Stolen guns are a problem for us all. Even if they didn’t end up in criminal hands, they’d still be taken from their lawful owners.
Theft of a firearm is a crime, of course, and those caught having done so are sent to prison. That means there’s not really room for more laws trying to punish criminals for such crimes. However, there’s still an issue. Guns are getting stolen, and they’re often being stolen because someone is being stupid.
In Houston, for example, the number is especially troubling.
Houston police are warning of a concerning trend involving a rise in the number of firearms stolen from cars.
“It’s out of control,” said Sgt. Tracy Hicks from Houston Police Department’s Auto Theft Crimes Task Force. “People have to stop leaving their guns in their cars.”
According to Hicks, more than 3,600 guns were stolen from cars in Houston throughout 2021. In January, the pattern continued with more than 350 guns taken from vehicles in Houston.
“The people who are stealing guns from cars, they’re people who aren’t allowed to have guns, felons,” said Hicks. “They’re [also] selling them to people who aren’t allowed to have a gun legally.”
Note that we’re looking at more than 10 guns stolen out of vehicles per day. Since guns don’t degrade, those numbers just keep stacking, which means you’re looking at a lot of guns in criminals’ hands.
Now, people who have their guns stolen are the victims here and should be treated as such. However, being a victim doesn’t make you immune to criticism if do something stupid that makes you the victim. That includes leaving guns in cars.
As Hicks notes, these aren’t people who can just buy a gun. Leaving a gun in your car is just making it easier for criminals.
Sure, sometimes it’s unavoidable, but far too many people who get hit aren’t sticking their guns in the glove box when they run in somewhere they can’t carry. They’re leaving a gun in the car all the time, thus increasing the chances that particular firearm will get stolen.
Look, Texas is a constitutional carry state. There’s almost no reason to leave a gun in the car regularly. Carry it on your person and it’s less likely to get taken by some criminal low-life who will then use it to hurt people. Keep it on you at all times except those rare circumstances when you can’t.
If it’s not all that rare–maybe you’re a high school teacher or something–then at least get a gun safe made for your car. It’s an investment at that point, really.
For most, this is the result of laziness. They leave a gun in the car so they don’t have to worry about it, even in states without constitutional carry. They figure they can just grab the gun if they need it, but don’t have to fool with the responsibilities of carrying it.
That’s not how it works, and if you’re going to leave it in the car, you carry the responsibility of having contributed to whatever happens after it gets stolen. That’s on you because you could have helped prevent it and you didn’t.
So don’t be stupid.