OTTAWA — Firearms experts say the Ottawa gunman’s choice of a slow-loading, old-time hunting rifle suggests his rampage was either a poorly concocted plan or designed as a one-way trip from the start.
Or, perhaps, he just pulled the 1800s-style weapon off somebody’s wall?
The Mounties say the origin of Michael Zehaf Bibeau’s .30-30 Winchester lever-action rifle has become a primary focus of their investigation into the attack that killed Cpl. Nathan Cirillo.
Zehaf Bibeau was shot dead inside Parliament Hill’s Centre Block after exchanging gunfire with authorities.
Gun experts say Zehaf Bibeau’s brush rifle was made famous in Hollywood westerns and is more suitable for hunting coyotes than surviving a shootout with police.
Ex-police training sergeant Curtis Rutt says the .30-calibre rifle would be difficult to use under stress, since it only holds seven rounds, must be reloaded one bullet at a time and requires the lever to be pulled down before each shot.
Rutt says he was surprised when he saw Zehaf Bibeau holding the Winchester because it’s not the type of weapon one takes to a gunfight.