Stolen guns a continued concern in Baldwin County - FOX10 News | WALA

Stolen guns a continued concern in Baldwin County

Posted: Updated:
(Baldwin County Sheriff's Office) (Baldwin County Sheriff's Office)

Baldwin County Sheriff's deputies have made an arrest in a string of vehicle break-ins that happened in two separate subdivisions recently.  They said it's a crime that can be easily prevented and all too often, guns are taken from the vehicles.

Investigators believe the suspect may be behind several vehicle break-ins during November in two different subdivisions.  Deputies said the crimes happened in the early morning hours and most of the cars were unlocked.  The victims lived in the Chamberlain Trace and Plantation Hills neighborhoods.  A break in the case came thanks to an image captured on one of the victim’s security cameras.

“We were able to take that video and ask our law enforcement partners to ask…identify him.  We were able to identify him and within a day or so, he was stopped in a traffic stop,” explained Capt. Steve Arthur with the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said 28-year-old Frank Lee McCall III confessed to the crime after seeing his picture on video.  Along with the video, investigators said other evidence recovered from McCall linked him back to the thefts, but wouldn’t confirm at this time that one of those items was a stolen gun.

“That’s part of the ongoing investigation that I can’t speak about at this time,” Arthur said.  “There will be other charges filed against Mr. McCall and there may be other law enforcement agencies and it may get into even state or federal charges before it’s all over with, with this individual, but that’s part of the investigation I can’t talk about, but there were some guns involved, yes.”

Along with the increase in vehicle break-ins comes a growing concern about guns that are finding their way into the hands of criminals.  In Daphne and Fairhope alone, so far this year there have been 288 vehicle break-ins reported with 53 firearms taken from them.  Residents from both neighborhoods said they’re troubled by the numbers.

“It would seem like these homeowners, vehicle owners would for sure lock their vehicles,” said Chamberlain Trace resident, Ann Hamilton.  “I mean these are expensive items and they’re certainly things that they don’t want stolen or like you said, be in the hands of people that can do more harm with them.”
Paul Hoover lives in Plantation Hills and has been a victim of this kind of crime before.
“It was my neighbors, several of my cars…they didn’t try just one.  They got them all.  Even got my shed,” Hoover said.  “Lock things up.”
That’s the very message law enforcement is sending to citizens throughout Baldwin County this holiday season.
 Right now, McCall is being held on charges from several agencies including Orange Beach where he has a no bond.  Charges include breaking and entering a vehicle and discharging a firearm into an unoccupied dwelling or vehicle.

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