Tag Archives: gun shop

Gun shop raffling AR-15 rifle to benefit Orlando victims

A suburban Chicago gun shop is raffling a semi-automatic weapon to benefit victims of the nightclub shooting in Orlando.

Second Amendment Sports in McHenry, Illinois, is selling tickets for $5 to win an AR-15 rifle similar to the one gunman Omar Mateen used when he opened fire in a gay nightclub June 12, leaving 49 people dead and 53 injured. It was the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

“We wanted to do something for the loss of lives and injuries that happened to people in Orlando,” store owner Bert Irslinger Jr. told the Chicago Tribune.

The store isn’t making a political statement, owners said.

“I understand that there are different opinions out there,” said Vic Santi, store marketing director. “We don’t look at this as a gun issue. We look at this as a terrorism issue.”

Store owners plan to announce the winner on July 31, when they open a new gun range and larger showroom.

Kathleen Larimer’s son, 27-year-old John Larimer, a U.S. Navy sailor from Crystal Lake, Illinois, was one of 12 people killed in the 2012 shootings in a Colorado movie theater. Larimer called the raffle an inappropriate publicity ploy.

“Guns are not toys,” Larimer said. “They should be taken seriously. I’m not saying they should be illegal, but raffling off a gun is not taking its killing power seriously.”

Colleen Daley, executive director of the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence in Chicago, said the raffle is offensive.

“I’m glad people are trying to raise money,” she said. “I just don’t think it’s the most appropriate way to do that. These guns are weapons of war, meant to kill large numbers of people in a short time, which is what happened in Orlando. I find it very distasteful and offensive.”

The gun shop said proceeds plus its own donation of $2,000 will go to the OneOrlando Fund run by the nonprofit group Strengthen Orlando Inc.

 

Wisconsin gun shop to pay $1 million to settle lawsuit

A Wisconsin gun shop will pay $1 million to settle a lawsuit in which a jury found it negligently sold a gun used to injure two Milwaukee police officers, the store’s attorney said.

The settlement eliminates what was expected to be a yearslong appeal of an October verdict in which jurors awarded Officer Bryan Norberg and former Officer Graham Kunisch nearly $6 million.

An attorney for Badger Guns, James Vogts, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1QaOzBU ) late Friday that the case has “been settled and dismissed.”

“This case is over,” Vogts said. He declined to say why his client decided not to appeal.

A jury found that found that Badger Guns and its owner negligently sold the gun to a straw buyer — someone buying a gun for someone who cannot legally purchase one. 

Kunisch and Norberg sued Badger Guns, its predecessor, Badger Outdoors, and the owners five years ago.

Out of the $1 million settlement, Kunisch, who has retired from the department on duty disability, will receive $216,120, while Norberg will receive $74,427. The rest is split up among the city, lawyers’ fees and other costs.

The officers’ attorney, Patrick Dunphy, didn’t respond to requests for comment Saturday.

A separate lawsuit, filed by two different Milwaukee officers also wounded with a gun from the shop, remains set for trial in May.

Norberg and Kunisch were both shot in the face after they stopped Julius Burton for riding his bike on the sidewalk in 2009. Investigators said Burton got the weapon, a Taurus .40-caliber handgun, a month earlier, after giving $40 to another man, Jacob Collins, to make the purchase at the store in West Milwaukee.

One bullet shattered eight of Norberg’s teeth, blew through his cheek and lodged into his shoulder. He remains on the force but said his wounds have made his work difficult. Kunisch was shot several times, resulting in him losing an eye and part of the frontal lobe of his brain. He said the wounds forced him to retire.

Jurors ordered the store to pay Norberg $1.5 million and Kunisch $3.6 million. The jury also ruled the store must pay $730,000 in punitive damages.

The gun shop’s attorneys denied wrongdoing. They said the owner at the time of the sale, Adam Allan, couldn’t be held financially responsible for crimes connected to a weapon sold at his shop and that the clerk who sold the weapon didn’t intentionally commit a crime. Rather, they said Collins and Burton went out of their way to deceive him.

