Bad experience at Larry’s Pistol and Pawn in Huntsville

I’m not really a complainer by nature (thank goodness), and I don’t tend to have problems with customer service at most of the businesses I deal with– in part because I am picky about who gets my money. Having said that, I had a bad experience with Larry’s Pistol and Pawn in Huntsville that I wanted to document.

Larry’s has been in business for a long time; when I moved to Huntsville in 1991, they had the only indoor pistol range in town. As long as I’ve lived in the area, I’ve shopped there, and I’ve never had a bad experience. Yesterday, though, I had a salesman who was both discourteous and uninformed about the law. He refused to sell me a rifle because I am a dual resident of California and Alabama– “I won’t sell you this because it’s not legal in California,” he said. 

I explained that I’d just gone through the same process at another local store, which had called the local Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) office to confirm that it was legal. According to 27 CFR 478 § 11, it is in fact legal for a US citizen who resides in more than one state to purchase a long gun in any state of residence. I meet the legal residency definitions for both Alabama and California, and if you read Example 2 in the definition for “State of Residence” it’s clearly applicable.

Rude Guy wasn’t in the mood to listen; he told me that the other store where I’d made a previous purchase had broken the law. That didn’t seem likely; gun stores tend to be terrifically careful to follow the law and ATF regulations because failure to do so can get them shut down and their employees jailed. I politely thanked him and left. Then I called the local ATF field office myself and spoke to a very helpful ATF employee. I explained my situation, she cited 478§11 to me, told me I was good to go, and gave me her phone number to have Larry’s call her if they had any questions.

Armed with this information (ed.: see what I did there?) I went back to Larry’s, stood in line for the same guy, and explained my phone call. He was even ruder than before: “I don’t care what she said,” he said angrily; “I still won’t sell to you.” Clearly there was no point in arguing, so I left.

I’ve sent Larry Burnett, the owner, a detailed letter explaining what happened, so we’ll see what action, if any, he takes. Until I hear back, though, Larry’s is off my shopping list. If you’re in the market for firearms, ammunition, or supplies, I suggest you go elsewhere.

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Filed under FAIL, General Stuff, Smackdown!

90 responses to “Bad experience at Larry’s Pistol and Pawn in Huntsville

  1. What’s even more unfortunate is that if the item you were attempting to purchase is one that’s extremely popular due to recent events, it will be sold to someone else before the owner takes any action on this. Sad.

  2. Glenn

    I’d guess that the clause that supports is applicable to you is:

    “Example 2. A is a U.S. citizen and maintains a home in State X and a home in State Y. A resides in State X except for weekends or the summer months of the year and in State Y for the weekends or the summer months of the year. During the time that A actually resides in State X, A is a resident of State X, and during the time that A actually resides in State Y, A is a resident of State Y.” ??

    Seems pretty straightforward to me. I’ll bet Larry does you right.

  3. kevin

    I have also encountered rudeness at Larry’s. On several different occasions they were rude and did not seem to have the time to help me. I wanted to buy a handgun but was unsure what exactly I wanted. I asked to look at a 1911. Still unsure I asked to look at another one. The man told got upset and told me to come back when I knew what I wanted. I personally will not be doing business with them again.

  4. dandeman

    Go to Craig’s in Athens – Lindsay Lane Shopping Mall. I was very happy with the service and support to help a new gun shopper.

    • robichaux

      Thanks, Dan. I bought a rifle from them back in December; in fact I went there today to look for a stripped upper but they were closed. I’ll be back again.

  5. Kayla

    Hi! I’m Kayla and me and my family opened a new pawn shop in Madison called quality pawn. Address 7449 HWY 72 W Madison AL 35758 … We would love to help you with anything possible! Please come check our GREAT selection of ammo and guns! 256-325-3113

    • robichaux

      Thanks, Kayla– my sons and I have been to your shop a couple of times before you got your FFL. We were treated well, and your prices on .45 ACP and .223 ammo are quite reasonable. We’ll be back.

    • Ben Tipton

      I too use to shop at Larrys pistol & pawn..I to refuse to spend my $ there any longer they are the rudest business in Huntsville. They get away with it because they unfortunately have a slight monopoly in this small town. I would love for gander mountain to run them out of business.

    • Ben Tipton

      Will u bet or meet Larrys prices. Most shops say no that’s why Larrys has a monopoly but if u can & will tall will be one of the first. & I will buy a hand gun from yall ASAP.

    • Been in your place a couple times and was very impressed, staff is very helpfull and prices were great. Hope you guys are around for a long time. I love Larry’s but it can be a real pain to shop there some times.

  6. jerry

    You need to read this:

    Illegal for the DEALER

    STATE OF RESIDENCE REQUIREMENTS FOR FIREARMS TRANSFERSSection 922(b)(3) of title 18, which forbids federal firearms licensees from selling or delivering “any firearm to any person who the licensee knows or has reasonable cause to believe does not reside
    in . . . the State in which the licensee’s place of business is located,” cannot be interpreted to define“reside in . . . the State” differently for citizens and aliens

    Illegal for the private BUYER

    (a)(3) tells us that unlicensed individuals may not go to a state where they do not live, buy a gun, take delivery of the gun, and bring it back to the state of residence

    California residents are subject to Penal Code 12070

    12070. (a) No person shall sell, lease, or transfer firearms unless he or she has been issued a license pursuant to Section

    and 12072(d)(d) Where neither party to the transaction holds a dealer’s license issued pursuant to Section 12071, the parties to the
    transaction shall complete the sale, loan, or transfer of that firearm through a licensed firearms dealer pursuant to Section

    Penal Code 12071 is the California firearms dealer licensing requirement. Complying “with State laws” requires using a properly licensed California FFL.

    Federal law also usually bars transfer of a firearm by an FFL to a resident of another state, unless the recipient is a Federally-licensed dealer or collector of curio or relic firearms. In some states, an FFL dealer may transfer a rifle or shotgun to a resident of another state if the prospective buyer’s state does not object, but California bars such transactions.

    check to make sure a California FFL dealer can legally receive that firearm and transfer it to you. Effective 1 July 2008, every FFL dealer wherever located who wishes to transfer a firearm to any FFL dealer in California must first register with the Firearms Bureau of the California Department of Justice and, before shipping or delivering a firearm, obtain an authorization number from the Firearms Bureau.

