Gun thefts from railroad cars parked in the Norfolk Southern rail yard in Chicago have been a “gangster’s jackpot,” fueling the city’s recent violence, reports the Associated Press. Thieves got 111 guns, including many .45-caliber pistols, from a 2015 Sturm, Ruger & Co. shipment traveling from New Hampshire to Spoken, Wash. Other guns thefts occurred in the same yard in 2014 and last September, and two other weapons heists from trains parked elsewhere have been reported in recent years.
Chicago’s leaders regularly blame lax gun laws in Illinois and nearby states that enable a flow of illegal weapons to the city’s gangs and criminals. But community leaders and security experts say no one seems to be taking responsibility for train-yard gun thefts. Only 16 of the stolen Rugers have been recovered since the 2015 break-in. Seven suspects face federal charges in connection with the theft, which authorities said was the result of luck, not inside information. Some complain that railroads don’t do enough to safeguard gun shipments.