The Dayton Daily News reports that Ohio ranks seventh in the nation, and first in the Midwest, for illegal interstate gun-running, according to a study released Monday by Americans for Gun Safety.
Using U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms data from nearly 110,000 gun traces, the study found Ohio was the original home of 1,697 guns recovered in crimes committed in other states during 2001. Only Virginia, Georgia, California, Florida, Texas and Mississippi had more.
“This isn’t just happenstance,” said Jim Kessler, policy and research director for AGS. “There are people making their livings doing this, and they know their business well.”
The problem is important because one-third of guns that the BATF traced in 2001 crossed state lines before they were used in crimes, according to the study.
The pattern shows that states with lax gun laws serve as donors to states that have embraced gun-control measures, Kessler said.
Ohio guns were traced to crimes committed in 47 states and the District of Columbia. Ohio was the leading supplier of guns to criminals in Michigan and West Virginia, the report found.
Ohio is a major crime-gun supplier to several Midwestern and northeastern states, generally ones with strict gun control laws, the report said. Of 1,697 Ohio gun exports, 962, or 57 percent, were to Michigan, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Those five states sent only 101 guns used by criminals in Ohio, the report said. Officials with the AGS, said two main factors boosted Ohio’s numbers: a low number of federal prosecutions and the “gun-show loophole.”
AGS is a Washington nonprofit group that supports the rights of law-abiding citizens to own a gun as well as increased regulation of firearms, Kessler said.