Chicago

Gun Used in Cmdr. Bauer’s Killing Had Long Journey to Chicago: Report

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Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

The gun used in the slaying of Chicago police Cmdr. Paul Bauer had its origins at a gun store in Wisconsin 7 years ago, passing through multiple owners before it found its way into the hands of Shomari Legghette, who was charged last week with Bauer’s murder.

An intensive trace by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, indicates the gun, a Glock 26, was first purchased legally at PT Firearms in Cross Plains, Wisconsin in December of 2011. The trace was first reported Wednesday by the Chicago Tribune, and a source close to the federal investigation confirmed the accuracy of that report.

The original owner sold the weapon in March of 2015 to a fellow member at an area sportsmen’s club near Madison. That man reportedly provided investigators with evidence of numerous transactions, and indicated he had sold the weapon to a buyer in Milwaukee in 2017, who he’d met on the internet site armslist.com, a site which does not require background checks.

The Tribune reported that man had a history of felony arrests, that in 2006, he reportedly was charged with felony possession of drugs, but the charges were dropped two years later. But the report says a search of the man’s home revealed dozens of firearms, gun magazines, thousands of rounds of ammunition, body armor and drug paraphernalia, along with extended pistol magazines like the one found in the gun when it was used to kill Bauer.

It isn’t clear how the gun found its way from Wisconsin to Chicago. But a trace of the shell casings revealed that the weapon had also been used in a shooting in July of 2017, when a man was shot in the side as he sat in a car at Garland Court and Lower Wacker Place.

Seven months later, the gun was allegedly used to kill Bauer in a stairwell of the Thompson Center in the Loop. The longtime Chicago commander was hit six times.

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