(02/26/2011)
West Virginia ranks second in the nation for supplying guns used in crimes nationwide, according to a survey completed by Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

States were ranked by the number of crime guns exported per 100,000 inhabitants. Mississippi led that list, followed by West Virginia, Kentucky, Alaska, Alabama, South Carolina, Virginia, Indiana, Nevada and Georgia.

The report says those states have more relaxed gun laws, suggesting that "criminals and gun traffickers may favor certain states as the sources of guns."

In states that do not require background checks for handgun sales at gun shows, the crime-gun export rate was two-and-a-half times as much as the rate in states that do require checks.

Nearly half of the guns that crossed state lines and were used in crimes in 2009 were sold in just 10 states, according to the report released by a mayors' group.

Those ten states accounted for nearly 21,000 guns connected to crimes in other states, said the survey.

Mayors Against Illegal Guns, an association of more than 500 mayors led by New York's Michael Bloomberg and Boston's Thomas Menino.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives traced more than 145,000 guns used in crimes in 2009 and found that more than 43,000 of those weapons were sold in other states.


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