Glen Burnie man charged in gun shop theft

July 02, 1999

County police arrested Wednesday a Glen Burnie man who they said drove a flatbed truck through the front of a Glen Burnie gun shop last month and stole four guns.

Police, who said the truck was burned to destroy evidence, reported recovering three of the stolen guns -- including an assault rifle with a silencer -- along with drug paraphernalia when they raided the man's house.

Christopher Dallas Thomas, 19, of the 7800 block of Shellye Road was charged with two counts of burglary, felony theft, vehicle theft, arson, possession of cocaine and drug paraphernalia, possession of a regulated firearm, underage firearm possession and other firearms charges. He is being held in lieu of $200,000 bail at the county Detention Center.

Officers who went to Select Fire in the 100 block of Holsum Way to check on a sounding alarm June 14 found the storefront destroyed, police said.

A store manager told police that four guns -- a semiautomatic assault rifle, a .30-caliber rifle, a .380-caliber semiautomatic handgun and a 9 mm carbine assault rifle -- had been taken.

Police said witnesses told them that a flatbed truck with "Jet Blast" painted on the door sped away before police arrived.

Two days later, officers spotted a burned flatbed truck in the woods off Howard Road in Glen Burnie. "Jet Blast" was painted on the side, and it had been reported stolen from Jet Blast Co. in Glen Burnie June 15.

Detective Michael Hruska, who was investigating the burglary, linked the truck to Thomas. Police would not reveal how he made the connection because they think others might be involved.

When police raided Thomas' home, they reported seizing four guns, three of which appeared to have been stolen from Select Fire. The fourth, a .22-caliber rifle, is being traced. The .380-caliber handgun stolen from the shop is missing.

Police also reported finding cocaine residue and drug-packaging paraphernalia in the house.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms is reviewing the case, county police said.

Pub Date: 7/02/99

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