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Dick's Sporting Goods to melt down unsold guns

A sign hangs outside of a Dick's Sporting Goods store on Feb. 28 in Chicago. After the Feb. 14 massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, the company announced that it will be destroying unsold firearms that it pulled from its stores. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Dick’s Sporting Goods announced last week that it will destroy all the guns it pulled from its shelves in late February.

Why were the guns pulled from the shelves in the first place?

Dick’s announced on Feb. 28 that it would be pulling all modern sporting rifles from all its Field & Stream stores after the Feb. 14 massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

The company also announced that it would stop selling high-capacity magazines, would never start selling bump stocks, and would refuse to sell firearms to anyone under 21 years of age, even though the legal age requirement dictated by the federal government is 18. Dick's is being hit with two separate lawsuits over the age restrictions.

Dick's had already pulled those types of guns from its "Dick's Sporting Goods" branded locations after the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012. This decision extended that policy to "Field & Stream" branded stores as well.

The company said that part of the reason behind the move was discovering that the Parkland killer purchased a gun at one of their stores and that, even though the gun was not used in the massacre, "it could have been." company CEO Edward Stack said that this proved that "the systems in place are not sufficient to be able to stop this. So we decided we needed to take a stand here."

Stack admitted that these new policies could hurt sales. According to an article in the Denver Post from March, Stack said that the changes were "not going to be positive from a traffic standpoint and a sales standpoint.”

Why is Dick's melting down its guns?

Dick's announced April 9 that it had decided to destroy the guns instead of selling them back to the manufacturer, which could then resell them to another distributor.

A store spokesperson told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “We are in the process of destroying all firearms and accessories that are no longer for sale as a result of our February 28th policy change. We are destroying the firearms in accordance with federal guidelines and regulations.”

The assault-style rifles will be destroyed at the company’s distribution centers, the company said. The the melted weapons will then be sent to a salvage company and will be recycled.

One last thing…
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