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View Full Version : How many times have you seen a gun safe defeated or stolen?


r08ert209cali
04-10-2009, 8:08 AM
Well in reading the aw thread that seemed to get off topic. How many times have you seen or heard of an entire gun safe being stolen or defeated in a residential robbery or even a commercial robbery for that matter. as well as any circumstances that you feel pertain to the heist.

DLaw
04-10-2009, 9:05 AM
Co-worker of mine (deputy) had his gun safe stolen out of his garage, it was a big safe, but he didnt have it bolted down.....They found it out by a river cut open all firearms gone...

BOLT YOUR SAFES DOWN!

kmr1631
04-10-2009, 10:51 AM
I have never seen a gun safe stolen or defeated in a residential burglary. I have seen those cheap fire safes defeated without a problem. I have actually had to break into a few with a halogen tool and it only took about two minutes.

Commerical burglaries are a bit different... I have seen several commercial grade safes defeated in businesses.

eta34
04-10-2009, 3:36 PM
I have seen large safes carted out of residences during burglaries. The common denominator: they were NOT bolted down. It is very simple to simply slide the large safes along two pieces of metal piping across carpet. BOLT IT DOWN!

yzernie
04-10-2009, 7:17 PM
Stolen-rarely. Defeated-never.

Jwood562
04-10-2009, 8:56 PM
Stolen-rarely. Defeated-never.



agreed with everyone here. because once they take it they have all the time in the world to cut/pry /blow it open but they cant do it if it's bolted down and they have limited time to work on it

Stoner
04-10-2009, 9:21 PM
I have never seen a large gun safe, say in excess of 300 pounds stolen. I have seen lots of the small fireproof safes stolen. And recovered a few that had been beat to death and opened.

FYI, I have never taken a residential burglary with any loss from a home with an alarm system that was turned on!!

jtippins
04-12-2009, 11:15 PM
A few years back - LE in GA - we had a safe stolen from a bedroom by the wall and floor boards being cut away with a rip saw. They allowed the safe to fall into a trailer then torched the base and removed about four of the 15 guns that were inside. They also left the $70K cash that was in it... dumb criminals then begin to brag around town about their 'great' escape with a gun safe. Needless to say, we made an arrest and charged them with some ferocious felonies... pretty rare to have a safe stolen though.

I get to still work on some dumb cases like that when I'm back east twice a year. Going back for summer... good times! Love riding with GSP.

nobody33
04-13-2009, 12:55 AM
I recovered a SA Ruger 45 lc from a yard in gangland about four months ago. Found the owner via DROS info and he was on vacation and didn't know it was stolen... his safe was defeated in a residential burglary. I didn't see it or have the details on that end though.

bluestaterebel
04-13-2009, 11:00 AM
I recovered a SA Ruger 45 lc from a yard in gangland about four months ago. Found the owner via DROS info and he was on vacation and didn't know it was stolen... his safe was defeated in a residential burglary. I didn't see it or have the details on that end though.

gangland?

deleted by PC police
04-13-2009, 11:11 AM
There was one in Sacramento a few years back, the guy left it in a storage unit.

bluestaterebel
04-13-2009, 11:20 AM
Farmington Utah huh? you retired? i hear Utah is becoming like Florida for police retirees? how you like it?

nobody33
04-13-2009, 12:52 PM
gangland?

yup, the ghetto, the hood, barrio, wrong side of the tracks, etc etc

Ron-Solo
04-13-2009, 4:36 PM
yup, the ghetto, the hood, barrio, wrong side of the tracks, etc etc

Hey Nobody33....


I guess some just can't even comprehend that kind of neighborhood community involvement. LASD gets most of the parts of the county that no one else wants. :44:

My first arrest with LASD was in '78 two blocks from Firestone Station at 8 AM on a Sunday morning. Johnny No-Good was out for his morning stroll with a rifle and a .38 revolver to pay his respects to the guys who beat the $%^%$ out of him the night before at a party.

Never a dull moment ! :thumbsup: August will make 32 years of fun in the sun for me.

696k
04-13-2009, 5:54 PM
Hmmm...in almost 30 years now...never. Doesn't mean it can't happen like some of the other posts but usually burglars are in and out quickly. If they go after your safe especially a big floor safe then they had some inside info.

I don't advertise that I have a safe. But honestly I am not to worried about a crook lugging it down the block. even here in So Cal somebody would probably call that in as a tad suspicious. Ignore the little bedside ones they can be conealed inside a backpack or under a hoodie. If you're gonna own firearms do it right and get a real safe. Big, heavy and fire resistant...

