Hello, I am new to this site and so far I really enjoy it. I have a question if you guys could help me out. This is how the story goes, my brother is looking to buy a new shotgun for duck hunting so we set out shopping for different guns at different retail stores and gun stores. We were both looking at guns and getting a feel for them seeing wich ones felt the best at the first retail store. Long story short we went around town looking for better deals but we ended up at the first store again. My brother decided what he wanted so he set off to buy it and at that time it was late in the afternoon. the salesman gave him the paper work and my brother started filling it out. About midway through the registration, the guy that we spoke to earlier in the morning came out and told us that we cant buy the gun with out even finishing the backround check. He assumed that earlier in the morning I was going to buy the gun because I was talking guns with him more than my brother was and I was apparently holding the guns longer than my brother was. Anyways he said quote on quote "Were not going to let you buy the gun right now because ealier we assumed that you were going to buy it and now your brother is buying it and this is looking like a very suspecious deal otherwise known as a Straw deal." I was appalled. My brother didnt even finish the backround check and they closed the deal because they thought he was buying the gun for me. Very Very disappointed in that deal and to tell you the truth very pissed off, they made a fuss in the store and made us look like fools, has this happend to anybody?Thanks,
Well allright then, I'm not crazy. have you ever heard of such a thing! I live in Arizona. I'm going to go in with my brother again tomarrow, if they refuse to sell again i'll be very mad! Basically what their saying is you have to purchase a gun alone and not with a buddy or hell my own brother. what do you think of that! Thank for the response
Ya this whole deal is a bunch of crap, not naming any names (Sportsman Warehouse) I am very disipointed and lost a customer for life! I keep thinking about it more and more It just makes me madder!
Workin at a gunshop I understand both sides of the situation. It is a pain in the butt but it us very possible that they(gunshop) could have just got burned by ATF. And were real sticky about the laws. From the gun shops point of view, If two people come into the shop one of them acts like he wants a shotgun and holds it gets a feel for it, Leaves then comes back and someone else wants to buy it. It does look like a straw purchase.
I understand the gun shops point of view fully, I dont blame them. But to refuse to sell a gun on one guys assumtion just does not seem right. So if I go into the gun shop today and go with my brother again to buy the gun with me standing there are they going to assume forever that my bro is buying the gun for me and never sell him the gun?
Well, it sounds simple enough to me. Tell the guy at the gun store that you really want the gun after all. You fill out the paperwork and then when the background check for YOU goes through, you change your mind just to prove to this guy that you're not trying to pull something over on him. I'm assuming that you can otherwise buy a gun. After both checks are done, they should have no problem and if they do, they're idiots... There's a local guy who has done time for knowingly selling a gun to an undercover cop who told him that the gun was 'for his buddy....'
BUT, if you can't legally own a gun, you shouldn't go with your brother to pick one out... There's too much suspicion involved.
When my wife purchased her .38, I was the one really looking at them because she's not a gun guru and definitely not a haggler on price. When it came time to make the purchase, my wife bought the gun because it was FOR her. I was very surprised that we didn't get a line like the one you got at your gun store. If we had gotten that line, I would have told them to run my background check if they needed proof that there was no reason for a straw buy to take place. Moral of the story, let them know up front that both of you can legally own a gun and you're not afraid of a background check to prove it.
Beware that this may pi55 the seller off...
Last edited by ponycar17; 12-26-2007 at 01:33 PM..
Ponycar17, thats exactly what I said. I offered to have my backround checked in front of the sales man and the guy said that they cant do that on a single purchase. that would take care of the problem, simple enough just like you said. anyways what can you do.
If you did that, and they still didn't want to cooperate with you, I'd go find another gun store.
But before I left, I'd let him know that when you accuse someone of a felony without supporting proof you're committing slander, and that you'd be writing a letter to the store's corporate HQ stating just that. And then find a gun store without idiots working in it, as was stated already... I feel for ya'... I hate when stuff like that happens.
I hate to say this guys. But while the second amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear arms. it doesnt guarantee the right that any private business establishment HAS to sell you a firearm if you show up, have the money and are legally able to own a weapon. Its that wonderful thing that business have called the right to refuse service to anyone for almost any reason. I can see where the gun shop is coming from and I agree with Southern, the gun shop probably just got recently burned on something or have been tipped off that there might be some sort of investigation going on and that agents of the wonderful BATF were around. While it may be a dumb business decision on their part to turn away a willing and ready customer but at the same time the gun shop is probably just covering their asses. Just head to a different shop and just know that business owners gotta look out for them and their own. I'm sure it was nothing personal.
