Gun Theft Suspect Arrested

One of two Peoria men accused of stealing nearly 100 guns has been arrested.

Peoria police say they received information on the whereabouts of Keith Winters, 28, and he was located around 5:40 p.m. Saturday in the 2000 block of West Forrest Hill. Winters was taken into custody without incident by members of the Peoria Police Target Offender Unit, Patrol and ATF.

Winters was transported to the Peoria Police Department and later arrested on a federal warrant and transported to the Peoria County Jail.

Winters and Miray Smith, 19, of Peoria were named in a federal complaint allegeding they stole guns from licensed retailers in Monmouth and Galesburg in March.

Smith remains at large.

Peoria Police Department

A third Peoria man, Jeremy Howard, 39, was arrested Friday and charged with possession of stolen guns.

As alleged in the complaint, Winters, Smith and another unnamed individual drove a stolen truck March 21 from Peoria to The Tac Shack, 1100 E. Jackson Ave. in Monmouth. A passenger vehicle accompanied the truck to serve as a lookout. When they arrived, Winters and Smith allegedly threw a brick through a window and used a metal pipe to break the glass and make entry. After taking 39 guns from the store, the men drove back to Peoria and allegedly divided up the stolen guns.

The complaint also alleged that on March 29, Winters, Smith and another individual allegedly drove a stolen truck from Peoria to Farm King, 3000 W. Main St. in Galesburg, where the men used wire cutters to enter a fenced area, threw a brick through a window and used a metal pipe to gain entry. During the burglary, another individual who had accompanied the men in a separate vehicle, acted as a lookout for law enforcement. After taking 59 guns from Farm King, the men drove back to Peoria and allegedly divided up the stolen guns.

If convicted for the offenses of stealing from a federal firearms licensee, possession of stolen firearms, and felon in possession of a firearm, the maximum penalty for each count is up to 10 years in prison. The maximum penalty for conspiracy to steal and possess firearms from a federal firearms licensee is five years in prison.

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