SPD detectives seized 68 handguns and rifles and a cache of body armor and ammo from a Bellevue home this week after relentlessly pursuing a burglar.
On December 31st officers responded to a commercial burglary in the 5000 block of Colorado Ave. S. in which numerous firearms were stolen as well as some suppressors. Approximately 17 weapons were taken along with four suppressors and many other high-end items. The suspect, at that time, was believed to be a white male driving a white, late-1990’s Toyota Forerunner.
On January 8th, there was another burglary at the same location. A witness, who was observing the entire burglary, called in a good description of the suspect and his vehicle. The suspect was again described as a white male possibly driving a silver, older model Toyota Forerunner. Police arrived and detained the male as he stood next to his Toyota Forerunner. Officers were able to determine that the subject was, in fact, the burglary suspect. Further, they could see items taken in the burglary inside the Toyota. Officers arrested the suspect and impounded the Toyota.
Through continued investigation, Detective Damon Deese of the South Burglary squad developed probable cause to obtain a search warrant for the suspect’s residence in Bellevue, WA along with a warrant to search the Toyota Forerunner.
Members of the South Burglary Squad along with members of the SPD SWAT, South CPT and Bellevue Police Department, served the search warrant on the suspect’s home on January 11th. Detectives searching the home found items from the original burglary, including all of the stolen firearms and the suppressors, custom tactical gear, custom knives, a Rolex watch, high-end Nikon camera equipment, military tactical armor vests, ballistic shields and other miscellaneous items. They also found numerous other firearms, as well as thousands of rounds of ammunition of various calibers. In all, 68 firearms were recovered.
The 38-year-old suspect remains in custody at the King County Jail for investigation of burglary and the theft of 17 firearms.
Police are still investigating what the suspect had planned to do with the weapons, but believe detectives’ thorough property crime investigation may have prevented potential violence in our city.