COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Legislation up for debate next year seeks to close the loophole that law enforcement officials say allowed Dylann Roof to buy the gun used to kill nine black parishioners in Charleston last summer.
Roof’s drug arrest last February should have prevented the sale, but data entry errors meant a background check didn’t produce the pertinent details in time. Federal law gives the FBI three business days to tell a gun dealer if someone can’t legally buy a firearm. Once that window expires, as in Roof’s case, the sale can proceed by default.
Proposals by Democratic Sen. Gerald Malloy and Republican Rep. Doug Brannon would extend to 28 days the allowed time for reviewing questionable criminal records. Their proposals don’t require any wait if a background check comes back clean.