Bloomington, IL - Early Sunday morning, police say there were two break-ins at local gun shops. The first happened Midwest Exchange pawn shop located at 1404 E Empire St, Bloomington. However, the thieves ended up leaving empty-handed as all of the firearms were locked securely in safes. Within an hour, another shop was hit. This time it was Smiley's Sport Shop, located at 2049 Ireland Grove Rd, Bloomington. This time, the thieves were able to make off with 24 pistols and one rifle.
Police have no additional information at this time and are asking for information from the public. If you know anything about the case, you can contact:
Bloomington Police Department Crime & Intelligence Analysis Unit (CIAU) at (309) 434-2963 or at email@example.com. The CIAU office is staffed from 8am-4:30pm weekdays. If no one is available to answer your call, please leave the information on the voicemail or send it by e-mail. You may leave information anonymously.
The break-ins in Illinois are part of an increasing wave of gun store thefts across the US. In Virginia Beach, VA, 20 guns were stolen on Wednesday morning. DOA Arms was part of a multi-person smash-and-grab, after which, the suspects fled in several vehicles.
On Thursday morning, a gun store in Garden Grove, CA was hit in the middle of the night. In this case, thieves made off with a whopping 40 firearms. In both the VA & CA incidents, police have released at least partial descriptions of suspects and/or their vehicles.