Jefferson County Sheriff's gun auction breaks previous record - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Jefferson County Sheriff's public gun auction breaks previous record

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JEFFERSON COUNTY (Press Release) - Jefferson County, Arkansas' tenth largest county played host to the largest public gun auction in the history of gun auctions in Jefferson County, Arkansas.

The public gun auction site at the Pine Bluff Convention Center hosted by the South Central Arkansas Law Enforcement Society (S.C.A.L.E.S.) Gun Club in conjunction with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office and Tri-County Drug Task Force reached $125,755.00 in combined sales. 

The auctioned netted the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office $73,210.00 and the Tri-County Drug Task Force $55,545.00. The last public gun auction hosted by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office and Tri-County Drug Task Force was in 2005 and only netted $15,957.00 with $12,632.00 of the proceeds going back to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office operating budget and the other $3,325.00 to the Tri-County Drug Task Force. 

Nationwide, gun sales have been at a record high. Just last year, over 21 million applications were processed through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is the same system used by a federal firearms licensee brought in by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office at today's auction to screen prospective bidders.  

Prospective bidders were encouraged to pre-register to ensure that they would be cleared through the NICS by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to purchase a firearm prior to placing a bid.  Pre-registration and public viewing of the guns for auction was opened on March 20-21, 2014. 

Approximately 600 people from across the state attended the auction with 380 registered bidders. Approximately 204 checks were processed through the NICS. However, 6 individuals hoping to leave with a firearm were disappointed after receiving 3-day delayed notices and one (1) individual was denied approval to purchase firearms by the ATF. 

Each gun auctioned went to the highest bidder. The highest bid at of $2,375.00 was for a Winchester .38 WCF L.A. Rifle and the lowest bid was $5.00 for a Marksman 177 Caliber BB Pistol. 

Major Lafayette Woods, Jr. is Major of Operations for the Jefferson County Sheriffs Office. He says, "We promote responsible ownership of guns and firearms, which is also why he made gunlock safety kits available to every successful bidder at no charge through Project ChildSafe to help ensure safe and responsible firearm ownership and storage."