Case Example: Learning from a Missed Opportunity—Databases Require Data to Prevent Gun Purchases
This case example explains how databases are only as effective as the information put in them; therefore, data documentation must be incorporated into policies. This is a hypothetical case based on real-world examples.
A woman gains a restraining order against her estranged husband for threats he is making against her life. The husband is a member of the military, and because of his continuing domestic violence offenses, he is court-martialed, which results in his prohibition by law from purchasing or possessing firearms and ammunition for life. After the couple gets divorced, the woman begins dating another man. The ex-husband enters the boyfriend's place of work and shoots and kills the boyfriend and ten of his coworkers before taking his own life using an AR-15 he bought just a week earlier. When he purchased the gun, there were no records indicating that he was prohibited because the military did not add his domestic violence criminal background information to the gun background check databases.