Friday, July 19, 2013


That's the internets for today, folks. Thanks for playing!


Bubblehead Les. said...

Yeah, I wonder what would happen if Zimmerman went to the Ye Olde Gunne Shoppe today and try to purchase a NEW Firearm, and the NICS check came back "Denied."

But I THINK Alan Gura could fit that into his schedule.

Seriously, could someone in Florida explain the Laws for Private Purchase in Florida? Can one just go to the Gun Show, find the "Not A Dealer" table and engage in Capitalism, like we do in Ohio? Because I really think Zimmerman needs to "Arm Up", and it's looking like that's his only option.

Tam said...

Bubblehead Les,

"Can one just go to the Gun Show, find the "Not A Dealer" table and engage in Capitalism, like we do in Ohio?"

If one has reason to believe that one would be denied by NICS, that's a crime.

Phillip said...

Gun show? Hell, we have people with tables at flea markets where you can pick up pistols, rifles, and even ammo with no more than showing your driver's license to show you're over 18 or 21 and from Florida. And I think that's just an abundance of caution on the part of the dealer. Private sales are extremely common here, and strangely, no blood in the streets and I've never heard of anyone shooting up a flea market. Now, I happen to be in Central FL where a lot of the area is still kind of country, I imagine it might be different down in Miami. Of course, we mostly consider Miami to be Northern Cuba, so there is that.

elmo iscariot said...

"If one has reason to believe that one would be denied by NICS, that's a crime."

Splitting hairs, not to nitpick but because I'm honestly curious: is that really the standard? I thought it was a crime to buy or sell if you have reason to believe the buyer is a prohibited person. A failing grade in the NICS database doesn't make one a prohibited person; it just indicates that you're listed in the NICS database as maybe-probably a prohibited person.

If I believe I don't meet any of the disqualifying conditions that would make me a prohibited person, but also believe the NICS database has an incorrect listing for me, am I breaking the law by buying a gun in a private transfer?

(Whether it's _wise_ is another question, of course.)

Tam said...

I probably could have phrased that better...

Maybe "If one is a prohibited person, it doesn't matter where or how one acquires the firearm."


Bubblehead Les. said...

Thanks Philip for the info!

Well Tam, yes and no. The way it works around here is that if Person A wants to buy a Firearm from Person B, all Person A has to do is show a Photo I.D. proving they're a Legal Ohio Resident of Legal Age (or a U.S. Military Person stationed in Ohio) and exchange the money. There is no "Burden of Proof" that REQUIRES the Seller to do any Checks, unless the Seller has a FFL and is doing Business at the Show. And if there is a Law, it sure isn't being enforced.

In fact, I seem to recall where some Private Dealers got into trouble because the Guns they sold were later used in Crimes. But the Judges ruled that is the job of the Law Enforcement Agencies to determine who is allowed/denied, not the Private Citizen.

As long as their I.D says they're from Ohio (or U.S. Military) and are of Legal Age, that's how it goes here in Ohio, unless one wants to buy from the FFL Tables or the Brick and Mortar Stores, of course. Then it is 4473 and NICS time.

Trust me, I know from experience.

There's been a couple of cases where they tried to get the Seller because the Buyer later used that Firearm in a Crime, but they were exonerated. I THINK the Judges ruled that it's up to the Local/State/Federal Government to permit/deny Firearm Sales, not a Private Citizen.

Which drives Bloomberg and the AntiGunners NUTS, and they call it "Straw Buying", but trust me, at the Shows, it's no big deal.

It DOES torque the FFL People and the Brick and Morter Stores, but right now, that's how it goes in Buckeyeland.

Tam said...

Bubblehead Les,

" There is no "Burden of Proof" that REQUIRES the Seller to do any Checks"

I didn't say there was.

But if you think you won't pass a background check because you are a prohibited person, then you're still a prohibited person even if you buy from a private seller in all fifty states and their various political subdivisions.

