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Walmart Refuses Guns Sale to Woman!?!

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Stupidity is one of the many reason why I NEVER shop at WalMart (another reason is that it seems as if a lot of people get shot in WalMart parking lots)

Obviously, this was a VERY STUPID employee who, if the manager of that WalMart has any sense at all, will fire quickly and apologize profusely to this woman (although it sounds like the manager of this WalMart may be just as stupid as his employee given their initial reaction of refusing to say anything about the incident).

You just can't fix stupid can you.

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I do believe that if a seller decides it looks like a straw purchase they can elect to not sell it but am not 100% sure what the exact rules are here.

However they cannot refuse due to it being too much for the person, or held wrong, or any of that.

Its the typical bad clerk issue. Lots and lots of gun clerks have a serious hangup about female shooters and discourage them in every possible way, patronize them, and are generally completely sexist about it. A lot of shooters do too, they see a woman with a gun and try to "correct" or "help" her when they would have let a male alone. Then people wonder why their wives do not care to shoot, and they have to sneak gun purchases around the wife, etc. :wall:

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Stupidity is one of the many reason why I NEVER shop at WalMart (another reason is that it seems as if a lot of people get shot in WalMart parking lots)

Obviously, this was a VERY STUPID employee who, if the manager of that WalMart has any sense at all, will fire quickly and apologize profusely to this woman (although it sounds like the manager of this WalMart may be just as stupid as his employee given their initial reaction of refusing to say anything about the incident).

You just can't fix stupid can you.

I would say that firing the guy would indeed fix stupid.

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If she were buying a 3.5" 12g, or .458 Win mag I could see trying to explain to her the ramifications of her choice, but to refuse sale is :bs:

Fire this guy.

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I would say that firing the guy would indeed fix stupid.

Fired or not fired; this employee will still be stupid so his problem will still remain. :)

More problematic is that whoever is in authority at that WalMart seems to be just as stupid as the employee - if they weren't they would have already apologized and offered to take a good chunk of money off the cost of the shotgun.

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Can they do that? I mean can they refuse it for this reason?

The story says he thought it was a straw purchase.

Liquor, Tobacco, Guns, and Ammo; you have liability when you sell those items and you can refuse to sell to anyone.

Edited by DaveTN
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Yeah, I think maybe the blog is a little one-sided.

The employee is legally bound not to sell the gun if he suspects its a straw purchase.

Obviously he had a reason to doubt the purchase and can refuse the transfer. I respect an FFL who is willing to lose business to look out for his community. No way would I fire this employee.

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The story says he thought it was a straw purchase.

Liquor, Tobacco, Guns, and Ammo; you have liability when you sell those items and you can refuse to sell to anyone.

If that way the only reason, I can understand because of the liability issue. I worked at Walmart years ago & had to refuse a fireworks sale because the kid was carrying & put the fireworks on the counter. Of course the mother just went to another register (on my recommendation) & put them on the belt with the rest of her stuff.…

But article mentions that the clerk commented on the way she held it & her size…

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There are many ways that this could be a straw purchase but aren't all gun sales. You have to give the customer the benefit of the doubt. Three months ago my wife had no idea how to hold my model 870 and since then she has killed more squirrels with it than I have. The way a person holds a gun should have no bearing on there ability to purchase one. Number one: if this were a person trying to do something shady, don't you think the felon husband would have stayed in the car while wife purchased the shotgun. Number 2: if husband was looking for a cheap shotgun to do something shady with there are cheaper shotguns to be had. Number 3: if an actual straw purchase why go to Walmart. They are going to CYA. <br /><br />Just on another note I will bet that more youth model shotguns have been sold by Walmart to full grown men knowing they won't be the primary shooters than any other stores. Who bought your first shotgun. My dad bought mine and I still have it. <br /><br /><br />My wife found this article researching shotguns for women because my youth model single shot 20g fits her much better than my 870. <br /><br />

Edited by jtmaze

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Yeah, I think maybe the blog is a little one-sided.

The employee is legally bound not to sell the gun if he suspects its a straw purchase.

Obviously he had a reason to doubt the purchase and can refuse the transfer. I respect an FFL who is willing to lose business to look out for his community. No way would I fire this employee.

So if a stupid WalMart employee thinks I'm too fat to properly shoulder a shotgun it would be reasonable for him to think I was doing a straw purchase? How about if I was "too old"? How about if I were handicapped?

Somehow I just don't think that the fact this was a woman purchasing a shotgun equates to a reasonable suspicion that this was a straw purchase situation.

Edited by RobertNashville

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It really would just depend on what actually went on during the potential sale. If during the entire time of selection he [husband] was the one handling everything, discussing what he liked and didn't like, and then towards the end the conclusion was "she's going to buy this one", well that is probably sour and the Walmart guy is just trying to do his job. After all, you never know what sort of pressure has been put on him by management to avoid any possible straw purchases.

If she was the one handling everything and it appeared she was trying to make a decision, then the Walmart guy made a huge error in making a decision.

Keep in mind Walmart is also the place that refused to sell me a knife sharpener when I was 17. A knife SHARPENER. So it is obvious that they are bending over kneeling :surrender: in hopes that they are not at all held liable for anything.

