BEECH GROVE — Dozens of hand guns were stolen from a Beech Grove gun store after a smash and grab robbery.
Beech Grove Firearms, located at 3020 South Emerson Avenue, reported the burglary around 3:15 a.m. Sunday morning.
The store's owner, Greg Burge, tells WRTV they have identified at least 48 hand guns that were stolen. They are still assessing the damages and property and that number may go up, he says.
According to the initial police report, the value of the stolen items was at least $15,000.
"Potentially now we're looking at some NFA items," Burge said. "That's a different classification of various devices in firearms."
NFA firearms are certain guns and accessories regulated by the National Firearms Act. According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), this includes weapons such as fully automatic, machine guns, suppressors, short barreled shot guns, rifles or any destructive device.
The thieves can be seen on camera ramming a pickup truck into the front of the building three times before making enough room for them to get inside.
Beech Grove Police have confirmed that the truck used to ram into the gun store was a Honda Ridgeline truck that had been stolen during an armed carjacking on Indianapolis' east side shortly before the burglary.
Police have identified and arrested one 16-year-old boy in connection with that carjacking incident. So far no additional arrests have been made.
The teen's identity is not being released because he is a juvenile.
Burge tells WRTV that the three people captured on surveillance video inside his store were inside for less than a minute.
"This wasn't just a fly by night deal. They were coming here on a mission," Burge said. "They did a number, but hey that's generally what misguided individuals do."
Burge believes the thieves have been into the store before, because their plan appeared to be "calculated and well thought out".
One of the suspects can be seen on camera smashing two handgun cases before all three of them start stuffing guns into the bags they were carrying.
Burge tells WRTV he has an extensive law enforcement background and he understands the severity of stolen guns being out on the streets.
"I am also a realist. When law enforcement encounters these firearms it's probably not going to be under the best circumstances," he said.
Burge says he's done everything he could to make sure his business had the best security, but he knows not even the best can stop every crime.
"The responsibility is on the criminals that did this," Burge. "I didn't fail, none of the companies that help me build this place failed."
Because of the thefts, the store has been forced to close for a few days while repairs are made and the damage is calculated. Burge says his goal is to have the store back open by Thursday.
"It may not be as pretty. We may just have our lipstick on not our eye shadow," Burge said.
Beech Grove Police are still looking for the people responsible.
If you have any information contact the Beech Grove police or Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at 317-262-8477.