by: Tony Thomas Updated:
SNELLVILLE, Ga. - One metro Atlanta police department is trying an unusual reward offer to try to crack on what detectives call their highest priority case.
"We thought by offering something that might be more enticing to the age group that we are targeting other than just some money might bring somebody forward," said Sgt. Trey Downs of the Snellville Police Department. "We did that to try and sort of pierce the veil of this culture of not wanting to inform or snitch as they say on somebody."
Twelve guns were stolen in a burglary in the Hawthorne Glen subdivision Tuesday and police are worried the guns are now in the wrong hands and will be used in other crimes.
Detectives believe juveniles are likely involved and are positive other teens in the neighborhood know who is responsible.
Among the missing weapons is an AR-15 assault rifle, an SKS assault rifle, several handguns and what police describe as "hundreds of rounds" of ammunition.
"We really want to get these guns off the streets." Downs said.
The homeowner told Channel 2's Tony Thomas the burglary occurred while he was at work. He said the burglar or burglars broke in through a back window.
The homeowner said he's now worried about his own safety and is doing everything he can to cooperate with police.
He said he's considering offering his own reward from insurance money. He admits the weapons were not locked in a safe.
Some of his neighbors are frustrated no one will come forward to say where the missing guns are now.
"I'm really scared for those guns to stay in the neighborhood here," neighbor Felix Murillo said.
Police said they do have burglaries in the eastside suburb where guns are taken, but it's rare to have 12 taken in one instance.
Also taken along with the weapons and ammunition, ironically was the same type of gaming system police are now offering as a reward, along with a suitcase.