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Omaha police urging people to lock up firearms

Posted at 10:09 PM, Feb 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-21 23:09:49-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) -  — At least six shootings have occurred in the past two weeks in Omaha.

Police say some were accidental and even involved teens, so they're urging gun owners to lock up their guns for safety.

Omaha Police say there's been an uptick in stolen guns during home burglaries because they aren't locked up properly.

"People have been waiting till late night or when people are gone to work and going over to the residence," Sergeant Kevin Elliot said. "[They're] checking to see if anybody's home, either entering through windows or breaking windows, breaking doors, etc."

Burglary Sergeant Kevin Elliot says there have been six guns stolen from homes in the past couple weeks.

He says gun owners need to lock up their firearms.

"[They're] going in ransacking homes and then while they're in the midst of going through the home, if they happen to see a firearm they're taking that as well," Elliot says.

He tells 3 News Now it's also easy for children to get a hold of those firearms.

"They may think it's a play toy or teenagers may find it and depending upon where they are, they may take that gun and you know use it for a particular incident or give it to a friend or something of that nature," he said.

Sergeant Elliot says it's not enough to hide them. He says firearms need a safe.

"It's very very important to have a safe, just because you may know where it is doesn't necessarily mean that somebody else, doesn't know where it is," Elliot said.

Omaha Police tell 3 News Now people who are caught with stolen guns face charges ranging from fines to felonies.

Omaha Crime Stoppers offers $1,000 for tips leading to illegal gun arrests.