Gun sales are up nearly 80 percent in Colorado over this same time frame last year, a surge that began just as governments started locking down state and local economies over the coronavirus pandemic.
According to this, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation approved a total of 97,762 firearm background checks in March and April. Only after the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut have gun sales in Colorado hit similar numbers.
Local gun range operators say that not only are gun sales up, but so are the number of requests from people who want to learn how to use them.
“We’ve been very busy,” said Matt Sebesta with the Family Shooting Center at Cherry Creek State Park. “Classes are huge and private lessons are up, so the majority of folks are seeking training.”
As the economy sputtered to a halt and millions of newly laid-off Americans began applying for unemployment aid, gun sales across the country skyrocketed right alongside toilet paper, hand sanitizer and Clorox wipes. In March alone, when the shutdown was just ramping up and some states were ordering gun stores to close after labeling them "non-essential businesses," the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System processed 3.7 million background checks, up from 2.6 million in March of last year.