AJAX22
04-13-2009, 5:57 PM
Tommy Lee had a safe stolen (a big one) during some renovations, he lost a bunch of registered AW's as well as the now infamous tape of him and his wife.

it wasn't bolted down, but it was carpeted into the wall (made to look like it wasn't there)

plm61
04-13-2009, 7:19 PM
A couple of months ago my neighbor's house was broken into while they were gone on a weekday. The zombies had all the time in the world.

They pried a gun safe (kind of a light weight one, more for security than fire) out of the closet where it was bolted to two walls. Took it to the living room and used hand tools (like a crowbar) to pop it open.

His guns are still in my safe (where they are feeling quite at home and loved, I might add!) until he can get spousal approval for another.

r08ert209cali
04-16-2009, 7:41 AM
I take it they got caught

Noboundaries
04-16-2009, 8:19 AM
I'm not a LEO but have a story.

One of my wife's employees had a large gun safe filled with his handguns, former military-use rifles (legally registered), and his deceased father's guns. His wife didn't want the guns in the house any longer so he moved it to a storage locker. It was stolen. The police figured it was an inside job because the security cameras were disabled and a forklift was used.

oddjob
04-16-2009, 1:21 PM
In 31 years I never took a call of a large safe being stolen or broken it to. I did hear of one in the Sheriff's Dept jurisdiction. The suspects tossed a cable around a safe and winched it through the house. The safe was bolted down. Poor farmer came home and part of his house was down. Guns and safe were never found.

VtotheZ
04-20-2009, 5:20 PM
yup, the ghetto, the hood, barrio, wrong side of the tracks, etc etc

You mean San Bernardino city right? lol

Yes bolt your safes down, Honestly I have seen a few badguys take the owners own dolly and roll the safe right out! They are ruthless and don't care, it takes about 30 seconds to wheel out a safe on a dolly

nobody33
04-20-2009, 6:03 PM
You mean San Bernardino city right? lol

Yes bolt your safes down, Honestly I have seen a few badguys take the owners own dolly and roll the safe right out! They are ruthless and don't care, it takes about 30 seconds to wheel out a safe on a dolly

I used to work for SBPD years ago. Calling that place a ghetto is an understatement.. it's a war zone.

VtotheZ
04-20-2009, 9:14 PM
I used to work for SBPD years ago. Calling that place a ghetto is an understatement.. it's a war zone.

Copy :cool:

AR-shogun
04-21-2009, 9:21 PM
This safe company makes a good safe.
http://www.graffundersafes.com/gallery.html

p24
04-21-2009, 11:27 PM
Hey Nobody33....


I guess some just can't even comprehend that kind of neighborhood community involvement. LASD gets most of the parts of the county that no one else wants. :44:

My first arrest with LASD was in '78 two blocks from Firestone Station at 8 AM on a Sunday morning. Johnny No-Good was out for his morning stroll with a rifle and a .38 revolver to pay his respects to the guys who beat the $%^%$ out of him the night before at a party.

Never a dull moment ! :thumbsup: August will make 32 years of fun in the sun for me.

Good ol Florence-Firestone... FS16's area, I ran on a GSW the other night at Alameda/Nadeau

Turbinator
04-29-2009, 5:42 PM
Tommy Lee had a safe stolen (a big one) during some renovations, he lost a bunch of registered AW's as well as the now infamous tape of him and his wife.

it wasn't bolted down, but it was carpeted into the wall (made to look like it wasn't there)

Interesting, did you respond to that particular call?

Turby

XJJack
04-30-2009, 8:35 AM
Just stop buying cheap safes. Mine is over 1000lbs and is quite difficult to move around in a house as ther is not much room. I move safes at work and know how to move them. I think if somebody tryed the tip over method to just drop it on the back to pry open it would just fall through the floor and they would then be working on a safe that is 2 feet below the floor to pry open.
The costco safes work fine for ammo boxes, but keep the (empty) gunes and other important stuff in a quality safe.
Mine Safari big game

RDT72
05-09-2010, 1:30 PM
Stolen from a home once, found abandoned on the side of the road the next day unopened, but they tried. Personally had to break into a firesafe to seize DV suspect's firearms, took about two officers using large pry tools(found in the suspect's garage) about 25 minutes to break it open and remove 5 long guns

thebronze
05-09-2010, 1:57 PM
This is who mine is from. I love it and I'm not worried about someone stealing it or breaking in to it. It probably weighs a full ton by now (1,100 lbs empty). It isn't going anywhere.

