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CAMPAIGN TO REDUCE “STRAW PURCHASES” OF GUNS ANNOUNCED
Program Raises Public Awareness and Trains Firearms Dealers
BALTIMORE, Maryland - United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein, representatives from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) today announced a major campaign to significantly reduce illegal “straw purchases” of firearms in Baltimore. The program, called “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy,” is designed to educate firearm retailers on how to detect and deter potential straw purchases and to raise public awareness that it is a serious crime to purchase a firearm for someone who cannot legally do so.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein stated, "It is a serious crime to purchase a gun for someone who cannot legally own a gun. Keeping guns out of the hands of criminals will help to keep our streets safer. The ‘Don't Lie For The Other Guy’ program promotes public awareness of the problem of ‘straw purchasers’ and teaches retailers to recognize potential illegal firearm purchases."
“Don’t Lie for the Other Guy” is a joint program of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods program (PSN) and the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). The program was developed four years ago to aid firearm retailers in recognizing potential illegal firearm purchases in order to deter those purchases. The program has now expanded to include a public-awareness component to warn citizens that straw purchases are a serious crime.
“Stopping illegal firearm purchases is critical to ATF’s mission of preventing violent crime and protecting the nation,” said ATF Director Carl J. Truscott. “Programs such as Don’t Lie for the Other Guy keep firearms out of the hands of convicted felons, criminals and other prohibited persons. ATF is committed to aggressively investigating and arresting these offenders to make our communities safer for everyone.”
“Don’t Lie for the Other Guy has been welcomed by firearm retailers as a valuable educational tool to help them spot would-be straw purchasers and prevent illegal firearm sales,” said Doug Painter, president of NSSF, the non-profit trade association for the firearms industry. “Our goal in reaching out to the consumer is to let them know they are committing a serious crime by attempting to purchase a firearm for someone who cannot legally possess one.”
“We applaud and appreciate the support of the United States Attorney, the ATF and local media for stepping up to lead this effort,” Painter added.
The campaign will visit nearly every federally licensed firearm retailer in the Baltimore area to distribute Don’t Lie retailer kits that were developed to aid retailers in detecting and deterring straw purchases. Each kit contains a video and informational brochure to educate storeowners and their staff on how to spot a straw purchase, as well as point-of-purchase displays aimed to raise awareness and deter this illegal activity. U. S. Attorney Rosenstein will also serve as a spokesperson in television public service announcements that deliver the “Don’t Lie” message.
Funding for the program comes from a grant for the United States Department of Justice and the NSSF. This joint funding provides for program administration, media outreach and ongoing firearm retailer education. The ATF will continue to work with retailers in their efforts to identify and deter straw purchases.
This page last modifiedJune 13, 2006