Skip to comments.StolenGuns A Commonality In Tampa Shootings
Posted on 07/05/2015 1:18:22 PM PDT by Iron Munro
TAMPA Most of the 21 homicides and more than two dozen shootings Tampa police have investigated this year have several factors in common.
The violence primarily is a result of neighborhood feuds among groups of mostly young black men, police say. All of the shootings took place in East and West Tampa. And investigators are struggling to get information from witnesses and victims about who committed the crimes.
Another pattern has emerged that has Tampa police and federal authorities working together to put a stop to it: Most of the bullets are being fired from stolen guns.
We believe thats whats feeding this area, said Kevin Richardson, spokesman for the Department of Justices Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The federal agency always has shared intelligence with the Tampa Police Department, he said, but after a particularly bloody first half of 2015 it has dedicated a field office team to the issue of gun violence in the city.
Now it has gotten to where we understand that we need to aggressively partner, Richardson said.
So far this year, 177 guns have been reported stolen to Tampa police, records show. That number is up slightly from the 140 reported stolen during the first six months of 2014.
Investigators have recovered or found 583 guns on the street this year, up from the 527 guns recovered during the same period last year.
Its not organized crime, said Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis. Its kids on the street selling guns or trading guns.
They get them, police officials say, primarily through car or home burglaries.
The use of stolen guns is not unique to Tampa, and it isnt new.
Its a nationwide problem, with multitudes of news reports describing gun caches stolen from homes or vehicles and shootings where a stolen weapon was used. Locally, there have been cases of thieves brazenly breaking into marked police cars and FBI agents vehicles to steal weapons.
Tarpon Springs officer Charles Kondek died in December after being shot by a convicted felon who got his hands on a gun that had been stolen from an unlocked car in Jacksonville. A Tampa 16-year-old was shot accidentally and killed this year as he and some friends were handling a gun they had taken from one of the boys uncles, the teens relatives said.
Davis would not give details about whether stolen weapons had been tied to the homicides in Tampa this year, citing the ongoing investigations. But police do know that none of the shooters obtained the guns legally.
Theyre committing crimes to get those guns, Davis said.
Detectives were investigating two homicides that occurred June 27, including the death of a grandmother who was asleep in her bed when she was caught in the crossfire of a neighborhood dispute. That same day, the agency hosted a gun buyback where people anonymously could drop off guns for $50 each, thanks to a grant from the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation.
Tampa police collected 521 guns 213 revolvers, 125 pistols, 104 rifles and 79 shotguns during the gun buyback. Investigators still are processing them to determine if any of the weapons had been reported stolen.
While the exchange yielded some guns that had been modified in such a way that they were made for nothing but killing, officials said, many were handed in by people who hadnt used them in years.
Those are people who are potential targets for the burglars, Davis said.
Authorities have found guns that have been stolen in Tampa and guns that have been stolen from other places, she said. Sometimes, thieves target homes or cars where they know people have guns, and in other cases it is simply a crime of opportunity.
Thats why we continue to ask people to take the proper safety precautions when it comes to your guns, Davis said.
People should keep guns secure in a safe in their house when they arent home so burglars or children cant get them, she said. If someone is going somewhere where they know they cant take their weapon inside, they should leave it at home.
A gun should never be left in a car, Davis said.
Leaving it in your car, youre just asking for a criminal to get it, she said.
The city has rolled out multiple new strategies to curb the violence surge so far this year, including extending some park hours and expanding summer camp offerings to help keep kids busy and off the streets. Thousands of dollars in reward money has been offered by Crime Stoppers with hopes of enticing tipsters to come forward with information that could solve the murders.
Last week, Tampa police held a news conference to plead again for information on the open cases, as well as announce the department will use federal grant money to pay officers overtime and increase police presence in parts of East and West Tampa.
Keeping illegal guns off the streets and especially out of the hands of kids is equally important to quell the violence, Davis said.
Clearly, we dont want a weapon, a gun, in a criminals hands, she said.
It will soon be a crime to have your firearm stolen.
So we are finding these massive gunshow loopholes may not be the problem that gun control geeks are making it out to be?
We need a law to make it illegal to steal a gun!
I know, pass another gun law, making it illegal to steal guns. Problem solved.
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I have a strong suspicion that the escalation in shootings across the nation comes from orders direct from the WH, that the MSM has been ordered to oversensationalize all shootings that have potential political value, and that their is a unit assigned to stage or create situations conducive to mass shootings. It also would not surprise me one bit if that unit were given a list of young teens or youths on psychotroic drugs that had guns registered to their homes then created situations to make them go off the deep end. This way it would be very hard to tie it back to them. Some might say thats a little tin foil hattish. I say not so in Barack Hussein’s Obama’s world...
I have a strong suspicion that the escalation in shootings across the nation comes from orders direct from the WH, that the MSM has been ordered to oversensationalize all shootings that have potential political value, and that there is a special unit assigned to stage or create situations conducive to mass shootings. It also would not surprise me one bit if that unit were given a list of young teens or youths on psychotroic drugs that had guns registered to their homes then created situations to make them go off the deep end. This way it would be very hard to tie it back to them. Some might say thats a little tin foil hattish. I say not so in Barack Hussein’s Obama’s world...
How many are revolving door perps?
Tampa police collected 521 guns 213 revolvers, 125 pistols, 104 rifles and 79 shotguns during the gun buyback. Investigators still are processing them to determine if any of the weapons had been reported stolen".
Gee, I would have given them $60 each sight unseen.
Only requirement is they have to function.
We need to close the stolen-gun loophole.
I would suggest that worthless black punks are the commonality here.
Never mind it's the CRIMINALS committing the crimes - it is the fault of those evil guns.
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The liberal logic is that making gun ownership more difficult will reduce the amount of guns avaliable to be stolen. It’s upstream legislative control. For the children, you see.
They focus on the guns because they do not allow themselves to focus on the people.
If they did that, they would have to consider responsibility, and this is all about no one having responsibility, except White Men, perhaps.
Tampa —an island of blue in a RED HILLSBOROUGH County. My area is red...Tampa is becoming insane...
Harbor Island or Davis?
Democrats have ruined just about every city in the country.
Except for the places where the wealthy reside most cities are now pretty much just holding pens for democrat victim groups.
Now the democrat politicians (and their RINO enablers) are using tax money to move them out into the suburbs and unincorporated areas in an effort to turn the RED areas BLUE at election time.
Our local conservative station has been running an ad for their “breaking news” prowess that is solid sound bites of an “active shooter” situation. It pisses me off to no end, the ad does nothing but constantly hammer home subliminally that “active shooter” situations are a constant occurance and threat...
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