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article imageMentally ill convicted killer gets gun permit, buys arsenal

By Brett Wilkins     Jan 22, 2013 in Crime
Watertown - A Minnesota man who shot his mother to death and was hospitalized for mental illness has managed to amass a small arsenal of guns and ammunition using a legally-obtained firearms permit.
KARE reports that Christian Oberender, 32, was arrested earlier this month in Watertown Township, charged with unlawful possession of 13 guns and ammunition.
Oberender first made headlines at age 14 in 1995 when he murdered his mother by shooting her five times with a shotgun in her home. He was subsequently committed to a hospital after he was found to be mentally ill and dangerous.
Despite this, Oberender was able to secure a gun permit last year due to a procedural loophole. He then amassed a veritable arsenal of weapons and ammunition. According to the Star Tribune, Oberender had purchased an AK-47 and other assault rifles, a Thompson submachine gun, shotguns and handguns, including a .50-caliber Desert Eagle. Oberender posted photos of his guns spread out across his bed, along with notes about how he sympathized with the Newtown, Connecticut and Columbine High School shooters, on his Facebook page.
He also recently wrote a chilling letter titled "Dear Mom":
I think about killing all the time. Why, God, do I feel like this? The monster want to hurt people. Guns are too fast. The monster want it to be slow and painful. There is so much pain in my heart and soul. Me want other to feel it.
Oberender was able to obtain a gun permit because the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) did not have his fingerprints on file from his 1995 murder case due to a lack of a case disposition.
"Any purchasing of guns by him was never legal but it was possible because the disqualifiers weren't in place," Carver County Chief Deputy Jason Kamerud told the Herald-Journal.
For its part, the BCA told KARE that "there were no data submitted... about this individual-- without it there can be no record."
According to KARE, Oberender's neighbors said he passes his days shooting guns in the back yard of the home where he murdered his mother 18 years ago.
"The neighbors said they made numerous calls to the sheriff's department that the young man is out shooting a gun in the back yard and reported it and I just think it took too long for someone to come and take his guns away," local superintendent of schools David Marlette told KARE.
Oberender is being held on a $1 million bond.
Shockingly, Christian Oberender is far from the only case of a mentally ill individual being able to purchase guns and, in numerous cases, commit violent crimes. According to the Star Tribune, since 2000, at least 84 people in Minnesota have been charged with illegal gun possession or assault with a deadly weapon despite the fact that they had been declared mentally ill or had been committed to mental hospitals.
More about christian oberender, convicted killer gets guns, minnesota bureau of criminal apprehension, Gun violence
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