Police cars in Oakville targeted for guns, police say


Criminals are specifically targeting police cars to steal guns, police said after the latest incident in which a marked police car was broken into happened in Oakville Friday morning.

A marked St. Louis County Police Department K-9 Unit car was broken into in the Oakbriar Woods subdivision in Oakville sometime from midnight Thursday to 6:30 a.m. Friday, police said.

Two department-issued guns were taken out of the car, which had its window shattered, according to a neighbor.

The department said last week it was reviewing how to better secure guns left in cars overnight after two guns were stolen from another county patrol car in Oakville in the overnight hours of Jan. 12. A city police car from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department was also broken into in Oakville that same night, but no guns were taken.

“It is clear that these criminals are specifically targeting law-enforcement vehicles,” police spokesman Officer Benjamin Granda stated in a news release. “We are continuing to assess different methods to better prevent this type of occurrence. Until we are confident that police service weapons can be secured safely, other arrangements will be made for the firearms when officers are not on duty. The system that secures the firearms is a commonly used one and we are in contact with the manufacturer about the issue.”

The St. Louis County Police Department’s Bureau of Crimes Against Property is leading the investigation.