Police: Gunmen's co-worker sold massacre weapon
Man not considered an accomplice
April 29, 1999
LITTLETON, Colorado (CNN) -- Authorities said Thursday they expect to bring charges against a man suspected of illegally selling the semiautomatic handgun used in the Columbine High School massacre.
The man's name was not immediately available, but he worked at the same pizza shop that employed gunmen Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17, according to Deputy Wayne Holverson of the Jefferson County Sheriff Sheriff's Department.
Steve Davis, a spokesman for the sheriff's department, told CNN that prosecutors and the man's attorney are "trying to work out some type of negotiation, right now, for him to turn himself in."
He said the man would be charged with violating a law against selling handguns to minors.
While the man is not considered an accomplice in the April 20 gun and bomb assault, "if he knew what (the gunmen's) intent was ... charges could escalate," Davis said.
Authorities called the sale of the semiautomatic TEC DC-9 handgun a "private transaction," but did not reveal which teen was believed to have bought the weapon
'This is the person who furnished the gun'
Although Jefferson County District Attorney David Thomas told interviewers in New York that an arrest in the case probably would take place in the next two days, police later backed off that statement.
"We jumped ahead, just a little bit," Holverson told CNN. "The investigators want to interview this person and so it does not look like (an arrest) will happen within 48 hours. But obviously, this is the person they are looking at as the person who furnished the semi-automatic handgun."
Harris and Klebold, hiding their arsenal under black trench coats, killed 13 people and wounded more than 20 others at the school before killing themselves. They had four guns and also left more than 50 bombs at the school and in their homes.
Authorities say the other three guns -- two shotguns and a rifle -- used in the massacre were bought by Klebold's girlfriend, shortly after she turned 18 last fall.
They describe her as a witness rather than a suspect in the rampage, because it is not illegal to provide a shotgun or a rifle to a minor.
The girlfriend, who attended the prom with Klebold days before the shootings, is just one of 600-plus leads being pursued in Colorado's largest-ever criminal probe.
Mourners, drained by a week of funerals, turn Thursday to the final service for the Columbine victims as Isaiah Shoels, 18, is laid to rest.
The aspiring music industry executive, who overcame his short stature (4-feet-11) and serious health problems to become an athlete, was the only African-American who died in the carnage.
"They said he would never play sports," recalled his father, Michael. "You know he conquered that. He not only played sports, he was one of the best."
Witnesses said the gunmen targeted athletes and minorities during their attack.
But Michael Shoels said things would have been different if the killers had looked beyond the color of Isaiah's skin and into his son's heart. "If those guys had any idea who Isaiah really was ... they wouldn't have (done) it."
Return to school delayed
Thursday was to have been the day that Columbine High School students resumed classes, but because of this week's funerals, their return to school was rescheduled for Monday.
Students are to begin classes Monday at Chatfield High, a rival school a few miles away.
The afternoon sessions, from 12:50 p.m. to 6 p.m., will continue until the end of the year, Barbara Monseu, area administrator for the Jefferson County School District told CNN.
She said counseling and other support services will continue to be available for the Columbine students at their new school.
Among the leads for investigators is a medical condition cited by the Marines Corps when it rejected Harris as a recruit just five days before the attack.
Harris, who had expressed interest in the Marines, was disqualified because he had been prescribed the anti-depressant drug Luvox, sources told CNN on Wednesday.
It was not clear if Harris had actually been taking Luvox, most commonly prescribed to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder in children and adolescents.
Investigators said they were interested in whether Harris' condition could be linked to the massacre.
The initial toxicology report indicated there was no drug or alcohol in any of those who died in the siege, including Harris and Klebold.
CNN IN-DEPTH SPECIAL:
Columbine shooter rejected by Marines because of anti-depressant drug, sources say
Swedish Hospital (patient conditions)
|Back to the top||
© 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.|
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.