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AR-15, high-capacity magazine, ammo sales spike locally

Frank Herndon of Backwoods Outdoors holds an AR-15 as he describes how possible new restrictive gun legislation has led to a weapons and ammunition buying frenzy in Albany and all over the country. He said sales of AR-15s, high-capacity magazines and ammunition have spiked since the Newtown, Conn., school shooting.

Frank Herndon of Backwoods Outdoors holds an AR-15 as he describes how possible new restrictive gun legislation has led to a weapons and ammunition buying frenzy in Albany and all over the country. He said sales of AR-15s, high-capacity magazines and ammunition have spiked since the Newtown, Conn., school shooting.

ALBANY, Ga. -- Area gun sellers say the uncertainly surrounding future gun control legislation has caused a spike in the sale of AR-15 rifles, high-capacity magazines and ammunition.

Since last month's Sandy Hook School massacre in Newtown, Conn., in which 26 students and school employees were gunned down, gun enthusiasts have been scrambling in the event restrictive new gun legislation is enacted.

"Absolutely, we have seen an increase in gun sales. We can't keep them on the shelves; they are moving as fast as we get them in," Frank Herndon of Backwoods Outdoors said. "People are buying AR-15s, high-capacity magazines and ammunition. It's gotten to the point that people have figured out when we get our deliveries and are waiting at the door for the trucks to roll in."

While the AR-15 has been the center of attention, Herndon says pistols have also been moving quickly.

"Pistols have also been going fast," he said. "We are seeing .380, .38, 9-mm and .40s go -- basically anything that is easily concealable -- selling fast."

Matt Kierce of Northwest Albany Pawn has also seen a surge in business.

"Our gun sales have basically doubled over the past month, here and in our Dawson Road store," Kierce said. "Ammo, handguns, assault weapons and tactical shotguns are selling fast. Our customers have figured out our pull schedule (when pawned items are moved from the back and offered for sale) is on Wednesday, and it has led to a huge increase in traffic. There is a lot of uncertainty out there."

Just last week, President Obama outlined a multipart plan he says will not only help prevent mass shootings but also reduce gun violence.

Among the 23 executive actions Obama is touting are universal background checks for gun sales, the reinstatement and strengthening of an assault weapons plan, tracing seized weapons and aggressively prosecuting gun crimes.

The uncertainty of what the future holds has led to the recent gun-related buying frenzy.

"I'm also a police officer with the Leesburg Police Department, and I am hearing it from both sides," Herndon said. "I've had people ask me 'What's gonna happen? Will you be coming for my guns?' I've been buying guns for the past 18 years, and I have never seen it like this."

The uncertainty has led to a seller's market.

"I'm pretty sure they (anti-gun) groups will go after the AR-15s and high-capacity magazines," Herndon said. "We used to pay around $800 for an AR-15, now we are seeing prices around $1,100 to $1,200. Despite that, we've sold more than 40 over the past month. We also used to buy high-capacity magazines (loosely defined as holding 30 rounds) for $15 each; now they are going for $75.

"I don't see this dying down anytime soon until people get a better idea of what's going to happen."

Kierce agrees.

"I don't think it matters how high the prices get because the demand is not going to go away," he said. "Even our distributors can't keep up with the demand. We can't keep our hands on them. People are grabbing them up after we barely have them out of the system and priced.

"There is not a doubt in my mind that there is a lot of price-gouging going on, and this is not ending any time soon."


waltspecht 2 years, 5 months ago

In no small part you also have to look at the fear people have of an economic failure in an area of such dependance upon the Government for living assistance. Some of these folks are worried about protecting their Families, themselves and their property in the event of Social upheaval. They watched Watts Burn, and saw the Korean's with their shotguns protecting their stores. Seemed they were the few that survived with their posessions intact. Now folks may not like this, but it is a fact. Otherwise how do you explain the run on ammunition, with the purchase of cases of it? Been to WalMart recently and tried to buy even some 22 long rifle?


Cartman 2 years, 5 months ago

During the Rodney King riots, those Korean store owners were defending their businesses with AR-15s as well.


Sister_Ruby 2 years, 5 months ago

Y'all buy all you want to. Obama's not planning to confiscate all weapons until His third term when the U.S. comes under the full authority of the United Nations.


Oldguy 2 years, 5 months ago

I have searched the internet and there is no 22 LR ammunition in stock. The most common cartridge ever made and you can not buy any. WHY? Several of the sellers have even imported 22 ammo from Mexico but that has also sold out. I have heard several stories on this. One is that all the cartridge manufacturers have large government contracts for gun powder and have set aside cartridge manufacturing until these are filled. Another rumor is that the government plans to force cartridge manufacturers to develop powder that will become unusable after a certain amount of time to keep people from stock piling ammo. And of course there is the Obama threat to limit types of firearms and magazines that can be manufactured and owned, first step in disarming the population. I have never seen such a frenzy to purchase firearms and ammunition. All that will be accomplished by his actions will be a massive black market and price gouging on these items. Wish I had a train load of assault weapons and ammo to sell.


waltspecht 2 years, 5 months ago

Try calling Barrow Automotive 478-8625205 in Butler Georgia. Was there last Thursday. Still had pleanty of Handguns and Ammo. Even a few of those so called Assault Rifles. From what I saw he hasn't jacket up the prices. Call before you drive, it is 90 miles. With a VISA Card, he will probably hold what you want until you get there.


Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 2 years, 5 months ago

I know I feel a little bit safer with the "protection" now in the hands of the locals.


Terry.Lewis 2 years, 5 months ago

I don't think they will be 'protecting' you :)


Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 2 years, 5 months ago

I would feel better if those same people purchased condoms instead. :)


erock 2 years, 5 months ago

Alright, now that we have them, lets use them. There is certain court date coming up in Florida that has gained national attention. I have a sneaky suspicion that when they find this fellow "not guilty" we may very well get that chance


bigbob 2 years, 5 months ago

I really don't understand why this isn't price gouging, if it was gas or anything jacked up like these guns everyone would be complaining about gouging.


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