    • robichaux

      Thanks, Jerry, but that’s not applicable. I met the requirements of 922.b.3 by maintaining residency in Alabama. None of the firearms in question ever went back to California. PC 1207x doesn’t apply.

      • Dale Harding

        How does the FFL know that you won’t try to take it to California? You are a resident. Why would you even want to be a resident of California?

      • robichaux

        The FFL isn’t responsible for what I do with my purchase after I buy it. That’s the kind of logic I’d expect from our buddy Mayor Bloomberg.

      • On the contrary to your response, the FFL is criminally liable as sated in both the California and Federal laws. Larry’s Pistol and Pawn cannot knowingly sell a California resident any firearm because Larry;s is not licensed or approved by California to sell or transfer firearms to residents of California. At the time you were denied the purchase, you were a permanent resident of California and only a part time resident of Alabama having a residence in Alabama only for the purpose of limited visitation with your children. Your permanent resident address, business address, voter registration, etc., were in California, not Alabama as you have previously stated. Even under Alabama hunting and fishing laws, at the time this incident occurred, you would have been denied a resident hunting and fishing license because you maintained your driver license and other identifications as a California resident. Neither Alabama nor California allow dual residency licensing nor dual voter registration in multiple states.

      • robichaux

        Lawrence, this is getting a bit tiresome. Tell you what: find me the section of California’s penal code that imposes criminal liability on an out-of-state FFL who legally sells to an out-of-state resident, who then unlawfully imports the weapon into CA. I’ll even give you a bigger target and say that I’ll accept the same for magazines that would not be lawful to possess in CA. If you can demonstrate that what you say is true, I’ll admit that you’re right. When you can’t, I’ll expect you to do the same.

      • Lawrence, this is getting a bit tiresome. Tell you what: find me the section of California’s penal code that imposes criminal liability on an out-of-state FFL who legally sells to an out-of-state resident, who then unlawfully imports the weapon into CA. I’ll even give you a bigger target and say that I’ll accept the same for magazines that would not be lawful to possess in CA. If you can demonstrate that what you say is true, I’ll admit that you’re right. When you can’t, I’ll expect you to do the same.

        Reply Comments
        Mr Robichaux, If you capable of accepting the personal responsibility the to obey the law like everyone else, you would not be trying so desperately to purposely misquote the law to make special exceptions for yourself.

        It is a violation of California law for a person who is not licensed as a California firearms dealer to transfer a firearm to another unlicensed person, without conducting such a transfer through a licensed firearms dealer . (Pen . Code, § 27545 .) Such a transfer may be punished as a felony . (Pen . Code, § 27590 .)

        At the time you attempted to purchase a firearm that is on the California prohibition list for California residents, all your legal personal and professional identification were from California. You confirmed your residence in Alabama was only part time, not your permanent residence. Larry’s Pistol and Pawn is not a licensed California FFL nor do they have a out of state California Firearms license to sell or transfer firearms to residents or California FFL holders. Had it been LEGAL for Larry’s to sell a California resident a firearm, they wuold have.

  7. kyle matthews

    i have lived in madison county for three years now and have gone to larrys on several occasions looking to purchase a firearm on all occasions i left the store empty handed because of their poor customer service. i barly can get anyone to help me and when i do the associate seems aggrivated that i have a question or that i may want to look at a firearm inside a case. i have vouched to never buy anything from them. i now shop at a small mom and pop type store on jordan lane called jc’s. they do not have the inventory like larrys but their customer service is much better.

  8. Bob

    Also try and get anyone at Larry’s to answer the phone at any time. But, Barnett is making a killing these days so they don’t care if you’re unhappy or not.

  9. Douglas Knox


  10. Tom Crain

    I’ve bought a couple of guns at Larry’s and shopped there a number of times. It’s a big store with a lot of inventory and a lot of customers. When it’s jam packed I browse and don’t take up the salespeople’s time. When I’m seriously shopping and want customer service I try to go at a time when they are not so busy and have time to work with me. That strategy has worked well for me at Larry’s. Not so well at Gander Mountain up the street. JC’s pn Jordan is a nice store, those folks are helpful. While they don’t have the inventory of Larry’s, they are very competitive when it comes to pricing a gun they will order for you!

  11. matt

    went by..RUDE AND RUSHED. I know a bit about all guns butbthey thought I was an iddiot. 450 on a glock19 gen4 brand new in box as trade in was an insult. call and they’re extremely rude… im taking my biz else were I hope larry knows how his staff is?!!!

    • Wes

      They are not going to give you more than what they can buy one for. That’s just common sense. Doesn’t matter what YOU paid for it. New Glocks can be bought for $499 retail ALL DAY. It seems you don’t know as much as you might think.

    • When you sell a brand new in box pistol to Larry’s, its no longer a brand new pistol. He is in business. He can buy brand new pistols for way less than you can. He’s not going to sell a used gun for the same price as a used gun. If you want to get more money for your pistol, put it on Craigs list. A high volume gun dealer is not in the business of buying used guns for more than he can buy new guns.

  12. John

    I have to say, I also was treated pretty rudely by one of Larry’s people. I was there to pick up a 9mm I had already paid for via internet. While we waited my dad and I browsed around. I asked one guy about a Makarov and got rude reply and a rude look. I guess since they have a lot of business they don’t really care. But it definitely has made me NOT want to go back to them for my next purchase. But I’ve found in general that most guys that work behind the gun counters in different places are a little rude and often don’t know what they’re talking about. I guess that’s why they’re behind the counter and not doing something else.

