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3 Kansas City men face federal gun charges connected to Chiefs parade mass shooting

Police clear the area following a shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl celebration in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024.
Reed Hoffmann
Associated Press
Police clear the area following a shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl celebration in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024.

In an unusually fast response from federal authorities, the men were not charged with shooting the weapons, but rather with trafficking, illegal sales and lying to federal agents. One of the weapons was illegally bought at Frontier Justice, where Missouri Gov. Mike Parson signed the since-blocked "Second Amendment Preservation Act."

Three Kansas City men were charged Wednesday with federal firearms trafficking in connection with weapons recovered from the scene of the mass shooting at the Super Bowl rally.

Just a month after the Feb. 14 shooting, the U.S. Attorney’s office announced charges against Fedo Antonia Manning, 22, who faces 12 counts including conspiracy to traffic firearms, illegal sales and making a false statement to federal authorities.

Ronnel Dewayne Williams, Jr., 21, and Chaelyn Hendrick Groves, 19, face a four-count federal criminal complaint for allegedly lying to federal agents.

The complaints do not accuse the young men of shooting at the rally. Two adult men and two minors face state charges in the shootings that killed one and injured 24 people.

One of the weapons was initially bought at Frontier Justice, a Lee’s Summit gun store where Gov. Mike Parson signed the 2021 “Second Amendment Preservation Act,” which barred local police from enforcing federal gun laws. The constitutionality of the law is being argued in the courts — most recently, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the case.

U.S. Attorney Teresa Moore referred to the protections those federal laws offer in a video statement.

“These cases underscore the importance of enforcing federal firearms laws,” Moore said. “Stopping straw buyers and preventing illegal firearms trafficking is our first line of defense against gun violence.”

In all, 12 individuals brandished firearms and at least six individuals fired their weapons, according to court documents. Kansas City Police recovered several firearms, spent shell casings, and other items, the documents say.

Manning faces the most serious charges and is accused of the straw purchases — the U.S. Attorney’s office says he bought dozens of firearms and then sold them to others. Seven of those guns were recovered during the investigation, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

The charges cover two weapons specifically: an Anderson Manufacturing AM-15 pistol that Manning allegedly purchased from Frontier Justice on August 7, 2022, and a Stag Arms 300-caliber pistol, recovered at the scene, which Williams purchased from The Ammo Box during a gun show at the KCI Expo Center on November 25, 2023.

Williams allegedly bought the firearm for Groves, who was with him at the gun show but was too young to legally purchase the firearm himself, the U.S. Attorney’s office said. Williams and Groves are accused of lying to federal agents about buying weapons.

I’m a veteran investigative reporter who came up through newspapers and moved to public media. I want to give people a better understanding of the criminal justice system by focusing on its deeper issues, like institutional racism, the poverty-to-prison pipeline and police accountability. Today this beat is much different from how reporters worked it in the past. I’m telling stories about people who are building significant civil rights movements and redefining public safety. Email me at lowep@kcur.org.