Man accused of Aurora-like shooting plot

Sunday, November 18, 2012
Blaec Lammers (AP Photo/Polk County Sheriff's Department)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A southwest Missouri man who confessed this week to plotting to shoot up a "Twilight" showing and a Walmart store was detained in 2009 after threatening a store clerk, police said Saturday.

Blaec Lammers, 20, of Bolivar, Mo., was charged Friday with first-degree assault, making a terroristic threat and armed criminal action. He is jailed in Polk County on $500,000 bond.

The investigation into the shooting plot began Thursday, when Lammers' mother contacted authorities.

She said her son had purchased weapons -- two assault rifles and hundreds of bullets -- similar to those used by a gunman who opened fire inside a theater in Aurora, Colo., during the latest ‘Batman' movie in July. That attack killed 12 people.

Lammers was questioned Thursday afternoon and told authorities he bought tickets to a Sunday "Twilight" screening in Bolivar and planned to shoot people inside.

In 2009, Lammer followed a female clerk around a Walmart store threatening her. He was not charged but was committed for 96 hours for a mental health exam.

Bolivar Police Chief Steve Hamilton said Saturday he didn't have details about Lammers' mental condition, although he said Friday that Lammers was under a doctor's care.

According to the probable cause statement, Lammers also said he planned to "just start shooting people at random" at a Walmart store less than a mile away. He said he'd purchased two assault rifles and 400 rounds of ammunition, and if he ran out of bullets, he would "just break the glass where the ammunition is being stored and get some more and keep shooting until police arrived," investigators wrote.

Police said Lammers bought one firearm Monday and another Tuesday, then went to Aldrich to practice because he "had never shot a gun before and wanted to make sure he knew how they shot and how they functioned."

Hamilton said it appeared that Lammers obtained the firearms legally.

He said his office has no information to indicate anyone else was involved but was interviewing people just to be certain.

Hamilton said it's "very difficult to say what (Lammers) would have done."

"I think he would have been adaptive," Hamilton said. "If one target wasn't available, I think he would have changed to something else."

Lammers faces three felony charges in the alleged shooting plot.

In Missouri, hospitals, law enforcement officials and private citizens can request a person be held against their will for up to 96 hours if he or she appears to be a threat to themselves or others.

"It looks like everything was done appropriately at that time," Hamilton said. "The average person will look at it and say `Why was he not charged criminally?' And the reality is the law only allows so much when a person is having some mental issues."

Bolivar, a town of approximately 10,000 people, is about 130 miles southeast of Kansas City.

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