Elvin Daniel: "A background check would have saved my sister’s life"

CREATED Sep. 18, 2013

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BROOKFIELD - Elvin Daniel lost his sister Zina when her estranged husband killed her and two of her co-workers at the Azana Spa in Brookfield in 2012. Daniel believes the shooting could have been prevented if the shooter hadn't been able to buy a gun without a background check - something that is possible on gun sites like Armslist.com.

Daniel has become an advocate for gun violence prevention, but is also a gun owner and card-carrying member of the NRA.

"After Zina was physically abused by her husband Radcliffe, a judge issued a restraining order that prohibited him from owning or buying guns," Daniel wrote in an op ed for Politico. "He couldn’t buy a gun at a licensed gun dealer, because he would have failed a background check. So he went online, where he posted a 'want-to-buy' ad on Armslist. Within hours, he found a seller and bought a .40 caliber Glock handgun, which he picked up in a McDonald’s parking lot for $500 cash."

Daniel said gun control group Mayors Against Illegal Guns will be releasing a new report on Wednesday, which will say that one in 30 people posting an ad to buy a gun on the website has a criminal history. Many of the sellers for the website do not require background checks.

"I’m a gun owner, a hunter, and a member of the National Rifle Association," Daniel continued. "I believe in the Second Amendment, but I also believe in sensible gun laws. I’ve seen how devastating gun violence can be. And I know that Radcliffe never should have been able to buy a gun online without a background check. A background check would have saved my sister’s life."

Daniel is pushing for background checks for all online sales, because the states that require background checks for gun sales have "38 percent fewer women are shot to death by their abusers." He is asking for background checks for all gun sales, including those sold online.

Daniel reminds his readers he is speaking for hid sister because her right to speak for herself was taken away by a man who was able to buy an illegal gun.

You can read Daniel's full piece here.