"Straw buying" is not what you or Bloomberg say it is. A straw purchase is when a person who is not a prohibited person knowingly acts as an agent for a person who is a prohibited person. Since it is directly related to perjuring yourself on question 11a of Form 4473, you cannot make a "straw purchase" without filling out said form.

Paul said...

Here in my parts you cannot knowingly sell a pistol to a prohibited person. You are not required to try and figure that out on anyone for a rifle or a shotgun. You are also not required to get any info on the person you sell the gun too.

Lots of guys around here do use a bill of sale on pistols, but that is more CYA that required.

that being said, you can be sure if Zimmerman needs to defend himself again and he uses a gun they will be going over the records of that sale with a fine toothed comb.

Zimmerman would be better off with a body guard than a pistol, legally speaking.

Course this should not be considered to be a valid or binding legal opinion.

Tam said...

(I'm pretty familiar with federal firearms regulations. I kinda had to be, what with it being my, you know, job and all. ;) )

Tam said...

"In fact, I seem to recall where some Private Dealers got into trouble..."

There are no legal "Private Dealers". You may buy and sell to enhance your private collection, but if you are engaged in the business of buying and selling firearms for a profit, then you need a license. That's federal.

There's a handy FAQ about how GCA'68 pertains to non-licensees here.

Tam said...

(To complicate things further, there's no hard-and-fast federal guideline for what is considered "engaged in the business". The guys you see at show after show with "private collection" tables are playing a risky game. I've seen BATFE come down on a few like a ton of bricks, too.)

Anonymous said...

"...not what you or Bloomberg say it is. A straw purchase is when a person who is not a prohibited person knowingly acts as an agent for a person who is a prohibited person."

Just annoying details which didn't keep Bloomie from ruining the lives and livelihoods of quite a few decent businessmen. Further, much like the "facts" as repeated ad nauseum re Zimmerman, many believe his twisted interpretation is correct; and to those FFL's he targeted, does it really matter?

Still, comparing the requirements and responsibilities of seller and buyer to an FFL transfer is non-sequitur; if both are private citizens the standard "knew or should have known" controls. For a dealer it's all about that many times did you have a potential buyer have you run a check just to "find out" whether he's prohibited or not?

Tam said...

Couldn't do that with TICS. Wouldn't do it with NICS.

Geodkyt said...

But Zimmerman isn't a prohibited person.

He isn't a convicted felon, not an illegal alien, not a dishonorably discharged serviceman, not convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence, not subject to a restraining order, etc.

The only thing that could hold him back is being under indictment.

Except. . . they never DID get an indictment, and his acquittal would have nullified it anyway.

So, Zimmerman going to a private seller (or having a buddy loan him a gun) because he thinks his NICS check would come back "denied", because NICS is in error is no crime.

Robert Fowler said...

Google the Shipley case. The ATF busted him as a non licensed dealer, even though his claim was he was a collector selling some to purchase others. The guy was a FBI Agent for Christ sake. Take a chance if you want to. If they will put a FBI agent in prison, what do you think they will do to a civilian?

As to anon's question about running a NICS check on a "potential" customer. Never, for any reason. I will not run a check on someone that "thinks" they may be prohibited.

Tam said...

"But Zimmerman isn't a prohibited person."


We veered off that path several comments back, I fear. I'm just picking fly poop out of pepper now. :)

Buzz said...

Those I know that buy and sell for their own purposes, not as dealers, will only sell after seeing the buyers' carry permit.
It's pretty simple and I wouldn't trust any government to continue to honor the "buckeye system." For accidents from drunk driving, the "grieving" plaintiffs ALWAYS go after the person(s) that provided the booze, commercial or private.

Tam said...

Robert Fowler,

There is a provision for pwndbrokers to do a pre-pawn NICs check. It was kind of important when the pawnshop exemption for NICs ended in the late '90s... ;)

Anonymous said...

Yesterday's winner:

David Burge
Turn Detroit into a national park, to show our kids the wonders of "Government Help."

Anonymous said...

"Wouldn't do it with NICS."

