Russellville Police say stolen guns and suspect still at large in pawn shop arson

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RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. - Local and federal authorities continue their search for a burglary suspect who set fire to a pawn shop to cover his tracks.

For more than a month, Russellville Police and the ATF have been working the case. Crime scene tape still hangs on the front of Mike’s Pawn Shop on Highway 43 in Russellville.

An intentional fire pretty much gutted the building in the early morning hours of September 4th. Investigators said the fire was used to cover up an even bigger crime.

More than 60 guns were taken from their display cases minutes before 911 got a call.

“That’s all types of weapons; from handguns to long-guns to shotguns,” stated Chief Chris Hargett with Russellville Police Department. “It’s pretty alarming that those could be out in the hands of people that might want to use them for other crimes.”

100516-fr-pawn-shop-burglary-arson-630pm-pkgSurveillance pictures from a nearby store have been released by the ATF. They believe the man, seen in the area before the burglary and blaze, is responsible.

Since their release, investigators have followed up on numerous leads which went nowhere.

“They’re following up on those leads daily,” explained Hargett. “So it’s an ongoing investigation and hopefully we will get a break here before too long and we’re able to actually arrest somebody on it.”

Chief Hargett is concerned about the number of illegal weapons being put on the streets from this burglary. He wants to get this case solved and figure out where those guns are.

The ATF is offering a $5,000 reward for information which leads to an arrest. You can contact the Shoals Area Crime Stoppers with any tips you might have on the whereabouts of the suspect.

The tip line number is (256)386-8685. You can also text your tip to 274637 (CRIMES), in the message type “tip1293” and your information.

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