BATFE gets their wrist slapped
Judge finds fault with ATF findings at Twin Falls gun shop
A federal judge has allowed a local gun shop to buy and trade guns again - for now.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives stripped Red's Trading Post of its license in March after an audit found numerous record-keeping violations over a five-year period.
But this week U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge ruled that the agency had exaggerated and omitted some of the findings it used to revoke the license. Lodge stayed the ATF's sanctions, saying the gun shop can continue operating until the judge decides whether the license revocation was legal. Lodge has not yet scheduled a hearing on the matter.
Shop owner Ryan Horsley said he was thrilled by the ruling.
"I am ecstatic. I was just waiting. For nearly two months this has been exhausting," Horsley said. "Getting all our advertising back in place, getting all our orders set, arranging - it's just kind of nuts. It's not over yet."
But federal officials stand by their investigation and decision to revoke Red's license.
"The report provided to the court was accurate and ATF stands by our initial inspection," said Julianne Marshall, spokeswoman for the ATF in Seattle. "We will await the court's final determination."
In his ruling, Lodge wrote that though the ATF mentioned violations found during inspections in 2000 and 2005, the agency failed to reveal that additional investigations in 2001 and 2007 revealed no problems. The ATF also counted some violations twice, Lodge found.