Authorities located six of eight World War II-era rifles that were stolen from an American Legion Post in Merango last month. They say it’s one of five central Ohio American Legion Posts that have recently been hit by gun thieves.
Detectives were contacted last week after the rifles turned up at a Lev’s Pawn Shop just outside of Columbus. Lev’s vice president John Kinney said the man who pawned the guns showed up at the shop four times in two days, selling the six rifles for $140 each.
“He said that a family member, father or grandfather, had bought a case of these things, old military weapons,” Kinney said, noting that if they feel something is awry with a sale, they’ll contact the police.
Authorities searched the gun seller’s home, but the man was not arrested. Although it’s unclear how exactly he came to be in possession of the weapons, which were loaned out by the U.S. Army to the Post to be used in special ceremonies and such.
Authorities did, however, arrest Kennith Nelson and Oscar Staton Jr. for another gun burglary at a Columbus area Moose Lodge.
Investigators have not said whether they believe the thefts are connected, but they looking at similar cases in the area.