SALT LAKE CITY — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is offering cash rewards to help recover dozens of firearms stolen in Utah this year.
ATF agents are looking for more than 60 pistols and rifles that were stolen in four burglaries at gun stores from St. George to Layton.
The majority of the guns are still out on the streets and that’s a huge concern for law enforcement.
“At this point we have three unsolved break-ins that we are really looking for help on,” said Michael Minichino, Resident Agent in Charge of the ATF in Utah.
One of the burglaries was at Wasatch Guns in Layton last May, where 17 handguns and a rifle were taken.
The Cal Ranch store gun department in St. George was hit back in September and 15 handguns were taken.
Then in October, burglars stole a dozen pistols and a rifle from Discount Firearms in Salt Lake City.
Out of all those weapons only two have been recovered.
“Historically speaking we know that fairly quickly these guns can turn up in serious violent crimes,” Minichino said.
The ATF is offering a $5,000 reward for the tip that leads to a conviction in each of these cases. The National Shooting Sports Foundation is matching that for a total of $10,000 in reward money.
Investigators know the pictures aren’t great but they hope the cash will help crack these cases.
“You procure these guns but then you have to do something with them,” Minichino said. “You can’t sit on them and so there’s going to be a lot of people contacted after the fact, after the burglary. There’s also going to be some bragging involved and so we think between people talking about having committed the burglary or trying to sell or trade the guns.”
There was a fourth gun store burglary in Bountiful where 16 firearms were stolen. Arrests were made in that case but 14 of those weapons are still not accounted for.
If you have any information that can help agents solve these tips, you can call the ATF at 888-ATF-TIPS or report it on an app called Report It.