Police in Indianapolis are investigating the burglary of a gun store on the city’s west side late Thursday evening in which the thieves used a car to bash a hole in the wall of the store to gain entry.
It was just before 3 a.m. when the unidentified burglars used a car from Ohio (likely stolen) to crash into the side of 500 Guns. The individuals then entered the gun store and stole an undetermined number of weapons before speeding off into the night.
As Fox 59 in Indianapolis reports, it’s not the first time that thieves have targeted the gun shop using a vehicle as a burglary tool. Something similar happened back in April of 2013.
Officers responded to investigate after multiple alarms went off at 500 Guns, located in the 3600 block of West 16th Street, around 3:15 a.m.
When they arrived, they found the store’s security bars ripped off the front wall. Police believe one or more suspects tore the bars from the wall using their vehicle.
The burglars stole at least one gun with a second gun found just outside the store. However, the gun store owner told police he believes the burglars made off with many more guns because he could see at least four cases damaged.
It’s obviously impossible to turn the average retail location into an impenetrable fortress, and if thieves are intent on getting inside a gun store they’ll likely find a way to do it, though these days I’m not sure how much they’re going to find once they get inside.
Police say in this most recent intrusion, they do have surveillance footage from inside 500 Guns that will hopefully provide some evidence that can lead to an arrest.
That was the case in Bradenton, Florida recently, where authorities used footage from inside High Noon Guns to arrest a 14-year old who had allegedly broken in to the retailer and stole more than a dozen guns earlier this month.
A 14-year-old boy was arrested in connection with the burglary on Jan. 12. The teen is charged with armed burglary, felony criminal mischief, and theft of a firearm. His name has been withheld because he is a minor. Police tell 8 On Your Side he has no prior criminal history and believe he acted alone during the burglary.
“No other persons were seen in the video. What he did after he left the parking lot, that is where we are working backwards now on the timeline to try to determine where he went,” said Capt. Brian Thiers.
While it may be impossible to fortify a gun shop to make it burglar-proof, there are a couple of steps that gun store owners can take to keep their inventory protected if thieves do make their way inside. The National Shooting Sports Foundation recommends locking up guns and ammunition once a store has closed for the day, as well as having a video surveillance system in place.
The NSSF also offers a Security Risk Self-Assessment tool for FFL’s to help them identify vulnerabilities in their current set-up. We might not be able to prevent every gun store break-in, but gun shops can make it much more difficult for thieves to get away with their crimes.