Chicago Campaign Targets Illegal Gun Purchases

NSSF, ATF, U.S. Attorney, Area Law Enforcement Emphasize ‘Don’t Lie for the Other Guy’

DontLieAs part of an ongoing national effort to help prevent illegal “straw” purchases of firearms, the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) are reminding the public in the Chicago Chicagoland area that stiff penalties are in place for individuals convicted of such purchases.

Billboard advertisements for the Don’t Lie for the Other Guy program have been purchased by NSSF in key locations throughout the region with the message: “Buy a gun for someone who can’t and buy yourself 10 years in jail. Don’t Lie for the Other Guy.”

The month-long public awareness campaign was officially launched today with a short program at the Bass Pro Shops, 709 Janes Ave, Bolingbrook, Ill. Present at the event were representatives of the ATF Chicago Field Division, the Bolingbrook Police Department, Will County Sheriff’s Office, DuPage County Sheriff’s Office and NSSF.

More than 55 million impressions will be delivered via billboards and in-transit displays, as well as 3.5 million digital and social media impressions around Chicago along with more than 2.4 million impressions through 30-second radio spots airing on local stations. Chicagoland was chosen for this special campaign by ATF. No taxpayer dollars are used. The program is funded in full by the firearms industry.  

“As evidenced today, the firearms industry is proud of its longstanding cooperative relationship with the ATF and the entire law enforcement community by assisting them in their efforts to combat the criminal acquisition and misuse of firearms,” said NSSF Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel.

“Don’t Lie” is a cooperative program ATF and NSSF, the trade association for the firearms and ammunition industry. The effort was developed more than a decade ago to raise public awareness about the seriousness of the crime of purchasing a firearm for someone who cannot legally do so. The program also helps ATF educate firearms dealers so they can be better prepared to deter potential straw purchases. The public campaign drives home the message that anyone attempting an illegal firearm purchase faces a stiff federal felony penalty of up to 10 years in jail or up to $250,000 in fines.

To legally purchase a firearm, a person must be able to pass an FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check and fully comply with state and local laws, including Illinois’ requirement for a Firearms Owners Identification Card. When a criminal knows he cannot pass this check, he may try to induce a friend or other person to make the purchase on his behalf, which is known as a straw purchase and is a felony.

Some of the Chicagoland area billboard locations are provided below:


  • Bishop Ford (I-94) n/o Silby (facing south)
  • Dan Ryan Expy (1-90/94) so 62nd St (facing north)
  • Chicago Skyway (Twy I-90) @ Calumet Ave (facing west)
  • Interstate 80/94 e/o Torrence Avene (facing east)
  • Interstate 80 w/o Cicero Blvd (Hwy 50) (facing west)
  • Tri-State Twy (I-294) @ 162nd Street (facing south)
  • Interstate 57 n/o 147th Street (facing south)
  • Tri-State (I294) n/o 111th Street (facing north)
  • Harlem Avenue (Hwy 43) s/o 95th Street (facing south)
  • Stevenson Expy (I-55) s/o Cicero (Hwy 50) (facing west)
  • Interstate 55 1.2 mi n/o Rt. 53 (facing southwest)
  • Hwy 53 n/o Royce Road (facing north)

Radio stations airing public service announcements are: WBBM – AM, WGCI- FM, WKSC – FM

Learn more about Don’t Lie for the Other Guy at


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