As we’ve previously reported, the Buffalo shooter wasn’t exactly unknown to police. That’s a tune we hear all too often when we hear about these shootings. It’s not the quiet ones, it’s the ones law enforcement has run into before.
Now, in New York, officials are looking into just how the shooter was able to get a firearm in spite of that.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said the state is investigating how a Conklin teen was allowed to buy an assault rifle nearly a year after he was reported to authorities for previewing a deadly attack to one of his teachers.
Speaking on Buffalo’s Kiss 98.5 Monday morning, Hochul said a teacher had reported 18-year-old [name redacted], who is accused of killing ten people at the Tops Friendly Market on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo, to authorities last June.
“What are your plans?” Hochul said the teacher asked [him]. “He said, ‘I want to murder and commit suicide.’ So they immediately took action.”
The remark was reported to State Police, after which [he] had a psychiatric evaluation but was released because there wasn’t a specific threat at that time, Hochul said.
New York has what’s known as a Red Flag law that’s supposed to block people thought to be a threat to themselves or others from purchasing weapons. Yet despite the incident last June, [he] was able to buy an assault rifle from a vintage firearm seller in Endicott, N.Y., the New York Times reported.
“I’ve asked for the investigation of exactly what transpired there,” Hochul said. “But there was nothing that flagged that he wouldn’t be able to — from that encounter at the time — be able to go into a store and purchase a gun. We need to question that as well.”
Now, I get that charges were not filed because there wasn’t a specific threat. It’s not a terroristic threat if it’s just an expressed desire to do something in general.
But yes, New York has a red flag law. In theory, it should have stopped the alleged killer from buying a firearm in the first place. While Hochul and others are fond of making a stink about the magazines he bought from out of state, the truth is that their own laws should have prevented him from buying a firearm in the first place.
And they didn’t.
See, it’s easy to blame gun rights when something happens in a pro-gun state like Florida because treating people like they’re adults means some people might take advantage of that. It’s the cost of freedom, much as it sucks to say that.
Yet New York doesn’t have that excuse. They have everything gun control advocates have been begging for, including a red flag law, and absolutely none of it worked. None at all. None of them stopped the Buffalo shooter from taking 10 people’s lives.
So don’t tell me we need more gun control. New York had it and it didn’t do a blasted thing, so why are we restricting rights for people when those restrictions don’t stop these kinds of vicious attacks?
I mean, New York isn’t exactly doing well. First the NYC subway attack and now this?
And you’re going to tell me the rest of the nation should follow their lead? Not hardly.