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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Irma Looters Target Firearms

While natural disasters typically bring out the best in humanity—with people opening up their homes, hearts and wallets to help out—there are always exceptions. Such is the case in Florida, where dozens of criminals have been looking to take advantage of Hurricane Irma evacuations.

The Daily Mail reports that 32 people have been arrested for looting deserted businesses and homes. One of their primary targets: guns. Two groups of looters attempted to break into two different sporting goods stores with the intent to steal firearms—and SWAT officers were soon on the scene of Academy Sports in Orlando.

In anticipation of such incidents, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) issued a special advisory recommending that federal firearms licensees remove guns and ammunition to a safe location, but that hasn't stopped criminals emboldened by the disaster. Florida also has a “hurricane gun law” in place that allows those taking part in a mandatory evacuation to carry a concealed firearm for 48 hours without a permit—which, with looters roving the streets in search of unattended guns, may end up being a much safer choice than leaving the guns at home, for a number of reasons.