Police: Greece Woman Bought Guns Used In Webster Firefighter Ambush
Updated: Friday, July 12 2013, 04:49 PM EDT
Rochester, N.Y. - A woman from Greece faces state and federal charges for allegedly purchasing guns that were later used to ambush firemen on Christmas Eve.
24-year-old Dawn Nguyen, who used to be a neighbor of the gunman, has been charged with making a false statement while purchasing a Bushmaster semiautomatic rifle and a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun. The gunman, William Spengler was found with the weapons shortly after he shot and killed firefighters Michael Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczowka.
"Ms. Nguyen intentionally and knowingly obtained the weapons with the understanding they would go to Spengler," said William Hochul, U.S. Attorney.
Nguyen was with Spengler at the Gander Mountain in Henrietta in 2010 when she purchased the firearms, according to court documents.
"He was her neighbor and went down with her because he knew about certain weapons," said David Palmiere, Nguyen's attorney.
Court documents state that Nguyen purchased the firearms for her own personal protection and did not report them stolen at any point.
Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley said Nguyen will be charged in Henrietta Town Court on State charges related to falsifying records in the purchase of the guns.
Spengler, who was imprisoned from 1981 to 1998 for killing his grandmother, was not allowed to own firearms.
"Dawn Nguyen told the seller of these weapons that she was to be true owner and buyer of these guns," said Hochul. "It is absolutely against federal law to provide any materially false information" on a firearms application.
A plea of not guilty was entered by Palmiere on behalf of his client.
In addition to the rifle and shotgun, Spengler was found with a pistol, which authorities believe he used to kill himself by shooting himself in the head.
The rambling letter Spengler left behind, which Hochul described as a “suicide note,” informed authorities that the guns had come from the daughter of a neighbor.
If convicted, she could face up to 10 years in prison & $250,000 fine or both.
On Monday, Lt. Mike Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczowka, volunteers with the West Webster Fire Department, were rushing to put out a car and house fire on Lake Road when Spengler opened fire.
Two other firefighters were wounded in the ambush. They are in satisfactory condition.
The gunman died after shooting himself.