Maryland police and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives are searching for two masked suspects who broke into a Maryland gun store last week and stole over 30 firearms.
Surveillance video shows two men smashing gun cases at the United Gun Shop in Rockville, Maryland. They snatch as many pistols as their bags can hold, grab several long guns off the wall, and leave within 90 seconds.
Authorities say they took a total of 24 pistols and seven long guns, according to WJLA News.
“It just shows you how quickly these burglaries can take place,” said Montgomery County Police Sgt. Rebecca Innocenti. “Certainly it is concerning we have these guns that are unaccounted for. That is why we are reaching out to the public asking anyone with information to call that ATF hotline. Up to a $10,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction in this case.”
The suspects appear to have had experience with similar robberies. They quickly and efficiently smash the cases with crowbars, disregarding the alarm that rings throughout the video. Police arrived six minutes after the initial dispatch, but by then the men were long gone.
Authorities say they fled in a light-colored, four-door sedan.
As of last week, the ATF had no idea who the thieves were, though they think they know what they plan to do with the guns.
“Anytime that there is a theft to firearms, the ATF has found that those firearms are destined to wind up in the hands of criminals,” ATF agent David Cheplak told Fox 5. “We take these thefts very seriously. It is important for us to work with the firearms industry to make sure that they do properly secure their weapons. This particular federal firearms licensee had a very significant security system in place.”
Despite the security system, officials say the men used crowbars to open the front door of the store. After that, it was just a matter of leaving before the police arrived.
“I’m surprised they got through,” said Betty Armstrong, who works at a neighboring business. “I’m surprised they got through their security. They have got cameras out here. They have got a steel door. They got bars on their windows. We really love having them down here because we feel safe and the police are around here, so I didn’t think this place would get broken into.”