Guns cause crime like cameras cause porn!
TTUshooter, while I agree that individual business owners have a decision in the matter, I'll disagree that what they did was right. It seems as though they accused him of a crime. If they had simply said that "we're sorry, but we can't sell this item to you," it may be perfectly acceptable, however dumb on their part. By indicating that they thought a 'straw purchase' was occurring, especially if other customers heard them say that, they really messed up. Maybe I'm out of line?...
I would call it similar to a store manager walking out and saying loudly, "hey did you just pick up something and put it in your pocket?..." And then calling the cops before checking your pockets. Now your image is ruined to anyone who saw the event, even though you committed no crime...
Buy the gun from another store! Then here's what I would do:
Write a letter to the corporate office, explaining everything that happened and that you were embarassed by their slanderous attack on you and your brother. Also tell them you are contemplating legal action (for their slanderous verbal attack in front of other customers) and you and your friends most certainly won't be coming into that store again. Tell them that you are a member of a local shooting club and the way you were treated will be relayed to all 400 (pick a number) members. Offer them a reprieve to the above actions if they force the sales person to apologize to you face to face. Now how sweet would that be if the salesman has to apologize in front of many customers?
If the corporation does nothing be sure to tell every one of your friends, fellow employees, and every Tom, Dick and Harry you ever meet or run into what a poor place that store chain is to shop at. Even telling a few people has a way of making a person feel better about the situation since that person got the upper hand and deterred at least one other customer from that chain.
I bought a pistol once that turned out to not only be a lemon but the manufacturer continuously lied to me during the months and months of wait for the gun. Believe you me, I tell everyone I know and everyone on the Internet about that company and I glow inside every time I do regardless that I lost about $700 on the deal. That manufacturer has lost that many times over based on my comments, and he well deserves it!
What we have here is typical of what is driven by Law Enforement today (COP. BATF, Prosecutors, etc). Zero Tollerance is what they call it. There is no grey area and everyone is guilty until proven innocent. Not only that, you are assumed to be a convicted felon and treated that way. Every traffic stop I have had in recent years has been that way and I'm a 66 year old grey haired white guy in a pickup truck or a Toyota commuter car. In this case that attitude filtered down from the BATF relentless search for gun store errors to the sales guy, who knows he could get into big trouble for not stopping what from some obscure viewpoint MIGHT have been a straw purchase. Its a sorry state of affairs!
While the gun store has the right to not sell to you, you have the right to relay your true story to everyone you know and impact the stores business.
Word of mouth is the best--or the very worst--kind of advertising a business can get, TIG. The advice LDB gave you is right on the mark. You were treated unfairly. Don't keep it to yourself. Trust me, letting people know what happened will have a very harsh effect on that company, especially if you write to corporate headquarters.
Here is my 2 bits and I ALSO am a class 01 FFL dealer. if I am approached by 2 guys (say, at a gun show), and I even suspect a little bit that one is buying for the other...I also will not sell....period...end of story.
Around here the BATF have been giving dealers hell over the straw purchase laws, and it is not worth LOSING MY LICENSE if it turns out I sell a gun to someone who is buying it for his friend or brother.
Can I ask a question? is one of you UNDER 18??? (or look like it), if so, it is understandable why the dealer thought you were buying the rifle for an UNDER AGE RELETIVE OR FRIEND and killed the sale. also, The FBI check does not even come into play if a dealer suspects a straw sale.
Next time go to the store ALONE.
...P.S. writing to the corporate hq will not change a thing, except maybe make them consider that the costs of selling guns is not worth the hassle. remember when pennys, sears, etc. all used to sell guns? I do.
Nobody was treated unfair here, except you simply do not know the rules the store MUST play by under the law. So next time, go to the store alone. very few dealers will sell if you bring a friend who asks a lot of questions and paws the guns before you decide which to buy. that is a fact.
Breaking the law is breaking the law, not potential, or maybe, or ????
The BATF is abusing its powers. It is not a straw purchase until the buyer hands the gun over to someone else. The dealer can not know unless told that it is a straw purchase, if that transfer takes place outside his knowledge. Since when in America is an innocent bystander (the dealer) responsible for the actions of someone else (the buyer and the guy receiving the gun illegally) if he has no knowledge of the intent or is not part of the plan. I suspect every dirt bag I see on the street of being a doper but that isn't enough for me or the Cops to put them in jail. A court of law would most likely agree that the BATF, if they took your license, would be wrong, unless you were part of the plan to "straw purchase". The BATF gets that power because they take it and no one slaps them down. Running a busines scarred (of the BATF) is not smart. If you are legally right, its time to fight as several dealers in other states have done. The BATF does not always win!
