INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A central Indiana gun store is calling for stricter security regulations after a rash of break-ins. Seven firearms were stolen from a store in Lawrence a few days ago. Last week, more than 40 were taken from a shop in Cloverdale.
Right now, there is no law in Indiana requiring specific security measures at gun stores. ATF Indianapolis said it can make suggestions, but it can't enforce anything.
Indy Trading Post on the near south side locks up their gun cases and has security cameras facing every direction. These steps are voluntary. They increased security and the manager, Tyler Hands, felt other stores need to do the same.
"We need to do everything we can to prevent firearms from getting into the wrong hands," he said.
He decided this was necessary after thieves broke into his store two years ago. They drove a car into it and stole more than 20 guns.
"I think there should be and could be more done. Maybe put some concrete structure in place," he said.
Statistics from 2017 released by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) show Indiana federal firearms licensees reported the thefts of more than 140 guns.
Patrick Hand, the group supervisor of ATF Indianapolis, said there are states that require certain security measures at its gun stores.
"Historically, their numbers of burglaries or robberies are lower than the states that do not have regulations," he said.
Beech Grove Firearms set up concrete barriers in front of their shop and they have not been robbed yet. The owner did not feel there should be requirements in Indiana. He is a retired officer with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and believed changes need to be made to the criminal justice system.
"I have a problem with the government imposing more regulations which would ultimately be attacks on a lawful business to protect itself from a lawful product," said Greg Burge.
Indy Trading Post has invested around $40,000 in security. They plan to spend more on it in the next few months. They feel the cost is worth it if it helps keep our community safe.
"It's the cost of doing business. You have to do the right thing and that’s what it’s all about," said Hands.