Indiana Supplying Chicago Gangs with Guns

Gang violence in Chicago is notoriously rampant. Illinois has fairly restrictive legislation on the buying and selling of guns to help combat the ability of criminal organizations to access firearms, but it doesn’t seem to help as much as was hoped. It turns out that many of the firearms used by Chicago gangs are coming from a different source altogether, Illinois’s neighboring state of Indiana.

The laws covering sale of firearms in Indiana are much less stringent than in Illinois. While officially licensed dealers in Indiana are still required to check an individual’s criminal history before sale to them, persons selling their own private stock of firearms at gun shows are not required to do so. Residents of Indiana buying from such vendors simply have to produce identification from Indiana and the vendor simply records their address and name. The problem, for Chicago and Illinois, comes from the relative ease of using falsified identification to appear as a resident of the state of Indiana to make the purchases.

Individuals are being discovered that have used these falsified IDs to purchase large amounts of firearms at Indiana gun shows from private vendors who then turn around and sell them illegally to gang members in Chicago, all for cheaper prices than can be found typically in Illinois.

With the heart of the issue lying in legal murkiness and the twisting of regulations to facilitate illegal sales, much of the focus and effort to stop the flow of firearms is now being aimed at trying to interdict the passage of these firearms across the state borders.