Recent Break-Ins Have the Coast on Edge

Contributor: Alyssa Meisner
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Updated: 1/22 6:56 pm
Today, four law enforcement agencies came together to ask for public assistance. Three businesses that sell guns had violent break-ins last week. A pick-up truck drove through the front door in two of the businesses, and now police believe the burglar in all three break-ins is the same person. Kenneth Cook, owner of Cook’s Gun Shop, says, "This was more personal. They did a lot of damage. It was a very violent crime. Pick-up truck comes crashing through the door. All we see is a light. He's in there a short period of time, and gone. And the big thing is where are the guns going? What are they going to do with them?" Cook is no stranger to burglary at his store, but last week's break-in and new police developments have left him worried. Cook also says, "What if they do something like injure someone, commit a robbery, or other crimes? We feel personally responsible for what happens with these guns." The connection between Cook's burglary in D'Iberville and the burglary in Gautier have led to a new alliance. Captain Clay Jones of D’Iberville Police says, "The A.T.F., D'Iberville, Gautier, and Ocean Springs Police are working together to restore peace to their business community."

Agent Joel Lee of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (A.T.F.) in Gulfport says, "So we take this crime very seriously. We've been working non-stop. We've been speaking with several agencies along the Coast, as well as all the federal agencies." Police have made this case a top priority and are encouraging public to help in identifying the thief. The A.T.F. is offering a 5,000 dollar reward for the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for this crime. Anyone with any information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at (877) 787-5898, or the A.T.F. at (288) 575-6501, or the D'Iberville, Ocean Springs, or Gautier Police Departments. The three cities are hoping that someone comes forth with information and that their joint efforts will help catch the thief quickly.
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