An Associated Press investigation has found that at least 1,900 U.S. military firearms were lost or stolen over the last decade.
These weapons are intended for war but some have ended up on America’s streets.
Army pistols, for example, were used in violent crimes including shootings and robbery. Pistols, machine guns and automatic assault rifles vanished from military armories, supply warehouses, Navy warships and elsewhere. Security lapses included unlocked doors, sleeping troops and a surveillance system that didn’t record.
The Pentagon and armed services say that missing firearms are a tiny fraction of the military’s stockpile and note that some weapons are recovered.
Stolen Army assault rifles keep showing up in California
Authorities in California’s agricultural heartland weren’t looking for a military assault rifle when they went to investigate a domestic assault case, but they found one.
It was one of 26 AK-74s stolen a decade ago from Fort Irwin, an Army base in the Mojave Desert.
While 17 of the AK-74s have been recovered, some in the hands of street gang members, nine remain missing.