ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) -- For months, News 4’s Maggie Crane has been reporting on these types of weapons, and on Tuesday afternoon, she got a rare, first-hand look at the lengths criminals will go to in order to hide their guns. Police say that these weapons were concealed in such a way that they never would have found them if it wasn’t for a tip.
In an abandoned garage in an alley off South Broadway, St. Louis Police Special Ops detectives check to see if the assault rifle they just discovered is loaded. They found it stashed inside the wall and a pistol hidden under the concrete floor.
“These screws were all in there and it was covered with this foam insulation and some black plastic sheeting,” Detective Mark West said. “On a normal search, you might have missed that.”
But the detectives got a solid tip from someone in the community that these two weapons were in here.
“The [guns] were hidden deliberately so that the police wouldn’t find them, for one, but they’re hidden in a manner that they’re probably a community gun that somebody’s going to come out whenever they need,” Det. West said. “The information we had was that they’re stored here and that whenever they need them, they come and get them.”
Police will now send the guns off for fingerprinting and ballistics testing, hoping to connect them to previous crimes. Police believe the guns are connected to gangs.
“There’s gang graffiti and there’s guns hidden here,” Sgt. James Joyner said. “They’re not quick-reaction guns where they’re going to go grab them, like they’re hiding under a rock for like retaliation stuff. This is thought-out retaliation stuff.”
Police hope getting these types of weapons off the streets helps slow the violence.