Posted: 3/16/2001 5:22:43 PM EDT
I live in MN, and was wondering what the law was for buying an Ar-15 as I have a lower waiting at my FFL dealer, and the St. Paul Police aren't cooperating.
I'm 18, and am going to build my first AR-15. I went to the downtown police station to get the pistol purchase permit, they sent it out to me on the 9th day, I haeded over to my FFL dealer, and he tells me he can't accept it because it is a permit to purchase "semi-automatic military-style assault rifles, AND HANDGUNS. He was confused because i'm not old enough to buy a handgun. He called to dept, and they said that they accidentally issued the wrong one, and to bring it in and they would fix the mistake. So, I bring it in friday afternoon, and the idiot behind the counter says that they don't issue assault rifle only permits, and that I have to be 21 to buy the rifle. He asked about 4 other people who were also clueless, so they ended up confiscating my permit and telling be to call the desk SGT. on monday morning. I know you only have to be 18 to purchace the rifles, so what I need is advice on how to handle this situation.
Here is the law:
Subdivision 1. Ineligible persons. The following
persons shall not be entitled to possess a pistol or
semiautomatic military-style assault weapon or, except for
clause (a), any other firearm:
(a) a person under the age of 18 years except that a person
under 18 may carry or possess a pistol or semiautomatic
military-style assault weapon (i) in the actual presence or
under the direct supervision of the person's parent or guardian,
(ii) for the purpose of military drill under the auspices of a
legally recognized military organization and under competent
supervision, (iii) for the purpose of instruction, competition,
or target practice on a firing range approved by the chief of
police or county sheriff in whose jurisdiction the range is
located and under direct supervision; or (iv) if the person has
successfully completed a course designed to teach marksmanship
and safety with a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault
weapon and approved by the commissioner of natural resources;
(b) except as otherwise provided in clause (i), a person
who has been convicted of, or adjudicated delinquent or
convicted as an extended jurisdiction juvenile for committing,
in this state or elsewhere, a crime of violence unless ten years
have elapsed since the person has been restored to civil rights
or the sentence or disposition has expired, whichever occurs
first, and during that time the person has not been convicted of
or adjudicated for any other crime of violence. For purposes of
this section, crime of violence includes crimes in other states
or jurisdictions which would have been crimes of violence as
herein defined if they had been committed in this state;
(c) a person who is or has ever been confined in Minnesota
or elsewhere as a "mentally ill," "mentally retarded," or
"mentally ill and dangerous to the public" person as defined in
section 253B.02, to a treatment facility, or who has ever been
found incompetent to stand trial or not guilty by reason of
mental illness, unless the person possesses a certificate of a
medical doctor or psychiatrist licensed in Minnesota, or other
satisfactory proof that the person is no longer suffering from
(d) a person who has been convicted in Minnesota or
elsewhere of a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor violation of
chapter 152, or a person who is or has ever been hospitalized or
committed for treatment for the habitual use of a controlled
substance or marijuana, as defined in sections 152.01 and
152.02, unless the person possesses a certificate of a medical
doctor or psychiatrist licensed in Minnesota, or other
satisfactory proof, that the person has not abused a controlled
substance or marijuana during the previous two years;
(e) a person who has been confined or committed to a
treatment facility in Minnesota or elsewhere as "chemically
dependent" as defined in section 253B.02, unless the person has
completed treatment. Property rights may not be abated but
access may be restricted by the courts;
(f) a peace officer who is informally admitted to a
treatment facility pursuant to section 253B.04 for chemical
dependency, unless the officer possesses a certificate from the
head of the treatment facility discharging or provisionally
discharging the officer from the treatment f
(g) a person, including a person under the jurisdiction of
the juvenile court, who has been charged with committing a crime
of violence and has been placed in a pretrial diversion program
by the court before disposition, until the person has completed
the diversion program and the charge of committing the crime of
violence has been dismissed;
(h) except as otherwise provided in clause (i), a person
who has been convicted in another state of committing an offense
similar to the offense described in section 609.224, subdivision
3, against a family or household member or section 609.2242,
subdivision 3, unless three years have elapsed since the date of
conviction and, during that time, the person has not been
convicted of any other violation of section 609.224, subdivision
3, or 609.2242, subdivision 3, or a similar law of another
(i) a person who has been convicted in this state or
elsewhere of assaulting a family or household member and who was
found by the court to have used a firearm in any way during
commission of the assault is prohibited from possessing any type
of firearm for the period determined by the sentencing court; or
(j) a person who:
(1) has been convicted in any court of a crime punishable
by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year;
(2) is a fugitive from justice as a result of having fled
from any state to avoid prosecution for a crime or to avoid
giving testimony in any criminal proceeding;
(3) is an unlawful user of any controlled substance as
defined in chapter 152;
(4) has been judicially committed to a treatment facility
in Minnesota or elsewhere as a "mentally ill," "mentally
retarded," or "mentally ill and dangerous to the public" person
as defined in section 253B.02;
(5) is an alien who is illegally or unlawfully in the
(6) has been discharged from the armed forces of the United
States under dishonorable conditions; or
(7) has renounced the person's citizenship having been a
citizen of the United States.
