John Houser, who recently murdered two young women and injured seven others in a movie theater, had a troubled history yet still purchased a gun through a legal vendor.
I’d like to request that the FBI conduct an investigation into (1) whether John Houser did, in fact, purchase his gun legally and after a background check; (2) whether the fact that he passed the background check was the result of any errors or problems in the system; (3) whether problems in Georgia or any other state’s record keeping and submission inhibited the ability for the NICS system to function fully; and (4) whether there are inconsistencies in the submission of records for people with mental health issues across states, and if so where the biggest challenges lie.
A fully functioning National Instant Criminal Background Check System is absolutely critical in our fight to stop the constant barrage of innocent deaths from gun violence. Thank you in advance for your attention to this important matter.
Charles E. Schumer