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Federal Investigation Targets East Windsor Gun Shop

The store reportedly sold a gun to Nancy Lanza that may have been used by her son, Adam Lanza, in the Dec. 14 shooting at Sandy Hook School.


NEWTOWN, CT -- Riverview Sales in East Windsor, a gun store that has been at the center of several recent, highly controversial incidents over the past several years, is under investigation by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

ATF Agent Debora Seifert confirmed that the store located at 4 Prospect Hill in East Windsor is subject to "an ongoing investigation" and was the target of a federal "enforcement activity" late Thursday afternoon.

Seifert said that she could not “speak to any of the particulars” of the investigation

On Thursday, East Windsor police confirmed that the store had sold a gun to Nancy Lanza, the mother of Adam Lanza, the 20-year-old who police said is responsible for the Dec. 14 shooting at Sandy Hook School. Adam Lanza killed his mother in their Sandy Hook home before he shot his way into the school and killed 20 students and six adults, state police said.

In a statement reported by the Associated Press, Riverview Sales owner David LaGuerica said that he was “appalled” that Nancy Lanza purchased a gun that may have been used in the tragedy.

“There is nothing more devastating than the loss of a child,” LaGuercia told the AP. “We are absolutely appalled that the product that we sold several years ago would be used in this type of horrendous crime. Our hearts go out to the victims and the families.”

“We are cooperating with law enforcement and their efforts to get to the bottom of this senseless tragedy,” LaGuercia said, according to the AP.

The gun shop has had a history of issues, particularly with being unable to track its inventory.

On Dec. 15, a South Windsor man was arrested after he attempted to steal a long rifle from Riverview Sales.

Jordan Marsh, 26, was charged with third-degree larceny, first-degree robbery, theft of a firearm and carrying of dangerous weapons. He was arraigned in Enfield on Monday and held on $2 million bail.

Further investigation revealed that Marsh had an AR-15 assault rifle stashed at a Hartford hotel where he had been staying, police said.

According to East Windsor Det. Matthew Carl, the AR-15 had been stolen from Riverview Sales, whose employees were unaware that the weapon was missing.

It was not the first time that Marsh had taken guns from Riverview Sales.

Marsh, who, according to relatives, is mentally ill, had previously received a two-year suspended sentence after it was discovered in June 2011 that he had stolen 12 firearms from Riverview Sales.

Store employees were not aware that Marsh had taken 12 guns from the store in the first incident until they were alerted in June 2011.

Marsh isn’t the only person who has stolen a large number of guns from Riverview Sales, according to police.

In 2007, Riverview Sales owner David E. LaGuercia notified the federal Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives that 33 guns were missing from his store, according to the Hartford Courant. Of those 33 guns, 28 were recovered when police searched the home of Brian H. McClelland, who was a frequent customer of the store and helped out on occasion, The Courant reported.

[Editor's note: This article was originally published on Dec. 21. The publication date was changed for layout purposes.]

Henry J Braud December 29, 2012 at 05:42 AM
Bobby said: " Usually, if there's a single discrepancy in a gun shop's paperwork the ATF will revoke their license right away." That's an outright lie and you know it! If there is one or even several discrepancies in the dealers A&D book the BATFE will sit down with him and try and figure out what has happened. They will give the dealer a certain amount of time to rectify the situation. If it can't be done then they will take administrative action...usually in the form of a civil penalty (fine) or such. It all depends on the circumstances. Revoking a license is the very last thing the BATFE does or wants to do. I have worked with them on both sides...as a police officer and as a licensed dealer...and found them to be easy to work with..friendly...polite...very cordial...and willing to bend over backwards to help when needed. On the whole, they are not the monsters they are made out to be in the media....nor by you Bobby!
Henry J Braud December 29, 2012 at 05:52 AM
John said: "it is like being drunk all the time" Well John...if that is the condition you are in most of the time then I guess you can't be held responsible for the things you say on your postings, I therefore will discount your postings...meaning I simply will disregard them as being from someone intoxicated...sound fair to you? :o)
John Giordano December 29, 2012 at 05:37 PM
Henry, stop patronizing me, i have leaened most right wimgers like to patroize people like they are so much smarter, but they are not! Not they are not like in your words my spelling is attrocious,you know why it is!. Is obvios to me I can't have a civlized conversaion with a person like you,because you like to throw things back in there faces, like you are so much better.
Brandon January 06, 2013 at 03:52 AM
EVERY SHOULD REMEMBER THE GUNS WERE ONLY USED AS A TOOL, IF YOU TAKE A CARPENTERS SCREW DRIVER, HE IS GOING TO USE A HAMMER AND NAIL INSTEAD. I do not agree that Dave should be shut down. I know Dave and I know his store, I personally buy guns, ammo and shooting accessories from Riverview Sales. Myself and a large group of my friends shoot, some of us hunt and some of us hunt. That does not make us demented mass murders. Just so you all know Dave had long guns stolen, and the state of connecticut I as a private citizen can sell you one of my long guns and my only requirement is to make sure your over 18 and live in ct, no background check. All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. { Edmund Burke } Removing guns from the hands of our law abiding citizens and shutting down local gun stores will not stop tragedies from happening, all you will do is put people who at one time could defend them selves and there families from doing so
Joanie January 24, 2013 at 12:26 AM
Stephen, it is very much understood by those of us who have been raised with guns. You can't own a gun in Mexico. But the cartels kill people everyday with all kinds of guns. If you disarm the public, you are going to have cartels, gangs, thugs and possibly our own government threatening your safety and freedom. My dad owned guns all our lives, we learned to respect them. He kept them locked up. We only shot with him and we never dreamed of hurting anyone. We would sport shoot, hunt and had an all around feeling of safety. The problem is that people don't take responsibility for their arms. There are signs when someone is not right, you make sure they don't have access to your arms. My grown sons hunt, collect and sport shoot. They also were raised with a healthy respect for guns. Just because you don't like guns,hunting, shooting, etc... doesn't mean you have the right to take it from those who do. A sick person is going to find a way to inflict pain and suffering even if it means fire, homemade bombs, cars, etc... the problem is not the guns, its the lack of responsibility and respect. People should have gun safety classes and be permitted just like if they are getting a drivers license. Awareness is key.

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