The ban came after notorious anti-gun Attorney General Josh Shapiro applied pressure on the promoter. He wasn’t the only one to squeeze Eagle Arms. A Pennsylvania state gun rights group also encouraged the host to ban the sale. That group is the Firearms Owners Against Crime (FOAC), which Kim Stolfer leads.
I first heard of the looming ban last week from a contact inside the show. The same person informed me that he witnessed Stolfer approach the JSD Supply tables and berated the employees while he was working the show. Stolfer told the unnamed employee he should be ashamed of himself.
I reached JSD Supply President, Jordan Vinroe, who confirmed that his employees did have a run-in with FOAC’s Kim Stolfer.
Since I am involved in other gun rights organizations, I didn’t want to write an article about the interaction. Also, for full disclosure, I have had friendly exchanges with JSD Supply and FOAC in the past.
When the ban went into effect, and news stories started coming out, A.G. Shapiro took a victory lap. A lot of articles quoted Stolfer and portrayed him as being instrumental in the ban. On private Facebook groups, I have access to organizations like CeaseFire. I saw them starting to talk about how to capitalize on the victory and will start pushing the talking point that “even gun rights groups admit there is a problem with ghost guns.”
My journalism integrity and my curiosity kicked in. I could write what would seem like a “hit piece” on FOAC, or I could write “this is just the gun world policing themselves” (Also, for full disclosure, I disagree with the latter). Thinking the media can take things out of context, I decided to reach out to Stolfer and FOAC, to get their side of the story, and clear up what he thinks.
After talking to Stolfer, I decided to give Jordan Vinroe a chance to respond to the charges that Stolfer lays at JSD Supply’s feet. I also recorded the raw audio of both phone calls with the permission of both Vinroe and Stolfer and uploaded it to YouTube for anyone to listen to and decide for themselves. This way, the reader can listen and make their own decision. Both embedded below.
My Conversation With Kim Stolfer About Unfinished Receivers
To Stolfer’s credit, he doesn’t deny the exchange with JSD Supply. He said he doesn’t remember exactly what he said but stands by the statement and went even farther and said JSD Supply doesn’t have a soul. In the phone call, he made damning accusations against the retailer accusing them of everything from marketing to criminals to being responsible for blood in the streets.
I feel the best and fairest way to write the article and include the allegations and then give JSD Supply’s response. I have attached both raw and unedited phone calls in the article, and I encourage everyone to listen to call exchanges and make up their own mind.
He points out that murderers killed five people in Philadelphia with completed guns made from Polymer80 kits. He seems to lay the blame at JSD Supply’s feet because, at the Morgan Town gun show, the AG did a sting and arrested four felons with P80s. One of the individuals arrested also had a Smith & Wesson 38spl revolver.
He makes the claim that JSD Supply is illegitimate and selling the kits for their own financial gain. He claims that selling the unfinished frames at the gun shows for cash means the company employees have no conscience and no soul. He states that the company “knows the people buying them are going to use them and turn them into crime.”
JSD Supply’s Vinroe says that this accusation is not the case. He says it is the everyday hobbyist that is purchasing his products. He says his business is legit and operates legally. He claims that the company has refused the kits’ sale to people they believe were up to no good.
For clarity, FOAC doesn’t want the Government to ban unfinished frames or make a registry but thinks the industry needs to self-regulate. They also believe there should be a paper trail when buying unfinished frames. Stolfer said people should pay by credit card or check to establish a traceable way for law enforcement. When pressed if this would constitute a registry, Stolfer said he doesn’t believe it is the same thing.
Vinroe says JSD Supply has no plan to stop accepting cash. The company believes people should be able to use any U.S. legal tender to pay for their purchases. He is also against the idea of a paper trail that he thinks a paper trail is like a registry.
FOAC by way of Stolfer also claims that JSD Supply is selling 50 to 100 kits at a time to random people at the gun shows. He believes that people in the InterCitys are setting up what amounts to assembly lines for firearms and then selling them on the streets. He equates it going out into the community and handing out kits and saying, “I don’t care what you do with them.”
Vinroe flat out denies any purchases of this size outside the sale of kits to other dealers. He did say sometimes people do group buys, but it has always been under twenty even then. Group buys are common in the firearm world. It is when a group of people pool their money to buy an item at a discounted price.
Also, Stolfer believes that dealers shouldn’t sell unfinished frames in certain areas. I asked him if that meant minority areas. At first, he said that was correct. Later he corrected himself and said, “high crime area.” From investigating the Shapiro surveillance operations, the officers seem to be more interested in black customers than white customers, so that is why I asked the question.
