Two Twin Cities gun shops were targeted for burglary in the middle of the night, and the owner of the second business said Sunday that thieves fled with a few firearms.
The first break-in attempt occurred about 2:15 a.m. Friday at Gunstop on Excelsior Boulevard in Minnetonka between Williston and Eden Prairie roads, a city spokeswoman said Saturday.
“This was an attempted burglary, [and] no entry was made,” spokeswoman Kari Spreeman said. “We were notified of the issue by an alarm. We did not catch the suspect.”
About an hour later and roughly 13 miles to the northeast, burglars successfully broke into Bill’s Gun Shop & Range on W. Broadway in Robbinsdale just north of 40th Avenue N., authorities said.
It looks like “somebody backed a truck into the store,” a police officer from the scene reported, according to emergency dispatch audio.
“They rammed the building 10 times with a large car,” said John Monson, who owns Bill’s, adding that the burglars were inside “a very short period of time” and stole a small number of guns.
Monson said the types of weapons stolen and their serial numbers have been turned over to law enforcement along with an extensive amount of video showing the break-in.
This is the gun shop’s first burglary since it opened in 1987, he said. Monson speculated that the two incidents were carried out by the same suspects. But Spreeman said, “Other than the fact they were both gun shops, we have no evidence to suggest they are related.”
Monson’s shop opened as usual Friday, with the damaged entry boarded over, and for the time being has armed 24-hour security while the owner awaits repairs to the building.