TIGARD, Ore. — With just two months left in the year, 2020 has already seen a record number of gun sales in the United States.
At Northwest Armory in Tigard, Karl Durkheimer says his shop has been seeing a surge in gun sales. Since March, he says he’s seen his stores bring in more than twice as much in sales compared to last year. He says there’s a reason the country is seeing a spike in gun sales this year.
“Normal middle-class citizens are scared, we’re going into unknown times," said Durkheimer.
According to data from the FBI, gun sales are hitting record numbers this year. As of Oct. 1, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System conducted 14.8 million background checks for gun sales. That is more than any other entire year, save for 2016 when 14.9 million background checks for gun sales were run.
Retired Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Agent David Chipman says gun sales are up because of COVID-19 and protests that have been taking place across the country for months now.
“I think some of the percentage of people decided, 'I’ve got to buy a gun just to be safe,'" Chipman said.
FBI statistics show that there were close to 10.7 million background checks for gun sales between June and September alone. The numbers of background checks for gun sales jumped by nearly 1 million between February and March, when the pandemic began ramping up in America.
Gun shop owners tell us they don’t expect to see numbers dropping heading into the last days of the election.