Guns

Notorious Philly Gun Dealer Colosimo's Pleads Guilty, Closes

| by Brady Campaign

Colosimo’s gun store has been on the Brady Campaign’s list of bad apple gun dealers for years.

During just one 7-year period, crime gun trace data revealed that Colosimo’s sold 425 guns traced to crime, including weapons involved in at least 10 homicides, 85 assaults, 30 robberies, and 300 additional gun crimes.

The last time ATF released a comprehensive analysis of crime gun trace data, they revealed that just 1.2% of dealers accounted for 57% of total firearms traced to crime originating at licensed gun dealers.

It is dealers like Colosimo’s which make up that 1.2%.

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After pleading guilty today to facilitating straw sales that fuel the illegal gun market — following years of selling hundreds of guns traced to crime — Colosimo’s is finally out of the gun business.

Via Newsradio 1060 KYW (Philadelphia):

A controversial Philadelphia gun store owner has pleaded guilty in federal court to charges that the store allowed so-called “straw” purchases — that is, selling guns through an intermediary that would end up in the hands of felons, who are prohibited from owning them.

Colosimo’s gun store, in the 900 block of Spring Garden Street, has been the target of protests for years (related story). On Monday its owner, James Colosimo, admitted in federal court that something illegal was going on in the store: straw purchases.

Assistant US attorney Tomika Stevens says the charges concerned three separate purchasers who bought a total of ten guns for other people:

“The first individual purchased four firearms, the second individual puchased five firearms on four different occasions, and the final person purchased a single firearm.”

Prosecutors described several occasions on which Colosimo’s sold guns, including .38 specials and nine-millimeter pistols, to someone who clearly did not intend to keep the gun.

In some cases, authorities say, a customer told the store clerk had brought someone else along to be the buyer of record because he was prohibited from buying the gun himself.

Colosimo had no comment after his plea, but he stressed in court that he did not personally sell the guns and would not have.

However, as a result of the investigation, he is closing his store. Officials say his license to sell guns has been permanently revoked and he is selling his inventory to other dealers.