CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. - People living in Cherokee County neighborhoods are worried about a rash of gun thefts.
According to deputies, suspected gang members roaming the streets have gotten into at least 70 cars and trucks and stolen more than a dozen guns in three different neighborhoods.
The thieves aren't using any fancy tools to break into the cars. In most cases, they are flipping the door handle. If the car is unlocked, they jump in.
They are not interested in purses or even cellphones as they check the glove box and console. What they want is guns.
"That's scary, that that's what they're after," Ashley Jensen said.
Jensen lives on a main road and was stunned early Sunday to find someone had snatched two handguns from her car and her husband's truck.
"We found the holster outside. They ransacked both of our vehicles. They opened the glove compartment, the console," Jensen said.
The thieves are believed to be scouting out neighborhoods during the day and then striking at night.
"This may be a gang-type thing where they are being used in Atlanta. We don't really know," said Sgt. Jay Baker, of the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office.
"I'm just hopeful they're trying to pawn and not going on other crimes with people's firearms," Jensen said.
But pawning a stolen gun isn't as easy as some might think, especially at Cherokee Gun and Pawn.
"We got to take a picture of them. I take their fingerprints. I run the serial numbers through the system. We put it in the back and the county has 30 days to figure out if it's stolen," said Roy Stogel, with Cherokee Gun and Pawn.
Jensen said she would like to get her guns back, but said she's not counting on it.
The Sheriff's Office urged that, even if you're in your driveway, take valuables, especially guns, out of your car and lock it.
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