In July, Brown signed six new anti-gun laws that are scheduled to take effect Jan. 1.
The gun control laws were pushed as a response to the terrorist attack in San Bernardino in December 2015, in which 14 people were killed and 21 were injured. The rifles used in that incident, however, were already illegal at the time, having been modified in violation of state law.
One of the new laws effectively outlaws magazine locking devices — commonly known as “bullet buttons” — on semiautomatic rifles, reclassifying them as “assault weapons,” which have been banned in the state since 1989.
Semiautomatic rifle sales as of Dec. 9 stood at 364,643, more than twice the 153,931 sold in 2015.
“Compared to a normal year, sales are up one thousand percent. It’s ridiculous,” Gabe Vaughn, owner of Sportsman’s Arms in Petaluma, told The Press Democrat in Santa Rosa. “Pretty much the second we got them they were gone. A lot of them were presold before they arrived to the store.”
He said he sold 60 semiautomatic rifles Dec. 21 alone.