Dick’s Sporting Goods, Walmart announce stricter gun purchase policies

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Dick's Sporting Goods and Walmart announced changes their gun sales policies on WEdnesday.

No more semi-automatic weapons will be sold at Dick’s Field and Stream Stores. There will be a higher age limit at both of stores. And there’s a huge push for expanded background checks.

Some people were surprised by the big box stores' decision to stop selling semiautomatic weapons.

The big question: Will the changes work?

Jeff Lepp, the owner of Specialty Sports and Supply Store in Colorado Springs, said the decision by some stores to raise the legal gun buying age to 21 isn’t fair.

“Why is it right that at 18 you can vote," he said. "At 18 you can join the U.S. military and end up in Afghanistan and get shot at.

"Why would it be fair a person who is going to defend the country can’t buy a firearm when they come home ... because of their age.”

Lepp’s store is where the man behind a massacre at a church in Texas legally purchased two guns. Those guns were not used in the shooting.

“The only thing that needs to be expanded is that these outside entities need to provide the information," Lepp said. "If they don’t’ provide information, OK, that doesn’t get sent forward then that’s not in that system. They don’t know about it.”

The Texas shooter passed the background check at the store since the Air Force never reported his past violence.

Stopping the sale of guns at stores isn’t a solution either, he said.

Businesses, he said, bend to political whims.

But Colorado Ceasefire sent a public thank you to Dick’s Sporting Goods, calling it a courageous stance.

“I think it's great," said Tom Mauser, the father of Columbine High School shooting victim Daniel Mauser and a spokesman for the group.

"They know there will be some people who will be upset, but what they saw was more important was their responsibility of firearms."

Colorado Ceasefire also believes raising the minimum age to 21 to buy a firearm is effective.

“Let’s face it, if you have someone who is 18 or 19 and they are going hunting with their family, they are going to be able to do that anyhow," Mauser said.

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