  13. mike shultz

    mike ill not be back rude people use to be a good place to shop not anymore

  14. Jay

    I’ve bought five handguns there in the last two years and got great deals on all of them, so naturally I went there during the last ar ban scare after the Connecticut thing. I saw an ad on the wall back by the ARs that said “military get $100 back back from (I think) S & W. Grabbed one of the 5 or 6 they had on the shelves and waited for a service person. Asked him if I was eligible as a Vet and he was careful to say “yeah you get that if you’re military”. I said I’d like to buy it and filled out the papers. Since there were only a handful of ARs on the rack, I figured they were all that was left and asked him if he still had all the papers and the box. He was careful to say “we have a box for yours”. as I started to fill out the paperwork he took the gun and handed it to a young helper who returned it to the shelf and brought out a new still-in-the-box gun. This gave me pause considering his reply and I figured they might just want folks to think they were running low. Now doubting his word a little, I asked for a copy of the ad on the wall so I could check the fine print. I asked him again, “Am I eligible for this rebate?” He got irritated and said “That’s between you and the manufacturer”. I stopped the paperwork and read the complete ad. Turns out the rebate was good for ACTIVE military, not vets. While he never lied to me, he was not about to clear things up either. Also there was the whole “Let them think there are only five guns left” thing. I became irritated and left. Stopped in a few times since and left each time after waiting too long for a salesperson. They’re fat right now, but when things slow back down, we will all remember.

    • I have been in Five Points for about six months house sitting for family. I am retired, have residence and live in another state. I have visited Larry’s Pistol and Pawn almost weekly since I have been here and never had anyone at Larry’s be rude to me. Granted, some of the hired help don’t know as much about a particular firearm as someone who has owned many of the same firearm or researched them, but rudeness usually begets rudeness in return and so far, everyone complaining about Larry’s appears to have been rude first then escalated the incident before leaving and upon returning fires up another argument again. I have had no problems trading or buying firearms there. Long guns are a straight forward sale, hand guns are transferred to home state to a FFL holder of my choice or just up to Fayetteville where I can easily drive to pick it up. As for California residents, whether dual residents with Alabama or any other other state, should not be sold a firearm from any other state firearms dealer or even individual unless the firearm can be shipped to a California FFL who can legally transfer the firearm to the California resident. What firearms dealer in their right mind would want to have their business on national news as one of the “rogue” gun dealers who sell firearms illegal for sale or ownership in California to some California resident who wants to use all the loopholes to get such firearms back to California…

      • Untz

        You ASSume that everyone complaining about larry’s initiated the problems? That seems a bit unrealistic for hundreds of people to have bad experiences that was ALL customer initiated. I have went to larrys and have had good experiences with certain employees and bad experiences with others. I think ill place the blame on the bad customer service skills of the employee. Their condescending undertone of the conversation, irritability and lack of patience will really aggravate you, as a customer, when examining a firearm that you may want to purchase. If it was a few people complaining, I would entertain the idea of customers being the issue. Out of the dozens of shooters I know, over half have had both good and horrible experiences with Larry’s. Im not sure why you would immediately ignore the possibility of bad customer service and instead directly place blame on customers themselves. Seems to me like you either work there, family of, or have some kind of conflict of interest.

      • Larry’s Pistol and Pawn serves tens of thousands of customers a year, not just the minor few who have posted complaints here. The number of people complaining loudest and those tending to back them up with nothing more than other stories of bruised feelings that when analyzed appear to be as much the fault or more of the customer who may not want to admit it but showed arrogance or irritation with the employees first.

        I have no relationship with Larry’s Pistol and Pawn other than I have been a frequent customer for the past six months but now returning to Nashville, and never had a problem or bad experience with any employee there. Even when dickering over the value of a rifle I was trading in on the purchase of another, our negotiations became quite technical and almost heated in our animated bargaining, but we agreed upon a value and both recognized that each of us knew what were talking about. Both the male clerks at the store and the females usually at the registers have all been courteous and professional in their dealings that I have observed.

        One last observation that you may want to continue ignoring is that over half of the posters complaining on this thread are competitors of Larry’s Pistol and Pawn who are promoting their own business. I have no ulterior motive for my participation other than It bothers me when I witness unjust accusations against any person or business that I know to be false.

  15. chris

    Last resort guns in Madison has a lot better customer service, after the rude treatment at Larry’s I will never return I would rather pay more than deal with them. Larry’s should invest in a trainer to come in and teach his employee’s customer service, it’s just pathetic there.

    • I have purchased many guns from Larry’s over the years. I have stood next to a young customer while a sales person showed him every pistol in the 9mm case. He then wanted to look at every pistol in the 40 case. He then kept asking what each one was like to shoot. If you are not knowledgeable about the guns you are going to look at, it can be intimidating. But that is your interpretation of what is going on. Swallow some ego and allow them to educate you, or take your business elsewhere. They are inundated with know it alls that come in and get upset when people don’t meet there every need.
      Also during the hording of ammunition people were buying ammunition from Larry’s and selling it on ebay. That led to the limiting of what amount people could buy. So not everyone coming in there is an angel.

  16. Me

    It is interesting that people will declare Larry’s staff “rude” because they won’t jump through their hoops or take unnecessary risks. If the laws regarding residency are AT ALL unclear, why would Larry take the risk? He could have his entire business shutdown, lose his livelihood, and possibly wind up in jail. That is not rudeness, it is simple self preservation. Your verbal assertion that everything is fine won’t reopen his business. My interactions with Larry’s staff indicate that they are there to sell product. Not to make you feel happy. Not to educate you. You want your hand held, there are plenty of more expensive shops that are more than happy to charge you to do that for you. Larry’s sells gun products and ammunition.

    • robichaux

      Well, I’d put more weight behind a comment from someone who at least bothered to use a pseudonym, but I hear what you’re saying. I tried to get the clerk who “helped” me to call the local ATF office to verify what I’d been told, but he wasn’t interested. Fair enough; that’s his prerogative. He was, however, rude. I’m not saying he was rude because he wouldn’t do what I wanted, I’m saying he was rude because he. Was. Rude. Everyone who’s been in the South for longer than 15 minutes can easily spot the difference between rudeness and ordinary civil behavior, and this fellow was on the wrong side of that line.

