Burnsville first responders shooting: Grand jury convened

The United States Attorney's Office has convened a grand jury, as the investigation into the deadly shooting of three first responders reaches new levels.

FOX 9 has confirmed the grand jury proceedings are underway in Minneapolis. Those proceedings are, by law, secretive. But witnesses can confirm if they’ve been subpoenaed to testify – and FOX 9 spoke to one of those witnesses who was ordered to appear before the grand jury this week.

The witness describes having to answer questions under oath about Shannon Gooden, how they met, their relationship, and their knowledge of his criminal history. But this person tells FOX 9, the focus appeared to be on how Gooden obtained guns.

Gooden is the man who opened fire from his home on first responders, killing officers Paul Elmstrand, Matthew Ruge, and firefighter-paramedic Adam Finseth. Gooden was barred from owning a weapon due to a past felony conviction. Yet, authorities have confirmed that Gooden had multiple weapons in his house, as well as significant amounts of ammo.

After shooting the first responders, authorities say Gooden turned his gun on himself.

Since that tragic Sunday morning in February, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and federal investigators have been looking into where Gooden obtained his arsenal. Last month, a local Burnsville gun store confirmed that a major component of an AR-15 rifle found in Gooden’s home had been traced back to their shop about a month before the tragedy. The store owner said he believed, based on their records and a visit from investigators, that the transaction appeared to be a straw purchase. That is when someone buys a firearm for another person who is barred from doing so.

Again, grand jury proceedings are secretive and the U.S. Attorney’s Office did not comment Tuesday on the case, so we do not know the full scope of this investigation. Typically.. prosecutors use this process to take sworn testimony from witnesses to obtain an indictment or otherwise file criminal charges against a suspect or in some cases, multiple parties.