Criminals broke into an Orlando, Florida home yesterday and made off with an assortment of firearms and corresponding ammunition. The burglars apparently made entry into the home through a window near the front door. They stole two pistols, two rifles, a shotgun and more than 500 rounds of ammunition in addition to other valuables.
This is just the latest in a string of burglaries in the Orlando area through which criminals have stolen guns. Less than a month ago, in three separate incidents, two handguns and two semi-automatic rifles were stolen from homes, bringing the total number of guns stolen in Orlando to 120 for the year.
The largest single stash of firearms stolen in the area this year was a collection of 46 handguns and multiple rifles and shotguns taken in a burglary of Al’s Army Navy in Altamonte Springs in late September. The rifles and shotguns were recovered soon after, but the handguns – and the criminals – have yet to be found.
The magnitude of that theft brought the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives into the investigation. In conjunction with the National Shooting Sports Foundation, they are currently offering a $5000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the culprits.
ATF Special agent, Julie Leon says, “gun thieves are a principal source of firearms for criminals who threaten public safety.
Florida ranks third in the country, behind only Texas and Georgia, in guns stolen. In 2012, nearly 13,000 firearms were reported lost or stolen in the state.
Police advise gun owners to keep their firearms locked in a safe inside the home. It’s also advisable to have a home security system installed. Studies show alarm systems often deter burglars from even attempting a break in.