A person who issues a certificate pursuant to this
subdivision in good faith is not liable for damages resulting or
arising from the actions or misconduct with a firearm committed
by the individual who is the subject of the certificate.
The prohibition in this subdivision relating to the
possession of firearms other than pistols and semiautomatic
military-style assault weapons does not apply retroactively to
persons who are prohibited from possessing a pistol or
semiautomatic military-style assault weapon under this
subdivision before August 1, 1994.
Subd. 1a. Ineligible to receive, ship, transport. A
person presently charged with a crime punishable by imprisonment
for a term exceeding one year shall not be entitled to receive,
ship, or transport any pistol or semiautomatic military-style
assault weapon. A violation of this subdivision is a gross
Subd. 2. Penalties. A person named in subdivision 1,
clause (a), who possesses a pistol or semiautomatic
military-style assault weapon is guilty of a felony and may be
sentenced to imprisonment for not more than five years or to
payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both. A person
named in subdivision 1, clause (b), who possesses any type of
firearm is guilty of a f
Subd. 3. Notice. (a) When a person is convicted of,
or adjudicated delinquent or convicted as an extended
jurisdiction juvenile for committing, a crime of violence as
defined in section 624.712, subdivision 5, the court shall
inform the defendant that the defendant is prohibited from
possessing a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault
weapon for a period of ten years after the person was restored
to civil rights or since the sentence or disposition has
expired, whichever occurs first, and that it is a felony offense
to violate this prohibition. The failure of the court to
provide this information to a defendant does not affect the
applicability of the pistol or semiautomatic military-style
assault weapon possession prohibition or the felony penalty to
(b) When a person, including a person under the
jurisdiction of the juvenile court, is charged with committing a
crime of violence and is placed in a pretrial diversion program
by the court before disposition, the court shall inform the
defendant that: (1) the defendant is prohibited from possessing
a pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon until
the person has completed the diversion program and the charge of
committing a crime of violence has been dismissed; (2) it is a
gross misdemeanor offense to violate this prohibition; and (3)
if the defendant violates this condition of participation in the
diversion program, the charge of committing a crime of violence
may be prosecuted. The failure of the court to provide this
information to a defendant does not affect the applicability of
the pistol or semiautomatic military-style assault weapon
possession prohibition or the gross misdemeanor penalty to that
Thanks in advance,
(sorry for the length, but i wanted y'all to see the law in it's entirety. this is MN statute 624.713)
According to federal law, It would only be a "Semi-Automatic Assault Rifle" if it has a detachable magazine and 2 or more "evil" features. The way I see it is you are purchasing a receiver for a long gun. To make it into an assault rifle would be a violation of federal law.
Maybe I'm not reading this right. I don't think you need the MN handgun pruchase permit to buy the AR lower, [b]UNLESS[/b] you are planning to register it as a pistol. And if you do that, I believe it must be under 50oz, which is usually only done with carbon-fiber receivers.
If you're building an AR rifle, all you should have to do is have the dealer do the NICKS [b]rifle[/b] check, unless St. Paul has specific city ordinances.
My best advice would be to run over to DPMS in Becker, about 30 minutes out of the Metro, by Montecello, and pick up a lower receiver. They do the check right there at the factory. It took me less than 5 minutes on Tuesday. All you need is a drivers license.
Make sure you have it built by Summer so we can do some shooting. I work for the Minnegasco Gas Company and will be going to a range, in the evenings, a lot this year. On the weekends I usually use the range by the prison in St. Cloud, off Highway 10.
I can check with the Sheriff's office if you have any specific questions. I am certified by the Minnesota POST(Police Officers Standards & Training) Board, with a Law Enforcement degree from Alexandria. Good Luck
The way I read it is that to buy a rifle or a handgun you need the permit, but you only have to be 18 to buy the rifle, but 21 to buy the handguns. I was told that i needed an assault rifle permit, but not the handgun part. This is too confusing.
a handgun purchase permit is just for that.
my permit says for handgun purchase.
anyways even if you needed a permit to buy a assault weapon, per federal statute, a firearm without 2 or more bad features is NOT an assault weapon.
exactly what steve said, this is just a Frame it is not an assault weapon, because it can be made into a variety of weapons, ie, a pump action .223, or a sporting type rifle.
i don't think your breaking any state laws here. i think you do NOT need to be 21.
