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Pair charged with stealing 20 guns from shop

Mike Schrank's Smoke 'N Gun store located 2010 WashingtStreet Waukegan. | Thomas Delany Jr.~Sun-Times Media

Mike Schrank's Smoke 'N Gun store located at 2010 Washington Street in Waukegan. | Thomas Delany Jr.~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 5, 2013 2:14AM

WAUKEGAN — Two juveniles got greedy after they broke into a gun shop and made off with 18 handguns and two shotguns, and tried to hit the store a second time. That’s when they got caught.

Police arrested the pair and recovered nearly all of the guns after they attempted to rob Schrank’s Smoke ’n Gun again.

Shortly before 4 a.m. on Oct. 30, a burglar alarm went off inside the store at 2010 Washington St. in Waukegan, and when police arrived, they immediately noticed forced entry had been made into the business. Inside, they found several display cases smashed and handguns removed, along with the shotguns and a lot of ammunition.

The suspect in the store’s videotape was wearing a gray-hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans.

While police were investigating the crime, shortly after midnight on Oct. 31, the department’s Gang Intelligence Unit executed a search warrant at 10 N. Victory St. in Waukegan, where they located one of the stolen guns. The target of the search warrant, a 16-year-old juvenile, was not there at the time.

Other officers from investigations and patrol were watching the gun shop and around 3:55 a.m., a minivan pulled into the parking lot and drove to the rear of the business. Then it pulled up to the main entryway where the forced entry had been made the night before. That’s when police pounced.

The driver of the minivan attempted to flee, hitting the building and got stuck on a grass embankment.

The driver then fled on foot, but was located a short time later in a nearby apartment.

The driver was the same person targeted by the search warrant on Victory Street.

Police said during an interview the suspect admitted he was the one who broke into the gun shop and had planned on repeating the crime again.

A second suspect, also a 16-year-old, was identified. He admitted to acting as a lookout for the first burglary.

Police recovered 13 handguns and a shotgun. The investigation is ongoing and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms is assisting with the case.

The two juveniles were charged with burglary and transported to the Juvenile Detention Center.

“The continued hard work of all involved officers brought this crime spree to a peaceful ending with almost all of the stolen guns recovered,” said Police Chief Daniel Greathouse.

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