Guns Bought at Glendale Store Net Pregnant Woman One Year in Federal Prison

A California woman who is five months pregnant will serve one year in a federal prison for buying 17 guns from a Valley store and selling them to a drug dealer.

Federal prosecutors say 23-year-old Clementia Robles Maldonado of San Fernando, California, knew darn well the guy was a drug dealer, too. Where most of the handguns are now, authorities don't know. But one turned up in a "gang related violent crime" in Los Angeles.

The federal indictment of Maldonado shows she bought the guns over a seven-month period at Copperstate guns, 6711 West Glendale Avenue in Glendale.

On December 9, 2006, she bought a Hi-Point .380 caliber handgun (nice and small for concealed carry), writing a bogus Arizona address on the official paperwork that gets sent to the feds.

A couple of months later, she went to the same store and bought a similarly sized Cobra .280 caliber handgun. She must have loved the ambience at Copperstate, so she went back the next day and bought three more .380 Cobras. A month later, she bought four of the Cobras and a Phoenix Arms .25-caliber handgun (another type of pocket gun). Finally, in June 2007, the store sold her four more Cobras, two more Hi-Point .380s and another .25-cal.

We called Copperstate this morning to find out if anyone ever got suspicious at all those buys. The man who answered the phone, Bill Carter, tells us he's the owner and this was the first time he'd heard of the case.

"I'm going to look into it," he says, asking us to fax him the indictment. We'll update this post if he calls back.

So, what happens when a woman has a baby while doing time in a federal prison? Assuming no late-term abotion, Maldanado will be allowed to have the baby in a local hospital.

"The child does not come back with the inmate," says Felicia Ponce, BOP spokeswoman, adding that nursing options are probably nonexistent. The above-linked policy requires the prison's warden to help her place the newborn with a caregiver if she doesn't provide one herself.

Another mother-of-the-year award candidate.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.