Coram Man Sentenced for Illegal Gun Dealing and Manufacture
MISSOULA – John Stewart Davis, 71, of Coram, Montana was sentenced yesterday to 48 months in prison and three years’ supervised release for dealing in firearms without a license and making and transferring a machinegun. Chief District Court Judge Dana L. Christensen issued the sentence.
Davis was charged by indictment and pleaded guilty to three counts on June 20, 2016. In documents filed with the court, Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulette Stewart stated that, if required to prove its case at trial, the government was prepared to introduce evidence that Davis dealt in firearms without a license and that he made and transferred a machinegun that was not registered. He also sold firearms to out of state residents. Davis had been dealing firearms without a license for 25 years, although only the years 2013-2015 were listed in the indictment.
Undercover law enforcement officers purchased weapons from Mr. Davis on multiple occasions at gun shows and at Davis’ shop in northwest Montana. Some of these purchases were regular firearms, some were machineguns, and some sales were to out of state residents. Davis told agents that he made a machinegun and showed them how it worked. Further, the agents observed that a room in his shop had a workbench, tools, and machines for gunsmithing, and that firearms and firearms parts were on the work bench. Davis also obliterated the serial numbers from some of the firearms so they could not be traced back to him. Many of these sales occurred without paperwork.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulette Stewart and investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Montana Division of Criminal Investigation, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.