Ethan Kollie is a car salesman who has been thrust into the spotlight after it was learned by authorities that he allegedly purchased weaponry and body armor for the Dayton, Ohio mass shooter.
Kollie, who was identified as Black on his mugshot, was reportedly arrested on Friday (August 9). The arrest warrant and complaint accuses the 24-year-old of possession of a firearm by an unlawful user/addict of a controlled substance and making a false statement regarding firearms.
Body armor and an upper receiver for an AR-15 assault rifle, which have been tied to Dayton shooter Connor Betts, were allegedly among the purchases he made under the false firearms forms he filed.
As the arrest was announced, people have began investigating Kollie and his beliefs. On Twitter, via his alleged handle @Mr_Ethan_K, he’s defended what he believes is his right to carry all types of weaponry, including assault rifles.
You should get a gun— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) December 26, 2018
Gun stores tattoo artists— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) December 6, 2018
Thank god you have the constitutional right to carry a gun to defend yourself.... oh wait nvm UC took that right from you— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) December 1, 2018
Look at this chart and then explain to me why banning the AR-15 is necessary. I'll wait. https://t.co/JCWjqIOa4M— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) December 1, 2018
Stop trying to strip people of their rights. We won't stand for it.— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) December 1, 2018
Shooters gonna shoot— Ethan Kollie (@Mr_Ethan_K) November 20, 2018
Kollie has also supported the defense of NRA TV show host Colion Noir, another Black pro-gun advocate. In a tweet Noir made clapping back at gun control advocacy group Moms Demand Action’s Shannon Watts, Kollie retweeted a reply to the back-and-forth alleging Watts was a racist.
Nothing like white liberals telling black people how to act and think. They're not racist, though.— Dan Routh (@Drouth85) December 1, 2018
Ethan Kollie has not been accused of knowing that the weaponry he purchased for Connor Betts was going to be used in the Dayton mass shooting that killed nine people and injured over a dozen more.
Since his arrest, Kollie’s lawyer has released a statement: “Like everyone else, we watched the press conference held by the United States Attorney,” said attorney Nick Gounaris via Heavy. “Although we will not discuss the two pending criminal charges against our client, we do want to respond to comments made during the press conference. Prior to his arrest on August 9th, Mr. Kollie participated in three separate interviews with federal authorities in order to provide helpful information to aid investigators. He does not deny his friendship with Connor Betts and he was as shocked and surprised as everyone else that Mr. Betts committed the violent and senseless massacre in the Oregon District. We appreciate the United States Attorney stating that there was no indication that Mr. Kollie knew that he was assisting Betts in the shooting.”
Photo: Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images