      • I keep reading your complaints and what keeps being revealed is that you don’t care whether Larry’s staff’s first duty is to protect Larry’s business. It is wonderful that you are so wealthy that you can afford dual residence in multiple states, California being one. That being said, if you have a Alabama driver’s license with Alabama address, then Larry’s would have no problem whatever selling you whatever firearm you want to buy as long as you have the money and pass the background check. Your PROBLEM is that you only have a CALIFORNIA driver license, photo id and residence. You can’t prove to me or anybody else that you will not take firearms you buy in Alabama or any other state than California back to California in violation of California law. Can’t you understand that it is only your word against decades of historical incidents where California residents purchase firearms and magazines that California bans back to California get caught then proclaim to the world where you bought these illegal firearms and accessories claiming ignorance of the law and that “rogue” FFL holders told you it was okay to take such banned firearms back to California if you buy them in this state…

      • robichaux

        Lawrence, I’m not sure where you got the idea that I was wealthy. I happened to have dual residence because my kids moved here with their mom and, rather than living in a hotel when I visited them, I rented a house here until I moved. If you’re looking for Daddy Warbucks, keep looking. In addition, if there were a prohibition in CA against importing a particular firearm, that’s on the importer, not the seller. Case in point: when I first moved to CA from OH, I had to sell my DPMS Panther because it’s on the CA ban list. If I had not done so, and CA had become aware of that, they would have had no legal recourse against the seller from whom I bought the DPMS, just against me.

        Leaving all the legalities aside: the staff there were rude, and I don’t do business with rude people. Simple as that. I’m glad you and others have had a good experience with them; as for me, I’m very happy with Last Resort (especially since its range is walking distance from my house).

      • Mr. Robichaux, I think you are being disingenuous in your claims. You claim that you only wanted to purchase a “rifle” from Larry’s. In California, it is illegal to sell you an assault rifle due to your dual residency which you refuse to give up. California law also requires you, as a California resident, to register with the state all handguns and rifles you own. As of January 1, 2014 Long gun serial numbers are now recorded, where as previously only the sale was recorded. While there is no requirement for California residents to register previously owned handguns or firearms with law enforcement, §12025 and §12031 enhance several misdemeanor offenses to felonies if the handgun or long gun is not on file in the Department of Justice’s Automated Firearms System. It is disingenuous of you to blame Larry’s for “your” state’s gun laws and requirements. Having a part time child visitation residence here, you appear to be trying to circumvent California gun registration and gun ban laws and it upsets you that some people, even in the BATF, don’t know the California gun laws but Larry’s staff does.

        BTW, I was once a divorced father whose children moved to another state. I couldn’t afford to rent or purchase a second house in that state nor afford to be away from my job in my home state for long enough periods of time to even consider such an action, You may not be “Daddy Warbucks” but you certainly are not a relying upon a middle-class job or income to support your now longer than a decade (last dealings with JC’s more than 15 years ago) dual residency and multiple homes.

  17. Doc

    I have been on both sides of the firearms counter and its hard for me to say sales staff is bad, when it could be one, or a few out of many. I do understand we created the problem because of greed also known as low prices we bombard the place and expect service now! regardless if the small place is already packed, this will put the sales staff to the test and after awhile its like a nagging spouse……..if they just had a place out back to go and yell for awhile.

  18. Jim

    They are the most arrogant wannabe’s I ever dealt with. Won’t ever do business there.


  20. GunDude

    Yeah, I take my business to the internet, Academy Sports, JC’s on Jordan Ln. and Craigs Tactical in Athens. Craig’s and JC’s will be great for a “new to guns” person that may not know what they want and what they need. BTW for the ladies that want to get into guns, go to Craig’s or JC’s….BOTH have very nice female staff to help you if that makes you more comfortable. Academy has a very good and POLITE staff, and prices are very close to Larry’s. I bought my last gun in Larry’s, and it seemed to be that I was a bother, looked at two handguns, and bought one in about 20 minutes…..because I already knew what I wanted. Now to be fair, I had ONE person in Larry’s (young military guy) that helped me one day and he was very nice, helpful and polite. He is probably lone-gone from there by now (about 8 months ago) and was the exception. Larry’s is in the business to get as much money as he can while this gun thing is going the way it is. If you know what you want, it would be OK to go there (however I don’t support that) , BUT if you don’t, please take your business elsewhere. Academy has a great selection, good prices, and friendly staff……so to make it easy, go ANYWHERE but Larry’s if you want to be treated fair and courteous, after all your the Customer, the other stores have this concept.

    • robichaux

      I bought a rifle from Craig’s about a year ago; my last experience at JC’s was probably 15 years ago, so that doesn’t count. I can’t say enough good things about Last Resort Guns (look for a future post on that topic), but whichever local shop you prefer, I encourage you to shop there whenever possible instead of hitting the big-box stores like Academy and Gander Mountain. After living in CA for a while I am very sensitive to how lucky we are in Alabama to have a diverse set of sporting goods and firearms stores, and the local shops need (and IMHO deserve) our support.

    • For a “gundude” you don’t sound very informed about this topic at all. Unlike JC’s and Craigs”s Tactical, Larry’s has a gun range and very profession range officers to help anyone decide what defensive firearm they need and can competently use. For $10 and the cost of a box of ammo, you can test shoot caliber handgun Larry’s has to sell plus the range officer is there to teach you how to operate it and hit the target. If you already know the caliber you want, the total cost of finding out which .380, .38, 9 mm, .40 S&W or ..45 is only about $5 to $10 more than taking your father’s hogleg to Last resort and shooting handloads you bought somewhere else…

      One last comment, personally, I think anyone who goes into a gun shop with the attitude that “I am the Gun Dude”… is not going to be very open to any informative advice or new information on any firearm or ammunition and conveys that attitude to whoever they speak to, staff or other customer.

      • Tom

        Damn Lawrence how much is Larry’s paying you? The way you’re replying condescendingly to everyone who has a complaint with Larry’s makes me thing you might needs to customer service training like the rest of Larry’s staff. The only person who has ever shown any competence in customer service and satisfaction was the range master. You’re telling me that since “I’m a car dude” if I take my car to a mechanic I wont be open to any information or advice a mechanic tells me? You are trying to do damage control for Larry’s because this is the 5th hit on google and Larry’s realizes they dropped the ball. Last Resort gets my business and should get everyone elses business too.

      • Tom, I met you at Last Resort back in May when I was trying to get price comparisons on a mini-revolver and range time. You didn’t even carry the pistol I was looking for, nor anything similar and your range time was outrageous. Your selection of pre-owned and used firearms was almost non-existent and your over priced limited variety of new firearms made Gander Mountain look reasonable. Yes, you were courteous until I told you I would go back to Larry’s and JC’s to see who got what I wanted in first for far less than you quoted a special order. (That time JC was the winner.) Unlike you and 70% of the people posting here, I do not work for any FFL pawn shop or, anyone else for that matter. I am happily retired.

