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No suspects in handgun theft; stolen weapons yet to be found

City police say they’re still trying to track down a number of handguns stolen during a smash-and-grab from a hardware store.

As of Tuesday morning, no suspect had been identified and the location of the guns remained a mystery.

Police were still working to secure a copy of the video surveillance, or at least still images from the footage, to distribute to media.

“We’re still waiting for video from the store itself … Whether we can actually get the video to run, or whether we’ll just be pulling stills … I’ll be putting it out,” Brandon Police Service Sgt. Dallas Lockhart said.

The break-in happened around 4 a.m. on Monday at the Home Hardware Building Centre on the 1000-block of 18th Street.

Lockhart said the investigation, which includes review of video surveillance footage, indicates that a masked suspect — likely a male — used a hammer or some other object to smash the glass out of the store’s front doors.

Once inside the store, the suspect smashed open a locked glass display case where the guns were kept.

The suspect then grabbed the guns and exited the store. The whole crime took less than a minute.

The business alarm, which is equipped with motion sensors, alerted police.

On Tuesday morning, the glass doors remained boarded up and the empty smashed display case could still be seen in the hunting and fishing department.

Police still haven’t identified the number, models and serial numbers of the stolen guns, citing the need for “holdback” information.

That’s a term used when police withhold details so they can verify the accuracy of information they receive from other sources.

Lockhart said further information about the guns may be released later.

He also said that technical problems have made it difficult for police to secure surveillance video, which captured images of the suspect, for release to the media.

Lockhart reiterated that the guns were legally stored.

Store owner Trevor Kowalchuk said the handguns were all equipped with trigger locks.

However, he declined to reveal further details, such as the number of guns missing and their type, stating that information was passed on to police and he didn’t want to interfere with the investigation.

Kowalchuk said the store is constantly looking at ways to improve security, and this incident has highlighted the need to do that.

“I was always looking to upgrade as much as I can,” Kowalchuk said.

» ihitchen@brandonsun.com

» Twitter: @IanHitchen

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition August 27, 2014

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City police say they’re still trying to track down a number of handguns stolen during a smash-and-grab from a hardware store.

As of Tuesday morning, no suspect had been identified and the location of the guns remained a mystery.

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City police say they’re still trying to track down a number of handguns stolen during a smash-and-grab from a hardware store.

As of Tuesday morning, no suspect had been identified and the location of the guns remained a mystery.

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