Volunteers at the Knox United Clothing Thrift Store in Didsbury discovered an unloaded sawed-off .22 calibre rifle on the morning of December 12.
The rifle had been at the bottom of a clothing bag in the donation drop-off bin for the store.
Upon discovery, the rifle was immediately taken to the Didsbury RCMP detachment. RCMP seized the firearm as a “prohibited” item due to it being sawed off, or cut below the minimum prescribed barrel length.
“This is the first time I've been aware of a firearm being left in a thrift store box,” said Sgt. Jeff Jacobson of the Didsbury RCMP. “It's definitely an unusual discovery, and quite concerning to the person who found it.”
RCMP are currently treating the situation as suspicious and are continuing to investigate the case. The firearm is being sent to the RCMP Forensic Laboratory in Regina for ballistics testing and analysis in order to determine if the weapon is linked to a crime.
Jacobson describes the rifle as being wrapped in a bag within the clothing bag.
“There's the potential that the person didn't realize that the firearm was there,” said Jacobson. “However it may have been disposed of on purpose. The fact that the rifle was sawed off is concerning, it may have been involved in an offence.”
At present the RCMP are seeking the public's help in determining who may have unintentionally or intentionally dropped the rifle off at the thrift store.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact RCMP at 403-335-3382 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).