DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of California

For Immediate Release

Thursday, November 16, 2023
Phillip A. Talbert
, United States Attorney

Grand Jury Indicts Bakersfield Man for Firearms Trafficking

FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a three-count indictment today against Joshua Ruic Kimball, 40, of Bakersfield, charging him with trafficking in firearms, unlawful transfer of firearms in violation of the National Firearms Act, and unlawful transfer of firearms in violation of state law, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, Kimball was the owner of Show Off Sports LLC, a licensed firearms dealer in Bakersfield. Through his shop, Kimball sold firearms illegally, including short-barrel rifles and silencers. He did not require background checks, firearms registration, or any paperwork for the firearms sales. More than 100 firearms traced back to Kimball have been recovered in connection to crimes in California, Nevada, Arizona, and Mexico.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Fresno Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert L. Veneman-Hughes and Stephanie M. Stokman are prosecuting the case.

If convicted, Kimball faces a maximum statutory penalty of 15 years in prison for trafficking in firearms, 10 years in prison for unlawfully transferring firearms in violation of the National Firearms Act and five years in prison for unlawfully transferring firearms in violation of state law, and a fine up to $250,000 for each count. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

San Francisco Field Division