Sunday, April 28, 2013

Stolen guns: Contemporary reports and old government memos

Theft is key means for criminals to obtain guns. ABC News noted earlier this year:
An estimated 230,000 guns per year are stolen in home burglaries and property crimes, according to a study by the Department of Justice.
Another 25,000 guns are stolen annually from firearms retailers, ABC said.

And criminals don't just steal from civilians. They also steal from cops. I found a smattering of reports on Google. Here's a few:

Two AR-15s and a shotgun stolen from police cars in Kansas City in January.

An AR was taken from a police car in New Bedford, Massachusetts last year.

In Oakland, California, a SWAT team was dispatched last month to retrieve a an AR stolen from San Francisco police.

Gun thefts from government sources are nothing new for bad guys - or gals.

Bonnie and Clyde had a fondness for government guns - including Browning Automatic Rifles - taken from National Guard armories.

As an FBI memo noted in 1933:
The number of rifles and automatic pistols found in possession of the Barrows, as well as the quantity of ammunition so found, indicates that the Government is furnishing ammunition and equipment to these outlaws.

There's also a letter in the FBI archive detailing the return of a stolen police revolver recovered from the Barrow gang.

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