Local gun shops respond to corporate boycotts

Here's how local gun shops are responding to big corporations like Dick's Sporting Goods and Walmart making some major changes to their gun policies.

Posted: Mar. 2, 2018 7:58 AM
Updated: Mar. 2, 2018 10:02 AM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Big corporations like Dick's Sporting Goods and Walmart are making some major changes to their gun policies.

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Their new policy is making it harder to buy guns. For example, Walmart announced they will no longer sell guns to anyone under 21-years-old.

Dick's Sporting Goods is doing the same. They’re also removing all assault-style guns and magazines from the store.

The company made this decision after the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

News 10 reached out to several local businesses to find out if they'll follow suit. Top Guns in Terre Haute says they will continue to sell assault-style guns.

They say they will operate under state law, which allows someone to purchase a gun at 18-years-old.

They say they look for red flags in all consumers, not just those between 18-years-old and 21-years-old. The owner is confident in his employees’ education to sell guns to the right owners.

“If morally we think the person is not stable, maybe he or she is under the influence, or maybe we think it’s a straw man purchase, we 're not going to make that transfer. We as a shop will not do that,” said Steve Ellis, owner of Top Guns.
Carson’s Firearms says they have mixed feelings about the corporate changes. They say if you can serve in the military at 18-years-old, you should be able to buy a gun.

They say these changes could be a good thing because it will push shoppers to local shops who will continue to sell under current policies.

News 10 also reached to Academy Sports but have not heard back.

People who live in Terre Haute tell News 10 any progress is the right progress.
“A step in the wrong direction is no change. There needs to be change,” said John Davidson, Terre Haute resident. “Incremental change is always better. People are always better with smaller changes than one big change.”

Below is the official statement from Walmart:

“In light of recent events, we’ve taken an opportunity to review our policy on firearm sales. Going forward, we are raising the age restriction for purchase of firearms and ammunition to 21 years of age. We will update our processes as quickly as possible to implement this change.

In 2015, Walmart ended sales of modern sporting rifles, including the AR-15. We also do not sell handguns, except in Alaska where we feel we should continue to offer them to our customers. Additionally, we do not sell bump stocks, high-capacity magazines and similar accessories. We have a process to monitor our eCommerce marketplace and ensure our policies are applied.

We take seriously our obligation to be a responsible seller of firearms and go beyond Federal law by requiring customers to pass a background check before purchasing any firearm. The law would allow the sale of a firearm if no response to a background check request has been received within three business days, but our policy prohibits the sale until an approval is given.

We are also removing items from our website resembling assault-style rifles, including nonlethal airsoft guns and toys. Our heritage as a company has always been in serving sportsmen and hunters, and we will continue to do so in a responsible way.”

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