Yucca Valley permits home gun sales

Neighbors of proposed home gun shop fear for their safety

Yucca Valley Permits Home Gun Sales

Yucca Valley, Calif. - When Luke Mintz received a home occupation permit to sell a limited number of firearms from his home, he was shocked at the blow-back from his neighbors. Just about everyone on the block is opposed to the idea.

"You have guns, ammunition. You have children," Joel Resnick - who lives a few doors down from Mintz - said in reference to a nearby child care center. "You have neighbors with children. You have earthquakes you have flood zones you have all these things. If you know Murphy's law, what could possibly go wrong?" Resnick asked sarcastically.

Deputy Town Manager Shane Stueckle says Yucca Valley has been issuing Home Occupation Permits for Federally Licensed Firearms dealers for years, and nothing has gone wrong yet.

"In the case of the town's ordinance, firearm sales on a limited basis are not prohibited," Stueckle said. "Historically, there have been a number of federally licensed firearm dealers within the town. There has been no record of difficulties or different types of crime statistics, or anything that would provide facts that indicate that should not be an allowed use."

Mintz can sell a maximum of 10 guns a month. He can not put up signage, and he can't advertise. He'll first meet customers he doesn't know in a public place outside his neighborhood. As far as safety, he says gun stores are most often robbed at night, and he'll be home at night.

"The fact that nobody is there to defend it is usually the only reason they get robbed," Mintz said. "Because who's going to walk into a gun store trying to steal stuff, when you know that the guy there has guns? I wouldn't."

While Mintz says he will abide by every law as strictly as he can, Resnick says the neighbors will exhaust every legal avenue they can to stop it.

"If all else fails, we will go to court," Resnick said. "I'm not the only one saying that."

Neighbors will make their formal appeal in front of the planning commission June 11th. If that effort fails, they can appeal in front of the Town Council.

"I think that if they can bring concrete evidence that it will harm the neighborhood in some way, I'll shut down right away and I'll have no problem doing that," Mintz said. "If I thought I was bringing any kind of harm to anyone, I would stop right there."

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