Thieves in Nashville this year have stolen exactly 1,259 guns out of vehicles, according to statistics, as compiled by the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD).

“More than 70 percent of ALL guns reported stolen in 2021 (1,789) were taken from vehicles. Last week, 49 guns were stolen from cars and trucks. Many of the guns taken last week came from vehicles parked outside nightclubs, apartment buildings and hotels,” MNPD officials said in a press release last week.

“Going hand in hand with vehicle burglaries is vehicle theft. A review of last week’s stolen vehicle reports in Nashville shows that 66 percent of the automobiles taken (45 of 68) were easy thieves. Just like guns taken from vehicles, these stolen autos are also routinely involved in criminal activities, including car jackings and robberies.”

MNPD officials have long advised Nashville residents to lock their cars and secure their valuables — especially guns — and remove the keys from the inside of the vehicle.

Nashville Public Radio (NPR) reported in 2019 that many states have observed a rise in gun thefts. The station said that “an NPR survey of a sampling of police departments reveals steady increases in reports of guns stolen from vehicle.”

As The Tennessee Star has reported several times, thieves and convicted felons throughout the state frequently bypass traditional and legal methods to obtain firearms — even though they are not supposed to have them. One example, as reported in March, occurred in the western part of the state where officials with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Tennessee sentenced an already convicted felon to 88 months in prison for possessing a firearm.

MNPD Chief John Drake last month announced a new Violent Crimes Division to investigate car jackings, armed robberies, and other violent incidents of an apparent serial nature.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Gun in Car” by gmsjs90.