Local News

Bragg soldier accused of stealing $68K worth of guns

Posted May 7, 2012
Updated May 8, 2012

— A Spring Lake gun shop was temporarily closed Monday after an overnight burglary in which a Fort Bragg soldier with the 82nd Airborne allegedly stole more than $68,000 worth of guns, ammunition and accessories.

A handwritten note attached to yellow crime scene tape outside Guns Plus on North Bragg Boulevard read: "Guns Plus will be closed for the day due to scumbags breaking in. But we caught them."

Cumberland County sheriff's deputies arrested Spc. William David Devane, 28, of 8961 Ardennes Road, who they found hiding early Monday morning on top of an old truck parked in heavy brush next door to the business.

A heavy-vehicle truck driver assigned to the Airborne's 2nd Brigade Combat Team, Devane was being held Monday in the Cumberland County Detention Center under a $50,000 secured bond on charges of felony breaking and entering, felony larceny of firearms and possession of stolen firearms.

A public affairs officer with the 82nd Airborne said Devane returned from deployment in Iraq in November after a six-month mission.

Stolen Weapons Bragg soldier accused of stealing $68K worth of guns

"Usually, the people that commit robberies are people who are jobless or on hard times, or something like that," the shop's owner, Chris Hatley, said. "I don't usually take it too personally, but to have a military guy break in – it's a little personal."

Hatley said someone pried open a metal roll-up door covering the store's entrance around 2:45 a.m. and used a chunk of concrete to break the glass door.

Once inside, the thief broke another window to get to nine semi-automatic rifles, seven semi-automatic handguns, ammunition, gun sights and several weapon magazines among other items. Authorities said they recovered all the guns.

Considering the amount of items stolen, Hatley said he believes the thief might have had an accomplice.

"All the guns he went after were the most expensive," Hatley said. "This guy's probably been in my store a hundred times. He knew exactly where to go. He probably knew where stuff was better than my employees do sometimes."

An employee said Devane had been in the store looking around on Sunday.

A spokeswoman for the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office said she was not aware of any accomplices and she could not say what Devane might have been planning to do with the guns.

Hatley said he can only speculate.

"Guns like this, when they are stolen, are worth more than going into a jewelry store and robbing a bank," he said.


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  • ladyblue May 9, 2012

    IMO someone with a thief as this should be considered accessary to terrorism as the only ones who would be using such weapons are the ones who want to terrorize others while doing bad things in life. To terrorize is not strictly a Muslim thing.

  • loprestw May 8, 2012

    @soldier, wrong what protects our liberties and rights is the constitution which is at threat by our own government and people. Afganistan or Iraq has never and will never be a threat to the U.S. You must be a support soldier because the majority that claim PTSD are cooks, clerks and not the Infantry guys who actually are serving our country.

  • soldier May 7, 2012

    @loprestw...Although I think this definatley wasn't a case of anything but stupid, your comment about PTSD belittles the men and women who do suffer injuries from serving our country and preserving your liberties and rights. Go back to whatever cloud of ignorance you fell out of.

  • LibertarianTechie May 7, 2012

    Spring Lake makes it onto FOXNews again; too bad its for crime again. Here is the story: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/05/07/fort-bragg-soldier-arrested-for-allegedly-stealing-68g-worth-guns/?test=latestnews

  • Domino May 7, 2012

    "What a "goober!" He was probably not the best Soldier in the crowd! Surely, not the best robber...

    Don't bring Goober into this... he just passed away.

  • jjrn May 7, 2012

    I can't believe someone would be that arrogant! That store is the textbook example of security. The people there are very nice, but they are serious about safety and security. Not the brightest bulb in the lamp!

  • Wacky_dood May 7, 2012

    What is wrong with this guy?

  • SFSOLDIER May 7, 2012

    What a "goober!" He was probably not the best Soldier in the crowd! Surely, not the best robber...

  • ceverly May 7, 2012

    Way to go on ending your career! I am sure you made your family proud!

  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc May 7, 2012

    Those EO Tech sites are pretty cool. But sometimes I feel like the high tech gadgets take the sport out of marksmanship...