Cho Guns Were Legal Despite Police Record

Judge's ruling of "mental illness" no deterrent in Virginia
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 19, 2007 8:09 AM CDT
This image made from NBC on Wednesday, April 18, 2007 shows Virginia Tech gunman Cho Seung-Hui in part of a package apparently mailed to the network on Monday, April 16 between Cho   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Killer Cho Seung-Hui's gun purchases were completely legal, despite his 2005 brushes with the police for stalking fellow students and threatening suicide. The judge who deemed him "an imminent danger to himself because of mental illness" ordered Cho to outpatient treatment; Virginia blocks gun sales only to those who have been involuntarily committed.

Cho also stayed within the legal limit of buying one gun per month, and although he was a resident alien, he properly produced three forms of identification. Because Virginia gun laws, among the laxest in the country, require no waiting period, Cho could bring home each gun the day he bought it.