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Columbus police seeing trend in firearm thefts from cars

Columbus Police Department seeing trend in firearms thefts from cars
Posted at 8:35 PM, May 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-18 20:36:02-04

COLUMBUS — A dangerous problem is impacting multiple communities in central Indiana: guns being stolen right out of vehicles.

Tamara Watson, a certified firearms instructor for Indiana State Police, said she had her duty gun stolen from her undercover cop car in 2013.

“I got this terrible sick feeling of 'I hope they didn’t pop the trunk,'” Watson said. “We never did recover my firearm."

Columbus Police Lt. Matt Harris said the department tracked five firearm thefts in the past couple of weeks.

“The trial hasn’t started yet but last summer we had an officer exchange gunfire with a suspect who was reported as a prowler and it was later determined that the firearm used in that crime was stolen from an unlocked vehicle from Columbus,” Harris said.

Harris said many times that these thefts occur when the car doors are unlocked.

Meanwhile, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department says 59 guns have been stolen from cars downtown this year alone.

Those numbers have officers concerned.

“These weapons end up in the hands of people who are legally allowed to have firearms oftentimes,” Harris said.