Binghamton, N.Y., gunman fired 98 shots in about a minute

Louise Backus of Binghamton, N.Y., adds to a pile of flowers Tuesday at the American Civic Association in Binghamton, the scene of Friday’s shooting.

Associated Press

Louise Backus of Binghamton, N.Y., adds to a pile of flowers Tuesday at the American Civic Association in Binghamton, the scene of Friday’s shooting.

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. — The man who gunned down 13 people at an upstate New York immigration center fired 98 shots from two handguns in a little more than a minute, police said Wednesday.

Gun control advocates said that if a man who complained about not getting enough in unemployment benefits could afford enough ammunition to repeatedly practice shooting and go into his killing zone with a satchel of bullets around his neck, new ways are needed to stem gun violence, including raising the price of ammunition.

Ballistics reports show that Jiverly Wong fired 87 times Friday from a 9mm Beretta and 11 times from a .45-caliber handgun. If he bought the ammunition online, he could have paid as little as $40 for the rounds he fired.

Friends say Wong had complained that he received only $200 a week in unemployment benefits.

Wong, 41, killed himself as police were rushing to the scene. He was found with a satchel containing several full ammunition clips. Police also found full magazine clips on the ground inside the center, which suggests that Wong dropped them while reloading. Police found an empty clip that had the capacity for 30 bullets.

Gun rights advocates argued that cheap ammunition is important to people who frequently practice shooting in an effort to be responsible gun owners.

Police said Wong had been practicing shooting at a local firing range in recent weeks.

New York Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand said Wednesday they will introduce legislation in Congress to grant honorary citizenship to the victims.

Binghamton, N.Y., gunman fired 98 shots in about a minute 04/08/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 8, 2009 9:44pm]

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