BUCKHANNON – A Buckhannon man was arrested after allegedly breaking into a local gun supply store.
Eric Rowan, 24, of Buckhannon was arrested for burglary on Sunday, Aug. 11, according to the criminal complaint in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s Office filed by investigating officer Deputy Joseph D. Barcus with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department.
On Sunday at 6:46 a.m., Barcus reportedly received a call for service involving a commercial burglar alarm at Second Amendment Supplies in Buckhannon, according to the report. Although the report says the store is located in Buckhannon, a Facebook page for “Second Amendment Gun Supplys LLC” lists the business’s address as 36 Landaplenty Road in Ellamore.
Upon arrival on the scene, Barcus began searching the business and discovered someone had cut the phone line and knocked two holes in the plywood on the south side of the business. Upon further investigation, Barcus discovered someone had entered the business through the small hole midway down the south wall of the building, according to the report.
Barcus advised the Upshur County E911 Comm Center of his findings and began taking photographs of the crime scene. During his search, Barcus discovered a Charter Arms Undercover .38 Special firearm lying on top of a bucket of used brass outside of the hole the suspect entered through, the complaint states.
The owners of the business arrived at the store, and Barcus reviewed the security camera footage with them. Upon reviewing the footage, Barcus noticed a slender male in a camouflage jacket with gloves on, wielding what appeared to be an AR-15 rifle, walk around the front side of the business, the report states.
When a motion sensor light kicked on, the individual on tape quickly ducked out of view of the camera. While speaking with the owners, they also noted the five-gallon bucket of used brass on which Barcus had spotted the firearm had been inside the business.
The owners also said whoever had broken in had likely moved the bucket outside. The security camera also allegedly showed the suspect inside the business, according to the complaint.
Then, according to the report at approximately 9 a.m., Barcus received a call from Cpl. Marshall O’Connor with the Buckhannon Police Department advising him that Rowan, the suspect, had allegedly gone to the city police department and reported that a .38 special firearm and an AR-15 were stolen from his vehicle during the night.
Barcus met with O’Connor and Cpl. Rodney Rolenson with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department; the three subsequently headed to Rowan’s residence in Buckhannon to question him. While en route to Rowan’s residence, Senior Trooper P.J. Robinette with the Buckhannon detachment of the West Virginia State Police said Rowan just left Cook’s Food Mart, and Robinette was behind him.
Barcus advised Robinette to stop the vehicle so Barcus could question Rowan. According to the report, police spoke to Rowan and advised him of his Miranda Rights, which he waived. Rowan then allegedly admitted to breaking into the business “due to him owing someone money,” the complaint says.
Rowan also said the .38 special firearm at the scene belonged to him and he had gotten it from his mother, the report states. Rowan was then placed under arrest for burglary, and his bail was set at $75,000.
If convicted, Rowan faces penalty of confinement in the state penitentiary for not less than one nor more than 15 years.