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Gun sellers say gun laws anniversary isn't anything to celebrate

By Emily Allen, Multimedia Journalist /Target 13 Investigator , emily.allen@krdo.com
Published On: Jul 15 2013 02:17:23 PM CDT
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

Monday marked the two-week anniversary since the Colorado's new gun laws took effect. Gun sellers around Colorado Springs said it's an anniversary they don't want to celebrate.

The new laws rolled out July 1. Under the new laws, selling magazines with more than 15 rounds is illegal.

Gun sellers spent months trying to keep up with the demand of panicked customers. Now it's a different story.

"These are empty ammunition shelves. This is absolutely unheard of," said Specialty Sports' owner Jeff Lepp as he walked around his store. "We are never out of anything. This year, things are really tough."

Each empty shelf is an eyesore for Lepp.

"Things have definitely slowed down and people are upset that things that they could buy two weeks ago, they can't buy anymore. There are certainly people who don't understand this and are very unhappy about it," said Lepp.

Sales at Specialty Sports are up compared to last July. Lepp said firearm sales always slow down in the summer.

"Summer is the slowest time frame of the year because people are traveling and doing activities," said Lepp. 

However, summer business is slower now than it was before the gun laws rolled out.

"People (are) saying, 'Well, if I can't buy what I want to buy, I won't buy (anything)," said Lepp.

"Whenever you have a boom period, there is always a real bust period afterwards," said Paul Paradis.

Paradis owns Paradise Sales off Colorado Avenue in Colorado Springs. Paradis was hoping to see sales increase 10 to 15 percent from last July. He says thanks to the new gun laws, they've flatlined.

"We went through five months of absolute panic buying, massive shortages, price increases and of course after the law passed, it slowed down considerably," said Paradis.

Back at Specialty Sports, Lepp said he isn't that concerned. Customers will continue to walk through his door hoping to take home a firearm -- it will just take a little longer.

Both gun sellers estimate it will take at least a year for store inventory to go back to normal.

There is a trial scheduled later in the year to contest the constitutionality of the new gun laws.

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