WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Wilmington Police say they have taken a large number of guns off the streets in the first two weeks of this month. Officers confiscated many of the guns from convicted felons.
In the first two weeks of July, police seized 29 firearms, including handguns, shotguns and assault rifles. Chief Ralph Evangelous says this record number of seizures is the result of more officers in the field.
"Many of these involved foot pursuits of our officers, where these people were armed with the handguns in their hands," Evangelous said.
Although police do not believe overall there are more guns on the street, they say the guns that are out there are being used more often than before.
"A lot more brazen activity out there on the street with individuals not only displaying these firearms, but also shooting," Evangelous said. "We've had a lot of shots fired calls lately."
Evangelous says many of these criminals are already felons. He says the guns they're using may have been stolen.
Police say they hope to find leads in open cases using guns confiscated from this search.
Police say they will conduct tests to see if any of the confiscated guns have been used in crimes, like the murder of a teenager last month on N. 5th St.