A priceless WW1-era cannon that was stolen earlier in May has been recovered by Richmond, VA police. The cannon was originally stolen by two men who broke its security chain and then towed it away in a pickup truck. Video surveillance showed that the thieves used a blue or teal midsize/full pickup truck with a regular cab and grey or silver rear wheels.
The original thesis was that the cannon was stolen to be melted down for the metal but it was sold instead to an unsuspecting buyer. The buyer saw the cannon on the news and quickly called police to return it. If the cannon had been melted down the material would have been worth about $1,500 according to SFGate.
According to the Los Angeles times, Police Lt Felix Tan was quoted as saying:
This is part of our American history and this is stealing from our culture. It’s stealing from the men and women who’ve fought for our country and our freedom.
The theft was executed in under a minute from the parking lot of the city’s Veterans Memorial Halll. It baffled police as to why no one reported seeing the cannon being towed within the city limits since the massive item weighed about 1 ton and would have been very conspicuous.
The buyer of the 5-foot brass and iron cannon paid $1,200.00 and said that he feft really horrible about buying a stolen piece of American history.
The Richmond Police Department had issued an earlier statement condemning the theft:
This selfish act is not just about stealing a 1 ton, 5 ft iron/brass cannon that’s been there since 1947. This act is about stealing a piece of our country’s history, and stealing from our war veterans who fought bravely for our country and our freedom
The 105 millimeter cannon was quickly returned to its original location at the veteran’s hall where it had been located for almost 70 years.