‘Ghost Gun’ Used in Murder Suicide

By Dean Weingarten

'Ghost Gun' Used in Murder Suicide
‘Ghost Gun’ Used in Murder Suicide
Dean Weingarten
Dean Weingarten

Arizona – -(Ammoland.com)- The “ghost gun” used in the murder/suicide in California was built with off the shelf parts, an 80% receiver, and a fair amount of machining.

The police officer in the video says that crimes committed with guns made this way are rare.  This is the first murder that he has heard of where one was used.

From kron4.com:

WALNUT CREEK (KRON/BCN) — A 21-year-old Lafayette native built the firearms he used to kill a 19-year-old college woman before he turned the gun on himself at a home in Walnut Creek last month, police said Tuesday.

Investigators say Scott Bertics bought gun parts through the mail and then secretly built the two firearms he used in the murder-suicide that claimed the life of Clare Orton.

The reporter noted that a serial number would not have made any difference in this case.

It would have been much easier for the murderer to buy a gun than to make this particular model, even under California’s strict gun laws.

A simple shotgun or rifle could have been purchased for far less than the components of the “ghost gun”California’s notorious 10 day “waiting period” would have taken less time than that required to order the parts, have them shipped, do the machining, and put them together.  There is no indication that the murderer was prohibited from purchasing firearms.

Firearms have been produced in homes for nearly 500 years.  Simple homemade guns are common, effective, untraceable, and impossible to keep from criminals.

David Kopel noted that a federal study found that one-fifth of the guns seized by the police in Washington, D.C., were homemade.  Most homemade guns are considerably simpler and easier to make than “ghost guns”.

In Brazil, where there are extreme restrictions on the legal ownership and purchase of guns, the criminals favor homemade submachine guns.  Murder rates in Brazil are five times greater than in the U.S.

Brazil Improvised Submachine guns
Brazil Improvised Submachine guns

In India, where restrictions on legal guns are similar to Brazil’s, pistols are made in small shops and sold for $10 – $20.   Detailed instructions on how to make them are available on the Internet.  India’s murder rates are slightly lower than the United States. (which is logical if you look at the shear number of people)

India Black Market Pistols
India Black Market Pistols

Murders are committed with numerous different weapons/tools/objects. Hands and feet are commonly used without any other implements.

Murder rates are driven by culture, not weaponry.

c2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch

About Dean Weingarten;

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

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George
George
5 years ago

The real focus should be detecting the mentally ill and getting them treatment BEFORE they run amok.

TEX
TEX
5 years ago
Reply to  George

The mentally ill have already been detected,…Hussein Obama,Hillary,Reid,Pelosi,Bloomberg,Feinstein,,etc…etc,,all the liberal scum/liberal voters are mentally ill. This liberal,progressive,socialist scum is already/has been running amok. The hard part would be getting this scum any treatment or mental evaluations because they already think they are superior to everyone else.Liberalism and socialism is a mental disease in and of itself,and that is going to have to be dealt with to prevent/reduce mass shootings and gun related crimes.

TEX
TEX
5 years ago

I bet that lower was sold by Ares Armor in Kali. The ATF really has a hard on for them ole boys !

Earl
Earl
5 years ago

Ghost Magazines are next. L.A. City Council BANS all legally owned mags over 10 rounds. Nope , No infringement here.
Chip , Chip , Chipping away… you cant BUY that ,but trust us you can keep it if you already OWN IT. Until such time as we want to change the rules AGAIN !!

throwedoff
throwedoff
5 years ago

An 80% lower (AR15) will have the magazine hole already cut, and the buffer tube cut along with the holes drilled to mount the lower to the upper. The magazine release holes will already be in place along with the holes and slot for the blot catch/release. You are left to carve out the fire control well in the lower, drill and slot the bottom of the lower for the trigger, and drill the trigger and hammer pin holes through the sides of the receiver. Sounds easy doesn’t it? It would be if you were a skilled machinist or even… Read more »

brasshopper
brasshopper
5 years ago

80 % lowers are not serialized. they are not complete you have to machine out a lot of metal therefore it is not a complete lower and does not have a serial number. Completed lowers do and have to be transferred through FFL. dealers. With out machine work an 80% lower is a paper weight.

Joe
Joe
5 years ago

It’s my understanding that the serial numbered “lower” must be purchased through a licensed FFL and registered the same as purchasing a complete firearm. I’ve never seen anywhere that a lower can just be ordered by anyone through the mail. Perhaps I’m wrong?

1 ab urbe condita
1 ab urbe condita
5 years ago
Reply to  Joe

@ Joe.

That’s why they call it a “Ghost”, NO Identification Source to Track Back too.

CJ
CJ
5 years ago
Reply to  Joe

It was an 80% complete lower; it was not a full, ready to connect with an upper and use, lower. Since it still needs milling before it can be used, it is not considered a firearm and does not need an FFL.

mb
mb
5 years ago
Reply to  Joe

It’s made from what is know as a 80% receiver, Where the basics casting is sold without the required precession machining performed. Available as 1911 pistol, AR-15 or AK-47. AR-15 requires least about of skill and tooling, but it’s still a long process that requires basic machining tools like a milling machine or at least a quality drill press and machinists vise. 1911 pistol and AK requires even greater skills and tooling. Not something you whip up in an hour or two. Also most likely 2-3 times as expensive as buying a completed weapon, but allows customization by builder and… Read more »

Shane
Shane
5 years ago
Reply to  Joe

Joe

You can purchase a 80% lower that has no serial number because by law it is not a firearm.

Vanns40
Vanns40
5 years ago
Reply to  Joe

Not true at all. An 80% complete lower receiver, which isn’t yet a lower, it’s just a hunk of metal, has no serial number and can be purchased through the mail with no more restrictions than a hammer. You then finish the lower at home and provide all the other parts. As long as you continue to own it for personal use no serial number is required by Federal Law. There may be state laws for registration.

MP
MP
5 years ago
Reply to  Vanns40

They will often refer to it as a “paperweight” to avoid confusion on whether it is a firearm or not. We all can figure it out.

Blue
Blue
5 years ago
Reply to  MP

They do the same with brass knuckles too ! Seriously !

TEX
TEX
5 years ago

This really would be an uncommon and rare occurrence,..if it’s the truth ! I’ve gotten to the point where I really don’t believe much of anything people say (most gungrabbers) that has anything to do with firearms. There were several statements made then retracted about the firearms used/or not used at Sandy Hook ! The list goes on. Since the ATF tried to ban 5.56 62 gr. green tip and failed,I have been waiting for a mass murder type shooting to take place involving green tip to occur probably involving LE or the military as victims. (I hate to say… Read more »