PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Ghost guns, or guns without a serial number, are coming up more in the conversation about rising crime in Oregon.
In the high-profile murder trial of Nancy Brophy, prosecutors accused her of researching and buying a ghost gun kit. In March, a grand jury indicted a felon after investigators discovered a ghost gun manufacturing operation at a home in Salem.
Now, Oregon’s Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum has had enough and wants the state legislature to ban them.
The bill that Rosenblum recently championed punishes the manufacturing, sale and possession of untraceable firearms. It also requires someone selling a gun to conduct a criminal background check before transferring an unfinished frame or receiver.
Senate Bill 1577 can be read in full here.
“Let’s face it — why would a person who is entitled to have a gun want to go out of their way to have an unserialized gun?” Rosenblum said. “Unfortunately, it’s a market for people who cant otherwise obtain a gun. People who have convictions, felony convictions.”
Rosenblum says her main concern over ghost guns is that all of them are untraceable, and many are also undetectable.
“If they’re made on 3D printers then they aren’t detectible by security devices (or) metal detectors. So, it’s a very serious problem that I became aware of. So, I presented it to advocacy groups and the legislature, starting three years ago. Next year will be my fourth try,” Rosenblum said.
She also said that she is frustrated more hasn’t been done.
The Oregon Firearms Federation has called Rosenblum’s efforts “disdain for the Constitution.”
KOIN 6 News has reached out to members of the Oregon Legislature and the National Rifle Association for comment.
PPB public information officer Terri Wallo Strauss said that ghost guns are not a cheap or easy option for the average criminal looking to obtain a firearm.
“The reason we don’t see these much is that it is still much cheaper and easier to buy a gun from the illicit market, which has become even easier with social media connecting the parties,” Strauss said.
Oregon House Minority Leader Rep. Vikki Breese-Iverson (R-Prineville) sent KOIN 6 News the following statement:
“Current State leaders have led a soft on crime agenda that is having a dangerous impact on the lives of Oregonians. Our communities are not safe when the Governor commuted sentences of convicted criminals, Democrats have defunded the police, and have not adequately invested in the legal system; including judges, district attorneys and public defenders. It is no wonder the criminal and cartel world have found safe harbor in Oregon under their failed leadership.”