Philly man accused of using 3D printer to make ‘ghost guns’ faces charges

ADA William Fritze talks about 3d printed firearms arrest

ADA William Fritze talks about the arrest of a man who was making 'ghost guns' using a 3D printer in his Roxborough-Manayunk home. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY News)

The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office has announced criminal charges against a man accused of using a 3D printer to make “ghost guns,” firearms that are frequently used in crimes because they are untraceable.

Assistant District Attorney William Fritze, superintendent of the Gun Violence Task Force, said Daniel Whiteman, 37, is facing multiple charges in connection with using 3D printing techniques to create the untraceable firearms.

A tip led investigators to Whiteman’s home near Roxborough-Manayunk, where they say gun parts were being created when they entered the apartment.

“He’s ordering parts of those firearms and then he’s using a 3D printer and he’s assembling the rest of the firearm with that 3D printer,” Fritze said.

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Picture of a 3D printer
District Attorney Larry Krasner and ADA William Fritze described how a Philly man was allegedly using a 3D printer to produce ‘ghost guns’. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY News)

Fritze said agents were given information that approximately four of the ghost guns had already been created before the raid.

Prosecutors say the case is a first in the city of Philadelphia where a 3D printer was found to be used to create parts to assemble firearms.

District Attorney Larry Krasner said he’s concerned about this new way to create an untraceable gun.

“This is a terrible threat to public safety, not just this one person, but the reality that this can be replicated,” Krasner said. He’s hopeful there will be more federal regulation of the practice.

Whiteman’s printer, computers and cellphones have been confiscated as part of the raid on his home, and investigators are trying to track down any firearms that had been previously created.

Fritze said they believe they caught the gun-selling business at its inception, after only being in operation for a month or two.

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Whiteman is currently being held on $750,000 bail and the investigation is ongoing.

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