cache coffee gun safe

Jamie Buttars talks about a gun safe at Cache Coffee on Friday. People who worry that firearms may not be the best thing for them right now, will have a place at the coffee shop to safely keep their guns until they are ready to have them back.

Support Local Journalism

Cache Coffee owners Mindie and Jamie Buttars recently announced they would hold weapons for those experiencing mental and suicidal crisis.

In June, Mindie and Jamie lost a dear friend to suicide and had a handful of other close calls, including an incident in which Jamie physically pulled a gun from someone’s hands.

After offering to hold onto guns for people, the two purchased a gun safe with the help of the Marine Corps League Auxiliary Unit 476 Cpl. James L. Anderson and Al’s Sporting Goods to properly store weapons.

“It just has to stop,” Mindie said. “It opens your eyes up to how bad things are and I think that there is a stigma with suicide so that people … if they reach out for help, they get thrown in a jail cell because there really is no help. They get their firearms taken away for life possibly and all they needed was time. We wanted to open that up.”

There are currently four guns in the safe. The two are talking to an attorney to work out deals so that if someone does ask for a firearm back, they will have proof of mental stability. They don’t want those dropping off weapons to feel like they are losing them forever.

Cache Coffee's offer isn't the first such service available to Utahns: Under the state's Safe Harbor Law, individuals can voluntarily hand guns over to law enforcement for safe keeping up to 60 days. An additional 60 days can be added if the individual requests it. In order to get the firearm back, the cohabitant must show proof of mental stability.

“The night that Jamie had to physically pull a gun out of someone’s hands, we had a very hard time getting him help besides the veterans that came immediately and talked to him,” Mindie said. “Brian, he was able to help Jamie get someone on the phone within 20 minutes that had available resources down in Ogden and the Salt Lake area.”

Brian Helbach runs the organization IGY6_22 dedicated to connecting “veterans, law enforcement officers, fire fighters, first responders, dispatchers and their families with programs to help identify and cope with trauma.” Mindie and Jamie said it was an amazing organization.

Cache Coffee serves coffee created by veterans and also donates portions of proceeds to veteran organizations. The shop is open for anyone in the community, hosting a variety of events such as movies, take-a-book-leave-a-book and even an extravagant Independence Day firework show.

“I think a lot of people see Cache Coffee and relate it to veterans, and that it’s only available for veterans," Mindie said. "No. Anybody — I don’t care who walks through that door. If they need a place, they’re welcome here.”

Cache Coffee will be hosting a Thanksgiving Feed this year at the Eagle’s Lodge in conjunction with Firehouse Pizzeria, Discount Tires and many more from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. There is a sign-up sheet in the store to donate unprepared or prepared food. This is their third year doing it; last year they served over 2,600 people.

Despite coming up with the idea, Jamie called it a community event.

“We try to bring the community together to help out everyone,” he said.

Jamie also added that many families bring their kids in to serve others and many residents across Cache Valley come out to help.

Jamie and Mindie have plans in the works to open two more stores.

“It's grown a lot and we’re so humbled. Cache Coffee is Cache Coffee, but it’s the community that makes this place so incredible. All hope is not lost," Mindie said. "There are still good people in the world and there’s proof in these doors all the time."

At least a dozen studies have linked access to firearms with an increased risk of dying by suicide, according to the Harvard project Means Matter.

"Firearm owners are not more suicidal than non-firearm owners," the project's website states. "Rather, their suicide attempts are more likely to be fatal. Many suicide attempts are made with little planning during a short-term crisis period. If highly lethal means are made less available to impulsive attempters and they substitute less lethal means, or temporarily postpone their attempt, the odds are increased that they will survive."

Given the temporary nature of most suicidal crises, the researchers state, nine out of ten people who survive a suicide attempt don't go on to die by suicide later.

People can be reluctant to ask someone who seems to be in distress if they've thought about suicide, and for a long time it was feared that just bringing up the topic could increase someone's suicide risk. A 2014 review of medical literature, however, concluded that there's no evidence that such questions increase suicide risk.

More info on suicide prevention resources can be found at cdc.gov/suicide/resources.

If you may be experiencing a suicidal crisis or know someone who may be, help is available through the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).

Please be aware that Cache Valley Publishing does not endorse, and is not responsible for alleged employment offers in the comments.

Recommended for you