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Whit Johnson Reporting Federal agents are looking into the possibility that at least three people may have previously owned the handgun used in the deadly shooting at Trolley Square. Initial reports suggested that those three people would likely face charges, but that may be premature.
We talked to officials with the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. They all say the origin of the .38-caliber revolver is still under investigation.
The three people who previously owned the gun may NOT be charged, and may NOT have broken any laws. Agents first have to prove that the gun was stolen, which at this point they do believe. Then they have to either prove that the previous owners knew the gun was stolen or are not legally able to own a gun, like in the case of a convicted felon or an out of state resident. There are a number of possibilities.
It's believed that the Trolley Square shooter Sulejman Talovic got his hands on the gun in either June or July. Charges against the previous owners are possible, but it's too early to say for sure or even that charges are likely.
Talovic was carrying the .38-caliber revolver and a 12-gauge shotgun during the shootings. Investigators say he used the shotgun to kill five people and injure four others before he was killed by police.
Officials with ATF tell KSL there is a grey area when it comes to prosecuting previous owners for giving the gun to a person who uses it to commit a crime. State gun laws prohibit an 18-year-old like Talovic from going into a gun store and purchasing a 38-caliber revolver, but it is possible under various circumstances for someone else to purchase the gun legally and sell it to him in good faith without holding any responsibility.