Law enforcement experts say that as the government continues to put more restrictions in place for gun ownership, more people are expected to begin manufacturing firearms on their own.
Guns without serial numbers, referred to as “ghost guns”, have been making headlines after authorities announced that the California gunman who was responsible for the recent deadly shootings that left five dead, used two guns that he made in his home.
During a press conference concerning the attack, Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston reported that gunman Kevin Neal was out on bail for an assault charge in January of this year. His family told authorities that he was unstable, and had a history of mental health issues including paranoia.
During the recent mass shooting, Neal was armed with two unregistered semi-automatic rifles with multi-round clips that were found to be illegally manufactured by him at his home. According to the Associated Press, Neal manufactured the guns in a feeble attempt to perpetrate that he was abiding by the court order prohibiting him from owning guns.
Stricter Gun Laws Will Not Solve the Problem
Sheriff Johnston indicated that more and more criminals will begin to build their own firearms as the gun laws become increasingly restrictive. Former FBI agent Steve Gomez indicated that criminals are already modifying existing guns in an illegal manner or completely building their own.
“If lawmakers took steps to make the gun laws more restrictive, those unlicensed home-made firearms would be highly sought after by people and criminals who do not care to comply with the law,” Gomez said.
“These guns are almost impossible to trace, experts say. Tracing the parts of a homemade firearm could be difficult if there are no serial numbers or registered identifiers designated for those parts. That typically is the objective of the manufacturer and end user of the [homemade] firearm — to produce and own a gun that is untraceable by the authorities,” Gomez added.
The Real Threat of Ghost Guns
Authorities indicate that the real threat of ghost guns is the fact that they are not registered, so there is no database to check to see if someone exhibiting potentially violent behavior owns a gun with the capability of reacting to those violent tendencies.
In addition, unregulated guns pose a threat to the public as well as the user due to the fact that they are not built to the precise operating standards of regulated firearms, and could malfunction at any time.
The only way authorities see to trace ghost guns is to monitor or regulate the materials required to manufacture firearms, much as they already do with the materials used to make explosives. They feel that this regulation would be extremely daunting and unfortunately not very successful.
While law enforcement officials agree that ghost guns are a very serious issue in the U.S. today, they do not think there will be legislation anywhere in the near future that will completely cease the manufacturing of ghost weapons for use by criminals.
~ Firearm Daily