A Texas man who sold an AK-47 to the gunman who killed five police officers and wounded six others says he’s no longer interested in firearms.
“It’s the fact that I feel partially responsible for all this sh*t that’s happened,” Colton Crews told the New York Daily News. “That’s it. That’s what it is. He’s just one guy who bought a gun from me, and he decided to do something completely awful.”
Crews said he had forgotten about selling the assault rifle to an unremarkable military veteran he met through Facebook until after Micah Johnson was killed by police during a shooting rampage.
The 26-year-old Crews said nothing about Johnson, a former Army reservist, raised any red flags when he sold the AK-47 in November 2014.
“He didn’t stand out as a nut job. He didn’t stand out as a crazy person at all,” Crews said. “He stood out as just another guy. And he was U.S. service, so he was like your first pick when you’re selling a gun to somebody.”
Law enforcement recovered the weapon Crews legally sold to Johnson, but the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has not said whether the weapon was used in last week’s mass shooting.
“I hope to God it wasn’t,” Crews said. “I hope I’m not that close to all this.”
No background checks are required under Texas law for private sales, if the seller is not a licensed gun dealer, but Crews said he conducted a brief online search on Johnson before selling the rifle.
“First off, it was my belief he would have passed a background check,” Crews said. “He didn’t seem weird in any way, just a normal guy.”
Crews said he sold the AK-47 to pay for an airplane ticket to attend a wedding in Mexico, but now his interest in guns is gone.
He opted out of a deal over the weekend to buy a shotgun, but his connection to Johnson has shaken him.
“I don’t even know how I feel about it right now,” Crews said. “I have no idea. It’s awful. It’s just bad.”