A Boulder woman will spend two years on probation, including one year of home detention, for making a false statement during a firearm purchase, the U.S. Attorney for Colorado and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ offices announced on Wednesday.
“Lying on an ATF form in order to purchase a firearm is not just a paper crime. It arms individuals who are prohibited from possessing firearms and puts guns in the hands of criminals,” said ATF’s Special Agent in Charge David S. Booth.
Cassidy Morgan Ahearn, as her plea agreement disclosed, purchased a rifle from a Northglenn gun store in May 2019. She signed an ATF form indicating she was the actual buyer. Instead, Ahearn made a straw purchase at the request of a friend. Ahearn gave the friend the firearm one week later, and it was later recovered at a homicide scene — though it was not the murder weapon.
According to the Giffords Law Center, a gun safety organization, an estimated 30,000 straw purchases occur each year. Studies also suggest that a small number of merchants accounts for a disproportionate volume of straw purchases.
A 2010 experiment involved two female callers contacting firearm dealers in California to ask if they could make a purchase for their boyfriends. More than one-fifth of stores indicated that they would allow the transaction.
In one instance, the store employee told the caller to “say it is for you, though,” and added, “you don't want to... you know.”