High gun sales holding steady in the Natural State


LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- When COVID-19 hit Arkansas back in March, we saw gun sales spike.

Now, two months later those sales are still steadily rising.​

One pawn shop in Little Rock said they can barely keep new guns on the shelves.​

“Guns have been flying out the door it’s all anyone has been asking about,” said Billy Landers, Owner of Big Daddy’s Pawn Shop.​

Billy Landers has been working at his family-owned store for 15 years, he’s now the owner.​

During his time at the store, he said he has never seen anything like the current gun sales. ​

“Sales of guns, we might have two or three a week but since the virus, we are doing three to ten a day somedays,” said Landers, “getting stimulus money didn’t hurt either. A lot of people used the stimulus money to buy guns,” said Landers.

Everyone who tries to buy a firearm must go through the FBI NICS process, which stands for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.​

At Big Daddy’s, that’s simply filling out a form.​

Once you’re approved, you are able to purchase a gun.​

The FBI tracks how many NICS Firearm checks are happening state by state, month to month.​

So far this year in Arkansas the number of NICS checks has jumped.​

In January the FBI reported 19,126 checks.​ In February there was a small increase to 21,445 checks.​Then in March, the FBI reported a huge jump to 31,651.​ For April, there was a small drop to 30,575.​

For reference, the FBI website shows this is the highest amount of NICS checks Arkansas has seen since December 2015.​

A trend Landers thinks will continue if stores can keep guns in stock.​

Landers says even getting guns from his supplier is getting tricky since they have set limits.​

“Whatever he’s got that I’m interested in, I can only get two of each one and it’s like that for all of his customers,” said Landers, “They’re (the two guns are) usually gone before they get here.”​

To see the NICS Firearm Background Check records, click here.​

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