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Banned for life from the gun shop???

Discussion in 'General EDC Discussion' started by DB, Feb 11, 2009.

  1. DB

    DB Kilted Moderator

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    I've been shopping around for 1911 recently, and stopped in at the local gun shop today where I purchased my Bersa .380 to see what they had on the shelf for me to look at. I looked at a Springfield, a couple of used Kimbers, and a Para-Ordinance. While I was window shopping, I saw another customer making a couple purchases. I politely asked to see what he was buying, and during the conversation it came up that he was a police dispatcher for the city I was currently in.

    Now, during this conversation, I was also talking to the guy behind the counter who was ringing up his purchases. As I had never purchased a gun anywhere other than an actual gun store, I took this opportunity to ask him a few questions about online and out of state gun purchases, and what was required for transfer and fees and such. The dispatcher brought up that he had a handgun that he was wanting to sell, but the gun shop wouldn't give him what he thought was a fair price. So he asks, "You're not interested in it, are you? I'd sell it to you for a better price." Now, at this point, I'm still talking to both of them, and I ask the shop person if there was any kind of requirement like a official transfer through an authorized gun dealer required if I should buy a gun personally from someone like the dispatcher.

    This is where my day went completely downhill.

    All of a sudden, the shop clerk jumps up, and starts screaming at me! "STOP RIGHT THERE! THAT'S AGAINST THE LAW! YOU HAVE 3 SECONDS TO GET OUT OF THIS STORE! IF I EVER SEE YOU IN THIS STORE AGAIN, I'LL HAVE YOU ARRESTED ON THE SPOT!!!!!"

    As you can imagine, this caught me completely off guard and threw me for a loop! All I wanted to ask was "Could you clarify? I'm not sure I understand what you're referring to?" But he just kept screaming over me to shut up and get out or he was going to press charges. I hastily made my retreat, still completely baffled at what had just happened.

    Now, looking back after I had a chance to collect my thoughts, I'm guessing what set him off was that he thought the dispatcher was attempting to sell me his gun privately on the premises, which was not the case. I was just trying to get some questions answered. What really baffles me now that I think about it, is why didn't he toss out the dispatcher? He was the one that made the offer in the first place. I hate to say it, but I'm guessing because he was in the middle of doing a transaction with him, and that he worked for the police, well...I was being chastised and punished simply because I'm just a citizen, and not a LEO.

    How do I deal with this? Other than never going back to this store and giving them my business, is there really anything I can do or should do?
     
  2. El Verbo

    El Verbo Empty Pockets

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    I feel for you.

    I'd just leave well enough alone. There was a line of etiquette crossed, but what's lame is you don't know what you did!

    Don't lose sleep over it.
     
  3. JonSidneyB
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    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    Hmmmm, If I was the person working in the store I might just ask that you do this outside of the store and leave it at that. In Indiana and Oklahoma I don't think that would be against the law.
     
  4. DB

    DB Kilted Moderator

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    Honestly, I'm still not entirely sure what happened. As I've never purchased a gun from a private citizen or out of state or online, I was just trying to get answers on the procedures for each. I wasn't sure if there was any kind of registry that had to be filled out from a private sale. If he just would have even given me a chance to respond, that's all I really wanted. I felt like a criminal the way I was treated earlier today.
     
  5. spaceconvoy

    spaceconvoy Loaded Pockets

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    From his perspective, it might have looked like the dispatcher was trying to coerce a private sale (or even talk of a sale) in order to bust the shop owner. You just happened to be the innocent bystander, but who knows... I'm pretty sure this kind of coercion is illegal, but that might have been what the shop owner was thinking.

    In any case, better to do your research online first if there's a question of legality.
     
  6. JonSidneyB
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    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    Private sales are legal in the states I have lived in. I don't know if it is inside a gun store however. It is my guess he would have been safe if just asked you to talk about it elsewhere. Hmmmm
     
  7. peacefuljeffrey

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    Stay well clear of that shop.

    Even IF the discussion you were having with the dispatcher were against the law--and I don't think it is, I really don't--the way he went about "handling" the situation indicates that he's a FREAKO of a HOTHEAD.

    You simply don't need to be in proximity of such a person, and you will be doing yourself a favor to forever shop elsewhere.

    Plus, it wouldn't hurt to badmouth the guy to anyone you know who might otherwise be interested in shopping there. I think that business proprietors who are total jerks deserve to have word of it spread.
     
  8. DB

    DB Kilted Moderator

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    I was specifically asking these questions to the shop worker, not the dispatcher. I figured if anyone had the answers I needed, it would be a licensed firearms dealer. The dispatcher had jumped in with his "offer", and that merely brought about my question of private sales.
     
  9. JonSidneyB
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    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    Oh...I misunderstood. It was the guy behind the counter you were talking to. Oh my, he could have just answered your question.
     
  10. bartsdad

    bartsdad Loaded Pockets

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    Hey DB,

    I'm assuming you were at a small shop with a range and not a big chain like Gander MTN or Sportsman's Warehouse. From my experience with the small shops, the guys behind the counter are a bit"different" than the normal guys you find at a big box. Small shops locally get a lot of business from the LEO's and don't like to bite the hand that feeds them. That doesn't make what happened right, but sure makes it easy as to where not to spend your dollars. We don't know what the rest of the clerks day had been like and what led up to this.
    Good luck in the gun hunt.
    Chris
     
  11. peacefuljeffrey

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    But instead, it seems, he turned into a raving psychotic! :laugh:
    And imagine--he's very likely wearing a gun on his hip! :rolleyes:
     
  12. bartsdad

    bartsdad Loaded Pockets

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    Probably 2 or more.
     
