A young woman from Chester has been charged with straw purchasing a gun, a conviction for which, under the relatively new Brad Fox Law, would carry a five-year mandatory minimum sentence. 

The woman, Staci Dawson, has been charged with providing false statements to police, tampering with government records, making false reports and two counts of illegally transferring firearms.

Dawson legally bought two guns, a Kel-Tec 9 mm pistol and .40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun, from a Lower Chichester sporting goods store in February 2013. Just a few weeks later, the Kel-Tec was found in the possession of Shamar Atkinson, a convicted criminal who could not legally own a firearm. Atkinson pleaded guilty in December to firearms not to be possessed by a convict and was sentenced to three to six years in a state correctional facility. Also in the car was Dawson’s boyfriend, David Colon, who was arrested on drug possession charges. Colon was murdered in August 2013. 

A full week after the arrests, Dawson reported the guns missing. 

CeaseFire PA is encouraged  by the prospect of straw purchasers facing harsher sentences.  We hope this will make people realize the serious consequences of using their clean records to get guns into the hands of people who should not have them.