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Targeting Gun Ranges to Steal Guns

It seems that two armed robbers decided they needed more guns and robbed people coming out of a local shooting range (Delaware Valley Sports Center) to get them. Unfortunately, they also shot one of the victims as they were fleeing. Police also say that there was a robbery at another area gun shop the night before.

Be careful and extremely observant, shooters in the Philadelphia area. These people have more guns and ammunition, and they are clearly willing to shoot you if they think they can get more guns off of you.

I will say that this makes the private club Sebastian shoots at more appealing because there’s no easy access without having to closely follow a member in and no easy exit.

22 Responses to “Targeting Gun Ranges to Steal Guns”

  1. dano says:

    It doesn’t matter where I’m shooting. I always have a full mag and one in the chamber. These kinds of ambush thefts are becoming a bit more common. A few years back there was one at an SGL range in central PA. I also had a suspicious situation at the Burma, where I don’t doubt we were going to be ambushed, until the actors saw how well armed we were. It was odd, really odd.

  2. Jay says:

    Concur….I *ALWAYS* “keep one back” even when on the line.

  3. Bill From over the Hill says:

    I also always carry the entire time I’m on the range. Yesterday I was drawing from an OWB at the 3 o’clock position while my CCW was IWB at 5 o’clock.

    I even take my mags with me when I go down range to the 200 yard rifle targets. Overly cautious? Maybe but I’d rather not leave a scoped rifle, ammo and magazines on the shooting bench for someone else to possibly use while I’m 200 yards away with a pistol.

    • Kirk Parker says:

      I even take my mags with me when I go down range to the 200 yard rifle target

      Can’t do this with my wonderful classic M1903, SRS, M-N, or my son’s beyond-beautiful Swedish Mauser currently in my care…

  4. Aaron says:

    I’ve heard of this also, and so I always leave the range in condition 2. Of course in Texas you can carry in the cabin of your vehicle, whether or not you’ve got a CHL.

  5. IllTemperedCur says:

    The two miscreants in the Florida FBI shoot out in ’86 got a fair number of their guns by hanging out at remote shooting areas and killing the last shooter onsite so they could raid his stash.

  6. Robb Allen says:

    Yup. Plenty of stories about thugs hanging around shooting ranges. Too many people shoot all they have and leave without any ammo.

    Not a good idea.

  7. Will says:

    In a similar vein, I read a post from a man and woman who shot every round they had with them, at a range in the mountains, and then had to drive home that evening by crossing the entire city of Los Angeles.

    That was the day the Rodney King riots started…

  8. RAH says:

    I have often thought we have been foolish bragging about no one robs a gun range or gun stores. It does happen. People at ranges are pretty trusting . Everyone has a similar mindset and does not commit crime. The worst is safety violations at the range.
    However I am in the rare state that does not have easy CCW or open carry, so it is illegal to have a handgun on me when I leave a range. I mostly only go to skeet and trap ranges.

    • neosteeled says:

      Rah, while your post is similar to the various other posts here, I’m replying to yours because I fully agree with you on the general mindset of shooters in gun clubs. Practically everyone at my club follows all the safety regs including the fact that the club is a cold range. I’m may be the only person who has ever considered that everyone is a sitting duck if a bad guy were to just roll up while everyone is downrange putting up targets. I always have a holdout piece concealed. Just in case.

  9. Brad says:

    I remember when the rise of carjacking was blamed on improved car anti-theft technology. Could these robberies for guns be linked to improved anti-burglary technology?

    Does anyone even know the quantity of firearms within the pool that the criminal subculture exploits? At worst it must be less than 0.17% of all American firearms. I can’t imagine that criminals would find it easier to rob people for guns than to acquire guns through other means.

  10. LKP says:

    I always wear a loaded pistol when I go to the range. My gun club is in a remote area and I’m often the only one there at the time. You can draw the weapon in your holster a lot faster than you can load the weapon you’re getting ready to shoot.

  11. asdf says:

    Anyone who has been in a stickup where they ambush you can tell you that even with a lot of training and real-world experience, your odds are less the 50/50 that you’re going to be fast enough to thwart a robbery. You pretty much have to have the gun already in your hand because they already have theirs in hand before approaching you. And they usually split up and come at you from more than one angle. And you have to commit to shoot very early on or it’s too late and they have the drop on you. Hopefully you don’t panic and shoot an unarmed hoodie-wearer.

    Source: I’ve been stuck up a few times. That’s why I’m a gun nut now.

  12. aaronw says:

    This is why, as crummy as the New York State pistol permitting system is, your “permit to possess” is also a “permit to carry.” Even the default “target and hunting” permit issued by the more restrictive counties at least allows one to carry concealed from home to range/hunting ground and back. The rationale is that by transporting it this way, you’re protecting the gun.

  13. Niccolo Machiavelli says:

    This seems like a great example of bad guys with guns unable to be stopped by good guys with guns.

    I hope no one paid with their lives, like Joseph Wilcox.

    http://contranra.blogspot.com/2014/06/case-of-good-guys-with-guns-unable-to.html

    • anon says:

      When Wayne LaPierre said “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun”, he obviously wasn’t referring to people carrying empty guns in locked cases. So this isn’t a great example at all.

      As for you dancing on Joseph Wilcox’s grave, nobody believes that having a gun will magically protect you from evil. But it can sure change the odds. If I’m in a store and am confronted by a spree killer, I’d much rather be armed than not. I’m typing this because I used a gun to avoid a confrontation with a dozen or so teens who took exception to my skin color. No shots were fired, and they were only armed with their hands and feet. But you and your ilk would happily see me disarmed and left a cripple or dead on the altar of victim disarmament. I hope you’ll understand why I and my family might disagree, and why we’ll fight tooth and nail to ensure that honest, law-abiding people can protect themselves from evil when it rears its ugly head.

      Aside from disarming victims, how do you advocate people protecting themselves? By the way, I’m sure criminals everywhere would be absolutely thrilled to have people like you succeed in disarming the rest of us. Instead of wondering if the next person they rob or house they break into will have a gun, all they have to do is target the most law-abiding people to reduce their chances of getting hurt. What a gun-free utopia that would be, kinda like DC and Chicago, and the UK for that matter.

  14. dustydog says:

    Don’t need to shoot anybody to steal guns at a range. One guy will forget a gun on the bench when he leaves, another guy will spend a half-hour in the potty with his collection spread out over two spaces. One guy will store the guns he’s not shooting in the open bed of the pickup truck. The rest of you shoot on a weekend morning and then drive to the nearest diner. All a thief needs is a car jimmy and determination.

  15. Andrew says:

    I haven’t been in a while, but I used to go to an outdoor range and at times, I’d be there by myself. Even prior to “carry” I’d at least carry one rifle to the 100 yard range just because. I recall the days of cheap ammo, one could take, say, two AK’s, couple AR’s, the FAL and CETME, and half dozen pistols to the range just for fun (oh, to have at least some of them back…) and the bank wasn’t broken for ammunition.

    One day I was up there, I had pistol in the holster, and carried one of my AR’s downrange. A vehicle drove slowly into the parking lot, swung over to the spaces next to where I parked, and they just stopped. I, being at the berm, upon hearing the vehicle, turned and had my rifle in hand, not pointed at them, but I watched as they turned around and left.

    I quit taking so many guns to the range unless I was with at least one other person.

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