Oregon Gunman Held 13 Legal Weapons Say Federal Agents


Federal agents investigating the man who killed nine people in an Oregon college this week said they found 13 weapons in his home.  All of the weapons that he owned and used in the shooting had been purchased legally.

Chris Harper Mercer carried six guns into the Umpqua Community College in Roseburg while he himself was wearing a flak jacket.  He opened fire on those he found and was killed by police after a gun battle.  Seven further weapons were discovered when his home was searched.


The police have also released the names of all of the victims, who ranged in age from 18 to 67, the oldest being a teacher at the college.  Meantime, survivors have been telling their stories of the incident.

Sharon Kirkham is a medical student whose friend Kim died in her arms at the college after she had been shot three times.  Sharon heard her friend gasping for air but could do nothing to save her, she told journalists.

Around the town, people have been lining up to give blood to help the survivors.  One, Tanya Talbot, said her best friend’ sister was in surgery and while she was expected to be okay, she felt she had to do something.  She added that the whole thing ‘didn’t seem real’.  Another said her cousin was in lockdown in the neighbouring building for an hour and was terrified while donating blood seemed the least that they could do.

President Obama spoke once again of his anger at gun violence when he held a press confidence on Friday, speaking of the need for the public to press their politicians into support reforms.  He added that voters needed to be a single issue voter on the matter because ‘that’s what’s happening on the other side’ in reference to the National Rifle Association’s lobbying power.

Mr Obama added that while the NRA were effective they didn’t represent the American people as a whole.


Investigators continue to piece together the life of Mercer with the aims of understanding why he carried out the killings, which is so far unclear.  Two of the victims believed that religion was an issue because the gunman asked victims about their religion then shot dead those who said they were Christians.  Father Ian Mercer said he was just as shocked as anyone by his son’s actions.

An online profile that seems to belong to the gunman listed his hobbies as the internet and ‘killing zombies’ while describing his politics as ‘conservative republican’ and being spiritual but not religious.

His profile did show an interest in other mass shootings including a comment that ‘the more you kill, the more you are in the limelight’ in reference to Vester Flanagan who murdered two journalists on a live broadcast in Virginia.

Locally, police have refused to release the gunman’s name because they don’t want to encourage others.  Online, many people have focused instead on Chris Mintz, a student and army veteran who is recovering from being shot seven times during his attempts at stopping the gunman.


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