Visalia Safe Co (http://www.visaliasafes.com)

43Duc
05-09-2010, 3:07 PM
Took a report once of a ransacked residence. Couple had left their "second home" and were in Lake Tahoe for a few weeks. Before they left that had some patio work done using their "regular guy" and his lackies. Well, they returned after the couple was out of town, parked their work truck in the driveway and ransacked the house over and eight hour period. Neighbors didn't think anything about it because they had seen several work trucks there the previous week.

Anyway.... they found the bolted-down gun safe. The tore the drywall out of an adjacent room so they could access the side of the safe where they proceeded to grind a large gash in the side. The house smelled like a foundry from all the burnt cutting wheels (I found about 10 blade centers, all ground down).

Anyway, last laugh on the crooks.... the homeowner had moved his guns long ago to his son's house and the only thing in the safe was his kid's red-rider BB guns that he bought for them back in the 50's. The crooks left those. So, after a full days work, the crooks only got a big-screen.

Oh, the crooks turned out to be two of the "lackies" that the contractor had picked up at the local day-labor pickup area for the previous weeks job.

AJAX22
05-09-2010, 3:29 PM
No, I was at Tommy's house one time when he was talking about it.

The infamous Tommy lee/Pam Anderson tape was also in the safe.... Along with a bunch of guns, money and jewelrey

GMG
05-09-2010, 3:39 PM
Pendleton Safe. YouTube!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NMNUx5i4dc

retired
05-09-2010, 7:27 PM
No, I was at Tommy's house one time when he was talking about it.

The infamous Tommy lee/Pam Anderson tape was also in the safe.... Along with a bunch of guns, money and jewelrey

I was at Tommy's house also....well, his temporary one at Men's Central Jail for the DV against Pamela.:D He was in the same cell that OJ and the Night Stalker had been in years before. A sgt. (me) had to stand by anytime his door was opened. I did so when he was finished sweeping up the dust in his cell one time.

As far as safes go; in the 15yrs. I was in patrol, I never took a safe broken into or stolen report.

AJAX22
05-09-2010, 7:37 PM
Lol, you know I might have talked to you (or tried to anyway) back in 2004 I had to call that station a lot to try to get the records/video/911 calls from a bunch of the incidents involving him ...
So if you had some punk from 20/20 or primetime live calling... That was me ;)

Tommy seemed like a pretty decent guy, but I think he had some serious issues with alcohol. He rode a neat late 80s Honda dirtbike and d&d a pretty decent hill climb on it

alex00
05-10-2010, 4:18 AM
I've seen plenty of lock boxes defeated, but never a safe. I remember taking observation notes on a burglary one time where a couple of kids tried using a freebie paint can opener to try and defeat a large Hall's safe. Yeah, that will work:rolleyes:.

Rigma
05-10-2010, 9:45 PM
I have never seen a large gun safe, say in excess of 300 pounds stolen. I have seen lots of the small fireproof safes stolen. And recovered a few that had been beat to death and opened.

FYI, I have never taken a residential burglary with any loss from a home with an alarm system that was turned on!!

THIS is interesting. I have another thought maybe someone can give an opinion on. How effective is concealment vs. strength of safe?

I'm thinking about getting creative and wondering about the effectiveness of some of those "in the wall" concealable safes. That or just hiding a safe altogether. I don't yet have a safe and want to get one so I can keep my rifles in my home rather then a friends safe.

On a side note: If alarms increase the effectiveness of safes...what about dogs?

alex00
05-11-2010, 8:16 AM
THIS is interesting. I have another thought maybe someone can give an opinion on. How effective is concealment vs. strength of safe?

I'm thinking about getting creative and wondering about the effectiveness of some of those "in the wall" concealable safes. That or just hiding a safe altogether. I don't yet have a safe and want to get one so I can keep my rifles in my home rather then a friends safe.

On a side note: If alarms increase the effectiveness of safes...what about dogs?

I rarely take burglary reports from houses with active alarms. I have taken one report recently where the power was cut to the house, and the alarm was disabled. I would strongly recommend against relying on concealment to protect your valuables. I would trust an openly displayed good safe over a hidden lesser safe. I have taken plenty of burglaries from people that were probably victimized by friends and acquaintances. If someone else knows, then figure everyone knows. If you can find a place to hide your stuff, a badguy can do the same. Most of the residential burglaries I have seen are done with simple handtools, or no tools at all. Burglars rarely bring heavy cutting equipment to a house hoping to find and defeat a safe. If they know the safe is there, that is another story. If you have your guns hidden, and the lockbox isn't the most secure, it may be discovered and defeated by tools you have in your house.

ETA: I have taken plenty of reports from homes that have dogs.

Rigma
05-11-2010, 10:24 PM
Thanks for the info Alex00!

