Keni Garcia told police he intended to use the 30,000 bullets they found in his car and home for target practice.
That is hard to believe, the prosecutor at Garcia’s arraignment said, because if he were to fire a gun for eight hours a day, it would take weeks for him to use all of it.
Garcia, who allegedly bought thousands of rounds of ammunition and had 10,000 bullets in his car when he was stopped by police Thursday, was ordered held on $500,000 cash bail yesterday.
Attorney Socrates de la Cruz of Lawrence, who represented Garcia, 32, of 12 Freeman St., at his arraignment in Haverhill District Court, said he will appeal the high bail in Superior Court.
Garcia is charged with three counts of possession of a high-capacity firearm, illegal possession of ammunition and illegal storage of a firearm. His case was continued until June 12.
Assistant District Attorney Christopher Holland asked Judge Patricia Dowling to impose $750,000 cash bail.
“He has no reason to stay here,” Holland said.
The judge ordered Garcia to surrender his passport, and said that if he makes bail he is not to leave Massachusetts.
Garcia is a native of the Dominican Republic who was expected to become a U.S. citizen yesterday, but then he was arrested, authorities said.
Police arrested Garcia after he had left Interstate 495 at Exit 49 Thursday. They said they found 10,000 rounds of ammunition in his car. His two young daughters also were in the car, police said.
Holland said at Garcia’s arraignment that a “joint effort” by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and state police found that Garcia had previously bought 20,000 rounds of ammunition in New Hampshire.
Garcia told police he only intended to use the bullets for target practice at a rifle range, Holland said, disputing Garcia’s explanation. His common law wife, Elizabeth Reynoso, consented to a search and police found another 20,000 rounds, Holland said. They also found one .38-caliber and two 9 mm handguns, and $25,000 in cash, Holland said.
The prosecutor said all of the bullets seized from Garcia were for .38-caliber, 9 mm and .22-caliber firearms. Such ammunition is “like gold in the Dominican Republic,” he said.
Holland said Reynoso told police he had “a shipping type of business” and that the $25,000 in cash must have come from Garcia cashing a business check.
“Where is the crime?” de la Cruz asked. The lawyer said Garcia had lived in New Hampshire for three years before recently moving to Haverhill.
“He bought the guns legally,” de la Cruz said. “He never hid the fact that he had them.”
Furthermore, de la Cruz said that when Garcia moved to Haverhill, he had a 60-day grace period to obtain a Massachusetts firearms card.
“There is no crime committed,” he argued, saying there was no evidence that Garcia was shipping guns or ammunition to the Dominican Republic.
30K? Really? I’m not much of gun person but I do own a few. I’ve just recently ordered 500 rounds of 9mm. It fits in one ammo can with room to spare… in the boxes. You could fit probably three thousand rounds of .22LR in a .30 cal ammo can. To a person who shoots often 30K rounds is not that many. And look at the calibers. 9mm, .38, .22? Those are cheaper, smaller calibers often used for practice shooting.
And don’t forget there is still a run on guns and ammo due to the Obama administrations strong language regarding guns and ammo. I ordered the 9mm ammo mentioned above in February and just received it last week . Obviously there are a lot of people buying ammo and I doubt its all new customers and small amounts.
This guy should move back to NH.