By Tony Hanson
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The prosecutor calls it a case of “drugs, guns and death,” and now the drug dealer who started it all with a straw gun purchase has been sentenced to two to six years in prison.
Forty-four-year-old defendant Daniel Ramos bought the 9 mm handgun in 2009. It was passed to his brother, then another man, Juan Crespo, who authorities say turned it on police just before Christmas last year.
Officer Timothy Stephan, with his brother William, answered the call of a man with a gun. They found themselves staring down the barrel of this straw purchase gun. Officer Stephan testified in court it changed his life.
“What he talked about in the courtroom was the impact of not only being confronted with the need to protect his own life, and being confronted with his own mortality, but also the impact it has had on him of having to do that, the impact of having to take another person’s life,” Prosecutor JT Tartikoff said.
And Tartikoff says three other guns purchased by Ramos are out there somewhere. He calls them “ticking timebombs.”
“This isn’t a baseball card,” prosecutor AJ Thompson said. “You don’t trade this. When you trade a gun, or sell a gun on the street, someone dies.”
Authorities say the practice of people without records buying guns for people who can’t legally own them endangers us all.