I guess I was hoping dog + alarm had some added effect...just a curious thought.

Your argument is solid, you can't rely on concealment of a weak container, but you can rely on strength (up to the point of it's own limitations). I think I will go the strong&heavy route, and be sure to bolt it down so they would have to take half the house along to drag it away.

My alarm would limit the amount of time they have to defeat it, and if it's hidden as well...;)

Already got the lecture on a battery back-up and wireless remote monitoring...but that's a different topic.

556fmj
05-12-2010, 2:18 PM
To echo what Alex said. A dog is no deterrent. Maybe an alarm but I've taken residential burg reports where neither did any good.

I took a report of some stolen guns from a house. The thief very easily pried open one of those $100 dollar "safes" that you can find at some sporting goods store. The owner lost a handgun and a SKS rifle along with some ammo. If your gonna get a safe, get a good quality one that has internal hinges and bolt it down to the floor. If you got good investments, money, jewelery and important paperwork...do yourself a favor and get a decent safe. Prepare to spend some money on one. Don't go cheap.

Falstaff
05-12-2010, 11:00 PM
My Liberty safe has 5lbs of black powder inside- have fun with the torch ghetto birds, hope ya got flame retardent feathers! (I wonder if a 5 lb container of powder would blow the door off??hmm..)

And to get back on topic, I did see one of the sheet metal "Homak" cheapo safes at a police auction that had been defeated; looked like they had a giant can opener that just peeled the the top panel off and then they pulled the guns out. I second those that say don't waste money on cheap safes. Get a real one and bolt it down, you can get an entry level Liberty that will stop 99% of the dirtbags out there for about $1200.00 mebbe less, well worth the peace of mind.

Patrick Aherne
05-12-2010, 11:03 PM
We've had two of the pistol safes, the kind I keep my gun in off-duty at the house, picked up and carried away. Don't know if they got into them as the guns haven't been recovered yet. Never any large gun safes broken into, though.

dk94044
05-19-2010, 4:24 PM
forgive my ignorance and laziness to use google or search, what is the recommended special tool or drill bit and bolts needed to secure the safe into concrete garage floor? I doubt my cordless Craftsman drill has enough torque to get through concrete even with a special diamond bit.

retired
05-19-2010, 5:28 PM
The bit would be a masonry bit and a strong cordless or electric should work.

I would ensure you don't have a post tension slab foundation before doing any drilling. It is usually stamped with those words somewhere on the slab. Mine is near the front of the garage door.

I was going to drill mine into the slab in the closet, but the superintendent of the tract told me the dangers of doing so, so I didn't.

In a post tension slab, there is cable at the midpoint crisscrossing the whole slab (this is in a 5" slab). He said there have been numerous injuries and some deaths when people have drilled into the concrete and hit the cable. The cable has whipped out and decapitated some people.:eek:

You would have to know exactly where the cable lies to drill into it safely. Of course, if you don't have this type, then ignore everything above.:D

ETA: I should have said hammer drill as BusBoy pointed out below.

BusBoy
05-21-2010, 9:22 AM
forgive my ignorance and laziness to use google or search, what is the recommended special tool or drill bit and bolts needed to secure the safe into concrete garage floor? I doubt my cordless Craftsman drill has enough torque to get through concrete even with a special diamond bit.

You would need a Masonry bit and a HAMMER drill... forget a normal electric drill and save your arms... any decent drill with a hammer function will suffice. Ive drilled through 5" of concrete with a cordless Makita with its hammer function selected.

Rob454
05-21-2010, 7:09 PM
I
FYI, I have never taken a residential burglary with any loss from a home with an alarm system that was turned on!!

Exactly. its good to have a layered defense. yes it costs money but well worth it IMO. ive never seen a house get broken into that had a safe broken into if the alarm was on and the safe was bolted down. The silly thing is it takes about 30 minutes to secure a safe to a floor.

Rob454
05-21-2010, 7:16 PM
Oh, the crooks turned out to be two of the "lackies" that the contractor had picked up at the local day-labor pickup area for the previous weeks job.


Yet another reason NOT to hire day laborers

KevH
05-24-2010, 3:40 PM
I've seen one of each.

The safe I saw defeated was made by Sentry. They appeared to have used pry tools and a saw-zall or something similar.

The other was one of the heavier Winchester safes. It has been bolted to the wood floor in a bedroom, but they had literally sawed out the whole floor and carted it off on a dolly.

Either one of these must have taken some time and made a whole hell of a lot of noise. Both happened during the daytime when the owners weren't home.

My personal opinion is that no safe is totally fullproof and that alarm systems are good ideas as an added measure.