        Also, I returned to Nashville in July. Here I hit the rounds with several local FFL holders and tend to favor Guns and Leather’s two locations (one in Greenbriar and the other in Hendersonville) They are much like Larry’s just bit newer into the business.

    • Through the ammunition shortage, Larry’s was the only place with all types of ammunition. They continued to sell it on a limited basis mainly because nobody else could get the ammunition. Larry could have sold every round to the highest bidder, but he did not. He kept the prices the lowest in the nation in order to support his loyal customers. The other gun shops were charging twice the price and were selling broken down ammunition in plastic baggies. Larry’s is the number 2 Rugger distributor in the USA. He is a huge Federal Ammunition sales point. He is up there in Colt, Glock, and Kimber sales. He gets large quantities for better prices and passes that on to customers. The people behind the counter are mainly retired Military. If you need your hand held, go somewhere else. If you want to buy a pistol or rifle go to Larry’s. If you want to learn to shoot a pistol or rifle, go to Larry’s.

  21. t g

    I see rude people in business all of the time. THey are easy to spot. I have bot a few guns from Larrys. I also shop at every other business in town. The big box stores all have pseudo trained temp style folks, with good days and bad days. A smile and kind word always turns them around when they are harried.

    All of the local gun shops, including Larrys, have been blitzed for a couple of years now, and we all know why. They all make every effort to hire good folks. Occasionally they get less than they are looking for, and those folks are either trained, or let go. If you see them before that happens, caveat emptor. A smile and kind word still helps. When stores have many more customerst than staff, especially for long periods, EVERYONE gets harried, and frustrated, me included. A deep breath, smile and kind word still turns everything around. Expressing the frustration I feel usually escalates with most, though the pro staff can often tough it out and keep on helping, sometimes even with their own smile.

    As the biggest and most popular store, Larry’s is most likely to be swamped, for the longest time, so their staff is most likely to be harried, and perhaps the previous customer was a real piece of work. BUT – the issue is really the same as any other establishment – for the best experience, go when they have time to work with you, smile and chat, find the clerk you get along best with, and stick with them. I have had too many good experiences at Larrys to let even several bad ones scare me off, but as I said, I also shop everywhere else too, even Walley World.

    Guess what – I find similar fine folks everywhere, but also an occasional issue… what I have not found, south of the Mason Dixon, East of the Sierra Nevada, is a CULTURE of problems at ANY establishment selling firearms.

    But out of state, or if they, in their experience, consider it a POSSIBILITY that you might be out of state, experiences can be annoying. I consider that government intrusiveness and societal ignorance, not bad business practices.

    All of the managers would work to make things as pleasant as the customer and circmstances would allow.

    I would like to give thanks and props to all of the clerks, managers, owners, and manufacturers in the firearms industry during this rathar difficult time.

    Thanks to those reading for your indulgence, and enjoy safe shooting. -tg

  22. Family Jewelry and Loan located at 11563 S Mem Pkwy Huntsville, Al 35803 now has the FFL. We are buying and selling firearms and we appreciate every person walking in our door. So if your tired of same old attitude come down and check out the store where you will be greeted with a smile and you will come back. 256 469-7635 open 9-6 Mon- Sat.

    • Judson Huey spano

      Yes Family Jewelry and loan they are the people to work with and make purchases. They are really family owned and they treat as if your part of the family. You can ask 100 questions at a time and will answer them all. They don’t try and push items on you. They are very professional and knowledge. I have made many purchases from them and have never disappointed also if there is something you are looking for if the don’t have it they do everything they can to get you what you want.i will cont. to do more business with them this coming week and yes I did make purchases just like last week. They smoke any shop out there with ease. I really enjoy just going a couple times a week just see what they might have in knew. They will even call you once they get to know you and tell you the deal they have on something you might be interested in. And like I said earlier the treat you with respect where you have a dollar in you pocket or ten thousand dollars they don’t care they want to serve and treat the customer the way they wood like to be treated. David, Vince, Tina, and all the other employes I would just to say thank you for your kindness and treating customers with respect.

      Thanks Again,
      Judson Huey Spano

  23. I have been buying guns from Larry since I got my first one a Police Snub nose 38 that a Detective had to turn in because of either the service life had expired or number of rounds he had fired through it. He was a former State Pistol Champion although he did not use the 38 in competition he loved to shoot so he put at least a 1000 rounds through it more likely 5000 knowing him. The city sold it to Larry’s and the Police officer a Detective made sure I got his gun along with a License to carry from the Sheriff’s office making me an Honorary Deputy Sheriff. It had no expiration date on it. I still have it but also get the new licenses with your Picture on it that are accepted in 20 plus states. I have bought 4 guns from Larry through the years and never had a problem. In the old days it may have been because they knew me as I ran one of if not the largest nightclubs in Huntsville for five years from early 1975 through 1979, and worked at another one of the well known ones for about a year. However they certainly did not know me when I bought my last one a Ruger LCP about 2 years ago because I wanted a smaller CCP. Granted they are busy and I do not like to ask questions if they are packed I just come back when they are not as busy. That may be one reason I got a little better treatment. I also think it speeds up their paperwork if you have a valid concealed carry permit, although I am not positive. Sorry for your problem and I certainly hope Larry reads some of these posts. He built his business on trust and good prices. He never had bad service in the early years or at least I never heard anyone complain. Again I hope he contacted you.

  24. Joe Gump


  25. anyone who thinks Last resort is the place to shop has more money than sense. Prices are on par with gander mtn. $100 more than anywhere else and the few times I have been in there selection was little to none and service was non existent. Spend away robi lol.

  26. B L

    Quality Pawn in Madison, AL Be ready on any new gun Layaway to follow the 80/20 rule 80% percent down with an additional 2% layaway charge on a new gun and pay the balance in 60 days. Don’t be fooled or you will loose what you have paid in! If not paid in full you will loose all funds invested! I learned the hard way! Note this is not stated anywhere. Not a good deal ! A to Z Pawn shop and Larry’s Pistol and Pawn is family owned and will work with you on layaway when you are on time.

