Â This gunshop is just a whipstitch down the road from where I roost.Â I have only been in there once, many years ago.Â I do not have any opinions on the merits of the case, but I offerÂ below some interesting circumstances.Â Fred Ludington is charged with selling guns to straw buyers, a convicted felon, and an alien.
* It is the only gun shop within a forty mile radius of where I live.
* It is located in a sleepy little town of a little over a thousand souls in a county with a population of perhapsÂ twenty five thousand.
* It has been a family-owned business for almost forty years.
* The shop itself is not much bigger than a two-seater outhouse.
*Â The US Attorney for this district, a protege of former Senator Evan Bayh, endorsed Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton in the 2008 campaign.Â He is also former Attorney General of Indiana.
Â Â Â Â Here are a couple of quotes from the news report:
“This is not simply a paperwork case,” Bob Browning, special agent in charge with the ATF, said during a Tuesday press conference at the U.S. attorney’s office in Indianapolis. “This is a case of an individual who, in my opinion, was putting guns on the street.”
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Â Â Â Â Again, I do not know the merits of the case, but ….’putting guns on the street’?Â What doesÂ that mean?Â Fred was laying firearms out there on the curb?Â
During the audit, inspectors reported that Ludco had 3,770 guns.
“It’s no surprise he couldn’t keep track of his inventory,” Browning said.
Â Â Â Â Well, chortle, chortleÂ we suppose.Â Â Again, we don’t know much about the case, but this account and several others reverberating around the wires seem to dwell an awful lot on the number of guns in the store.Â It sure does seem like a similar argument to the oldÂ “who needs an AK47 to go hunting?” chant.Â “Why does old Fred need three thousand guns in his store?”Â Heh. Heh.Â By the way, Fred’s website touts the fact that he has over three thousand guns.Â Â Like we said, the store is the only one for miles around and has been there for forty years, so it’s not like the operation was camouflaged or anything. Fred has signs up, advertises and I guess has a license.Â And call me crazy but, if Fred thought he had a little overÂ over three thousand guns and The FedsÂ upped the tally to 3,770, doesn’t it sound kinda like instead ofÂ ‘putting guns on the street’ old Fred was actually sucking them all up into his little shop?Â
Â Â Â Â My question would be “Why did it take seventy agents to raid a shop not much bigger than a two-car garage and cuff 61-year-old Fred, who also serves on the town council in the little burg of Parker City?”Â
Â Â Â Â Oh, and here’s another little gem.Â The report quotes the prosecutors as saying that among the charges is that Fred sold a gun to an illegal alien.Â Â An illegal alien.Â One.Â Excuse me but how many guns did ATF agents place in the hands of how manyÂ foreign nationals on our southern border?Â And since when did mainstream media and federal authorities from the Obama administration revert back to using the term illegal alien?Â
Â Â Â Â So anyway, an audit apparently turned up some discrepancies in Fred’s bookkeeping, and rather than trying to reconcile things with Fred, the BATF decided to set up some elaborate stings and summon agents from all over the country in a show of forceÂ to descend on a matchbook-sized gun store started by Fred’s dad forty years ago. Â And the beat goes on.