U.S. Dept. Of Justice Announces Tennessee Convictions For Sale And Use Of Gun-Modifying Switches

Image Credit: Luca Sartoni / CC & atf.gov

The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –

West Tennessee law enforcement has placed dozens of people behind bars after being charged with using “Glock switches,” after several months of investigation uncovered the use of a device that turns a regular semi-automatic handgun into a fully automatic firearm.

US Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee Kevin Ritz showed reporters a new public service announcement at a press conference on Monday, stating that 26 people had been either federally charged or sentenced since last fall for the possession of the switches. 

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A Glock switch is a small and illegal gun attachment that is capable of firing more than a dozen rounds in just seconds. It is activated simply by putting it on the back of a gun.

These switches can be purchased online or are often made on a 3D printer.

“Switches are illegal and highly dangerous devices that convert semi-automatic firearms into machine guns,” stated Ritz. “These devices threaten public safety and make the gun violence problem even worse.”

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ATF Nashville Field Division Special Agent in Charge Marcus Watson said that nothing like this had been seen since the 1930s. 

Individuals found in possession of a Glock switch will be treated as if they were in possession of a machine gun, Ritz said. The minimum sentence is 10 years in federal prison. 

“Anyone with this will face federal consequences,” Ritz said

6,000 stolen guns have been recovered since 2020, according to Memphis Police; many of the guns had switches. 


On Monday, 26 prosecutions were announced by the Department of Justice (DOJ). These arrests stem from Memphis and Jackson, Tennessee. 

Some of those convicted were found with guns that had switches attached to them; others were found guilty of selling switches to other individuals.

About the Author: Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative  ~ Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career.  Most recently, he served as Deputy Director for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen, the Crossville Chronicle and The Oracle among others.  He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History.  Contact Jason at news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com

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