  27. One more point of information, Dual state residency is not recognized under California Criminal Law addressing firearms sale, ownership or registration. Dual residency is only recognized and defined under the California tax codes, resident, non-resident, temporary resident, part time resident. I can understand with the excessive taxation on the wealthy in California why you would want dual residency in a lower taxation state such as Alabama to avoid the excessive personal taxes in California but want to maintain a California official permanent residence for professional recognition. However, as of January 1 of this year, all California permanent residents (which you still declare yourself as due to all your continued use personal identifications showing California as your permanent residence) must have all owned hand guns and long guns registered with the State of California whether by a California licensed dealer (including those non-resident FFL dealers who sell firearms to California residents or individual owner using California’s voluntary registration form. Larry’s is not licensed to sell or register firearms to California residents. From a FFL dealer’s perspective, he cannot trust you to legally register a firearm in California and he cannot sell you any firearm listed or defined by California as a “dangerous weapon” or “assault weapon” which encompass hundreds of firearms recognized as legal rifles, legal short barreled rifles and shotguns, and handguns in other states.

    • robichaux

      Thanks for that “point of information,” such as it is. The fact of the matter is that, according to Alabama law and California law and Federal law, there is absolutely nothing illegal about purchasing a firearm in state A and keeping it in state A if you hold legal residency in state A and state B. California law applies to the importation into, and possession within, of firearms inside the state borders. That doesn’t apply here. California had no nexus in this case. In any event the question is moot, as I am (and have been for some time) a full-time resident of Alabama. If you had bothered to do cursory research instead of playing Internet lawyer, you might have noticed that I moved here in June of last year, so you’re wrong about my declared residency as of January 1 in addition to all the other things you’ve gotten wrong. My advice, freely given: find another hobby.

  28. That was true prior to 1/1/2014 but not now. As of this year California gun laws require residents of California to register all their hand guns and long guns with the California DOJ.

    Congratulations for finally making a positive decision on your actual residency and becoming a true citizen of Alabama. Now, if you had bothered to do that before trying to entrap Larry’s Pistol and Pawn into violating California law you wouldn’t have had any basis for your childish complaint to this fine Huntsville business. As for your false assumptions that I was wrong in anything I posted, my truthful and factual answer is, “If you didn’t try to play between the lines of the law and benefit from one state’s laws by avoiding recognition of your former state of residency (the state you were legally registered and voted in) you would not have much to complain about at all. But then… how do we know you didn’t vote in both states in violation of Federal law??? We don’t. Just as we don’t know that the alleged “rifle” you wanted to buy in Alabama while having primary residency in California was not recognized as a banned illegal dangerous weapon/assault rifle in California.

    I do have other hobbies… fishing, hunting, shooting sports, camping, etc., but you not being a “lawyer” or having any legal expertise except maybe in software patent/copyright laws and my being retired from professional investigations and licensing in 17 states, I may know a little more about the “laws in multiple states” than you even though I was never a “lawyer”…

  29. I went in looking to buy a cheap phoenix arms .22 and they were selling it above retail. I told them i could buy it new for 135.00 and they were trying to sell it for 169.00! The guy behind the counter called me an asshole and walked off. I later found one on ARMSLIST.COM for 100.00…..FUCK YOU LARRYS

    • It sounds to me like you should have just bought that cheap .22 elsewhere and not exhibited an attitude. The dealer that sells Phoenix Arms ,22’s for less than MSRP has either purchased a slew of them or is selling blemished models. The Phoenix .22 ranges in price new from blemished in a box at around $120 to NIB with plastic case, cleaning kit and extra barrel for around $180. A dealer that doesn’t cater to selling such “cheap” guns does not get discounted prices from their distributor for large bilk sales of such cheap guns. If you wanted a better price on a better made handgun from a more respected manufacturer,you would be hard pressed to beat Larry’s Pistol and Pawn prices. But you sound like the kind of person who only buys cheap guns anyway.

      As for your choice in sexual partners, that is your own business, but I likie to offer you some rational advice and not threaten to affections upon Larry;s…. you might end up opening your mouth for more than you can swallow…

  30. John Hering

    To start I have been employed with Larry’s business for 20+ years. I normally don’t get involved in on line pissing contests but came across this blog and want to interject something.

    You answered the issue of your residency yourself above. I was in the store at the time of this incident but not the salesman you are referring to, all you had was a Huntsville utility statement to show your residency. Above you posted you rented a house when you first moved here, “Renting” a house or apartment is not residency, “owning” property does. Period. A copy of a property tax document from the state of Alabama would have settled the debate, you were instructed as such but you continued to be argumentative about it and never produced it, I believe you actually came back in the store a second time on the same day, thus the rudeness you experienced was you were told the issue was dead and it was a “no sale”.

    While it is impossible for ALL state gun laws to be known by ANYONE, as with most gun shops Larry’s does it’s best to decipher as much as possible. At the end of the day it is up to the gun shop to prove it was a legal sale. It’s a judgement call, either right or wrong. When BATFE comes to inspect records annually the customer is not standing at the table pleading his or her case “WHY THEY” think it was a legal sale. This is a federally regulated business and we not willing to loose license to conduct business over something like this.

    We have all experienced a bad day, I’m not going to make excuses for the rudeness anyone has experienced, I’m guilty of that myself on occasion. I have found the underlying cause is usually because we are so rushed.
    Larry’s, as with all businesses go through growing pains and regretfully some customers don’t get treated the way we want, or more importantly the way the customer wants. Larry’s has plenty of salesmen with different personalities, most have been employed there there over 10 years they ARE gun guys, and know their stuff. Some are still learning and until you have been behind this counter I wouldn’t be quick to judge on competency. Getting to know someone where you are comfortable with them is important. If you feel rushed, as we do, say something, we are trying to help everyone standing behind you also.

    This is something everyone involved has to work on.

    Welcome to Alabama, finally. John

    • robichaux

      Thanks for weighing in, John. Let me preface my comments by saying that I understand that BATFE takes no prisoners and that the risk of noncompliance is high. While I think it is crystal clear that it would have been legal for Larry’s to sell me the rifle I wanted to buy, and I think I made a good case for why that is so, AND I had a BATFE staffer from the local office available, you disagree, and that’s fine. (When the salesman told me he wouldn’t sell to me because the rifle I wanted wasn’t legal in CA, he was wrong too, but let’s leave that aside.) Having said all that, at no time was I argumentative or rude. Larry’s salesman was. That was the underlying issue, not “waah, Larry’s won’t sell me a gun.”

