Part 1: 'Blow Torch Crew' steals hundreds of guns from stores across Carolinas

A major criminal ring is responsible for stealing hundreds of guns across the Carolinas and Georgia, according to federal officials.

Federal agents call the ring the Blow Torch Crew because they use fire tools to break into many gun shops.

Devonnaire Coffey, 27, was the ringleader of the Blow Torch Crew, which targeted gun shops in the Carolinas and Georgia.

Federal officials said that's how his crew stole more than a dozen guns from a Gander Mountain store last year.

In other cases, agents said the crew tried to smash their way inside, including during a robbery at a family-owned business in Rock Hill in March 2016.

“To watch it on the video with the officers was chilling, it was scary,” store owner Tina Nichols said.

Coffey and his cohorts unsuccessfully tried to break into Rock Hill Academy Sports.

Surveillance video captured them in Greenwood, South Carolina, trying to smash shatterproof windows and running away

They stole more than 300 firearms during their string of robberies.

The ATF linked a stolen gun to a homicide in Washington and recovered 86 others in several states across the country.

Agents caught Coffey during a traffic stop in Georgia with a stolen gun in his car that blew the Blow Torch Crew case wide open.

Coffey is in prison for the next 10 years, but Nichols won't let her guard down.

“We know there are always criminals trying to get in to steal them because they're easy money out on the streets,” Nichols said.

Coffey was already a convicted felon, charged with several crimes in Georgia including theft by receiving stolen property, and burglary.

Last October, the ATF said the Carolinas led the country in gun thefts with more than 900 weapons stolen.

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