7 Simple Ways of How to Check If a Gun is Stolen

Every firearm has a legal title.

If you plan to buy a used gun, you want it to be “clean.”

That said, you should proceed the purchase with caution because you may be caught buying a stolen gun.

If a random dealer offers you a reasonable deal, you have a clue to suspect it.

However, there are more things to manage beyond the shady broker.

Here is a couple of things you should cross your mind.

Scroll on find out.


Why Do You Need to Verify a Used Gun?

Federal reports have discovered a great variety of guns are missing upon inventory.

Whatever the reasons might be, missing guns expose their risk to the public.

Stolen guns can become a hassle for both the previous owner and the next.

Your gun may end up in the black market, or worse. Who knows if your lost gun got involved in an assassinate or served some criminal crime scenes.

For those who want to buy a pre-owned firearm, your wish is to stay away from those illegal circumstances. That is why you want your gun well verified.

At least, you will have proof that you’re not the one who shot in the recent bank rob.

How to Check if A Gun is Stolen?

Find a Non-dodgy Seller

Don’t run to a shop at the corner you don’t know. If you have to reside in that store’s owner for a weapon you deadly want at a justifiable price tag, make sure you sign the receipt, an authorized one.

Keep the bill securely because the paper will be your solid proof in front of the authorities. Don’t listen to any excuse to resist you from getting the document; just don’t buy the gun.

Compare the Selling Price

The initial judgment should make on the price tag.

It is advisable to look at the official price first, or other sellers’ offers. This is why you should roam around more than one store to do a price comparison.

You are somewhat safe if the price is close to the manufacturer’s tag. But if the two prices show a huge gap, rise your caution. Black marketed guns are always at a great discount.

You may ask for more details about the gun’s history and reasons it’s got such a nice price.

Do Background Check 

A legit firearm should come with verified papers. But a hinky shop owner knows how to gloss over it.

You can always ask for checking the serial number. There is a number of websites that allow you to check it online.

If the number’s worn to the point where you can’t read, ask the seller the other way to verify the gun’s integrity.

The most prevalent one you can rely on is www.hotgunz.com where people store the stolen gun database.

With more than 14,000 report serial numbers, it’s likely you can find the one you’re looking for within North America. Better than that, the search is free.

However, the website is not perfect. It requires the victims to know the tool and submit their stolen gun’s serial number. Otherwise, you can’t track the weapon’s origin.

NCIC is another reliable source though it’s got a hasty first glance. However, it runs the same mechanism where the pre-owners need to report the case.

Also, the site is not for public use. That means you will need to get help from your local law enforcement agency.

Inspect Fully

This savvy part is all yours considering you know about guns before heading to a shop. Or at least get somebody to help.

The full inspection matters as in the case where the gun got modified. It may change its working order and make it an illegal firing item.

Check with State Registration

Residences in some states can take advantages of the recorded database that is well managed.

DC and Hawaii have registers of all types of firearms.

In California, you can’t find any handgun registered before Jan 1st, 1998, no firearm before Jan 1st, 2014, only new residents have to disclose their weapons. This might cause some tricks if the gun you bought got stolen from a long-time citizen.

New York’s authority only registers handguns.

It is even more difficult to verify a gun in Maryland because, before Oct 1st, 2013, all firearms got registered voluntarily.

Check with The Authority

This would be the last thing you want to think about because it may include a series of procedures.

Besides, it does look odd to have an officer knocking on your door claiming you had purchased a stolen gun and ask you to prove yourself.

In that case, you can prove your record of the trade. But you don’t look innocent to the authority then.

In the situation where you suspect the weapon and run to the government station to inform you have bought an invalid firearm, you can pray for them to care. Worse, they may stick their nose toward you.

But you may be lucky enough to get someone to help. That would worth a try.

Wrapping Up

Law enforcement sources advise those who own guns should be aware of what they are carrying. Make the weapon discreet if you need to bring to the public.

Use a holster that doesn’t print the gun out to your outfit. You can hide in your ankle or chest.

Keep the gun locked when you don’t use it. Wherever it should be, vehicle or house, keep your weapon secure and away from thieves’ eyes.

And don’t trade with an unknown dealer who you don’t have any information about.

Checking a stolen gun is hard work. All methods don’t seem to be useful in all aspects. Nevertheless, they are worth trying for saving you from any stick legal issue if you inadvertently bought a stolen weapon.

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1 thought on “7 Simple Ways of How to Check If a Gun is Stolen”

  1. “Every firearm has a legal title.”

    While this may be true in other countries, this is not the case in the US. For newer firearms, it is true that every firearm has a serial number. However, if the gun was created prior to October 22, 1968, it’s possible that the firearm has neither a serial number, nor a title paper. The vast majority of these guns are simply “out there” with no specific knowledge of who currently owns them or whether or not they are stolen.

    If your firearm becomes stolen, you should report the theft to the ATF so that if the gun becomes in possession of a gunshop, the serial number can be identified in an electronic trace after the gunshop sells the stolen gun to a customer. See below:



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