Police: Men say they bought guns for protection

Three men with criminal records prohibiting them from possessing firearms who were arrested and charged in three separate incidents in April allegedly told police they bought their guns on the street "for protection."

According to court documents filed recently in Hennepin County District Court, Rayandre Torrence, 28, told police officers he purchased the gun he was caught with "from some guy for protection because he had been threatened."

Rondale Hubbert, 25, during an arrest on April 7 allegedly told police he “bought the handgun off the street for protection.”

Anthony Lee Palmer, 32, was found in a minivan with two other men and a loaded, 9mm Ruger semi-automatic pistol. “I’m not going to lie to you, that’s my gun, I bought it on the street for protection,” he allegedly told officers. Police say Palmer told them he paid $500 for the gun and still has the receipt for it.

Arrests and charges of this nature are not unusual.  MPR News examined hundreds of Hennepin County cases charged in adult court last year that involved gun-related crimes. More than a third of the alleged offenders in those cases were already under a firearms ban because of past convictions for serious offenses.

Editor's note: The headline of this post initially read 'Felons say they bought guns for protection.'  Under Minnesota law 624.713, a person prohibited from possessing firearms does not necessarily have to be a convicted felon.

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