Bryan Black looks at the equipment James Holmes bought for his shooting rampage in Aurora, Colorado:
In looking at what Holmes purchased, it’s somewhat clear that he didn’t have much in the way of training to employ his preferred weapons effectively. Most notable is his choice to run a 100 round drum magazine that was recovered from the scene. Anyone that’s had the opportunity to fire one of these can testify to their poor reliability, at least that’s been my experience.
It’s also come out that Holmes’ AR-15 “jammed” on him, forcing him to discard it and choose another gun. However, photos show an AR-15 near the emergency exit door Holmes used with what looks like a regular AR magazine attached. He could have tried to change mags during the malfunction, not properly knowing how to clear it, then discarded the AR when he couldn’t get it working again.
In a span of two months leading up to the shooting, Holmes obtained his firearms from various retail outlets in Colorado. The first Glock was purchased at the Aurora Gander Mountain on May 22nd, the shotgun from Bass Pro Shops in Denver on May 28th and the AR-15 on June 7th. The other Glock pistol was purchased July 6th back at the Denver Bass Pro Shops.
The total ammunition acquired by Holmes from online retailer bulkammo.com consisted of 3,000 rounds of .223 for the AR, 3,000 .40 cal rounds and 300 rounds of 12 gauge for the shotgun. On July 2nd he shopped at online retailer tacticalgear.com and purchased a Blackhawk Urban Assault Vest (black), Blackhawk Omega Elite Triple Pistol Mag Pouch (black), Blackhawk Omega Elite M16 Mag Pouch (black) and a Blackhawk Be-Wharned Knife (silver). All totaling around $300 with shipping.
If you notice in this video, ABC improperly calls the Blackhawk Assault vest purchased a “bullet proof vest” when the screen clearly shows the make of the assault vest from Blackhawk and even displays “Assault Vest” on the screen. It makes me question whether Holmes was truly wearing body armor or an armored helmet.
As many shooting enthusiasts reading this will agree, the ammunition count is not hard to accumulate if you’re taking your training with firearms seriously and practicing your skill-set. Yet the media is painting this with all their buzz words about being enough ammo to for a small army and sparking their debate for another assault weapons ban.
Ordinary hobbyist shooters routinely order thousands of rounds at a time, when they shop online, in order to reduce shipping charges. Realize that they shoot hundreds of rounds per range visit. The number of rounds needed for one practice session or one competitive match is more than enough for a massacre or two. (I’ve mentioned this elsewhere.)
When I did a quick search on Amazon for body armor and ballistic helmets, I was reminded of just how many cheap lookalike products there are, and I thought, hmm, a shooter could probably look bulletproof easily enough. I guess I was right.
So, shooting in a dark theater full of tear gas wouldn’t be easy, but if you don’t actually need to make an eye-shot to stop the insane killer? It seems doable. Well, for a competitive shooter.