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Mass Shooter At St. Louis High School Had AR-15 Taken Away By Police But Got It Back

Mass Shooter At St. Louis High School Had AR-15 Taken Away By Police But Got It Back

St. Louis

Photo: Twitter

A 19-year-old man named Orlando Harris in St. Louis went to his former high school, Central Visual and Performing Arts High School, on Oct. 24 and shot and killed two people and injured seven. He was armed with an AR-15-style rifle, 600 rounds of ammo, and more than a dozen high-capacity magazines. His family had desperately tried to have his weapon taken away. Police did take away his AR-15, but he wound up getting it back before the attack on his alma mater, in which he killed one student and one teacher.

Following a gun battle with police, Harris was shot and injured. He died later in the hospital.

He intended on mass murder. He left behind a handwritten note in his car that read: “I don’t have any friends. I don’t have any family. I’ve never had a girlfriend. I’ve never had a social life. I’ve been an isolated loner my entire life. This was the perfect storm for a mass shooter.”

School shooters tend to be white. According to ResearchGate, 54.7 percent are white, African American school shooters make up 17.2 percent. ResearchGate’s study examined 64 school shooters who committed multi-victim attacks in the U.S. during the years 1966 through 2015. ResearchGate is a European commercial social networking site for scientists and researchers.


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Across the country, at least 67 shootings have happened on school grounds so far in 2022.

Weeks, an FBI background check stopped Harris from buying a gun, police revealed. He attempted to buy a weapon from a licensed dealer in St. Charles, Mo., but an FBI background check “successfully blocked this sale,” St. Louis police said in a news release shared with The Washington Post.

Police did not explain why the FBI had flagged Harris.

But after being refused by the licensed dealer, Harris bought the AR-style rifle he used in the shooting from a private dealer who had legally purchased the weapon in 2020, The Washington Post reported.

“There is no existing law which would have prevented the private sale between the original purchaser and the suspect in this case,” police pointed out.

Prior to the shooting, Harris’ family told police he had mental issues and had pleaded with authorities to do something about his arsenal.

On Oct. 15, Harris’s mother called 911 and said that he had a gun at his house and that she wanted it removed. When police arrived, they took the rifle from Harris and turned it over to an adult who did not live in Harris’s home and was legally allowed to carry.

Investigators looking into how the weapon came to be back in Harris’ possession.

Harris struggled with his mental health and had been in mental health programs, interim St. Louis police commissioner Michael Sack said at a news conference.

“They made every effort that they felt that they reasonably could,” Sack said at the news conference. “I think that’s why the mother is so heartbroken over the families that paid for his episode.”

Photo: Twitter