LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Police are searching for answers – and missing weapons – after thieves break into a Little Rock gun show. The theft happened overnight at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds in what is believed to be a well-orchestrated incident.
The first weekend of January was one full of activity for the Fairgrounds, hosting their first function of the season. “Our first event of the year was a gun show,” explained Douglas White, President and General Manager of the grounds. The fair’s Hall of Industry hosted the three-day firearm convention, an event that drew a large crowd. “I would estimate that thousands of people came through [in one day],” White said.
But not all attendants were there to browse. As Saturday drew on, thieves were setting their sights on potential targets and creating a plan. As night fell, they struck. “It appears there was a break-in at the Hall of Industry, it looks fairly well-orchestrated,” said White. Robbers took guns and ammo off of vendor displays, avoiding the sole security guard patrolling the hall. White says this has never happened before at the fair: “This is the first event of this kind that we’ve ever had.”
But the plot was captured on the fairground’s security system, scattered throughout the property. “We do have security cameras in place,” said White, with a few capturing the moment thieves hatched their plan. Now, the Little Rock Police Department is pouring over footage, trying to track down weapons left unaccounted for. As for the fairgrounds, they’re looking at new security measures to make sure this is a one-time incident. “We’re going to take those steps to make sure our exhibitors and our patrons are safe,” White said.
It’s not clear how many guns and cases of ammo were taken, or how many thieves were involved. This is still an ongoing investigation.