Gun seller says he made no major changes despite violations


October 4, 2015

MILWAUKEE The owner of a gun shop that sold the handgun used to wound two Milwaukee police officers in 2009 testified that he made no major changes in the years before the shooting, even though the store was cited for 130 federal violations.

Adam Allan testified Friday in a trial that pits the wounded officers against Badger Guns store and its owners. The officers allege in their lawsuit that the store and its owners were negligent.

Allan took over the store in September 2007 and was inspected eight months later, finding 70 violations at that time.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported ( ) that the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives warned Allan in 2008 that if he continued to violate federal regulations, his license may be revoked.

Allan testified that he promised to do a better job, but he didn't give examples of what he did.

A year after that warning, Badger Guns sold the weapon used to shoot Officer Bryan Norberg and former Officer Graham Kunisch.

Jacob Collins bought the gun and gave it to Julius Burton in exchange for cash. Burton was 18 and couldn't buy a handgun from the store. He was convicted of shooting the officers and received 80 years in prison; Collins got two years for being the gun straw buyer.

Allan testified that this was the only straw sale he was aware of in his store in four years.

The officers' attorney, Patrick Dunphy, highlighted several "red flags" during the sale, including the fact that Burton was there and looking over Collins' shoulder as Collins struggled to fill out required paperwork. Collins also initially answered on the form that he was not buying the gun for himself, but he was allowed to change it.

Burton also pointed to the gun and said, "that is the one." Attorneys for Allan and Badger Guns said the clerk who sold the gun did not see that exchange.

When Allan took over the store in 2007, he also took over the inventory of Badger Outdoors, which operated in the same location. In 2006, ATF regulators recommended revoking Badger Outdoors' license, but that didn't happen. Instead, the license was given up and a new one was issued to Allan.

In their lawsuit, the officers have alleged a conspiracy to pass the business to Allan and defeat the recommended revocation. The defendants' attorneys have said it was always the plan to pass the business to the next generation and there was no conspiracy.

The ATF ultimately revoked Allan's license in 2011.


Associated Press