Reflecting a national trend, St. Louis is experiencing more burglaries that target firearms, reports the city’s Post-Dispatch. Burglars have hit St. Louis-area gun stores at least eight times this year, including an April heist at Cabela’s, three burglaries earlier this month in St. Louis County, and thefts last week at two other business that sell guns. Last year, federal licensees reported 7,488 guns stolen in burglaries. The national figure increased 59 percent in a year; licensees reported 4,721 stolen guns by burglary in 2015. The number of burglaries has also increased, data show, from 377 reported burglaries in 2012 to 558 last year.
In Missouri, the number of burglaries per year has generally remained steady, hovering between 12 and 19 over a five-year span. In Illinois, last year was a banner year for gun thieves, with 14 burglaries reported, up from five in 2015 and three in 2014. The number of guns stolen by burglary has fluctuated in both states. Last year, thieves stole 149 guns by burglary in Missouri and 280 in Illinois.