The purchasers offered to have both undergo a background check and the dealer refused. He also didn't handle it in a professional way but accused them of doing a illegal purchase in front of a store full of people. That's equivalent to accusing you of shop lifting without anyone observing it or it having occured, just becasue you looked suspicious. If that is not deformation of character, I don't know what is.
My suggested approach of writing the chain store headquarters I beileve will get no response but you never know. The chain store headquarters deserves the chance to respond because it was an employee, not them, that created the whole situation. But not frequenting that store or any other in the chain and spreading the "NEWS" is a viable alternative if they don't respond.
Last edited by LDBennett; 12-27-2007 at 05:20 PM..
Go into the store alone next time? they should not have that power to refuse to sell you a gun because you have a buddy there with you. Your telling me if i have a buddy that doesnt know jack about guns but he wants to purchase one, I cant help him pick a gun based off of my knowledge and help him decide what he wants? Here's a story, I was talkin to my buddy about this situation, I told him my story and he told me his story. He went into the same gun shop and bought a gun with his wife, he was asking the saleman what would be a good gun for my wife and so on. Anyways he ended up buying the gun with the salesman knowingly it was for his wife. interesting huh. It's the same thing. Also, we did talk to the corporate office of the company and they were very apologetic about the whole situation. After reviewing all of the security camera tapes of the situation they Admittedly said that they handled it wrong and they said to come on in any time to purchase the gun. talk about kiss and make up huh
Well i'm glad you got the situation sorted out TIG. But you guys are being pretty ruthless towards the employee's of that place. As the owner of a business you are all sorts of concerned about legal liability and what dumb crap people can come after you for. I understand what you guys are saying but as the business will be held as an innocent bystander, not by far... Lets say that it actually was a straw deal going down. You are buying a shotgun for a convicted felon who is not allowed to possess a gun. Say that said convicted felon goes off and knocks off a 7-11 and gives the store cashier a chest-full of rock salt and kills him. when the investigation goes down, they will say where did this gun come from? oh a friend bought it for him? oh they both went to the shop and one was asking all the questions, yet the other one was trying to buy it? Well geez Mr. Gun shop owner didn't it look like something fishy might be going down? Dont you know what a straw deal is? So lets get the BATF all up in your kool aid because you should have known better Mr. Gun shop owner and obviously to let somthing like this go down you must be doing a bunch of other f*ucked up stuff and who knows what else is going down. I know a lot of business owners look at things on the grand scheme of things. You are not gonna make every customer happy, but a business owner if he really is sweating something and he is that worried about it guess what, it means an unhappy customer but you are assured to do business another day. And if the customer is upset enough about it and really does have a valid complaint it will get handled and chances are the customer will get their way. From the position of the business its better to have a slightly upset customer than to let somthing potentially happen when you notice that there potentially might be something fishy going down.
Guns cause crime like cameras cause porn!
Carry a valid Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP) with you... In SC, if you have a CWP you don't have to go through the instant-check system for purchasing a firearm. If you don't have a CWP and think that you may be eligible based on your state's requirements, then attempt to get it... I think that would eliminate a LOT of confusion... In SC, law enforcement valued CWPs so much in 1996 that the SC Highway Patrol asked that the CWP holder immediately show a permit to them if they are stopped for any reason. The requirement was later rephrased to state any time a CWP holder was carrying a weapon. The CWP holders felt the disclosure ridiculous if they had no weapon on them. The reason wasn't to harass the CWP holder, but to make the cop feel more secure. If someone flashes you a driver's license in the middle of nowhere at 3 AM it means you're still in danger, but if someone flashes a CWP at 3 AM it means they've passed both state and federal background checks and the officer is probably safe...
I don't know the laws in your state, but I do know that it's beside CA, so good luck with that...
Common sense is the problem. If they were going to refuse the sale because of a perceived straw-man potential, then they should have pulled both of the gentlemen in question back into an office and discussed it in private. Explained to them that the behavior they saw was identified to them by the ATFE as an indicator of a straw-man purchase and as a result, they cannot sell the guns. Expressed their regrets and apologized for the inconvenience.
Instead, the first salesman acted in an insulting and slanderous manner, accusing them of participating in a felony. My guess is that he was upset at losing the sale to the second salesman who was helping them with the purchase.
That's based upon real-life experience with sales guys. Some of them will do almost anything, including act like complete jerks, to keep another salesman from getting the commission on a sale they think they deserve.