Did you know that the television show, Red Jacket Firearms had its beginning on the Discovery Channel? It was a real life, multi-cam series that focused on the shop, Red Jacket Firearms located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA. The show features the shop’s work from home business venture, gun manufacturing and sale. This shop was operated and owned by Will Hayden.
There are some background facts that can be found about Red Jacket Firearms. In the first episode, titled “The Fall”, a shop employee had an unfortunate encounter when he tried to purchase a gun for his girlfriend, knowing that the shop did not have any guns available for purchase. After making the sale, he mistakenly stuffed the gun into his pocket instead of placing it in the box provided to him. As a result of this, a bounty hunter from Louisiana came to buy the firearm, and was looking for a place to store it. The shop manager, who was in fact an FBI agent, had been following the man and his girlfriend throughout the day and had noticed the unusual combination of weaponry in their car, which led the man to intentionally try and sell it to the bounty hunter.
What happened to the guns? None of them were used in any crimes, but the owner of the shop, Bill Hayden was arrested and later convicted of stealing six handguns from a licensed firearms dealer. These weapons were sold to a different person in Mexico. Hayden was sentenced to fifteen years in federal prison for his crimes. Despite this stain on his record, he was allowed to work with the FBI on a penitentiary job.
In the third episode of the show, titled “Pawn Shop”, we finally found out what happened to the six handguns that Hayden had pawned. The story revealed that he had been working as an informer for the bureau, but had been fired when the agent discovered that he was trying to sell two semi automatics to a drug dealer. The informer had told the defendant about the weapon he wanted to get, and the dealer had given him a loan that he was going to use to pay for it. Hayden was working undercover at the pawn shop and went there with a gun that the drug dealer intended to give him.
When the two men arrived at the pawn shop, however, they were stopped by an armed security guard who saw them. After a short struggle, the gun went into the security guard’s pocket. The drug dealer, who thought the gun was authentic, handed the gun over to him. Hayden tried to sell the gun to him, but the dealer produced ID, proving that it was a fake. Before the investigation could conclude, Hayden was arrested. The story ends with him being given a life sentence in a federal penitentiary.
So, what did happen to Red Jacket Firearms? The short version is that it was one of those guns that was “replica” or fake. While there are many stories of people using real weapons to try and fool the police, most of the fake ones end up in the trash can. As long as you are careful when dealing with these types of things, you should have no problems.