Can you buy weapons online like the Colorado shooter used?

4:10 AM, Jul 21, 2012   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida - After a tragic shooting spree in a Colorado movie theater, focus has changed from the dead and injured to the weapons used in the massacre. Sources said that James Holmes bought his weapons from several different stores in Colorado, but the 10 News Investigators have learned he could have just stayed home and bought them online.

Gallery: Tweets, real time social media from Dark Knight shooting scene *warning, VERY GRAPHIC content*

Some estimate almost 50 percent of weapon sales are made online. But just like weapons purchased in stores, there are checks in place for those who buy online.

"Basically what they're going to do, they are going to purchase online, they are going to pay for it. Then they have to find an FFL dealer," said Cheryl Fowler at Shooting Sports in Tampa. FFL means Federal Firearms Licensed dealer. The guns are then shipped to that dealer and not to a person's home. The buyer then goes to the dealer, submits to a background check, and then are given the weapons if there are no issues. If you want to go on line and buy weapons you can.

Pictures: PHOTO GALLERY from the shooting scene

The 10 News Investigators found a website called and looked for the weapons James Holmes used to kill 12 people and injure many more.

According to reports from Colorado, Holmes entered the theater with an AR-15 assault rifle, two .40 caliber Glock handguns and a Remington 870 shotgun. He also had a third Glock in his car.

Online, we found the Glocks for $499 a piece. We found an AR-15 type assault rifle for $699 and the shotgun for $399. We added those to the cart check out and paid $2598. The guns could then be shipped to a local FFL dealer of our choice. 

In Florida, the purchaser will still have to wait three days after passing a background check, but in some states like Colorado there is no waiting period.   

While you can buy a huge cache of weapons at once either online or in person, the National Tracing Center will learn about it immediately. "For someone to purchase more than two firearms at any one time, they have to be on a multiform which is part of our control of firearms," said Fowler.

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Pictures: PHOTO GALLERY from the shooting scene

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