April 24, 2008 in City

Man charged in firearms robbery

By The Spokesman-Review
 

A man accused of hiding in a Spokane Valley sporting goods store after it closed last month and then stealing 14 handguns has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Spokane.

Patrick Thomas Boam, 34, faces charges of stealing firearms from a federally licensed dealer, possession of a stolen firearm and being a felon in possession of a firearm, authorities said Wednesday.

He was arrested earlier this month on a criminal complaint that preceded the indictment returned Tuesday by the grand jury.

Boam, who is being held without bond, is scheduled to be arraigned Friday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cynthia Imbrogno.

The indictment accuses him of stealing the guns March 25 from Sportsman’s Warehouse, 14014 E. Indiana.

In-store surveillance tapes show a man matching Boam’s description entering the store about 6:40 p.m.

“This surveillance video further shows, that at approximately 9:35 p.m., after the store was closed and (its) employees had left the premises, this individual, wearing the same clothing, behind the firearms counter, placing handguns into a bag,” court documents say.

The video shows the burglar exiting the business through a rear door carrying a large bag that apparently contains the handguns.

A still photograph of the burglar was obtained from the surveillance video, and that photo was disseminated to Spokane-area law enforcement and store security personnel, ultimately leading to the identification of Boam as a suspect, court documents say.

The value of the weapons isn’t given in court documents.

The handguns included 9 mm, .40-caliber and .45-caliber semi-automatics manufactured by Ruger, Taurus, Magnum Research and Kahr, the court records say.

One of the stolen firearms, a 9 mm Ruger, was found in Boam’s possession when he was arrested April 12, the indictment alleges.

The other 13 firearms have not been recovered, authorities said. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is investigating.

Boam can’t legally possess firearms because of two credit union robbery convictions in U.S. District Court.

In December 1999, he confessed to holding up the Telco Credit Union in Spokane in August 1999 and the Wa-Two Federal Credit Union in Walla Walla in September 1999.

He was sentenced to 70 months in prison for those crimes.


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