The gunman who committed the mass shooting at Prague’s Charles University used an AR-style rifle — the second mass shooting in Europe involving a gun designed by Eugene Stoner in recent months.
In the Dec. 21 attack, the shooter used a ZEV AR10 308 to kill 14 people and wound 25. Police later discovered he had also killed his father and two others earlier. The slaughter horrified the nation of 10.5 million. The Czech government declared a national day of mourning. The shooting followed a terrorist attack in Belgium in October in which a terrorist used an AR-15. Both types of rifles are capable of shooting rapid-fire, high-velocity rounds and both were developed by American gun designer Eugene Stoner (1922-1997).
Stoner created an AR-10 first in the 1950s. It fires a larger and more powerful round than the AR-15. As explained in American Gun: The True Story of the AR-15, the U.S. military rejected the AR-10, after it failed critical tests. But afterward, an Army general visited Stoner at his office in southern California and asked him to make a gun like the AR-10 — but with a smaller caliber. Thus was born the AR-15. Today updated, semiautomatic versions of both types of rifles are sold to civilians in the U.S.