BURBANK (CBSLA) Arms stores in the Los Angeles area saw sales soar after the violent break-in of the U.S. Capitol building on Wednesday.
Several arms stores in the region saw an increase in first-time buyers. Redstone Firearms in Burbank told CBSLA that the number of people who want to buy a gun, take safety classes and shoot at its range has suddenly increased by 40%.
“All of a sudden, text messages, phone calls, and emails skyrocketed,” Geneva Solomon, co-owner of Redstone Firearms, told CBSLA on Thursday, an influx of business we wouldn’t normally see on a Thursday. “
Arms manufacturers also benefit. Smith & Wesson shares rose 18% on Wednesday after the Capitol was locked.
Overall gun sales have increased significantly since the coronavirus pandemic began. US arms sales set a record for 2020.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation found that 17.2 million background checks had already been done as of October, two months from the end, which CBS News said shattered the previous record of 15.7 million in 2016.
Kimberly Bailey, a first-time gun buyer, said she was nervous about the purchase.
“It’s a little scary, but I think it’s very necessary to do this now,” Bailey said, adding that the safety of herself and her elderly mother is paramount.
“It only has one nail on it,” she said of the attack on the Capitol. “It’s something I always knew we had to do, but yesterday I kind of said, ‘Let’s go.'”
Bailey says that while buying a new one gives her a sense of security, she hopes the only place she needs to fire is in range.
“The biggest worry is just knowing that you’re protected. You’re hoping you never have to use anything, of course, but you just want to know that you’re feeling fine,” Bailey said.