Machine guns stolen from SWAT van

Discussion in 'In the News' started by jgullock, Apr 26, 2007.

  1. jgullock

    jgullock Active Member

    :shock: Hope it was some good-ass BBQ. ... 42,00.html

    Machine guns stolen from SWAT van

    By Alex Doniach
    The Commercial Appeal
    April 23, 2007

    Memphis police were looking Monday night for the thieves who stole seven weapons from a North Carolina SWAT team van parked in South Memphis.

    Members of the SWAT team based in Raleigh, N.C., were eating at Interstate Bar-B-Que, 2265 S. Third, about 3:30 p.m. Monday when they realized their van had been broken into, said Lt. Jerry Gwyn of Memphis felony response.

    Taken were three machine guns, two semi-automatic handguns, and two 12-gauge shot guns, Gwyn said.

    The officers, who were traveling from Raleigh to Little Rock for training, noticed two thieves driving away in a burgundy Ford Expedition, Gwyn said. A video surveillance camera also caught the thieves in action.

    "We’re concerned with getting these guns off the street," Gwyn said. "We have a lot of folks working on it right now."

    The theft was reminiscent of a heist in 1997, when thieves stole a Little Rock FBI team’s Suburban. Inside the SUV were grenade launchers, M-16 rifles, submachine guns and other potent weapons, which were found after an intense three-day search.
  2. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

    Guns stolen from cops? Inconceivable!!

  3. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday New Member

    Sorry but I just gotta :lol: my tail off!

    Memphis is home to great BBQ though. At least they weren't at a Dunkin Donuts. :lol: :twisted:
  4. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

    Grenade launchers? Grenade launchers?! WTF does the FBI need grenade launchers for?!
  5. ahlongslide

    ahlongslide New Member

    I bet that wouldn't have happened if they had locked them in the glove compartment... :roll:
  6. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday New Member

    Probably for less than lethal purposes I would hope. smoke, gas, etc.

    I bet they leave the frags behind unless they are going on a fishing trip to Waco with their buddies from the ATF.
  7. rajl

    rajl Guest

    Imagine explaining THAT on your annual review:

    Boss: "So, explain to me the incident where you lost a truck of grenade launchers"

    Agent: "Well, Mac wanted a donut so he jumped into the Dunkin Donuts. He left the car running because it would 'only take a second'"
  8. slabertooch

    slabertooch New Member

    Good chance they were only 37mm though, not sure if they use the same 40mm tubes that the military uses.
  9. Tinkerhell

    Tinkerhell Active Member

    That's one way to get around the class III paperwork! :twisted:
  10. glockgirl

    glockgirl Guest

    Man I would not want to be those guys when they get back to the station house... Honestly when I take the horses places I park where watch them WHILE we eat...
  11. jgullock

    jgullock Active Member

    THEY DONE FOUND THEM!! ... 48,00.html

    Luck, sound police work break weapons-theft case

    Jim Weber/The Commercial Appeal

    Memphis Police Director Larry Godwin displays one of the SWAT team weapons recovered during an investigation into weapons stolen this week from an out-of-town SWAT unit.

    Memphis police got some lucky breaks in running down a gang of thieves and the small arsenal they stole from a SWAT van.
    But as the saying goes, you make your own luck.

    At 3:36 p.m. Monday, thieves in a stolen Ford Expedition pulled next to a Chevrolet van belonging to the Wake County, N.C., SWAT team in the parking lot of Interstate Bar-B-Que at South Third Street and Interstate 55.

    They broke in and took the weapons, including three submachine guns. It took them from five to seven seconds and went unnoticed by the SWAT officers even though they sat where they could watch their van.

    Upon hearing of the theft, Police Director Larry Godwin put together a team that had worked on a similar theft in 1997, when an FBI SWAT van was stolen with sophisticated weapons, including grenade launchers. Those weapons were recovered and the suspects charged inside of three days.

    "When I got the call," Godwin said, "I told them, 'Let's get the team together. I want those guns back.'"

    Good intelligence gathering, a relentless manhunt on the streets of North Memphis, help from some citizens and solid forensic work all came together.

    "The streets are safer today because these weapons are sitting here," Godwin said, pointing to a table full of guns. (Bwahahaha! Sound familiar?)

    "From the moment they were stolen, we had officers who never stopped. They beat the streets."

    Within 48 hours of the theft, police had arrested two men and recovered three shotguns and three fully automatic, $12,000 SG-551 military-grade assault rifles that can fire up to 600 rounds a minute.

    The search for two semi-automatic handguns and several other suspects continued Thursday.

    The first break in the case came 10 hours after the theft. About 1 a.m. Tuesday, Shelby County sheriff's deputies found the stolen maroon Expedition that had been used as a "work car" for the crime.

    Memphis police crime scene investigators Don Carpenter and Nathan Gathright, with more than 60 years experience between them, were able to pull two fingerprints from the van -- those of Memphians Brian Bowles, 21, and Clent Green, 23, the latter believed to be the man who entered the SWAT vehicle.

    Tuesday afternoon, while hundreds of Memphis police scoured the streets, officer Ken Hailey got a call from a woman in his precinct who told him where to find one of the assault rifles.

    Police recovered the weapon in an apartment on North Seventh Street. Green had sold the weapon to another man for $200.

    Police would not detail how the rest of the weapons were found, but said some were recovered wrapped in duct tape and hidden. Word had gotten out they were too hot.

    In the meantime, police gathered information that the stolen Expedition had been used in another vehicle break-in on White Station Road. A witness to that break-in was able to get a tag number.

    The thieves had replaced the original Florida tags with plates stolen from an employee at the Regional Medical Center at Memphis.

    About 1:15 a.m. on Wednesday, police found Green at 893 Ayers and arrested him on eight outstanding warrants for vehicle break-ins.

    Green's crew is well-known to police here. They target work vans, which often hold valuable tools, and vehicles with out-of-state plates. After interviewing the suspects, police concluded they did not know the guns were there.

    Bowles was charged with the theft of the Ford Expedition from Bally's Casino in Tunica.

    Several other suspects have been detained and were being questioned Thursday.

    The thieves were dismayed to learn there was an envelope containing $5,000 in the stolen Expedition they had been driving, money the owner had won at Bally's.

    Police said they expect to charge Green in federal court in order to take advantage of stiff mandatory minimum sentences.
  12. rajl

    rajl Guest

    Even better, the van was parked where the SWAT team could *WATCH* it while they ate.
  13. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

  14. viper32cm

    viper32cm New Member

    A similar theft, hrm, sounds like they have a problem in that locality.
  15. Adam5

    Adam5 Atlanta Overwatch

    I grew up in Memphis. Criminals have taken control of the city. The mayor and police chief have both been the targets of investigations for corruption. As far as Interstate BBQ is concerned, it's the best of the best. They serve beer which makes it legally off limits for carry, but I don't care. I refuse to go anywhere near that area of Memphis unarmed. My wife thought it was funny the last time I went there. I had my Glock OWB at 3:30 and my PPK/S IWB at 5:00. It's one in of the ares of town where the police won't respond to any 911 call with less than 2 cars and 4 officers.