Straw purchases are funny anyway. Anyone that cannot legally purchase a firearm knows how and where to find them. And anyone that cannot legally purchase a firearm that wants to purchase one NIB from the store knows that all they have to do is find someone willing to go into the store alone and then what store is going to deny the sell calling it a "straw purchase" then?

I have actually seen the "straw purchase" rule prevent quite a few purchases that were probably legal. Such as a female at Walmart I overheard asking the attendant if it was ok if she purchase a firearm for her husband for Christmas. He called it a straw purchase and said that was illegal. As long as the recipient can legally own a firearm, it is my understanding that in this case it is legal.

If he hounded her about not being able to handle it, that's not cool. But it is also possible he said something like "That's a lot of gun for a young woman like you, sure you can handle it?". After the denial, her and her husband may have exaggerated what was said and claimed is was discriminatory.

Edited by CZ9MM

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^ True.

We weren't there so maybe my opinion is an overaction (I have an religious objection to WalMart anyway so that may have played a part in my reaction as well :) )

Maybe this WalMart was entirely right; it's just that my gut tells me that this was some employee either being overly macho in telling a mere woman that she couldn't handle the gun or an employee being very overzealous in protecting the store from facilitating a straw purchase.

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So if a stupid WalMart employee thinks I'm too fat to properly shoulder a shotgun it would be reasonable for him to think I was doing a straw purchase? How about if I was "too old"? How about if I were handicapped?

Somehow I just don't think that the fact this was a woman purchasing a shotgun equates to a reasonable suspicion that this was a straw purchase situation.

My point is that the blog is clearly one side of a two sided story.

Also, Let's say couple of customers throw vague flags suggesting a straw purchase, and you complete the transaction. Then said customers turn out to be BATF&E secret shoppers. Well you just got your business fined and potentially cost them their FFL.

Edited by Troutburger

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My point is that the blog is clearly one side of a two sided story.

It is a one-sided story but as noted by the author; the store has apparently circled its wagons and isn't talking so if we only have one side it's because of WalMart's decision to make it that way. ;)

Also, Let's say couple of customers throw vague flags suggesting a straw purchase, and you complete the transaction. Then said customers turn out to be BATF&E secret shoppers. Well you just got your business fined and potentially cost them their FFL.

I don't know what the specific laws say regarding an FFL's liability for selling to someone and it turns out to be a straw purchase; or what their liability would actually be but I would at least hope that there has to be something more substantial than a vague suspicion before the FFL can be held liable. :shrug:

Edited by RobertNashville

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I don't buy the article. Got to be more than that. Even if the guy thought it was a strawbuying scam, he has to tell

the ATF, but not to refuse a sale. Missing a whole lot here, folks.

The ATF has to prosecute cases like that if they actually think it exists, but just some kid in a

Wal-Mart doesn't constitute anything. If you have a valid ID and are of age to purchase, all it

takes.

Edited by 6.8 AR
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I might be wrong but I am pretty sure any store can refuse service to anyone without having to explain their actions.

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The walmart employee was not stupid and has a legal obligation if he thought it was straw. From the gest of the womans story, it sure smelled of a straw purchase to me. Good job walmart employee, the world needs more of you. Thank you for doing your job!!!

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I might be wrong but I am pretty sure any store can refuse service to anyone without having to explain their actions.

Yep.

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I might be wrong but I am pretty sure any store can refuse service to anyone without having to explain their actions.

I'm not sure that's true; at least not as broadly as you state it. ;)

The walmart employee was not stupid and has a legal obligation if he thought it was straw. From the gest of the womans story, it sure smelled of a straw purchase to me. Good job walmart employee, the world needs more of you. Thank you for doing your job!!!

The woman may or may not be telling the truth but I don't "smell" a straw purchase here based on what has been said in the story. :shrug:

Anyway, if the FFL, in this case, WalMart, has a duty to report (which 6.8 AR indicated they do and which I think is correct) then the obvious question that should follow is, did WalMart report the attempted illegal purchase to the BATF and if not, why not???

If they truly thought this was an attempted straw purchase then, required to do so or not, it would seem to me that they at least should report it and if they didn't report it then it's reasonable to wonder why (and, not reporting tends to lend credence to the assumption that this was a stupid and/or overzealous employee; at least in my opinion).

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I might be wrong but I am pretty sure any store can refuse service to anyone without having to explain their actions.

Sure they can, so that is what you would use as a defense if that female decided to sue you for discrimination? Not

saying at all I disagree with your premise that that's the way things work, but more trivial things have triggered a

dumb lawsuit. I would think the Wal-Mart manager should have been brought in to make that kind of decision. I'm

not taking sides, but I don't think it is up to Wal-Mart to make an assertion of straw buying without informing the ATF.

If it was me, I would sell the gun if legal to do so, then report the incident to the ATF and let things fall where they may.

Edited by 6.8 AR

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I don’t think an FFL is required to report an attempt; but I don’t know that for sure. But the responsibility of who you transfer a gun to is absolute.

If the guy thought she couldn’t handle the gun and refused to sell it for that reason; he’s a jerk. If he thought it was a straw purchase; he did the right thing. If she thinks she has been wronged she can sue Wal-Mart and see how that works out for her.

I’d like to see a court case that acknowledges that anyone has to sell you a gun; but I don’t think it will happen. biggrin.gif

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When I was a FFL I had a legal obligation to prohibit a straw sell, but had no obligation to report it.

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