Authorities Raid Front Royal Pawn Shop

By: Andrea Oleen Email
By: Andrea Oleen Email

Local and federal authorities have seized almost 1,400 weapons and 15 boxes of documents from a Front Royal pawn shop.

Pawn shop owner, Don Francis Simonpietri, is facing charges for allegedly selling a gun to a convicted felon at the Front Royal Flea Market.

Charles Shipe of Strasburg is also facing charges for allegedly selling firearms to convicted felons at the same market.

Following their arrests, agents from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms raided Simonpietri's pawn shop on Royal Avenue in Front Royal.

Authorities took 1,361 firearms as well as records about gun transactions including receipts, inventory records, pictures and log books. Authorities also took weapons from Simonpietri's home.

"Where [Simonpietri] got himself in trouble there is he was going to known convicted felons and I think most anybody can substantiate or in their own mind kind of get a, come to their own conclusions when somebody has that line of firearms and they're running a pawn shop whether he's engaged in the business or not," says Michael Schneider, an ATF agent who took part in the raid.

Authorities believe Simonpietri and Shipe were involved in a conspiracy to sell weapons to convicted felons. Both have been released from custody.

Simonpietri will appear in Warren County General District Court November 10. Shipe has a preliminary hearing November 17.


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