      Enough other people have citing similar rudeness to point out a trend. I’m not saying that every one of those customers was in the right; maybe they were rude, or having a bad day, or whatever. But where there’s smoke, there might be fire. I can say that the crowded, rushed feel of Larry’s is unique in my experience, and it’s been that way for a long time, whether by design or happenstance.

      Regardless of my decision not to spend money at Larry’s, I am glad y’all are there fighting the good fight and making legal firearms available to legally qualified buyers.

      • Mr Robichaux, Your last post pretty much re-enforces my conclusion on your bad experience at Larry’s Pistol and Pawn. Your original statement was incomplete and misleading and you continue to think you were totally in the right when you legally were not. You are just trying to pacify your ego to think that those few people who posted agreement with you on this thread because they are promoting businesses competing with Larry’s Pistol and Pawn.

    • Great post John. I’ll be by tomorrow to pick up my new in box used EMP. If you are rude to me, I’ll come by more often.

      Thanks for the great store,
      Bill C

  31. Lawrence, you really need to get a life. You spend entirely to much time on here just so that you can challenge everything that is said. It must be tough being so smart and informed on everything. Geez what a tool.

    • I made one initial comment. Every additional reply I have made has been in response to an email generated by the op or other posters on this thread, just as you did, Aren. As for someone who “needs to get a life” and “spends too time” on the internet just so you can attack others and name call… Your single post on this thread fits that description perfectly. You did not address the topic either pro or con and your sole purpose in posting was to attack and insult me because I have actually had real life experience regarding the topic and multiple state laws affecting businesses and individuals. Now, what was that about who is being a “tool” ???

      • Tom

        Actually nah, I personally know the writer of this blog, Paul said you’re subscribed to this entire post, so when someone comments you get an email… Nice try though.

      • Tom, if that were true, then why are you selecting me to reply to? For instance, below this little box titled “Leave a Reply to Tom” that I am typing in is this statement, “Notify me of new comments via email.” preceded by an empty box that I leave unchecked.

        Keep up the snipe hunting, you appear to need something to do…

  32. danny

    This guy Larry is a ripoff if you deal with them you just as well give them your money there are crooks

  33. John

    I have lived in Madison, AL. for 30 years now. Mostly buy ammo there and it is always way busy in that store… have to turn sideways to pass… anyway we bought my wife’s pistol there and they were a bit rude to us… they act like if you don’t know GUNS then you’re wasting their time… We bought the gun but I try not to go in there because of how small it is, the number of bodies always in there and the clerks not wanting to spend much time on “newbies”… makes you feel no very valued for your money!!

    • John, I think your attempt to show support for all the negative statements made by persons who own competing businesses with Larry’s Pistol and Pawn plus the OP who really doesn’t have a legitimate complaint to begin with is quite weak. 1. You “try not to shop there” but do. 2. You must really hate to shop for groceries with your wife (or alone), shop at Walmart, any of the Malls and avoid flea markets, guns, boats, outdoors, RVs, camping, and car shows like the plague… or, do you…

  34. E. Grant

    When I visit a firearms dealer and I have no particular piece in-mind I simply browse the cases and racks. If I am interested in a particular make and model I search via phone and web to determine availability and price. I simply price shop. When I buy a firearm I could care less about customer service or employee friendliness – I’m looking for the best price I can find. Whether doing business face-to-face, on the phone, or via the web I am always friendly, courteous, and never get up-set. I have yet to encounter anyone I would refer to as rude. After all, a vendor knows the value of their product and I know how much I’m willing to part with. No need to get one’s blood pressure up – it’s only a firearm not your last meal.

  35. Oceanbob

    Pardon the intrusion folks. I want to clarify California Law. Someone said that all Handguns and Rifles have to be registered in California. This only applies to all firearms bought after 1-1-14. Either thru an FFL or via a Private Party transfer. The other requirement is if you’re moving to California, you must fill out a form and register all guns within 60 days of moving here. For residents, there is no requirement (yet) that you must register older handguns or long guns. They are grandfathered in.
    We’re with and other gun rights groups and constantly working to preserve gun rights. We have a 10 day waiting period for all guns and handguns have always been registered when bought or transferred. The new law starting 1-1-14 included recording serial numbers and registering
    Long guns as well. I do know that California doesn’t recognized dual citizenship but they have no jurisdiction outside of the State. Hence, many people who have a presence outside the State (house, property, apartment, family homes, etc) and a ID card (for example) can legally buy guns. They just have to keep those guns out of California. We know many people with Arizona State ID cards and live part time (retired for instance) who can legally buy guns in Arizona (a 10 minute process) without breaking any laws. Of course bringing an AR into California would be breaking California Assault Weapon Laws, but that is on the gun owner, not the FFL that legally sold the weapon. Be well, Bob.

  36. Leland Collins

    if you want quality guns at a reasonable price shoot me an email and we can order you exactly what you want and at a great price.

  37. I wanted to add 2 things. First, my experiences at Larry’s have been top notch. professional, friendly, courteous. I know the gentleman in this post was upset that he could not buy a weapon because of the issue raised at Larry’s. That’s a fact. Who was to blame for the perceived raised blood pressures can’t be determined without a video of the interaction. I suspect there is blame on both ends of the discussion.

    Second, whether Larry’s was right or wrong in their interpretation of the law I don’t know, but I am very happy that they do not try to skate laws as they understand them. They interpreted the law, and enforced it in good faith. So my hats off to Larry’s.

    There is no gun dealer in the Huntsville area that I would go to except Larrys, period.

    • Jim

      The only problem I have with Larry’s is the $50 “paper work fee” they charge you if you change your mind on a gun purchase before your approval goes through. They make you pay for your purchase before they run the background check then if it’s not approved immediately, they tell you to come back next week to pickup your item. And if you don’t want to wait that long, too bad. To the customer it makes more sense to be charged for the purchase after you’ve been approved and can walk out the door with your purchase. This “paper work fee” is nothing but a rip-off and should be stopped. It doesn’t encourage me to go back to Larry’s and spend money. Maybe all gun shops operate like this? I know Academy doesn’t.