Vinroe says they sell at gun shows and can’t control where the shows are hosted. He believes that Stolfer was referring to minority areas. He points to the AG’s monitoring of minority buyers as an example of discrimination.
Stolfer also says JSD Supply only sells 80% kits at the show. I can’t say what they were selling at the show he was attending, but I have purchased a Sig trigger from JSD Supply in the past. He was adamant that JSD Supply only sold kits that people turned into “crime guns.”
I verified with Vinroe that they do, in fact, sell other parts, including triggers. He doesn’t know why Stolfer said that they only sell kits.
Stolfer also takes issue that JSD Supply does not have any signs on their building. He states it looks like a storage area and that JSD brings the kits in from Ohio. He believes they are not a legitimate business because of that.
JSD Supply’s owner, Jordan Vinroe Response To FOAC
Vinroe told me that JSD Supply doesn’t have a storefront and doesn’t want to be targeted from a robbery, so they don’t have signs. He says some parts come from Ohio, but most do not. He doesn’t understand why where the kits come from was even brought up in the conversation.
Stolfer ends by harkening back to his time in Vietnam as a Marine and says the bloodshed he saw shaped his opinion. He also says that he has done more for gun right in the Keystone State than any other person.
Vinroe, for his part, doesn’t get why a pro-gun organization would be working with Anti-gun Democrats like Rep. Amen Brown. He has no plans on changing his business model.
Who is right? That is for you to decide!
Recent Press Releases from State Rep. Amen Brown, D-Phila and Firearms Owners Against Crime (FOAC) on the Ban
“PHILADELPHIA, March 15 – State Rep. Amen Brown, D-Phila., today announced an agreement he negotiated with the state’s largest gun show promoter and the PA Office of Attorney General to ban the sale of ghost gun kits at its shows.
Brown, a first-term lawmaker representing Philadelphia’s 190th Legislative District, joined Attorney General Josh Shapiro at a morning news conference to announce the agreement to halt the sale of 80% receiver kits at Eagle Arms gun shows. Eagle Arms owner credited Brown for leading him to the decision to ban these kits after Brown reached out to him to explain the devastation these kits were doing to the West Philadelphia communities he represents and communities across the city and the state.
Brown said after visiting one of the company’s gun shows and watching how easily it was for individuals to purchase ghost guns and knowing these same types of guns are being used in his district to commit crimes, he recognized that immediate action was needed. Eagle Arms Production holds about 42 gun shows in the state each year.
“It is my job to do everything I can to fight for and protect my community,” Brown said. “It is beyond heartbreaking to see how many lives are being lost and how many families are left in anguish due to senseless gun violence – the impact on my community is grave. The way in which these kits can so easily be purchased by anyone from table vendors who don’t live anywhere near my communities is alarming and sad.
“After watching people leave the show with duffel bags full of these kits, heading straight for Philadelphia, I pulled the needed parties to the table to figure out what can be done today that does not require legislation or policy change, and this agreement is the outcome of bringing people together and working as a collective unit. I applaud Eagle Arms for becoming the first gun show promoter in the nation to stop the sale of these kits turned so easily into deadly weapons.”
Ghost guns typically start as 80% receivers that are sold in kits without background checks. They easily and quickly be put together, lack serial numbers so they cannot be traced, and, once fully assembled, can operate as fully functioning firearms. In Philadelphia, 99 ghost guns were recovered in 2019 and 250 were recovered in 2020. More than 80 have been recovered so far in 2021.
Brown said he is preparing legislation to bring an end to violent crime in the state. He is proposing that any previously convicted felon who is found to be in possession of an illegal firearm would be subject to progressively stronger sentences and a minimum term of incarceration. He is proposing that these interventions be installed for four years before sunsetting to stabilize communities currently roiling in senseless violence.
“While we work with businesses like Eagle Arms to reduce the number of guns coming to our streets, we also must make it known to those committing crime and assembling these guns and murdering innocent people that they will be held accountable for their actions and will not have a fast release,” Brown said. “It is hard to witness what is happening in my community, as well as hear the fear that my constituents have each day. Members of my community are in constant fear of their safety due to the constant violence that is taking place in our neighborhoods.
“Today’s agreement with Eagle Arms proves that if we come together with honest conversation and understanding, we can create much-needed change. It gives me great hope in being able to work with my colleagues and across the aisle as needed to implement legislation that will make our communities safer.”
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.