A tip and blood left at scene led to arrest in Eudora gun shop break-in, affidavit says

While an 18-year-old and two 15-year-olds all were arrested and charged in a Eudora gun shop break-in, one of the younger boys told police the older teen was the instigator.

That, plus matching blood and fingerprints, led authorities to arrest and charge Stevan Rios of Eudora in the case, according to an affidavit in support of his arrest prepared by Eudora police. The Journal-World requested and received the affidavit this week through Douglas County District Court.

The Journal-World also requested affidavits in support of arrests of the two younger boys, who were charged as juveniles, but juvenile division judge Bethany Roberts denied the request, saying that such affidavits are not part of the court’s official file as defined by the state’s juvenile code.

The smash-and-grab-style break-in happened about 2:10 a.m. March 15 at Free State Guns and Tactical Weapons, 218 E. 20th St. in Eudora. 

According to the affidavit supporting Rios’ arrest:

A break in the front-door glass triggered the shop’s automatic alarm, and Eudora police went to the scene.

When police arrived, they found the broken front door and several broken display cases inside — with blood on them.

Police took blood and fingerprint samples from the cases. They also searched a field next to the shop and found three boxes of shotgun ammunition, a magazine for one of the weapons that had been stolen from the shop, and shoe prints.

A few days later, after getting a tip, police interviewed one person, whose name is redacted from the affidavit.

When police asked him whether he broke into the gun store, he told police that he was pressured by another person, whose name also is redacted, who had been pressured by Rios.

He also told police that he did enter the gun shop but that Rios and the other person were the ones who took the guns. He said after leaving the store they ran across a field to a waiting car and drove off.

That day police searched Rios’ home and said they found a pair of jeans with blood on them and a handgun in the pocket — but it wasn’t one of the nine listed as stolen from the shop. That handgun, police determined based on its serial number, had been stolen out of Kansas City, Mo.

Rios is charged as an adult with one count of burglary, one count of theft for allegedly stealing multiple firearms and two counts of contributing to a child’s misconduct, all felonies, according to the complaint filed in Douglas Country District Court. He’s also charged with one count of criminal damage to property, a misdemeanor, for allegedly breaking the shop’s display case.

According to court records, he is scheduled to enter a plea on May 23.

One of the two 15-year-olds has since turned 16, according to court records. Both boys face one count of burglary and nine counts of theft of firearms, all felonies, plus two counts of misdemeanor criminal damage to property.

The charges list the models of guns that were stolen, and they include assault-style rifles and pistols, as well as multiple revolvers.