As the St. Louis Post-Dispatch describes it, the events of Friday evening sound tragic but unremarkable: Police responded to a call of a woman shot in the head in a car around 11:45pm; 26-year-old Becca Campbell was later pronounced dead at a local hospital. But police sources close to the investigation tell CNN that Campbell and her 33-year-old boyfriend, who was driving at the time, had purchased the gun to protect themselves from any Ferguson-related unrest.
The unidentified boyfriend says that Campbell was brandishing the gun as they drove, joking that they were prepared for Ferguson. He reportedly told police that he ducked to avoid the gun and rear-ended a car as a result. In the accident, the gun went off, he says, and a bullet hit Campbell in the head. CNN reports that police are digging into his story to make sure it checks out and are waiting on gun residue tests. Post-Dispatch reporter Paul Hampel yesterday tweeted a photo he took on Aug. 18 of a woman he says is Campbell, showing her arguing with Ferguson cops; he calls the circumstances of her shooting "suspicious." (Read more Ferguson, Missouri stories.)