A suspicious transaction and a conversation with police resulted in a man being reunited with his stolen rifle, per a July 18 report by Clinton Police.


The matter originated with a man reporting to police in early January that some rifles, part of a larger collection, had been stolen from his home. Included in the loss was a lever-action 30-30 rifle. Police at the time filed a report, noting that the gun owner had “unknowingly contaminated the crime scene” with his own fingerprints after coming home and finding his door had been pried open.


The stolen rifles were listed by description, but the owner did not have the serial numbers for any of the missing firearms.


The matter was reopened when a man came to police in July, suspicious about a 30-30 rifle he had bought from an area man. After speaking with police by phone, he brought the rifle into police, who then ran its serial number through the national stolen goods database. The rifle was not listed in the database.


An officer did, however, note the rifle sounded like the one which had been lost in the January theft, including its having a saddle ring on one side. This rifle had not been listed in the database due to the unknown serial number.


Police took a statement from the man who brought the rifle in, who gave them the name of the man from whom he had bought it. Meanwhile, the man who lost his guns in the January theft was shown the rifle, who told police that the rifle was one of the ones of his which had been stolen.


Police checked, and the man who had sold the gun, Kenny Wilson, 31, of Clinton, was in jail at the Faulkner County Detention Center. Police interviewed Wilson July 18 who told them, according to the warrant affidavit, that he had traded another man a bag of marijuana for the rifle.


Wilson was charged with two Class D felonies, one for theft by receiving, a firearm, and the second for possession of firearms by certain persons. A third charge, a misdemeanor, for delivery of a Schedule IV controlled substance was also listed on the warrant affidavit.