NEWTON, Kan. — A gunman who killed three people and injured more than a dozen at a Kansas manufacturing plant worked at that factory, and had been served with a restraining order just 90 minutes before he began his shooting spree, the county sheriff said Friday.Sheriff T. Walton of Harvey County said at a news conference that the protection from abuse order, usually intended to keep perpetrators of domestic violence away from their victims, might have set off the rampage on Thursday. He identified the gunman as Cedric Larry Ford, 38, who died inside the plant in shootout with a police officer.Mr. Ford barged into Excel Industries in Hesston after 5 p.m. and opened fire with an assault rifle, apparently not targeting anyone in particular or speaking to anyone, the sheriff said.
“He was randomly shooting people,” he said. The death toll could have been much higher, the sheriff said, if not for the Hesston Police Department officer who confronted and killed Mr. Ford. The officer’s name is being withheld pending further investigation.
How did he get the guns since he would not have passed a background check? I heard a federal prosecutor explain that nearly all strawman purchases start out as love stories, and this is one of them:
Investigators said Friday that the gunman who opened fire at a Kansas factory where he worked received a court order 90 minutes before the rampage and obtained the two weapons used in the attack from a friend.
Sarah Hopkins, 28, of Newton, Kan., is charged with one count of knowingly transferring a firearm to a convicted felon. Prosecutors allege Hopkins, a friend of Cedric Ford, knew about his criminal history before giving him the semi-automatic rifle and handgun he used in the rampage that left 3 dead and 14 others wounded.
The Wichita Eagle reported Hopkins is the mother of Ford's two children. She moved out of her home with Ford in July and retrieved the guns from the house less than a month later with the help of police, the Eagle reported, citing an affidavit in the case. Shortly thereafter, Hopkins gave the guns back to Ford "because Ford had threatened her," the paper reported.