Mom of Ore. Mass Shooter Allegedly Stockpiled Firearms at Home


The mother of the Oregon mass shooter reportedly shuttled her son to shooting ranges and stockpiled weapons at home out of fear of stricter gun laws, according to the New York Daily News.


The mother, Laurel Harper, a nurse who shared an apartment with her son Chris Harper Mercer, 26,  "spoke openly about her love of guns, said the mother of one of her patients," writes the News.

"She said she had multiple guns and believed wholeheartedly in the Second Amendment and wanted to get all the guns she could before someone outlawed them," Shelly Steele, who hired Harper to provide care for her sickly teenage son, told the News Saturday.

Steele also told the News that Harper enjoyed talking to her husband, an avid hunter and former member of the military, about taking her son to shooting ranges.

She allegedly told Steele that she tried a shooting range close to the Umpqua Community College campus in Roseburg, Ore., where her son reportedly killed nine people last week, but didn’t like it “because it wasn’t very private,” the report says.

“You needed to have a range master with you, and she didn't like anyone watching,” Harper allegedly told Steele, the report says. “She wanted more privacy.”


Steele told the newspaper that she found the whole situation strange, especially since Harper knew her son had "mental-health issues." Steele said the woman told her that her son suffered from Asperger’s syndrome and had “mental problems.”

The shooting was a grim reminder of the 2012 rampage in Newtown, Conn., carried out by Adam Lanza, whose mother, Nancy, supplied him with weapons.


Thirteen guns were recovered from Harper Mercer, and at least some were purchased legally by other family members, police say.

Meanwhile, reports surfaced Saturday that Harper Mercer turned a weapon on himself, disputing previous claims that he was taken down by law enforcement.

Police are still investigating the shooting.

Read more at the New York Daily News.