Buffalo suspect bought gun months after cops ordered psychological evaluation: NPR


Police and FBI agents are continuing their investigation into Sunday’s shooting at Tops Market in Buffalo, New York. A gunman opened fire on the store, killing ten people and wounding three others on Saturday.

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Buffalo suspect bought gun months after cops ordered psychological evaluation: NPR

Police and FBI agents are continuing their investigation into Sunday’s shooting at Tops Market in Buffalo, New York. A gunman opened fire on the store, killing ten people and wounding three others on Saturday.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

The gun used in Saturday’s shooting in Buffalo was purchased this year from a vintage gun store near the suspect’s hometown, the owner of the gun shop confirmed to NPR.

Robert Donald, 75, owner of Vintage Firearms in Endicott, NY, told NPR the gun was purchased in 2022. And he confirmed he did a background check on Payton Gendron, the suspect 18, but the report showed nothing.

The purchase came months after New York State Police briefly arrested Gendron after he threatened to shoot, as authorities described.

Last June, state police investigated Gendron and ordered a psychiatric evaluation. After a day and a half in a hospital, he was released, authorities said. Thereafter, he did not stay on the radar of law enforcement.

The timing of the gun purchase, as well as Donald’s report on a background check, raise questions about why a police-ordered mental health assessment would not have appeared on the report .

Donald’s store typically sells vintage and collectible firearms. In an interview with The New York Times, he said his store only sells about half a dozen assault rifles each year — and Gendron didn’t stand out.

In the suspect’s 180-page screed posted online, the suspect described the weapon as a Bushmaster XM-15, an AR-15 style rifle.

Police said on Sunday they recovered two additional guns from his car, a second rifle and a shotgun, but gave no further details.


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