As of the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994, they are no longer being made. What you are wanting to buy is classified as a receiver for a semi-auto sporting rifle. That is why Colt for example makes a Match Competition Target HBAR (not an AR-15, banned under the 94 act). Assault Weapons are no longer made. Those ignoramous cops (some, not all) barely know the make of the pistol in their holster or the shotgun in their squad car. By law you should not even need a permit to purchase the receiver. It is a sporting rifle receiver the same as one for a Rem. 7400 or a Win. M-70. Get a copy of the law and show them. Maybe they will learn something.
Forgot to add; Technicaly if you were to buy a PRE-BAN assault rifle, you would need a permit and be 21. But for a POST-BAN sporting ("assault style") rifle or receiver, just 18 and a NICS check. Your dealer can still sell pre-bans (which would be grandfatherd in) for example, but again you would need a permit. Not for a post-ban. I hope this helps you.
MN must suck. Here is OR we just have to pass the Criminal Background Check and be of, or older, than the age of 18 to purchase a rifle. That goes for AR15's to 22cal to 50 cal, a rifle is a rifle. To obtain a pistol you have to be 21 or older and pass a criminal background check. No waiting period and no permits unless you want a concealed weapons permit.
I would think that if you are purchasing a stripped lower receiver then it shouldn't be considered an "assult rifle" since it hasen't been assembled and doesn't contain enough "evil" features to be considered one. I'm probably wrong but I don't think it should matter anyway. I was 20 years old when I built my first AR and I had no problem doing it at all.
The law is a minnesota state law, and the lower is classified as the whole rifle because it is a serialized part, my dealer says i need the permit from the state to purchase, and my local cops won't give me one because they say i'm not old enough. I have monday off, and am going in to talk to the desk Sgt, with a copy of the law in my hands.
the law i'm refering to is: MN statute 624.713
Under the Federal 1994 crime bill. Rifles made after 10-94 are not assault rifles. They are not called that to be politicaly correct. Your receiver at this time is just another "sporting rifle". Your dealer should know that(and he better if he wants to stay in business). And I will be very surprised if a desk sargeant does. Most local LE is very ignorant when it comes to knowing the details of gun laws.
I hope my posts help. But I can't explain anymore than that. Good luck on your mission.
Don't even waste your time going to talk to the desk cop. If your FFL won't sell the lower to you, just go somewhere else. All the dealer/ffl needs to do is run a NICS check on you.
St. Paul is goofy because it says "Handgun and assault rifle permit", while the rest of the state just gives handgun only permits. Thats why you are having a problem. Buying the lower is no different than buying a Remington 700 from Galyans or Wal-Mart.
Just go to DPMS or another dealer and take the easy route. Once again this is just another example of us knowing what we are talking about, and nobody else having a freaking clue. Good luck
I went and talked to Sgt. Linda Wilson today, and she starts yelling about how it's federal law that she can't issue a permit to purchase until i'm 21, and how no such permit exists, and that she will never issue one, she ended up telling me to call the city attorney's office about this. I plan on filing a complaint against her and the rest of the staff, not because they won't issue a permit, but because of the rude way in which they have treated me. The problem with going somewhere else is that I have already bought the lower from gunsmoke, and had it shipped to Armored Fire, so I own it, but can't get ahold of it. I don't know what to do, dealer is insisting that I get a permit, and that there's a special permit available, the pricks at the police station won't issue one, and state law says that the police are required to issue a permit, and that you can't buy one without. The police are claiming federal law and state law prohibit me, but neither of them do, what is a guy to do?
Armored Fire should know better - they're a Class III dealer for cryin' out loud! The service there is very hit-or-miss (excuse the pun). I may be going there this week to do a little target practice. If I do, I'll try a little recon to find out what and why they require what they do to buy a gun.
Thinking back... for all of the evil-black rifles I've bought, the dealer wanted to see my Permit to Purchase card as well. Since I had one and am over 21, I didn't really argue the issue and just gave it to them to make them happy. I should have argued the case. Next time I'll know.
Two cases in point; (1) Last gun show we had here in Virginia, MN. Friend of mine bought a new DPMS (post ban)although he is in his 60's,all he had to do was pass NICS (no permit). Which he did and bought the gun.
(2) Our local gun shop has a Pre-ban Colt AR-15 and a Post-Ban Bushmaster. To buy the Colt, you would need the permit, be 21 and pass NICS. Because under the Fed. Crime Bill it is an Assault Weapon. To buy the Bushmaster, all you would have to be is 18 and pass NICS. As this rifle is not an Assault Weapon. The details are easy to understand, but most PD's are to ignorant to know them and some dealers to scared to oblige 'em.
