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Report: Tucson Shooting Spurs Glock Sales Surge

Roanoke Firearms store owner John Markell holds a Glock 19 handgun, the model used in both the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre and the recent shootings in Tucson, Ariz. Sales of the handgun surged after both events. Getty Images

Glock pistols have long since entered pop culture vernacular thanks to gangster rap and their widespread popularity among law enforcement all over the world.

They were a revolutionary handgun when their Austrian manufacturer, Glock GMBH, first put them on the market 20 years ago, because they were made with a high-tech polymer instead of steel, making them lightweight and reliable.

Now, however, a more grisly event has led to a new rise in Glock's popularity: a shooting in Arizona by a mentally disturbed 22-year-old suspect who used his Glock handgun to quickly kill six people and wound 14 more.

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One-day sales of handguns in Arizona jumped 60 percent, two days after the shooting, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation data, reports Bloomberg News. Ohio saw the biggest jump in handgun sales, while Illinois, New York and California also saw siginificant increases. Nationally, one-day handgun sales rose 5 percent.

Of all the pistols sold, Arizona gun dealers told Bloomberg that the Glock model used in the Tucson shooting was among the most popular.

Major news events involving a shooting usually spur gun sales, Bloomberg reports, like after the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007 that saw 32 people killed by a mentally disturbed gunman also wielding a Glock.

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"Whenever there is a huge event, especially when it's close to home, people do tend to run out and buy something to protect their family," Don Gallardo, a manager at Arizona Shooter's World in Phoenix, told Bloomberg. Gallardo said he expects handgun sales to climb steadily throughout the week.

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