Two weeks ago, a man drove down from his home in Venango Township, Pa., to the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where he turned his 2017 black BMW over to valet service and booked a room for the night. Acting on a tip, authorities checked the man’s vehicle and saw in plain view a Bushmaster AR-15 rifle and 90 rounds of ammunition. There was a Glock inside the unlocked glove box.
Predictably, folks downtown lost it. Imagine: all that firepower in the vicinity of President Trump’s ritzy hotel and his White House dwelling place.
The mayor called a news conference to assure the nation that the situation was well in hand. The D.C. police chief went before the microphones to publicly thank the tipster for helping to bring a “potential tragic situation to a peaceful end.”
It turns out that the guns at the Trump hotel are legally owned by Bryan Moles, a licensed physician and a former Navy corpsman. Moles had been released from custody pending court proceedings so that he could travel to Atlanta to be evaluated at a veterans facility. He was jailed this week, however, on charges that he violated the terms of his pretrial release after he displayed behavior that troubled prosecutors.
The downtown reaction was understandable. The thought of lethal weapons where they don’t belong is unnerving — even though the White House and Trump’s hotel are knee-deep in security.
It’s a different world for the rest of the District, where guns are as plentiful as the air.
Those guns, however, are in parts of the city where the political and social elites don’t live, work or play. Those guns rarely make the news — unless one goes off in somebody’s face or is recovered by the police.
Otherwise they share a silent, deadly coexistence with the community.
Here is a simple recitation of bloodless facts about our gun world, as captured in D.C. police reports that identify illegal firearms recovered across the city since the discovery of Moles’s gun cache on May 31.
Repetitive, boring reading? Don’t skip. Take them in — one by deadly one.
A black and brown Hawes Western Marshal model .357-caliber revolver.
A black .38-caliber Charter Arms revolver.
Thursday, June 1
A black H&R Model 732, .32-caliber revolver.
A black Hi-Point 9mm semiautomatic pistol.
A silver and black Smith & Wesson SD40 VE, .40-caliber.
Friday, June 2
A black Keltec model P11, 9mm handgun.
A black Taurus Model PT 24/7 OSSD, .45-caliber pistol.
A black and silver Glock 23, .40-caliber handgun.
A black and green Bersa Thunder, model Compact, .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol.
A black, SAR B6P, 9mm semiautomatic pistol.
A silver Ruger .357-caliber revolver.
A black Star Firestar, 9mm semiautomatic pistol
A black Remington Model 1911, .45-caliber.
A black Glock 43, 9mm.
A black Palmetto State Armory AR-15 rifle, 5.56mm.
Saturday June 3
A black Hi-Point, model CF-380, .38-caliber semiautomatic pistol.
A black Ekol Voltran P29, 9mm.
Sunday, June 4
A black HWM .38-caliber revolver.
A black Glock 22, .40-caliber handgun.
A black and silver Smith and Wesson 9mm pistol.
A 12-gauge Franchi Affinity semiautomatic shotgun.
Tuesday, June 6
A 12-gauge Companhia Brasileira De Cartuchos shotgun.
A .25-caliber Melior handgun.
A .25-caliber FIE Titan.
A .357 Taurus revolver.
A 9mm Taurus 709 Slim handgun.
Wednesday, June 7
A 9mm Glock 19, and at another scene
A 9mm Glock 19.
A .22-caliber Davis D22 Derringer.
A 9mm SCCY CPX-1-CBPK handgun.
Thursday, June 8
A 9mm Jimenez J.A. Nine handgun.
A 9mm Springfield Arms model XD handgun.
A 7.62x39mm rifle, unknown make or model.
Friday, June 9
A .380-caliber Taurus PT738 handgun.
A .22-caliber pump-action Winchester Model 190 rifle.
A 12-gauge Winchester Model 37 shotgun.
A .380-caliber Ruger LCP.
A 9mm Taurus PT709.
A 9mm Glock 17 handgun.
A 9mm Springfield Arms XD-S handgun.
Saturday, June 10
A .380-caliber Bersa Thunder handgun.
A 9mm SCCY CPX-1 handgun.
A .45-caliber Ruger P345.
Sunday, June 11
A black and silver .40-caliber Smith and Wesson.
A 9mm Sig Sauer handgun.
A black 9mm Ruger LC9s handgun.
A black .22-caliber Ruger handgun.
Nearly 1,900 illegal weapons were recovered in the District last year.
However, that’s not counting the number of illegal guns hidden in pants pockets, waistbands, under mattresses, in drainpipes, car trunks, etc., just waiting to be called into service.
They outnumber many times the total recovered by the cops.
Bryan Moles, his guns, ammo and the Trump hotel?
If only the rest of the city could attract half of that attention.
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