The case was only the second of its kind nationwide to make it to a jury since Congress passed a law a decade ago holding gun dealers and manufacturers largely immune from such lawsuits. In the first, a jury found in favor of a gun store in Alaska.

Burton pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree attempted intentional homicide and is serving an 80-year sentence. Collins got a two-year sentence after pleading guilty to making a straw purchase for an underage buyer.

The last gun store in San Francisco is closing doors for good

The only gun store in San Francisco is shuttering for good, saying it can no longer operate in the city’s political climate of increased gun control regulations and vocal opposition to its business.

“It’s with tremendous sadness and regret that I have to announce we are closing our shop,” High Bridge Arms manager Steve Alcairo announced in a Facebook post on Sept. 11. “It has been a long and difficult ride, but a great pleasure to be your last San Francisco gun shop.”

Alcairo said the breaking point came this summer when a local politician proposed a law that would require High Bridge Arms to video record every gun sale and submit a weekly report of ammunition sales to the police. If passed, the law would join several local gun control ordinances on the books in a city still scarred by the 1993 murder of eight in a downtown high-rise and the 1978 assassination of Mayor George Moscone and gay rights activist Harvey Milk.

“I’m not doing that to our customers. Enough is enough,” Alcairo said. “Buying a gun is a constitutionally protected right. Our customers shouldn’t be treated like they’re doing something wrong.”

The announcement prompted an outpouring of sympathy and anger online from gun enthusiasts _ and a steady stream of customers eager to take advantage of going-out-of-business prices.

The new rifles lining the store’s walls are quickly dwindling, and the handguns in the glass cases are going fast. So are T-shirts that boast in English and Chinese that High Bridge is “The Last San Francisco Gun Store.”

For years, the High Bridge Arms weathered mounting restrictions imposed by local lawmakers and voters, who passed a handgun ban in 2005 that a judge later struck down. The gun store increasingly stood out in the gentrifying Bernal Heights neighborhood of hot restaurants, trendy bars and a chic marijuana dispensary, while weathering organized campaigns calling for its closure.

High Bridge will close Oct. 31, Alcairo said.

Supervisor Mark Farrell said he introduced the latest bill to help police combat violent crime in the city. “Anything that makes San Francisco safer, I support,” he said.

Farrell said the bill hasn’t been voted on, and he doesn’t understand why the store is closing now. He said it was “comical” that the High Bridge is blaming its closure on a proposed law still months away from taking effect.

Alcairo said news coverage of the bill’s introduction in July slowed sales considerably because customers wrongly believed their purchases would be recorded and turned over to police. He said he had to lay off three clerks and that sales slumped throughout the summer. The store’s summer slump comes amid an overall gun sales surge in the state, according to California Department of Justice statistics.

The California DOJ reported 931,000 guns sold last year_ three times the number sold in 2004 and the second highest annual number since the department began keeping sales records in 1991.

In the end, Alcairo said, he and the High Bridge Arms owner tired of the continued opposition and mountains of paperwork required by the San Francisco Police Department, state Department of Justice and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Alcairo grew up near the store and says he is angry and disappointed with San Francisco.

“This is the city that defended gay marriage and fights for unpopular causes like medical marijuana,” he said. “Where’s my support?”

Champion pistol shooter Bob Chow opened the store in 1952, four years after competing for the United States in the summer Olympics in London. Chow sold the store to Andy Takahashi in 1988. Chow died in 2003. Takahashi, who also owns the building that houses the store, declined to comment.

Alcairo said the owner shouldn’t have a problem attracting another type of business in economically booming San Francisco.

The quirky city fixture attracted gun enthusiasts from around the world, many posing in photos with Alcairo and his pistol-packing clerks. Alcairo said professional athletes would visit the store when playing in San Francisco for the novelty of buying a weapon _ and a T-shirt _ from the city’s last gun store.

“High Bridge has always taken care of me,” said Chris Cheng, a San Francisco resident who calls it “my home store.” Cheng won a $100,000 cash prize and a professional marksman contract after winning the History Channel’s “Top Shot” competition.

“It’s always been a challenge for the store to do business in San Francisco,” Cheng said.