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Local Gun Sales Surge Since San Bernardino Massacre

SAN BERNARDINO ( – The sales of guns have soared since last week's mass shooting in San Bernardino.

At Turner's Outdoorsman gun shop less than 2 miles from the scene of the massacre, more than two dozen people lined up outside when it opened Tuesday morning. The interest in buying guns is so high since the shooting that people like Moreno Valley resident Milton Strickland have to take a number and come back.

"My children who are in their 20s decided they wanted to learn how to shoot," Strickland explained. After the incident the other day, they figured it would be a good skill to have in case they ever get caught in anything like that."

It's a similar story at Riverside Magnum Range, where Syed Farook took target practice two days before he killed 14 coworkers and wounded 21 others. Sales there are up 60 percent since the massacre, according to the business.

After the massacre, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department received seven times the number of concealed weapons permit applications it normally gets, according to the Los Angeles Times.

At Turner's, many of the new customers were women. Jennifer Gingras of Highland just bought her first weapon, a 9mm handgun. She said she will apply for a concealed weapons permit.

"All the stuff that's been going on, the shootings in San Bernardino, and there's been two bomb threats where I work" at Loma Linda University Medical Center, Gingras said. "It's kind of sad that we're feeling this fear in our hometown and in our own areas."

Angelica Carrillo of Lake Arrowhead feels the same way. "After the shooting, we have to be prepared. You can't mess around."

She is planning to buy her first gun because last Wednesday's carnage was too close to home. "I work for the county, too. I've had Christmas parties the same place they had it. So, it's like, you know what, you can never be too prepared. You have to protect yourself," Carrillo said.

Desiree Pagliuso is a single mother of three. She said she never had a gun before until now. "I've had, you know, multiple conversations with women that have never even shot guns that are looking into buying guns to be able  protect themselves," she said.

Nerves are frayed throughout the San Bernardino community. On Sunday night, there was panic when reports of gunfire at a nearby mall led to more than 300 law enforcement officers circling the property. It turned out to be a robbery, where people mistook the sound of smashing glass for gunshots.

"People are on edge, and people are a little extra cautious, which is good. That's what we are asking people to do," said San Bernardino police Chief Jarrod Burguan.

For Pagliuso, being extra cautious now means owning a gun. "9-1-1 is not that quick of a response. In 2.5 seconds, they are not going to be there," she said.

Gun and ammunition manufacturing is a $13.5 billion dollar industry in the U.S. According to FBI data, requests for background checks to buy guns spiked after high-profile mass shootings like this one.

Gun sales often rise after high-profile shootings, especially when gun control advocates call for tighter restrictions on guns.

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