Not knowingly. But then you're back to the standard for private transactions. If you didn't know but your spidey sense was tingling, do you turn down the dude who wants that rifle, fills out the form and puts down his money? Or, being a rep for a capitalist establishment and in any case not wanting to violate his rights, run the check and give him the news (at which he didn't seem too surprised) and an appeal form...all the while smirking to yourself "I knew it!"?

irontomflint said...

To: Tam and Bubblehead Les,

There are several "alternative lifestyle" motorcycle clubs in the Great State of Ohio that have found large loopholes in the background check fiasco!
It seems that you only have to do a background check if the guns you are selling actually BELONG to you...


Tam said...


Maybe I'm not getting the joke?

You only have to do a background check... indeed, you are only ABLE to do a background check... if you are a licensee.

Non-licensees cannot do NICS checks, nor are they required by federal law to do so.

irontomflint said...

I made an allusion to the fact that when particular piece of merchandise is not owned by the seller, he is under no obligation to verify where it came from or who it is going to...

When explaining the origin of said merchandise, being sold for astoundingly low prices, the universally acceptable explanation that one gives or receives is usually...
"It fell off a truck...Why? You a cop?"

Paul said...

Sounds like Zimmerman has bought a replacement for his Ket-tec. Good for him. They have a side blurb on the truth about guns.

dave said...

A straw purchase is when a person who is not a prohibited person knowingly acts as an agent for a person who is a prohibited person.
The posters at my gun shop (helpfully provided by BATFE) say that a straw purchase is any purchase in which you are not the actual buyer, not just those in which the actual buyer is prohibited. That would expand the definition to cover, say, me (not a prohibited person) asking a friend (also not prohibited) to pick up a K-31 at the next fun show while he's there b/c I'll be unable to make it. I don't mean to argue with you, but to ask: can you clarify which understanding is correct?

Tam said...


The poster is absolutely correct, in that the actual crime referred to as a "straw purchase" consists of perjuring yourself on Question 11a of Form 4473.

"Question 11.a. Actual Transferee/Buyer:
For purposes of this form, you are
the actual transferee/buyer if you are purchasing the firearm for yourself or otherwise acquiring the firearm for yourself (e.g., redeeming the firearm from pawn/retrieving it from consignment, firearm raffle winner)
. You are also the actual transferee/buyer if you are legitimately purchasing the firearm
as a gift for a third party.
Mr.Smith asks Mr. Jones to purchase a firearm for Mr.
Smith. Mr.Smith gives Mr. Jones the money for the firearm. Mr.
FEREE/BUYER of the firearm and must answer “NO” to question 11.a. The licensee may not transfer the firearm to Mr. Jones. However, if Mr. Brown goes to buy a firearm with his own money to give to Mr. Black as a present, Mr. Brown is the actual transferee/buyer of the firearm and should answer “YES”
to question 11.a. However, you may not transfer a firearm to any
person you know or have reasonable cause to believe is prohibited under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g), (n), or (x).
Please note: EXCEPTION: If you are picking up a repaired firearm(s) for another person, you are not required to answer 11.a. and may proceed to question 11.b.

Tam said...

(Sorry for the crappy formatting of the copypasta from the .pdf.)

Anonymous said...

Why is there a pic of John Travolta at the top of this post next to the name Robb Allen? :)

Mykel Obvious said...

Let's buy George a new gun!!

Kristophr said...

Interesting that they allow a pre-pawn check these days.

We have one old rifle from back when our shop did pawns ... the owner could not pass a NICS check to get it back. And none of his family could either.

A lovely bunch of people there.

perlhaqr said...

All the more reason to pass my "if you're not in jail you aren't a 'prohibited person'" legislation.

Tam said...


"Interesting that they allow a pre-pawn check these days."

They've been allowing it for, like, a decade now?

Tam said...



My Gold House And A Rocket Car legislation has about as much chance, though. :(

Kristophr said...

Tam: There was more than a decade gap between my past FFL, and going to work for the current FFL.

Yes, I am not up to speed.

Ed said...

Regarding former (not by his choice) FBI Agent Shipley: