Bringing Receipts: Print Date: 10/22/20

The Delaware Courthouse has started making exhibits from the Hunter Biden trial available. There are a few interesting tidbits about the paperwork from the gun shop.

The background check form shows that it was submitted at 6:36PM on October 12, 2018 and came back at 6:37PM.

We knew that already. Ronald Parlimere, the gun shop owner who tried to politicize this in 2020 only to belatedly attempt to doctor the forms in 2021 when the ATF came asking, emphasized that detail to Derek Hines and Erika Jensen when they asked him about the belatedly doctored records a few weeks ago.

Based on Palimere’s review of the documents related to the sale of the revolver, Biden made the purchase of several items including the Colt Cobra revolver at approximately 6:36 p.m. on October 12, 2018. The FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) check came back in about a minute and was a very fast response.

In the interview, Parlimere made some kind of connection between reviewing the form and media attention from people like Tucker Carlson he says happened in 2021. That seems to be one of his excuses for not properly annotating the change to the form three years after the fact (the other being, he didn’t want to call Hunter Biden to get the proper ID he hadn’t gotten years earlier).

Palimere scanned and emailed the certified 4473 to Reisch using his StarQuest email address, [email protected]. Palimere uses this email address exclusively and it is not shared by other StarQuest employees. The form was then filed away. Palimere did not handle the form again for three years and until he was requested to turn it over to ATF SA Veronica Hnat on September 23, 2021.

In 2021, Palimere had significant media attention and he had news crews, Tucker Carlson, the ATF and the FBI contacting him. He received numerous contacts from media including to his email address and on his phone.

Palimere was contacted by Hnat who said she wanted to come by to take custody of the Form 4473. Palimere ultimately went to the ATF building in Wilmington, Delaware, and turned over the annotated 4473. Palimere received a receipt for property from the ATF. Hnat allowed Palimere to make a copy of the annotated 4473 for his records.


At the time it was a big scandal and there was intense attention on the incident. It was on prime time on every news channel and USSS was saying they never went into StarQuest. Palimere and the other employees heard that Mac Isaac of the computer store was in protective custody. They were all scared to death. Palimere felt it was necessary to annotate the Form 4473 because he felt they were going to get in trouble just for going up against Biden.

Anyway, what I find interesting about the timing of the background check is that it took another 16 minutes to ring up the purchase, as indicated by the red rectangle on the receipt.

I’m not sure long it should take after all the approvals are done. I do know that Parlimere told Hines and Jensen he wanted to get Hunter out of the store as quickly as possible.

In the case of Biden’s sale, Gordon Cleveland, was the salesman. Palimere was sitting at his desk in the back and Cleveland said something to the effect of, “Hey, Hunter Biden’s here. He wants to use his passport.” Palimere was familiar with Biden’s father’s not being a gun supporter so Palimere thought it would be bad for Palimere’s business to have Hunter Biden seen in his store. Palimere wanted to get the sale completed and get Biden out of the store, so Palimere said yes to using the passport as identification. Palimere never interacted with Biden.

Should it have taken 16 more minutes?

I have no idea. I look forward to Gordon Cleveland’s testimony. He doesn’t have a proffer immunizing him, after all.

According to Erika Jensen’s testimony yesterday, she herself subpoenaed this exhibit.

BY MR. HINES: Q. So looking at the background check paperwork, what does this document appear to show, could you explain it?

A. This is a response for a check of a subject’s background in order to see if they qualify to purchase a firearm.

Q. And when you look at the status on the bottom, what is the status for whether or not Mr. Biden passed the background check?

A. The status response is proceed.

Q. And is that after — that was in the production after the Form 4473; correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, turning to page, government’s Exhibit 13(a), page 1, government’s Exhibit 13(a), page 1, is that a receipt — take it down. Is that a receipt that you received from StarQuest?

A. This is a receipt I received in response to the subpoena to StarQuest.

Given the Bates stamp, it would have been included in the production certified by StarQuest on April 24, 2024.

After admitting the exhibit, which was subpoenaed last fall, Derek Hines walked Agent Jensen through the receipt, showing each of the items Hunter Biden bought back on October 12, 2018.

MR. HINES: Move for the admission of 13(a).

MR. LOWELL: No objection.

THE COURT: Thank you. It’s admitted. (Exhibit No. 13(a) was admitted into evidence.)

BY MR. HINES: Q. If we zoom in on the top. Can you please list what the items are that are listed on this receipt?

A. The first item was an Item Number 18654, was a Colt Cobra 38 Special, Talo Classic, with a serial number RA551363.

Then cuing her by asking not what the date was but whether it was the date that Hunter had withdrawn $500 from an ATM, she noted that the date of the receipt itself is October 12, 2018.

Q. This was the day $500 was withdrawn from the ATM?

A. This was on October 12, 2018.

Q. Looking at the bottom, does it say Robert Biden?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you redact the address that’s listed there?

A. Yes.

Hines made two errors. Hunter didn’t withdraw the money from an ATM. He went to a teller, which was rare for Hunter Biden. And it was $5,000, not $500. We know that, in part, because prosecutors want to compare his signature on the withdrawal form with the signature on the gun purchase form.

Ah well. In the grand scheme of the errors Derek Hines has made, I consider this a fairly minor one.

Anyway, until after we get the Cleveland testimony — to learn why it took another 16 minutes to complete the sale — I’ll hold off on my curiosity about why it took 16 minutes to complete the sale.

In the meantime, though, I want to consider what the other date on the receipt means.

October 22, 2020.

You see, according to Abbe Lowell, in October 2020, Palimere and some buddies had “a plan to send [Hunter’s gun purchase form] to others” to make sure “the gun sale issue and the form [would be] exposed during the Presidential campaign.” But first they “had to get their stories straight.”

It also reveals a now-exposed attempt by the gun store to fabricate a false narrative about the gun sale. Palimere said the addition of the seller transaction serial number (“5,653”) may have been added on October 26, 2018. (TAB 4, Palimere FD-302 at 4). He said the vehicle registration reference was added in 2021. Yet, the government provided WhatsApp communications from October 2020 and February 2021 between Palimere, friends of his, and then-Delaware state trooper Vincent Clemons3 (see TABs 6 – 6C), all of which refer to the form, a plan to send it to others, needing to get their stories straight about what occurred in 2020, and wanting the gun sale issue and the form exposed during the Presidential campaign.

3 Not to be lost is the fact that Clemons was the Delaware State Police officer who first arrived at Janssens’ grocery store on October 23, 2018 when Hallie Biden threw a bag containing the handgun into a trash can in front of the store. It was Clemons who took statements about the handgun from both Hallie and Hunter Biden and was part of filling out an official police report on the issue. Two years later, he is in the communications with Palimere about the Form 4473, one of which states: “Yep your side is simple – Hunter bought a gun from you, he filled out the proper forms and the Feds approved him for a purchase.” (emphasis added). Palimere later responded, “I’ll keep it short and sweet as well: Hunter bought a gun. The police visited me asking for verification of the purchase and that’s all I can recall from that day. It was over 2 years ago.” (TAB 6B, 10/26/20 Palimere-Clemons Texts at 4, 6.) The reference to filling out the “proper forms” is not lost on defense counsel given what transpired thereafter. And, despite the importance of Clemons (e.g., the person who actually took the statements), the Special Counsel is foregoing him as a witness to call two other Delaware officers instead.

Derek Hines says that’s not right, and successfully pitched all this a claim of political bias.

These selected portions3 of communications by Palimere to two friends and also to Sgt. Clemons – were made two years after the events in question when defendant’s father was a political candidate. The defendant inaccurately summarizes them as referring “to the form, a plan to send it to others, needing to get their stories straight about what occurred in 2020, and wanting the gun sale issue and the form exposed during the Presidential campaign.” Supp. Resp. p. 8 and n. 3. Nevertheless, he clearly wishes to confuse the jury by introducing these spliced, non-relevant communications to incite prejudice and emotion among the jury to distract from the elements of the crimes that were complete years before.

And because she fell for one of Derek Hines’ false claims again, Judge Noreika prohibited any of these communications from 2020 from coming in as evidence.

3. Questioning, testimony, evidence or argument, including but not limited to, the additional exhibits designated by the Defendant as tabs “6-6C” to his supplemental submission regarding any witnesses’ political bias are excluded from introduction or admission at trial because such questioning, testimony, evidence or argument is not relevant, is unduly prejudicial and invites nullification.3

2 The government has stated that it intends to call Gordon Cleveland, a gun shop employee, who will testify that he watched Defendant fill out Section A of the Certified Form and that Defendant checked “no” to question 11e about being an unlawful user or addict. Both the Certified Form and the 2021 Form have the same check mark (“X”) responding “no” to question 11e. The addition of “DE VEHICLE REGISTRATION” to a different section of the 2021 Form after the Defendant filled it out does not have “any tendency to make” those two facts, which are “fact[s] of consequence in determining” the charges – that he filled it out and that he said he wasn’t an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance – more or less probable. F.R.E. 401. The Court also agrees with the government that Defendant’s conspiratorial theory about “doctored” forms and currying favor with the government is unsupported rhetoric, which would be prejudicial and confusing to the jury.

Through his considerable power of prosecutorial dickishness, Derek Hines got Judge Maryellen Noreika to exclude these 2020 communications from evidence.

And then he submitted one himself.

Update: In leading gun salesman Gordon Cleveland in the sale yesterday, Derek Hines corrected himself to say that this was a reprint of the receipt.

Q. I’m showing you Exhibit 13(a). Is this the receipt, a reprint of the receipt that rang out the sale for Mr. Biden that day?

A. Yes, it is.

22 replies
  1. PeteT0323 says:

    Much ado about nothing, but I see the gun shop upsold Hunter a wee bit.

    The revolver is a Colt Cobra 38 spl (+P for completeness), but more intere$ting a Talo Classic.

    On top of a speed loader he did not need.

    To be fair, a Talo Classic is not all that “special” or collectible (Typical Colt – and well, most firearm mfgs with their special edition crap) , but he could have spent probably a lot less money for a standard 38 spl revolver. $750.00 for a 38 spl is a lot of money – then. A standard Colt Cobra 38spl +P is $999.00 MSRP today. Yikes.

      • PeteT0323 says:

        He lied. No surprise.

        Call me as a witness.

        He may have given a good deal for the time, but the engraving and fancy Talo grips are an upsell.

      • PeteT0323 says:


        It’s very uncommon to only have one sadly.

        The gun nuts kind of skew the average for the masses.

        It is almost a daily occurrence to have an all out guns-a-blazing street shootout in SE Florida.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      There are a lot of .38 specials out there. A two-inch barrel is common. Most sell for less than HB paid, though Colt tends to be a better manufacturer than many.

      For a first-time purchaser – someone who knows little about guns and less about why he wants one – a speed loader is over the top. It would be unusual to sell only one. But even one could add 5-10% to the total sale. That makes it the sort of thing a salesman would try to add. HB would have been the perfect customer to up-sell.

  2. txpat68 says:

    Lowell to Hines: “Bruh! Really nice job opening that door! Looking forward to chewing your face off.”

    [Welcome to emptywheel. Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We have adopted this minimum standard to support community security. Thanks. /~Rayne]

  3. Savage Librarian says:

    Well, dang, a little oopsie there for the prosecutors. Don’t that beat all, as they say. But it’s the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth for witnesses. Or try to catch them impeaching themselves.

    For a little levity, here’s a lie detector to use on Hines and Wise.

    “Nothing But The Truth by Cameron Francis”

  4. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Five hundred, five thousand, an ATM or a teller? The list will be a lot longer before Hines is through. Pretty soon he is going to wish there was no such thing as reasonable doubt about the accuracy of the prosecution’s claims.

  5. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Sixteen minutes from an approval – presumably the last thing to get in hand before finalizing a gun sale – to ringing it up? Do most customers stay that long in a gun shop? Is that consistent with wanting to get an individual customer out of the shop? And why is that even a thing?

    Most small businesses try to keep customers with money and intent to buy in their shop until their money’s gone. Why is HB an exception? Selling a gun to the son of an anti-gun politician would be a win for the right. Why not luxuriate in it? Is getting customers out of the shop routine, so they don’t question making a purchase? Or is that what you routinely do when you know that your paperwork is pretty much crap across the board?

  6. Time Enough says:

    I’d like to add that the $749.95 looks to be just the sales price for *only* the firearm. That number does not look like he bought ammunition at the time. Part of the defenses opening arguments was that Hunter never even loaded the gun.

    The 16 minute thing doesn’t surprise me at all. They need to go fish out the original box from the back, take time to upsell, etc.

    • dopefish says:

      I wonder if the Point-of-Sale terminal has internet-synced time, or if its some ancient legacy thing and its clock could have been off by 5 minutes and no one would care.

  7. dopefish says:

    Is ‘growing’ a typo on the article summary on the front page?
    “After growing to great lengths and making at least one false claim”

  8. originalK says:

    This was the date of the October 2020 presidential debate. The one with Tony Bobulinski as invited guest.

    I was looking into the EW archives re: Lunden Roberts, to try to determine how her relationship with HB overlapped with Zoe Kestan’s. I believe she would have had her daughter in August 2018. Not to mention Savage Librarian’s recent comment about Lunden’s planned book about her time with HB including “gun claims”.

    Anyway, in the archives I found that Joseph Ziegler’s planned “walk by” surveillance of HB, shut down by his superiors, was similarly timed – October 20, 2020.

    Is anyone keeping a big ole spreadsheet of all the dates when things took place? (I wish I had time to build a database.)

  9. Petet0323 says:

    Just to try and finish off this thread with a final bit of useless trivia.

    TALO stands for Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma consortium of Colt distributors. It is they who “commissioned” Colt to make TALO special edition handguns – not just of the Colt Cobra revolver.

    I suppose one could have made its way to the Delaware gun shop in any number of ways.

    • Rayne says:

      Thanks for that explainer. I assumed the acronym had to do with the model, but this adds some depth which might be important to defense. How did the shop get this? Is this typical stock this shop obtains and did obtaining it follow federal regulations? Did the proffer cover any other “errors” in this shop’s operations which violate firearms regs?

      • Ithaqua0 says:

        You can get them anywhere – TALO itself is a buying co-operative that has been around for 60-some years. From its website (

        “TALO is a wholesale buying group that works with premier vendors in the industry to create products and programs to offer to their dealer customer base. Since 1965, TALO has serviced dealers throughout the United States with special programs and buys. In more recent times, TALO has become more specialized in custom designed firearms and accessories. “

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