A common element links many of America's recent mass shootings: the presence of semiautomatic weapons in the arsenal of the shooters.
After a deadly rampage at a Colorado movie theater, an attack on an Arizona lawmaker and others, the mowing-down of Sikhs at a Wisconsin temple and the mass killings at Virginia Tech, law enforcement found at least one semiautomatic pistol in the possession of the killers.
And, on Friday, authorities said they seized two such weapons at the scene of the horrific slaughter at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., where 20 small children and six adults died.
In all but one of those tragedies -- and in other earlier ones, including a mass shooting in Connecticut 15 years ago -- Glock semiautomatic pistols played a role.
The high-power capabilities of Glock pistols, as well as the ease of concealing them, attracts those bent on a high body count, according to criminal-justice experts. They are legally sold in gun shops and online, some for less than $500.
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These gangsters loved a semiautomatic pistol called a Sig Sauer. Most gang members had them. And they hung onto the $500 guns murder after murder.
The Bushmaster was also used in the 2003 Washington, D.C. sniper shootings where 10 people were killed and two people arrested.
That incident resulted in a lawsuit settlement and eventually Bushmaster's Windham, Maine facility closed in 2010, but owner Dick Dyke started a new rifle manufacturing company called Windham Weaponry Inc. soon afterward.
Bushmaster's parts and gear are still available online.
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