Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed a bill into law that targets people who try to buy guns, even when they're not legally allowed to because of a court order or conviction.
"This will not just keep guns out of the hands of those who are not eligible to have them, but keep the public and our law enforcement officers safe," Inslee said.
The bill follows an investigation by KING 5 and public radio's Northwest News Network. The probe found that in more than 3,200 cases over nine months in 2016, gun sales were denied because the buyers had failed background checks. However, law enforcement seldom followed up.
The bill's supporters argued that survivors of domestic and gun violence needed to know if their attackers were trying to arm themselves.
The measure requires gun dealers to notify the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs within five days of denying a gun purchase.
Then the Washington State Patrol must put the information into an electronic database that law enforcement agencies have access to.
The new law allows WASPC to set up a grant program that would help cash-strapped law enforcement agencies follow up on those gun cases.