Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) Report of January 2, 1979

Department of the Treasury – Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
Report on Investigation (Criminal Enforcement)
To: Special Agent in Charge
San Francisco, California
Date: 1/2/79

On December 13, 1978, Group Supervisor [name deleted] and Special Agent [name deleted] and this agent traveled to Ukiah, California to check the FFL records of Yokayo Rifle Shop and to try and determine how many temple members had purchased weapons from this dealer.

[name deleted] of the Yokayo Rifle Shop, told this agent that he was acquainted with several members of the People’s Temple especially [name deleted]. In fact, [line deleted]. He remembers that [name deleted] had asked about various weapons but finally chose a Winchester 243 rifle with scope. She stated it was to be used as a hunting weapon and that she was going to go hunting with her husband. She asked for instructions in the use of the weapon. [name deleted] said he showed her how to use the weapon and that she became familiar with it. [name deleted] then stated the next thing he k new she had quit he job and departed for Guyana. [name deleted] said he could not remember the other temple members names but would recognize them if shown a picture.

[name deleted] then had [name deleted] assist ATF and Customs by going through the Federal Firearms Transaction Records form 4473 and picking out all suspect People’s Temple members.

A list of persons who went to Guyana was used as a reference when comparing the form 4473. This list is not a complete list of Temple members. A number of persons defected [from] the church prior to Guyana. At this time no law enforcement agency has a complete list of all the People’s Temple members. At this time ATF is attempting to compile a list in order to get an accurate determination of weapons purchased.

On December 15, 1978, Group Supervisor [name deleted] advised AUSA [Assistant U. S. Attorney] [name deleted] that ATF was pursuing the firearms purchases and would advise of any violations. [name deleted] stated he would relay and information on firearms violations to ATF. No word has since been received from [name deleted].

[Page 2]

On December 21, 1978, Group Supervisor [name deleted] contacted ASA [name deleted] FBI, San Francisco. [name deleted] advised [name deleted] of the information developed to date. He also advised [name deleted] that there was no evidence to date of any violation of laws under ATF jurisdiction and that ATF had no reason to continue the investigation unless the FBI or US Attorney requested specific investigation as a part of the task force effort. [name deleted] indicated that the FBI did have some interest in gun purchase information and would make a specific request in writing.

On December 23, 1978, information was received from Special Agent [name deleted] FBI, that the list of 35 guns received by the State Department and traced by ATF, was all the guns detained by the Guyana officials from Jonestown. The FBI stated that the other guns were presumed lost or stolen by villagers in Guyana after the suicides in Jonestown.

From December 26 through December 30, 1978, ATF has been attempting to develop a list of all the members this requires a tremendous amount of time and effort by comparing lists held by Immigration, FBI, Customs, San Francisco Police Department and the Freedom House.

On December 29, 1978, [name deleted, probably Jeannie Mills] the Freedom House, Berkeley, California was contacted and was interviewed. She has offered their assistance and will help in compiling a list of all members of the church. They will also attempt to identify any persons who may have had false identification.

This agent has quaried [queried] the AFS computer for known temple members who have purchased handguns in California. At this time checks are being made with AFS, Sacramento, California, to determine if any of the suspect “hit squads” or Temple Enforces have purchased firearms. It is also being determined by the AFS checks where the suspect temple members were purchasing the guns.

On January 2, 1979, [name deleted] FBI, San Francisco was contacted and advised that unless ATF was notified in writing that ATF’s assistance was required by the authority of the SAC this investigation would be closed.

Special Agent [name deleted] stated that the FBI would evaluated ATF’s reports and if ATF’s assistance was needed a letter would be forwarded to ATF, San Francisco.

Interviews with [names deleted] defectors of the People’s Temple, will be conducted on January 2, 1979, in Berkeley, California. They will attempt to provide ATF with information as to who may have been purchasing firearms under assumed names.

The list of suspected People’s Temple members who may have purchased firearms and the types of firearms purchased follows. This list is not complete, none has been completely verified as to date.

[Page 3]

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

1. Highstandard Daringer
Serial Number 2372668
DOT [Date of transaction]: May 26, 1973

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

2. Ruger 18/22 Rifle
Serial Number 11199940
DOT: April 20, 1973

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

3. Ruger 77
Serial Number 7868941

4. RI Shotgun, 12 gauge
Serial Number 281573
DOT: August 11, 1978

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

5. Ruger 77, 234 Rifle
Serial Number 7068995
DOT: January 31, 1973

6. Perita .32 pistol
Serial Number 87650
DOT: December 22, 1972

7. Plainfield carbin [carbine]
Serial Number 155656
DOT: September 4, 1973

8. Plainfield carbin [carbine]
Serial Number 997549
DOT: April 30, 1972

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

9. Browning pistol, .22
Serial Number 37907090
DOT: May 30, 1974

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

10. Smith & Wesson 38 Super
Serial Number 70606035
DOT: March 30, 1973

11. Colt..25 Automatic
Serial Number GD81273
DOT: March 18, 1973

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

12: Ruger 18/22 Rifle
Serial Number 111-51702
DOT: March 4, 1973

13. Smith & Wesson Model 19 357
Serial Number 2K58773
DOT: November 4, 1972

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

14. Winchester .22 Rifle
Serial Number 30946
DOT: December 16, 1972

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

15. Ruger Security Six Pistol
Serial Number 100-14317
DOT: June 27, 1972

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

16. Ruger Security Six Pistol
Serial Number 12987
DOT: April 25, 1972

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

17. Browning 7mm Rifle
Serial Number 946587
DOT: May 31, 1974

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

18. Plainfield carbin [carbine]
Serial Number 52353
DOT: April 9, 1974

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

19. Plainfield carbin [carbine]
Serial Number 26265
DOT: March 27, 1974

[Page 4]

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

20. Roger 77 30-06 Rifle
Serial Number 708078
DOT: March 3, 1974

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]
California Driver’s License [illegible]

21. AR-10
Serial Number [illegible]
DOT: March 19, 1973

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

22. Browning Shotgun, .12 gauge
Serial Number 2534A47
DOT: December 13, 1974

[Two short lines of identifying information deleted]

23. Ruger Rifle 243
Serial Number 71-28491
DOT: July 1, 1977

24. Ruger 44 revolver
Serial Number 8282284
DOT: May 18, 1977

25. Ruger 44 revolver
Serial Number 8190667
DOT: April 8, 1977

All of the above listed 25 firearms were found in the records of Yokayo Rifle Shop, Ukiah, California by comparing the 4473 forms with known members of the People’s Temple and possible members living at the Temple in Redwood Valley, Ukiah, California.

Originally posted on May 15th, 2013.

Last modified on February 2nd, 2022.
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