While much of the controversy over gun control revolves around the purchase of firearms, a topic typically overlooked is the thousands of guns shipped around the U.S. each week, reports the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. Those transactions can be ripe opportunities for thieves to walk away with firearms. Authorities suspect many guns stolen in transit end up in the criminal underworld.
The newspaper tells the story of a Glock 9 mm handgun that started its journey to Maryland from a New York state firearms wholesaler warehouse in 2009. A customer picked up the package at a United Parcel Service shop and found that it was empty. A Sheriff's Office investigation that led to the arrest of an employee at a New York state UPS location who admitted that he'd stolen six handguns that were being shipped. Records obtained by the Democrat and Chronicle under the state Freedom of Information Law reveal the occasionally porous transit network for firearms that have been bought and sold. The reports from the Monroe County Sheriff's Office focus on the firearms trade of one large local wholesaler — Chili-based AmChar Wholesale Inc. — and show more than 40 guns that went missing in transport over a five-year period.