PITTSFIELD MA Feb 2 2017 — A routine shoplifting call last week led to the recovery of a pair of weapons and over 100 rounds of ammunition left unsecured in the back of a vehicle — and the arrest of two city women.
Shaina J. Sayers, 29, and Sarah M. Kirchner, 20, are facing charges after the incident on Thursday afternoon outside Walmart on Hubbard Avenue.
About 5:20 p.m., police were dispatched to the store for a report that Kirchner had stolen some clothing.
Police approached her in the parking lot and told her if she returned the merchandise to them, they would issue her a summons, rather than arrest her immediately.
Kirchner agreed and gave a few items of clothing to officers, according to the police report. When they asked her if there was any other merchandise, she told police there may be some in the back.
She opened the rear hatch of the vehicle, which was registered to Sayers, who was shopping in a nearby store at the time, and police spotted a gun case that was slightly open.
Kirchner was ordered away from the car and placed into custody.
Inside the rear of the vehicle, police found a .22 caliber bolt-action rifle on top of a camouflage gun bag; the gun bag contained was a 12-gauge pump-action shotgun with three bandoliers with a combined total of 35 rounds of ammunition and a magazine containing another two rounds.
Inside the camouflage bag, police found a total of 70 rounds of .22 caliber ammunition.
Neither the weapons nor the ammunition was in any way secured nor were the weapons equipped with trigger locks, police said.
Sayers returned to the vehicle and when asked for a firearms license, could not produce one.
She said the weapons and ammo belonged to family members and she was not aware they had left them behind after a hunting trip.
After the arrest, police found nine rounds of .22 caliber ammunition inside the bag Kirchner had used to carry the merchandise. Both women told police the bag belonged to the other.
Sayers pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Friday to two counts each of possession of a firearm without a firearms identification card and improper storage of a firearm and one count of possession of ammunition without a firearms identification card. She also had an open warrant out of the court.
Kirchner pleaded not guilty to one count each of shoplifting and possession of ammunition without a firearms identification card.
Judge Patrick Sabbs released both women on their own recognizance and ordered them to return to court March 10.