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Press Release

Omaha Woman Sentenced for Straw Purchase of Two Firearms

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Nebraska

United States Attorney Joe Kelly announced that Ashlie Rickards, 27, of Omaha, Nebraska, was sentenced by United States District Judge Robert F. Rossiter, Jr. on June 18, 2020 for transferring a firearm to a prohibited person. She received a three-year term of probation.

An ATF investigation revealed that Rickards purchased two Taurus 9mm handguns in 2016. According to firearms transactions records executed by Rickards, she purchased four handguns between the dates of September 22 and September 24, 2016. Two of the purchases were, by Rickards own admissions, straw purchases.  A straw purchase occurs when someone buys a firearm for another person who is legally prohibited from purchasing a firearm.

Between September 11 and September 24, 2019, Omaha Police conducted two interviews with Rickards. Ultimately, she admitted to purchasing two Taurus 9mm 111G2 handguns for her then boyfriend in exchange for money. The boyfriend was prohibited from possessing a firearm. During each purchase, Rickards falsified firearm transaction documents indicating that she was the actual transferee/buyer of the firearm listed when, in fact, she was acquiring the firearm on behalf of another person, which is a violation of federal law. Her boyfriend is not charged at this time.

This case was investigated by Omaha Police officers who are members of a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives task force. This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, which is a national initiative of the Department of Justice that was announced in 2001 to reduce and prevent violent crime and make the nation’s neighborhoods safer.

Updated June 25, 2020

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses