MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) – A new report shows an alarming increase in the number of guns stolen from cars, and Memphis is number one.
Everytown, a group that advocates for tougher gun laws, analyzed FBI statistics over the past decade and found that Memphis had the highest rate of guns stolen from cars during that time. , the rate having quadrupled from 2011 to 2020.
It’s an issue that Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland has called attention to.
“They don’t steal guns to go hunting. They steal guns to commit crimes,” Strickland said.
Action News 5 found several videos on the Memphis Police Department Facebook page.
The mayor says gun thefts from cars have skyrocketed since state lawmakers passed a 2014 law allowing adults to have guns in their cars without a license.
“If there weren’t guns in these cars, they wouldn’t go as much,” Strickland said.
Data from the Memphis Police Department shows more than 1,800 firearms were stolen from cars in Memphis last year.
So far this year, police say 564 firearms have been stolen from cars, up from 378 so far last year.
Memphis Police Chief CJ Davis was even victimized in January, when thieves stole his service weapon from his car in a bang and grabbed it outside a store in Cordoba.
The mayor gave Davis a verbal reprimand.
He says all Memphians need to do a better job of securing their weapons.
“Please secure your guns in your car or in your home,” Strickland said.
The MPD says it has recovered more than 1,500 stolen weapons this year and arrested more than 1,300 people on firearms charges, including 106 minors.
As for where guns are most often stolen in Memphis, that data was not available Monday. But other data shows that car thefts in general occur most often in three ZIP codes: 38118 east of the airport toward Parkway Village; 38103 downtown; and 38104 in Midtown.
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