Neologism – ‘gunfaced’, 4473 stuff

I learned a new word today – gunfaced. It’s a verb to descrive the action of shoving a gun in someones face to get them to stop what they’re doing. A fella was talking to me today and telling me about a almost home-invasion that occurred at his house. He says when he opened the door there was a guy standing there who looked like some sort of ‘Alabama meth head’ and that the guy started yelling and screaming at him. As this happened, the fella noticed this guys buddy creeping up along the side of the house. The storyteller then said “so I gunfaced him and told him to get off my porch…he fell all over himself getting out of there.”

“Gunfaced”. I like it.


There’s been some discussion in comments a few posts back about ATFE Form 4473 and how it will lead to dastardly things happening.

I’ve been selling guns for a number of years, let me tell you how it works here in Montana. You buy a gun from me and fill out the ‘yellow sheet’. If you have a carry permit, I dont have to call for the NCIC background check…you fill out the form, collect your thundertoy and go. If I call the NCIC background weasels, they do get your personal info but they dont get to know what you purchased…(oh, they know “handgun, long gun or other” but thats it…they’ll know the call is about you trying to buy a pistol…they won’t know its make, model, serial, caliber, etc.)

So, you fill out the yellow sheet, collect your gun and head home. What happens to that yellow sheet? Well, here in Montana there is no state requirement to do anything like fax it to the state police or something, like in other states. So, all I do is what the feds require. Here’s what that is – the yellow sheet goes into a filing cabinet and after twenty years it goes into the shredder. (They may have changed that last part.)

So how does .gov track you, then? Well, they’d have to send someone to the shop and have them demand to go through all the sheets looking for the one with your name. Other than that, they dont get that info…the notion that a week after you buy a gun from an FFL (in Montana, anyway) your name is in a federal database somewhere with a serial number and all is kinda silly. Unless the feds are psychic and have mastered ‘remote viewing’ a’la Art Bell, there’s no way for them to know until they come and pick up those sheets.

So how do guns get traced? Well, let’s say little Leroy blows away a 7-11 clerk in Los Angeles and for some reason ATF decides it’s worth following up on. They call Remington and ask who they shipped that 870 to. Remington says it went to Jovino’s in 2005. They call Jovino’s and ask who they sold it to. Jovino’s calls them a few days later and says that after checking their books, they find they sold it so Joe Blow in ’06. They contact Joe Blow and Joe says he sold that shotgun probably around ’08 at a moving sale when he moved to Iowa. Some guy came up and offered $150..he had a receipt but he lost it in another move recently.  At that point, the trail ends. Unless….in ’09 the guy who bought the 870 pawns it and never redeems it. The pawn shop logs it in and know its back ‘in the system’ in the sense that the next person to buy it has to fill out a yellow sheet. But tracing the gun from Remington will dead-end at the point where the new owner didn’t do any paperwork…that on-the-lawn moving sale.

Or…….They call Remington and ask who they shipped that 870 to. Remington says it went to Jovino’s in 1978. They call Jovino’s and ask who they sold it to. Jovino’s calls them a few days later and says that after checking their books, they find they sold it so Joe Blow in ’79 but tossed all the yellow sheets in ’99 when they hit the 20-year-mark. They have a name, “Joe Blow”, copied from their in/out log, but no yellow address, no DOB, no POB, no nothin’. Sorry.

Or…ATFE checks their records from gun shops that were closed and finds the last known person who bought it, and he says he sold that shotgun probably around ’08 at a moving sale when he moved to Iowa. Some guy came up and offered $150..he had a receipt but he lost it in another move recent.y.  At that point, the trail ends.

So let’s review….the only way your purchase, on a 4473, gets into the ATFE’s hands is if the gun shop you purchased it from has gone out of business OR they are tracing a particular firearm and that firearm never changed hands without going through a dealer. The notion that they just do a couple keystrokes and find you bought a 10/22 last week is a bit far-fetched.

Now, some states do require the gundealer to send the records into a state agency and the state agency may have a database. Thats up to the state. In a place like Montana, and many other states, there is no state registration. What about ATFE just coming into a shop, grabbing all the 4473′s and going door-to-door? I suppose they could but the idea that they have the manpower for such an activity is absurd. Oh, they might try to recruit local law agencies but I bet that wouldn’t go very far. And, honestly, if they ask where that AR is you bought in  ’04 and you say you sold it at a yard sale to some college kid..well, that’s legal (in this state) so..sorry, can’t help ya, guys.

Does that mean there’s no advantage to buying unpapered guns? Well, I prefer unpapered guns but I can’t really put my finger on why. Intellectually, I know that the guns I do the yellow sheets on for myself aren’t going in a database somewhere…but I still like to get those free-range guns when I can.



14 thoughts on “Neologism – ‘gunfaced’, 4473 stuff

  1. Other than trying to wade through the .gov websites (and ATFE’s primarily), where can I look up specific state’s practice on the storage/handling of 4473s? I’m guessing if not on the .gov sites then at the states AG office?

    Just another useless bit of knowledge I’d love to know…

  2. what happens if a gun’s serial number is run during a traffic stop? It does not get confiscated and the traffic stop results in no charges. What happens to that data? Now they have an individual, a make, a model, and a serial number all combined.

    • If it’s a traffic stop why is the cop checking out your gun? I’ve been stopped a number of times with guns in my vehicle and they never ask to check the serial. But, let’s say they did. The guy calls in the serial number and the dispatcher checks it against the stolen property database. No hits. Then what? The dispatcher then hurriedly makes a new entry in a different database, enters the serial, all the information from your drivers license and then attaches the two? Nope…at least, not in this state. Don;t take my word for it, though. Go ask some cop friends or something.

    • The few times I’ve run gun serials on traffic stops (1) there’s been a specific reason (likely the reason for the stop in the first place) and (2) the only thing that happens is it’s run against the NCIC stolen items database. And possibly kept on the recorded audio for the local 911 line – and I don’t know what their retention schedule is but it can’t be long because the data storage costs would be outrageous. It MAY be associated with your name and/or plate in your local LE reports database, but those are not connected to any federal or even state DBs, at least not in my state. A more troubling way to get recorded is to pawn your gun. Those records last a lifetime.

  3. Im in MT as well, the troublesome part, at least to me, they are now requiring Gov issued papers or ID with a physical address printed on it. My DL is a PO BOX so I have used a vehicle title recently. I would guarantee the NCIC system could check an address and to know if a resident has ever purchased firearms including dates of purchase name of purchaser and from your info i glean type pistol, or rifle.

    John Lott recently said the FBI is required to destroy all the information within 48 hours after the NCIC check. He sounded skeptical that they actually did. I would bet all I own, they don’t. All the FBI does is file information, they wont destroy jack.

    On the other hand Im proud to say most houses in MT and WY have a gun that lives there so a check to confirm the obvious is moot.

    But the purpose of a gun ban, in my mind is a profit driven law, the justice system is always happy to find a new customer. The target customer is a white male of all income classes. They are the most law abiding demographic in our country-and the most likely to resist a gun ban- this same class is not as easily tripped up by other laws. The fines, jail time parole, diversion programs is a cash windfall for big GovCo (where the customer is always wrong).

  4. John Lott


    I’ve read two of his books: “More Guns, Less Crime”, and “Why Everything You Know About Gun Control is Wrong”. Both excellent, albeit sometimes a bit dry. (He’s an economist by trade)

  5. The Oregon State Police like their background check fee, so sales are called in. Which would be no different than NICS *except* that the OSP also want serial numbers. We The People are assured they’re not collecting them or anything, though….

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