(Reuters) – A good friend of the Ohio man who killed 9 individuals in Dayton was charged on Monday with mendacity about his drug use on a type when he purchased a gun and advised authorities that he purchased physique armor and firearm equipment for the shooter, a federal prosecutor mentioned.
The Aug. four assault, which ended when police shot and killed the gunman, 24-year-old Connor Betts, was one in every of three-high profile mass shootings over three weeks that shocked the US and stoked its long-running debate on gun rights.
The U.S. legal professional for the Southern District of Ohio, Benjamin Glassman, charged Betts’ good friend, Ethan Kollie, 24, with making a false assertion concerning firearms. He was additionally charged with possession of a firearm by an illegal consumer of a managed substance, in response to court docket paperwork.
Glassman mentioned throughout a information convention in Dayton saying the costs that Kollie advised federal brokers that he had bought physique armor, an adjunct for an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and a 100-round double drum journal that Betts used in the course of the capturing.
Kollie’s legal professional Nicholas Gounaris couldn’t instantly be reached for remark.
Kollie, of Kettering, situated just a few miles south of Dayton, stored the gadgets at his condominium to assist Betts conceal them from Betts’ mother and father, in response to an affidavit.
“There isn’t a proof and no allegation … that Kollie deliberately participated within the planning” of the Aug. four capturing, Glassman mentioned. “That’s not what this case is about.”
Authorities obtained the shape that Kollie used to buy a pistol final Could and located that the person answered “No” to a query asking if he was an illegal drug consumer or hooked on marijuana, a depressant or stimulant or some other managed substance.
“He admitted that he did keep in mind submitting out the shape … and indicating falsely that he was not a consumer of unlawful medicine,” Glassman mentioned. “He knew that if he answered honestly, he wouldn’t have obtained the firearm that he was shopping for.”
Betts opened hearth outdoors a bar within the Oregon District of Dayton at 1 a.m. on Aug. four. The capturing ended quickly when police who have been close by moved in and shot Betts useless. These killed included Betts’ 22-year-old sister, Megan. At the least 14 individuals have been wounded by bullets, whereas others have been injured as they fled.
Glassman mentioned the investigation into the capturing continues.
The gun Betts used was purchased legally on-line from a seller in Texas and shipped to an area firearms seller, native police mentioned.
Throughout an interview at Kollie’s dwelling on the day of the capturing, brokers smelled marijuana and observed a marijuana bong and a Micro Draco pistol in his possession, Glassman mentioned.
Later that week, authorities interviewed Kollie once more, this time at work, the place he advised them he was a gun proprietor and that he had carried out exhausting medicine with Betts in addition to marijuana and acid 4 or 5 occasions per week from 2014 to 2015, Glassman mentioned.
Kollie advised authorities he smokes marijuana each day and had been doing so for 10 years. He additionally advised brokers that he “micro-doses” mushrooms on a relentless foundation, saying it gives him with power and is “enjoyable,” in response to the affidavit.
Kollie, who was arrested Friday, faces as much as 15 years in jail if convicted.
The FBI mentioned final week that Betts had a historical past of violent obsessions and had mused about committing mass homicide earlier than his rampage in Dayton’s historic downtown.
Reporting by Peter Szekely in New York and Brendan O’Brien in Chicago; modifying by Cynthia Osterman and Leslie Adler