Cho Seung-Hui, killer of 32 on the Virginia Tech campus last week, bought at least five 10-shot magazine clips on eBay's website for one of the two guns he used, the same gun he purchased in February from a Wisconsin online dealer.
Cho first purchased two 10-round clips for a Walther P22, a .22 calibre semiautomatic pistol, on March 22 from eBay seller ‘bullelk14’, which is an account associated with Elk Ridge Shooting Supply, a Rigby, Idaho-based eBay store whose owner touts it as a "small family-owned business”. According to eBay records, Cho paid $38.99 plus $5.75 shipping.
The second eBay transaction was finalised the next day, March 23, when Cho bought three more 10-round clips for a P22, this time from eBay seller ‘oneclickshooting’ for $59.99.
Police have said that Cho was armed with two semiautomatic pistols, a Walther P22 and a Glock Model 19 9-milimetre. Media reports have said Cho picked up the P22 February 8 at a pawn shop in Blacksburg, Virginia, and bought the Glock at a Roanoke, Virginia, gun shop on March 12. Virginia law prohibits the purchase of more than one firearm in a 30-day period.
Cho's eBay username came to light Friday when investigators filed a search warrant affidavit that asked to search the killer's email accounts, including his Blazers5505@hotmail.com account. Cho used the same name for an eBay account - blazers5505 - the San Jose-based company confirmed to the Associated Press on Saturday.
EBay records show that blazers5505 had conducted 64 transactions, many of them as the seller, and received feedback with a positive rating of 98.5 percent. The feedback comment provided by bullelk14, the seller who sold Cho the first 10 clips, read: "Good buyer, prompt payment, valued customer, highly recommended”. Oneclickshooting added, "great transaction good eBay A++”.
The magazine clips Cho bought online were empty; eBay does not allow the sale of weapons or ammunition.
Federal law does not permit the sale of firearms direct to buyers via online or mail-order, although sales are allowed when a registered firearm dealer acts as intermediary to physically deliver the weapon and complete the paperwork. According to articles in The Roanoke Times, Cho purchased the Walther P22 from the TGSCOM, a Green Bay, Wisconsin-based online firearms dealer that operates a pair of websites: TopGlock.com and TheGunSource.com. Both sites sell the P22 for $274.32.
Cho picked up the P22 at the Blacksburg pawn shop, where the state and federal background checks were also conducted and final papers filled out.