SOURCE: The Post and Courier – March 20, 2018, Andrew Knapp |  Read entire article

Outrageous. Superficial. A fool’s errand.

A federal judge in Charleston used those words Tuesday in a scathing rebuke of how the FBI handles gun background checks that fail to prevent tragedies like the Emanuel AME Church shooting.

The process involves FBI examiners sending out thousands of requests with aging technology — a fax machine — and hoping for a response from police departments that have records pertaining to whether someone is allowed to buy a gun.

The FBI already has some of those documents, including one that would have stopped Dylann Roof from getting the pistol he used to kill nine black worshipers at the church. But the agency’s internal rules halted it from searching a database that stored the document.

U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel called for that system to change Tuesday as survivors of the 2015 mass shooting and the victims’ families packed his courtroom. Gergel’s pleas brought force to outside calls for change. The Post and Courier reported last month on officials’ hesitancy to act.

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SOURCE: The Post and Courier