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POLITICS

Tucson gun shop denies Mark Kelly’s rifle purchase

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Michal Conger

The gun shop where Mark Kelly, the husband of former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, bought a rifle to make a political point has decided to “terminate” Kelly’s purchase, Diamondback Police Supply Co. owner Douglas MacKinlay said Monday.

“While I support and respect Mark Kelly’s 2nd Amendment rights to purchase, possess, and use firearms in a safe and responsible manner, his recent statements to the media made it clear that his intent in purchasing the Sig Sauer M400 5.56mm rifle from us was for reasons other then for his personal use,” MacKinlay said in a Facebook post.

“In light of this fact, I determined that it was in my company’s best interest to terminate this transaction prior to his returning to my store to complete the Federal From 4473 and NICS background check required of Mr. Kelly before he could take possession this firearm.”

Kelly, a retired Navy captain, posted a photo to Facebook of himself buying a .45-caliber handgun and an AR-15 rifle from Diamondback Police Supply in Tucson on March 8, saying his purchase was intended to make a point about how easy it is to buy an assault rifle. He said he would turn over his rifle to the Tucson Police Department.

“Scary to think of people buying guns like these without a background check at a gun show or the Internet,” Kelly said in his post. “We really need to close the gun show and private seller loop hole.”

Kelly didn’t have possession of his rifle yet. Because Diamondback Police Supply had bought one of the guns from another customer, the store was required by a Tucson ordinance to hold the gun for 20 days to give the city enough time to make sure the weapon wasn’t used in a crime, according to Fox News.

MacKinlay said Monday he has refunded Kelly and will be donating the gun to the Arizona Tactical Officers Association, where it will be raffled off to help purchase tactical equipment for ATO members.

The store will also donate the price of the rifle to a children’s gun safety course.

“Diamondback Police Supply will make a $1295.00 contribution (the selling price of the M400 rifle) to the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program that teaches children, in pre-K through 3rd grade, four important steps to take if they find a gun,” MacKinlay said. “The emphasis of the program is on child safety, something that is important to all of us and at the core of the current debate on gun control.”

Kelly and Giffords started a gun control group called Americans for Responsible Solutions, which they have used to advocate for extended background checks and an assault weapons ban.

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