Crime

Thousands of dollars in stolen replica firearms seized in Merced, police say

Merced and Atwater police officers teamed over the weekend to return more than $60,000 in recently stolen replica firearms from a company in Sacramento County.
Merced and Atwater police officers teamed over the weekend to return more than $60,000 in recently stolen replica firearms from a company in Sacramento County. /Atwater Police Department

Merced and Atwater police officers teamed over the weekend to return more than $60,000 in recently stolen replica firearms from a company in Sacramento County.

In a statement released early Sunday, American Airsoft, a Galt-based company that supplies replica firearms and other equipment for competitive team-shooting, combat-simulation sports and law enforcement training, lost more than $100,000 in property during a theft reported on Dec. 12. The case remains investigation by the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.

Atwater police on Saturday were contacted by Merced officers after a “cache of stolen property was found in a residence in the 1100 block of Vine Street” in Merced, authorities said in the statement.

Merced police were investigating an unrelated case when they stumbled upon several hundred airsoft replica weapons and equipment, including some with price tags still attached, officers said.

Police said investigators “found it odd that the property still had price tags attached.”

Officers collected 341 items, valued at more than $60,000. The property was returned to the owner. There was no word on Sunday on where the remains stolen property might be located.

The owner of the business, identified on the company’s website as Larry A. Hartman, could not immediately be reached for comment Sunday.

Police on Sunday did not release the identities of any potential suspects in the case. It was unclear whether any arrests had been made in connection with the investigation.

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