Marysville Police arrest seller of stolen guns

MARYSVILLE — Marysville Police detectives had a unique opportunity to team up with a Puget Sound citizen to help prevent illegal weapons trafficking.

Shortly after some of William Webster's guns were stolen in a Pierce County burglary, he found two of them listed for sale on the website, one of which he was able to identify through its distinctive carrying case.

Webster arranged a meeting with the seller of the guns for April 12 in Marysville and contacted the Marysville Police Department on April 11, along with the Pierce and Snohomish county sheriff's offices, to get their detectives involved. The meeting took place at a gun shop directly across the street from the Marysville Police Station.

"We had a couple of SWAT team members there and our detectives went undercover as buyers," Marysville Police Cmdr. Robb Lamoureux said. "After they verified that the serial numbers of the seller's guns matched those of Webster's guns, we took the seller into custody without incident."

Lamoureux explained that the arrested seller claimed not to have known the guns were stolen, and was very cooperative in supplying information for further investigation.

"We believe he didn't have any knowledge of the theft," Lamoureux said of the arrestee, who lives just outside of the Marysville city limits. "He was so innocent he brought his teenage daughter with him to the meeting, and he was very appreciative of how we treated him."

Lamoureux deemed Webster's actions a positive example for his fellow citizens.

"He did everything right," Lamoureux said. "He did his own research, which is okay for citizens to do, but once it came time to meet with a potential felon, he made sure to get law enforcement involved, so that this could be resolved without incident. We certainly don't want citizens to do things like this on their own."

Webster had nothing but praise for the Marysville Police Department, as well as the Pierce and Snohomish county sheriff's offices, for the parts they played.

"These guys are heroes," said Webster, who praised the Marysville Police detectives for going undercover as Webster and his son. "They didn't know what they might be up against. The police don't always get the recognition they deserve, but these brave guys are aces in my book."

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