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7 States Where Gun Sales Are Surging Since the Sandy Hook School Shootings

Across the nation, the rush is on to grab assault rifles and large-capacity magazines -- even in Connecticut.

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A Virginia gun-rights advocate says that should be no surprise, given comments from national lawmakers about increasing gun restrictions in the wake of the shootings.

According to state police records, the agency processed 4,166 background checks to purchase guns on Saturday—the highest volume of transactions in one day since the program began in 1989.

It was a 42 percent increase over the number of checks on the same Saturday (Dec. 17) in 2011.

3. Florida. It's the state known as the home of the infamous "Stand Your Ground" law invoked by George Zimmerman, the killer of Treyvon Martin, an unarmed African-American teenager who was gunned down by a self-styled neighborhood watchman. According to the news site of WSVN television in Florida, the state today issued its one millionth concealed-carry permit, which allows the bearer to carry a concealed firearm, marking the state's designation as first in the nation in gun sales.

Also the home of several recent mass killings, Florida saw the murders of two men and the wounding of 12 others outside North Miami's Funeraria Latina Emanuel funeral home earlier this year, and the 2010 shooting of seven women, four of whom died, at the Yoyito Restaurant in Hialeah. 

From the WSVN report:

Following the Sandy Hook school massacre, gun sales are booming. "People are buying assault rifles, AR-15 magazines and more handguns than usual," said Walter Philbrick, owner of 911 Guns in Hollywood, Fla. "Me and my store staff would prefer not to have high gun sales than 20 kids alive in Connecticut, believe me," he added.

4. Texas. Home of the 1991 Luby's Cafeteria massacre, which left 24 people dead and 20 wounded at the hands of George Kennard, as well as the Fort Hood killings of 2009 and the Wedgewood church murders of 1999, the Lone Star state has seen its share of mass-murders. That knowledge did little to prevent a run on guns and bullets in the land of the Alamo. From a report by Javier E. David of CNBC:

The Sandy [Hook] shooting has "created a national shortage" of firearms and ammo, one Texas gun shop owner told CNBC, who asked not to be identified for fear of a backlash. "All of our suppliers are almost sold out of items across the board."

5. Colorado. In the state where the notorious Columbine High School massacre took place, record numbers of the background checks required for legal purchase of guns have been processed since the Connecticut shootings. From a report by Ryan Parker of the Denver Post:

The first day after news of one of the worst mass shootings in America, when a gunman killed 20 children and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., requests to buy guns in Colorado surged.


A total of 4,154 background checks were submitted on Saturday, said CBI spokeswoman Susan Medina. Those figures topped the previous greatest number of background checks on Black Friday this year, when 4,028 were processed.

6. California. There's already an assault-rifle ban in effect in California, but that hasn't stopped citizens from the Golden State from rushing, since the Connecticut tragedy, to gun stores to buy whatever kinds of rifles are still legally available. California is no stranger to mass killings; in April, One L. Goh, a student at Oikos College in Oakland, shot and killed seven people at the college. 

From a report, by Janet Zimmerman of the Riverside  Press-Enterprise, on the gun rush that began immediately following Friday's tragegy in Connecticut:

Norris Sweden, owner of Warrior One Guns & Ammo in Riverside, said the background checks are very effective in regulating who can have guns. And most people who buy semi-automatic weapons do so for recreational purposes because the guns can be customized with different colored stocks and the addition of lights and lasers.

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