Walmart, Dick's Suspend Sales of Certain Firearms

The Newtown, Conn. school shooting has spurred some retailers to suspend gun sales.

*Clarification: Walmart sells ammunition but not guns in California; Dick's Sporting Goods in West Covina does not sell guns; Big 5 in San Dimas sells handguns and some rifles. Further, a pdf of California's gun laws—by which many semi-automatic rifles are illegal—has been attached to this article.

Christmas shopping for the outdoorsman in many parts of the country may be a little different this year.

Dick's Sporting Goods has suspended sales of semi-automatic weapons at its stores following , according to a report from CNN.

The chain, which has 511 stores in 44 states, including one in West Covina*, posted this message to its website:

We are extremely saddened by the unspeakable tragedy that occurred last week in Newtown, CT, and our hearts go out to the victims and their families, and to the entire community.

Out of respect for the victims and their families, during this time of national mourning we have removed all guns from sale and from display in our store nearest to Newtown and suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of our stores chainwide.

We continue to extend our deepest sympathies to those affected by this terrible tragedy.

A search of the Dick's Sporting Goods web site for “semi-automatic rifles” produced a handful of paintball guns, but no lethal weapons. A search for “modern sporting rifles” turned up no results. 

It’s unclear how long the suspension will last.

Patch left a message with the communications department, but did not receive a reply as of press time.


Walmart* pulled a Bushmaster rifle that's in the same group of guns as the one reportedly used by Lanza from its web store, according to the Nation.

It’s unclear if the chain suspended sales of any other sporting rifles. Searches for “modern sporting rifle,” semi-automatic rifle,” and “bushmaster” displayed guns for sale in stores only. But when checked for availability, all showed as "out of stock."

Patch also left a message with Walmart’s media department, but did not receive a comment as of press time.

Big 5 Sporting Goods

A search for “modern sporting rifles” turned up two results for single gauge shot guns; a search for “semi-automatic rifles” produces half a dozen results for, but notes that the guns will only be sold to buys 18-years-of-age, or older.

Patch left a message with a spokesperson at Big 5*, but did not receive a comment as of press time.

Jay December 21, 2012 at 03:24 PM
These sales made up such a small part of their revenue and they saw this as an opportunity to score some brownie points with the libs. I never bought or would buy a weapon from any of these stores
TCAT December 21, 2012 at 04:50 PM
I actually used to be a manager at Big 5. They have not sold handguns in a long time. They do sell sporting rifles and shotguns and their firearm sales actually do make up a substantial portion of their revenue. Especially during the during the holiday season. Keep in mind that Big 5 does not allow anyone to purchase a firearm for another person ( aka a straw purchase) as a gift or under any other circumstances. Instead they offer gift cards to be purchased in the same amount so that the person who will be owning the firearm submits the proper documentation. I would be very surprised if Big 5 decided to follow suit and remove their firearms from sale. Especially now knowing their competitors have already done so leaving a significant opportunity to make additional revenue at the end of the year.
Lou Irigoyen December 21, 2012 at 06:39 PM
The same mentality that would drive a mentally deranged person to walk into a crowd of people and open fire with a high capacity weapon, is the same mentality that would find a way to fulfill his mission, if all guns were eliminated and banned. We have a society that has a very compassionate attitude about mental illness. Some people with mental health issues, may never think about committing a heinous crime of this nature. The problem is that a person that is not of sound mind, is very unpredictable at best. We dont know what triggers behaviour issues. We can only treat the problem. How much of our freedom do we restrict to prevent this from happening ever again? Do we keep restricting, banning? Making anything that might be a danger, illegal? The middle east is a climate for terrorism and they committ this type of crime by strapping themselves up with explosives. So again the point being, if a person is on a mission, he will find a way to prevail. Remember the Tylenol scare many years ago? Had nothing to do with guns. The evil minded have and always will find a way to meed their objective.
ROBERT E. FISHBACK December 27, 2012 at 07:47 PM
Just because Walmart suspends a certain type of product, no need to call them bad names. I mean "Walmart Dicks suspends...."


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