CRIME
01/28/2013 02:28 pm ET

Man Who Brought Loaded AR-15 Into Kroger Grocery Store Will Not Face Charges, Police Say

Police say a 22-year-old man who brought a loaded AR-15 assault rifle into a Charlottesville, Va., grocery store on Sunday night will not face charges.

Authorities say the man originally entered the Kroger unarmed before returning to his car, getting the weapon, and re-entering the store, according to WVIR. The man was reportedly only in the store with the AR-15 "briefly" before making his exit.

After witnesses and store employees called 911, police arrived and questioned the man, the station reports.

But because the man legally owned the rifle and it was in plain view, he didn't actually break any laws, Charlottesville Police Lt. Ronnie Roberts said, according to The Daily Progress.

As to why the man brought a loaded assault rifle into a grocery store?

"It was most likely a demonstration of his Second Amendment rights," Roberts told The Daily Progress.

Virginia law allows gun owners to openly carry their weapons, but a permit must be obtained to carry a concealed gun, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

The AR-15 semi-automatic rifle is a lightweight, military-style weapon that can hold magazines of up to 100 bullets. It can fire more than 120 rounds a minute, depending on how fast its user pulls the trigger. More than three million Americans own an AR-15, according to CBS News.

The AR-15 has been used in several recent mass shootings in the United States, perhaps most notably by Adam Lanza, who killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Dec. 14.

James Holmes, who is accused of killing 12 people and wounding 58 at a Colorado movie theater on July 20, also allegedly used an AR-15.

(h/t Raw Story)

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