MARTINSBURG, WV –-(Ammoland.com)- An anonymous source within the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Firearms Technology Industry Services Branch (FTISB) reports turmoil within the department over a promotion.
The head of the FTISB, Michael Curtis, is retiring from the Bureau, and Daniel Hoffman has been selected as his replacement by Chief of Firearms Ammunition Technology Division (FATD), Eral Griffith. Hoffman has been a Firearms Examination Officer (FEO) for the past four years. Before coming to the FTISB, Hoffman did not have any experience within the firearms industry. This choice led many others inside FTISB to wonder how he got the nod over other more qualified candidates. The choice has caused an uproar within the department.
Curtis and Hoffman have been two of the ATF’s crusaders against pistol-stabilizing devices. They have long held the opinion that the devices are a workaround for gun owners to legally violate the National Firearms Act (NFA) restrictions on short-barreled rifles (SBRs). Both have long argued that certain pistol braces were designed to be shouldering devices.
Not only does Hoffman have minimal industry experience, but he has also faced complaints filed by other ATF employees from the FTISB. It has been suggested by sources that Hoffman has an unstable and explosive temper. The complaints seem to at least partially stem from Hoffman’s suggested bad nature. Several employees have referred to Hoffman as a toxic personality.
This choice harkens back to the nomination of David Chipman as Biden’s pick to head up the ATF.
Chipman once accused black applicants of cheating on a test because he felt they could not possibly score as high as they did on the exam. Chipman faced multiple EEOC complaints about his racist and sexist remarks, and yet President Biden still thought he was the best option to be the Director of the ATF.
The push back against Hoffman by revolting ATF employees seems to be causing the leadership within the ATF to second guess their decision to tap Hoffman as Curtis’s replacement. AmmoLand News’s sources report that Hoffman is on the verge of being unselected by Griffith as Curtis’s replacement as the head of FTISB. One thing is clear Hoffman is a very unpopular choice within the chaotic department.
The reason that the ATF’s top brass chose Hoffman to replace Curtis is perplexing. Curtis is in a top leadership position inside the ATF, but Hoffman is a low-level employee with little experience and a history of employee complaints. The choice doesn’t make sense to people in the know, leading many to wonder exactly how Griffith concluded that Hoffman should replace Michael Curtis.
Gun Owners of America (GOA) has also taken notice of the strange, proposed appointment of Hoffman to head the FTISB. The gun-rights group will be filing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)(below) request for all of Hoffman’s examinations. The group hopes to shed light on why the ATF would select any potentially problematic employee to lead one of the most powerful departments within the ATF.
The ATF has not responded to AmmoLand News’s request for comment about the appointment at the time of publication. As of now, Hoffman is still Griffith’s choice to replace Curtis.
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.