  13. shrap

    shrap Loaded Pockets

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    You can't really do anything, other than spread your bad experiences about the store to other gun owners in the area. The gun store is private property and the salesman can ban you from the store without recourse.

    I guess if you really want to follow up, you can contact the shop owner (who I'm assuming is not the salesman who threw you out) and express your dissatisfaction. But I wouldn't hope for much out of that discussion.
     
  14. DB

    DB Kilted Moderator

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    Yeah, it was a small shop...no range though. Everyone seemed to be in a pretty chipper mood until this guy flipped out on me.


    Yes, actually he was. One very good reason I didn't press my luck and just ran.


    Actually, I believe it was the shop owner who threw me out. I'm considering calling them tomorrow, and along with an explanation of what actually happened, ask for an apology. Even if he was in the right to do what he did, he did it in the worst possible way it could have been handled, IMHO. Perhaps a complaint to the BBB is in order, too.
     
  15. Rpuppet
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Rpuppet Loaded Pockets

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    I will preface this by saying I know little about gun sales/trades private or otherwise.

    From a retail standpoint the first person to step over a line was the dispatcher. Offering to sell you a gun in someone else's gun shop is not ok. In some places that could be a type of theft. Stores pay for advertising and taking a sale from them from inside their own store... I've never heard of anyone actually being arrested, they usually just kicked us out of their store. (I worked commissioned retail for a number of years.)

    In your situation I can't see that you did anything wrong. The sales clerk was completely out of line. If he had reason to kick anyone out it was the dispatcher. I can't imagine him doing that since he was in the middle of a sale with him and the local law enforcement probably accounts for a significant portion of his monthly sales.

    What can you do about it? If he owns the store, not much. If he is just a clerk there I would write a letter of concern to the store owner explaining what happened and asking what you did wrong. If it was my store I would bend over backwards to make you happy and earn your business back. I'd probably give you a huge discount too.
     
  16. peacefuljeffrey

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    I don't see how that could be in any way, shape or form "a type of theft," or where the "some places" might be. What is being stolen? Is it theft if you go into a Walmart and see someone about to buy a floor lamp and you tell them that Target has it on sale cheaper?
     
  17. Rpuppet
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Rpuppet Loaded Pockets

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    No, it was walking into the TV department of Best Buy and pitching TV's that I sold in another competing store. I handed out some business cards and offered lower prices. My sales were great that week. I got two phone calls. One from the company lawyer telling me that I'd be fired if I ever did it again. One from the Vice President of Sales, he laughed and told me he better not hear about it happening again. (The handing out business cards got them into some trouble.)
     
  18. icqcq

    icqcq Loaded Pockets

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    DB:

    From the strength of the response, I would make a point of calling - if you're going to call the shop - from a pay phone or other number not associated with you: the last thing you want at this point is to give that guy any sort of information about you, especially contact information or a name.

    Sounds paranoid, but that's also what they say about people who make a point of carrying a gun for self-defense. What's your response to that? 'Better safe than sorry.' Same thing here.
     
  19. grimm_kaosboy

    grimm_kaosboy Empty Pockets

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    Well, things may have changed since the last time I looked it up, and local state laws may further regulate what I'm about to say....

    From the federal standpoint a private sale between two people is just that. Private. No paperwork or anything else required so long as both parties reside within the same state. Private sales from one state to another DO require the seller to transfer it thru a federally licenced firearms dealer, so there is paperwork and fees involved. Buying a firearm online you can go about it two ways: one, contact the online merchant with your intent to purchase and ask them if they have a local dealer on file that they can transfer the firearm thru OR two, find a local dealer who is willing to do the transfer THEN contact the merchant and tell them you want the firearm transferred there.
    Sorry to hear about your bad experience bro...basicaly what happened was a gross breach of ettiquite on the part of the dispatcher along with a over-reaction on the clerk (store owners?) part. He just saw a vast profit margin go down the drain.
    (Personal example, one store wanted to give me 300 bucks for a pristine H&K .45 usp with night sights. The going rate for a used one, in the same condition was about 700 bucks. Net loss $400)
    There was nothing you could have done at the time constructively. If you waited around for him to call the police, he still could have had you trespassed and removed from the property even if you were 100% in the right. I say don't beat yourself about this. The guy is/was a tool. Try and contact the owner and cost him a ear chewing or firing...if he was the owner, inform him of your intent to file a complaint with the BBB.
     
  20. jag-engr
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    jag-engr Semper Bufo!
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    Well put. What the police dispatcher did was rather uncouth. If he mentioned to you discreetly that he had a gun that he was wanting to sell, you two could arrange to discuss it by telephone or at least outside the store. Discussing it with you right in front of the clerk was the epitome of rudeness.

    I would have to disagree with this. The clerk had valid reason to kick both of them out. They were both participating in a discussion of how to circumvent his legitimate retail business and then asking him for advice in how to do so. Since you were obviously trying to keep the transaction legal, there was nothing wrong with the discussion, per se, but it was the wrong time and place. Granted, if the police dispatcher was in the process of purchasing several guns, I can see why the clerk didn't throw him out (not to say that he shouldn't have).