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SACRAMENTO - California legal gun sales on pace to set a record this year.

The state Department of Justice expects 725,000 weapons will be legally purchased this year, nearly twice the 370,628 guns purchased five years ago.

Gun sales have increased during the past decade despite drops in crime and economic woes.

Experts say it's difficult to pinpoint a reason for the increase because the state doesn't track the reason for purchases.

Gun store owners say a diverse group of people have been buying guns. Some are responding to tragedies such as last week's massacre in Colorado, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the Virginia Tech shootings.

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