It is simple to understand for us, but not the ones who should know.
mpthole: If you do go, can you e-mail me with anything that you find out? E-mail address is in my profile. Thanks, Kris
Hello mpthole, I've heard of Armoured Fire but have never been there,how are their rates compared to Bills gun range? Do they have rifle range there? KL2001,sounds like someone is too lazy to look up the regs.that cover this. I guess things in St.Paul have not changed since i moved away from there over 20 years ago! Ben
I'll probably be going to Armored Fire on Thursday. I'll try to remember to get the scoop.
Armored Fire's range rates are better than Bill's; and even cheaper if you become a member. They also have a longer indoor range than Bill's, which is nice for rifle sighting. They have several lanes dedicated to shooting from a bench - unlike Bill's - but be forwarned, don't shoot standing up from the bench-only lanes. They get p.o.'ed when you do that. The clientel that frequents Armored Fire tends to be a little higher quality than those that you see at Bill's (from my experience).
...[b]BUT,[/b] like all gun shops/ranges, the quality of the people who work there varies greatly. I've had knowledgeable, friendly folks help me at both Armored Fire and Bill's - I've also had rude, complete f&*^ing idiots who couldn't tell their @$$ from a hole in the ground.
Overall, it seems that I end up going to AF a lot more instead of Bill's.
BTW - if you're looking to shoot pistol only, you've got to check out the Burnsville Pisol Range off of Cty Rd 42. Its small, cheap, and the guy who runs it is a pretty OK guy. If I'm going to just shoot pistol (and not rent anything), that's where I go.
Between laws like that and the overbearing tax rate in MN I am glad I moved from St Paul to Washington State last fall.
I think i've figured it out, it has to do with the two different definitions of assault rifle. according to federal law, the lower i want is NOT and assault rifle, but I still believe it is by minnesota law. I gotta compare them, and try to figure it out.
Thank you for the advice and comments,
Could it be you somehow ordered a pre-ban receiver? Perhaps this is the reason the dealer want's the permit. I don't know. I recently found 2 pre-ban stripped lowers for sale.
I would explain to the dealer the trouble you are having an ask for a refund. The DPMS factory is just down the road from you. All you need is your drivers license. That's all it took for a complete rifle anyways.
Now I must brag. I took my DPMS out today and shot some groups off the bench. What started out as a 1/4" group(.251"), opened up to .476 on the 5th shot@100yds. It is very easy keeping all groups under an inch with the standard A2 iron sights. I have fired 390 rounds without a malfuntion/jam.
Very pleased with their products. Good Luck
KL2001: Please post your findings on the difference (if any) between MN and Fed law.
The law is very specific on PRE-BAN receivers. That is if it was not assembled into a finished rifle before Oct. 94,it must be assembled as a POST-BAN gun. No pre-ban options such as bayo- lugs, flashider, collapisable stock etc. Serial number does not mean a thing. This is further explained in the legal issues on AR-15.com homepage. In other words, there is no such thing anymore as a new stripped pre-ban receiver you can just do carte-blanche to.
Subd. 7. Semiautomatic military-style assault weapon.
"Semiautomatic military-style assault weapon" means:
(iii) Colt AR-15 semiautomatic rifle type;
(2) any firearm that is another model made by the same
manufacturer as one of the firearms listed in clause (1), and
has the same action design as one of the listed firearms, and is
a redesigned, renamed, or renumbered version of one of the
firearms listed in clause (1), or has a slight modification or
enhancement, including but not limited to a folding or
retractable stock; adjustable sight; case deflector for
left-handed shooters; shorter barrel; wooden, plastic, or metal
stock; larger clip size; different caliber; or a bayonet mount;
(3) any firearm that has been manufactured or sold by
another company under a licensing agreement with a manufacturer
of one of the firearms listed in clause (1) entered into after
the effective date of Laws 1993, chapter 326, to manufacture or
sell firearms that are identical or nearly identical to those
listed in clause (1), or described in clause (2), regardless of
the company of production or country of origin.
U.S. Code as of: 01/05/99
Section 921. Definitions
(30) The term ''semiautomatic assault weapon'' means -
(A) any of the firearms, or copies or duplicates of the
firearms in any caliber, known as -
(iv) Colt AR-15;
(B) a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a
detachable magazine and has at least 2 of -
(i) a folding or telescoping stock;
(ii) a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the
action of the weapon;
(iii) a bayonet mount;
(iv) a flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to
accommodate a flash suppressor; and
(v) a grenade launcher;
according to fed law a post ban isn't an AW, but according to state law it still is, i believe.
Man, what a crock of sh!t!!! I swear, if MN doesn't pass the shall-issue law that's in the house and senate that just gives me one more reason to move out of this d@mn state.
I was at Armored Fire tonight and got the same song & dance.