If TN Shooter Bought Guns On Internet, Did He Evade Background Check?


A friend's claim that the man accused of opening fire on two military facilities in Tennessee bought powerful guns over the Internet has renewed attention to online firearm bazaars, a lightly regulated world where buyers and sellers can set up purchases without background checks, reports the Wall Street Journal. A friend of Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez, the man authorities say shot and killed four U.S. Marines and one sailor, said that Abdulazeez had long been fascinated with guns and within the last year or so had purchased weapons legally, using the website Armslist. Abdulazeez, who was killed by police on Thursday, purchased an AK-47 rifle, an AR-15 rifle, a Saiga-12 shotgun and a 9mm handgun through the site, said the friend. FBI agent Ed Reinhold said some of the shooter’s weapons “were purchased legally and some of them may not have been.”

Abdulazeez was arrested in April for driving under the influence and had a court date set for this month. Because he hadn't admitted to illegal behavior or been convicted of any crime, legal experts suspect the incident wouldn't have raised a red flag on a background check. “For all we know, [Mr. Abdulazeez] passed a background check,” said Jennifer Baker, a spokeswoman for the National Rifle Association. “Just because he may have bought through a website doesn't mean anything at all.”

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