Alleged Philly Straw Buyer Sold Guns, Tried to Hire Hitman for $200

AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File

Some people claim that if we had universal background checks, criminals couldn't get guns at all. After all, these folks argue, if every gun sale had a background check, the bad guys couldn't pass it and so they'd be disarmed.


That kind of naivety would be adorable if it weren't motivating people to trample on our rights.

The criminals aren't undergoing background checks because the people selling to them generally know they're selling to criminals and don't care.

And let's be real, it doesn't take a master criminal to pull this kind of thing off. Take this guy in Philadelphia, for example

The office of Pennsylvania Attorney General Michelle Henry announced, on Wednesday, the arrest of a 37-year-old Philadelphia man who is alleged to have been a straw purchaser linked to at least 31 illegal firearms purchases and is suspected of trying to pay -- just $200 and a handgun, officials allege -- to have a man killed.

However, the attorney general's office notes that the intended target ultimately was not harmed.

On Wednesday, Henry's office announced the arrest of Richard Taylor 37, of Philadelphia, after he, allegedly, made a straw purchase of a firearm and had finalized an agreement for a murder-for-hire job.

Taylor, officials said, has been charged with 31 counts of firearm violations, criminal solicitation of homicide, and related offenses.

“We have a wealth of examples to show that illegally-obtained firearms are often used for criminal activity, and oftentimes, in deadly shootings,” Henry said in a statement on Taylor's arrest. “My office, in collaboration with law enforcement partners, have prioritized tracking these firearms and the people who put them into the wrong hands to make a profit.”


Also, just last month, officials claim Taylor attempted to get someone -- who he had planned to sell a firearm to -- to kill someone for him

Officials claim Taylor offered $200 and a Glock handgun, and provided the intended hitman with the target’s information.


Yeah, this genius really thought he could hire a hitman for $200 and a Glock.

If it had happened, though, the Glock Taylor would have allegedly provided would likely have been the murder weapon, which means if it were recovered, it would be traced back to him.

I know I say tracing data is overrated for law enforcement, but if you're a complete idiot, it can still catch you.

Taylor allegedly conducted 31 straw purchases and told one person he could get them all the guns they wanted because of his clean criminal record.

Well, at least he's looking at having solved that little issue, hasn't he?

Now let's be real here. While Taylor isn't alleged to have armed half of Philadelphia's criminals or anything, this is just one avenue for criminals to get guns, and it's an avenue that will never be closed. Couple that with stolen guns and the ability to keep criminals disarmed vanishes entirely.

And if this moron could figure out how to arm criminals, literally anyone could figure it out. It's clearly not difficult.

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