- Dick’s Sporting Goods will no longer sell assault-style weapons or sell any guns to customers under the age of 21.
- In November, Nikolas Cruz, who is suspected of killing 17 people in Parkland, Florida, purchased a gun at Dick’s.
- “It was not the gun, nor type of gun, he used in the shooting,” Dick’s said in a statement on Wednesday. “But it could have been.”
On Wednesday, Dick’s CEO Edward W. Stack announced that the retailer would no longer sell assault-style rifles. Dick’s additionally increased the minimum age for people buying firearms at its stores to 21.
“Following all of the rules and laws, we sold a shotgun to the Parkland shooter in November of 2017,” Dick’s said in a letter to customers on Wednesday.
“It was not the gun, nor type of gun, he used in the shooting,” the letter continued. “But it could have been.”
Nikolas Cruz is suspected of killing 17 people in the shooting at a Parkland, Florida high school, allegedly using a R-15 semiautomatic rifle and “countless magazines,” according to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office.
Under Dick’s new policies, Cruz – who is 19 years old – would not have been able to purchase any firearms from the retailer.
“It came to us that we could have been a part of this story,” Stack told The New York Times. “We said, ‘We don’t want to be a part of this any longer.'”
The Parkland shooting has sparked a national debate about gun rights in the US.
“When we saw what happened in Parkland, we were so disturbed and upset,” Stack told The Times. “We love these kids and their rallying cry, ‘enough is enough.’ It got to us.”
In conversations with the press and social media, survivors of the shooting have urged politicians to pass gun-control regulation and for companies to cut ties with the National Rifle Association. More than a dozen companies– including Hertz, United, and Delta – have recently severed ties with the gun-rights organisation.