Dayton firearms thefts expose impotence of "universal" background checks to stop criminals' access to guns

Headlines earlier this month screamed the news: at least 75 handguns and two semi-automatic rifles were stolen during overnight break-ins at three Dayton area firearms retailers.

From the article:

Thieves have broken in to three local gun shops in three days, stealing a total of 75 handguns and 2 semi-automatic rifles, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

All three break ins occurred last week at the Vandalia Range and Armory, Palmer Firearms, and The Miami Armory.

The ATF has partnered with the National Shooting Sports Foundation - the trade association for the firearms industry - to offer a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of gun thieves.

The first burglary occurred Aug. 5, early morning in the morning, at the Vandalia Range and Armory. A total of 42 handguns were taken. On Friday, Aug. 7, detectives believe the same suspects broke in to Palmer Firearms in Beavercreek and stole 2 semi-automatic rifles. Early in the morning Aug. 8, investigators the thieves hit again - this time stealing 33 handguns from The Miami Armory in Miami Township.

The Dayton criminals' images were captured on security video, just as they had been in a dramatic video taken from an Orlando gun show last month.

What no one in the media thought to mention is the fact that these burglaries have exposed the fallacy of so-called "universal" background checks (UBCs) for the entire world to see.

Forcing family members, relatives and friends who wish to sell firearms to one another in a private transaction to spend time and money to go through a background check will not stop criminals from accessing firearms, as these high-profile burglaries prove. Criminals will not be submitted be background checks, no matter what the law, because criminals do not obtain their firearms through legal means.

Earlier this month, another widely-publicized revelation that also exposed the impotence of UBCs came in the form of news that bureaucratic bungling had allowed two mass killers access to guns, despite laws that should have prohibited them from making a purchase, and that significant problems in the computerized background-check system operated by the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation has resulted in thousands of criminals having "clean" records.

As Jeff Knox, a frequent contributor to this website observes, "background checks, like all gun control laws, focus on the law-abiding while mostly ignoring criminals."

"The idea of 'universal background checks' sounds good and seems reasonable," Knox continues, "but it is a fantasy that cannot work to keep guns away from criminals. What it would do is increase the cost of firearms, some by as much as 30% to 40%, encumber the law-abiding with additional regulations, and generate a paper trail that could be – and historically has been in places like California, New York, and New Jersey – later used for registration and confiscation."

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary, BFA PAC Vice Chairman, and an NRA-certified firearms instructor. He is the editor of, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website.

Help us fight for your rights!

Become a member of Buckeye Firearms Association and support our grassroots efforts to defend and advance YOUR RIGHTS!

Subscribe to our FREE Newsletter

Get weekly news and instant alerts on the latest laws and politics that affect your gun rights. Enjoy cutting-edge commentary. Be among the first to hear about gun raffles, firearms training, and special events. Read more.

We respect your privacy and your email address will be kept confidential.


Buckeye Firearms Association is a grassroots organization dedicated to defending and advancing the right of citizens to own and use firearms for all legal activities, including self-defense, hunting, competition, and recreation. Read more.