Dick's stores suspend sales of certain rifles - FOX 35 News Orlando

Dick's stores suspend sales of certain rifles

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Since the school massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, gun stores around the country have been reporting record sales. One of the most popular selling weapons right now is the AR-15 rifle. The same rifle police say the gunman primarily used on his killing spree.

Fred Lutger of Freddie Bear Sports in Tinley Park showed us what a bushmaster AR-15 rifle looks and feels like.

"A lot of people like to call it an assault weapon because this is the gun we used in Vietnam," Lutger explains. "That's the rifle everyone wants to buy, because that's one they will go after."

The seven-pound semi-automatic rifle--the civilian version of the military's M-16 rifle--was also used at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Authorities say it was the suspect's primary weapon.

Lutger says sales of the AR-15 have spiked since the Connecticut school massacre.

Like many gun shops nationwide, Freddie Bear Sports is also experiencing a boost in business--a 20% increase in sales. Lutger believes its being driven by fears that President Obama and other lawmakers will tighten gun control laws.

"Right after an incident like this people run in and grab a gun real quick," Lutger says. "Not so much for home protection or anything else, but for political reasons."

Meanwhile, Dicks Sporting Goods announced that out of respect for the victims and their families, "We have removed all guns from sale and from display in our store nearest to Newtown and suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of our stores nationwide."

Some Dicks Sporting Goods stores like the one in Tinley Park have rifles on display, except AR-15 rifles. Other locations said they had taken down all rifles for sale.

"I think it has to be dealt with more with the people, the mentally ill, than the gun ownership," says gun enthusiast Tom Heuer.

"It's a good sign, I think it is," says Bernice O'Brien who supports gun control. "It's a small start, Washington do something about situation."

Dick's Sporting Goods has not responded to calls or emails inquiring about how long the suspension of rifle sales will be in effect.

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