2. Question: The Minchas Chinuch (mitzvah 51) asks: What is the difference between selling an animal that gored before being found guilty and making it ownerless before it was found guilty?
A. The Tur says if one’s ox gores and then the owner declares it ownerless, he is exempt from paying damages even if he acquires it again before it is found guilty in court.
B. The Tur also says that if one’s ox gores and then he sells it he is liable. Which seemingly means you don’t need to have one owner of the ox in order to be liable (as Rashi holds) but that would mean there is a contradiction between selling and making ownerless.
C. Even the Tur holds that you need ownership from the goring through the court case without any break.
Answer: By buying and selling there is always someone owning it even while changing hands so the obligation sticks. But when made ownerless even if picked back up by the sane person there is now a break in ownership which causes an exemption. [/exand]