Background Checks Will Save Lives of Domestic Abuse Victims

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Eighty-precent of Wisconsinites Support Background Checks

For Immediate Release:       Thursday, March 21, 2013
Contact:                                   Tony Gibart, WCADV, 608.255.0539 x 310

Madison—Last Thursday, surviving family members of domestic violence victims and victim advocates praised the introduction of legislation to require background checks on all gun sales in Wisconsin. Advocates say the measure, which is supported by 80-percent of Wisconsinites according to a new poll, will save the lives of domestic violence victims.

Elvin Daniel spoke at a press conference to announce the introduction of the legislation. Mr. Daniel is the brother of Zina Haughton. Zina was shot and killed by her husband, Radcliffe Haughton, at the Azana Spa in Brookfield, Wisconsin last October after he purchased a gun through an unregulated, private sale.

Haughton posted the following wanted to buy ad on the internet:

“Looking for a handgun that is $300 or best offer. Looking to buy ASAP. Prefer full size. Prefer 45 or 40 caliber. I constantly check emails. Also I’m hoping to has [sic] a high mag capacity. I’m a serious buyer so please email me ASAP. Have cash now and looking to buy now.”

Two other women, Cary Robuck and Maelyn Lind, were also killed. Because he was subject to a domestic abuse restraining order, the Radcliffe would not have passed a background check had one been required.

“The mass shooting at the Brookfield salon shows the urgent need for background checks for all gun sales and the absurdity of the current loophole,” said Patti Seger, executive director of the Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence (WCADV). “The loophole makes it easy for violent abusers to buy guns they shouldn’t have—in a matter of minutes. How many more times must we watch tragedies unfold and ask what could have been done? We know background checks would make a difference.”

50 for the Future
Since 2000, over 50 individuals have been fatally shot in Wisconsin by domestic abusers who illegally purchased or obtained the murder weapon. WCADV has been highlighting the stories of these victims on its website since January (http://wcadv.org/content/fifty-future).

“We appreciate and honor the courage and strength of Elvin Daniel for speaking out about the need for background checks in Wisconsin,” said Seger. “His sister is one of the over 50 victims who have been killed by an abuser with an illegal gun in our state. We hope legislators heed his call for sensible gun safety measures. Given the tragedy that took his sister, Elvin knows more than anyone that background checks on all gun sales will save lives.”

Source: Press Release – WI Coalition Against Domestic Violence


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