Dick's Sporting Goods selling assault rifles at specialty chain

Photo: Dick's Sporting Goods
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Dick's Sporting Goods is now selling assault rifles at its separate chain of specialty stores, despite suspending sales of assault rifles last December. The company issued a statement after the Newtown, Connecticut shooting that killed 26 people saying it would no longer sell assault rifles.

"We are extremely saddened by the unspeakable tragedy that occurred last week," said the statement, "and our hearts go out to victims and their families and to the entire community. Out of respect for the victims and their families, during this time of national mourning we have removed all guns from sale and from display in our store nearest to Newtown and suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of our stores chainwide."

Less than a year later, Dick's has launched its new hunting and fishing chain called Field & Stream. According to NBC News, the first store in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania is selling the Bushmaster AR-15 assault rifle, the same gun used in the Newtown shooting.

Dick's Sporting Goods has plans to open Field & Stream specialty stores in Kentucky and Pennsylvania. After licensing the Field & Stream trademark since 2007, Dick's bought full rights to the name on August 1, 2012 for $24.5 million.

NBC News contributed to this report.