  38. Gene

    I go into Larry’s a couple times a month or so. I have bought guns and gear at Larry’s, Bradford Pawn (athens), and walmart (72 W. in Madison). I bought a gun at the Madison gun shop between staples and publics on 72 in madison but that was a horrible mistake and I am thankful they are closed. I have gone into the other gun shops Bradford’s is a very friendly Mom and Pop shop and know their weapons. Their prices are fair but the repair guy is less then helpful. Walmart is cheap but I don’t like buying guns where the clerk is openly opposed to private gun ownership. I have had trouble at Larry’s but as a very large and loud Military retiree I tend to push back when someone cops an attitude. After many arguments with the clerks I have found three or four that I trust and are more then willing to help. If they are not there when I go in then I just pick up some ammo from one of the young ladies that work there and leave. Last week I went to buy a rifle and while I waited for the clerk to run my paperwork and do his thing I overheard a black couple talking to a black sales person about buying their first handgun. At first the clerk was actually mean to them and was very impatient but I stepped in to give them my opinion, based on my choices over the years, and the clerk seemed to ease up and really started helping them. I have bought gear from the Craigs in Ardmore the one clerks in Athens always seem to be eating when I go in there and I am not going to talk to a clerk while he is standing there eating a sandwhich. The gun (pawn) shop on 72 in madison seems pretty good but I only went there to check their prices but they were helpful and friendly.

  39. tammy

    I’ll never go back to Larry’s Pawn and Pistol they are liars very rude if it wasn’t for his guns and ammo that Pawn Shop wouldn’t be worth a shit

  40. Twelve Crows

    I find every gun shop in North Alabama to be run by rude, “know-it-all” staff who act as if they are doing the buyer a favor by selling to him/her their wares…Until you establish and relationship with them: and then it seems to be hit or miss even after seven years of patronage.

    My advice is to plan ahead and buy your ammo on-line in bulk (which is much cheaper); buy used from fellow citizens on the boards (you can find anything you want if you are willing to do a little travelling within the state); and if you require your guns to be new, find a local, private FFL (easily done on-line). Or move to Tennessee so you can shop in the stores there; I have found the shops in Franklin and Nashville–for the most part–to be much more welcoming and agreeable with more reasonable prices.

  41. Davy

    I went in with my wife and daughter to buy three guns. A pistol for my wife, a ruger 10/22 takedown for my daughter and Mossberg 500 for my self. You would think, that spending that much money that they would not have treated us like crap. I told the guy that this is my wife’s first experience in buying a gun and that we need to find a gun that fits her hand and preferably a 9mm. that she can rack the slide easily in case of a jam.
    I know what guns I wanted her to try first ruger lcp, body guard, glock 26, sig, Taurus. He would only lay one gun on the counter at a time. If he got one gun from down on the other side of the building he would take it back before he pulled another gun. You could tell after about 10 min he was getting frustrated.
    My wife had to take my 13 daughter to the latrine, having girl problems, sorry those thing happen. While they were gone he proceeded to tell me that woman were weak and that she needed a 380 he brought me about 5 different 380’s without me even asking.
    I told him we decided on the Taurus pt 111 G2 9mm. I ask if we could look at the ruger 10/22, he grabbed the black, we tried it and when we ask to see the one with wood grain , that’s when it really got bad. He blew like a bull and rolled his eyes. I told him I was eventually going to get my daughter into completion, and ask “if he had any 22 competition rifles.” We really didn’t want to see them, just asking.
    Wow, he put his elbows on the counter and starred us down. There was a very long awkward silence. I tried to break the ice by asking my daughter if there was another name for them, (maybe I was not asking right)
    He just left the counter and walked down to the other end and turned and motioned to us with both hands toward his chest like he was herding cattle, and said ” well, come on, there down here”
    My wife turned to me and said he is getting mad at us. I said I don’t know why, we are here to spend money. This whole time his tone of voice was sharp and condescending. We made that a quick look and I patted him on the back and said sorry we are taking so long, he just shrugged his shoulders. It’s only been about 20 min. Needless to say we were so frustrated from being belittled, I for got to ask him to bring out a Mossberg 500 for me. We were so ready to get out of there. We got the Taurus and ruger and got out of there.
    The biggest thing that makes me mad is that my wife’s first time in a gun store, was a very bad exsperance. Probable never go back there.

  42. Frank

    I have NEVER had a problem with larry’s. Yes it does take awhile to get someone to help you but they have always been very informative to me. I might not know what I want but I know you have to have an idea of what you are looking for. They are not going to pick your gun for you. They make it well known that you choose what you want to buy. If you have to have someone telling you what you want to buy either send your wife or rethink buying a gun. If you are in a rush then you may want to rethink why you want to buy a gun. If you are unsure what kind or caliber of gun you want. They have a range and guns that you can shoot in the range before you buy. I have bought almost all of my guns from them and will continue to buy from them because they are the most helpful and have the most knowledge about their product. They are not like any other gun store in the area…. they will not ever tell you what you need to buy…… they only sell you what you want to buy. They are gun salesmen not mind readers. To me that makes the best salesmen in the world. Car salesmen could learn a thing or two from the wonderful staff at Larry’s. I will shop there as long as they are around and can’t wait to go to their new store which i have not had the opportunity to visit yet.

  43. Oxshmaahad

    Go back to California

  44. DAVY

    Wow Frank. You are delusional or you just cant read very well.
    I knew exactly what guns I wanted her to try.
    I knew exactly what caliber I wanted her to have.
    I did not want them to pick a gun for us. My wife was picking the gun.
    He tried to sell us a 380. That’s not what she wanted.
    We were not in a rush, he was.
    Only the second time in the store. We didn’t know we could shot before we buy. A good salesman would have told us that, especially after I fold him my wife situation.
    I have bought a lot of cars in my day and none, even come close to the way we were treated.

  45. brad blakeley

    Whiner, get a real life !!!
    Greatest people there, by any law, they have a legal right to not sell to anyone if not comfortable!!!!!
    Poor thing,, and fc cali ,, commi!!

    • robichaux

      Shush, Brad, the grownups are talking. And work on your spelling. You sound like you’re from Mississippi.

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