Three teenage youngsters and one adult face charges after one of the teenagers allegedly distributed several guns that had been identified as stolen.
Jordy G. Lerma-Quintero, 19, of Hailey, appeared for arraignment on one count of felony grand theft in 5th District Court in Hailey after being arrested for allegedly having three stolen pistols in his possession: a Kimber Model 1911, a Colt Model 1911 and a .22-caliber Ruger handgun with a scope and suppressor attached.
Hailey Police Lt. Steve England said in a recent interview that a Wood River High School student told Officer Raul Ornelas, who works as a resource officer at the high school, that a 16-year-old boy may have had a gun on or near the school campus.
The 16-year-old student in question was then interviewed by Blaine County Detective Mike Abaid, who wrote in a report that the youth admitted to having stolen nine guns from a mid-valley home, two of which were found by police in his closet in his Ketchum home.
When further questioned by Abaid, the 16-year-old said Lerma-Quintero and two other men stole three of the pistols from him during an attempted sale in Croy Canyon, west of Hailey, the report states.
Abaid wrote that Lerma-Quintero was stopped by police on his way home from work and he agreed to show police where the stolen guns were hidden.
With Lerma-Quintero’s cooperation, police found the three stolen pistols and an additional .22-caliber rifle in the trunk of a 1988 Dodge Colt parked at the Valley View Apartments in Hailey.
Lerma-Quintero was then taken to the Blaine County jail, where he was interviewed by Abaid and Special Agent Ron Shackle, with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
During the interview, Lerma-Quintero allegedly initially told the officers that he had purchased the guns for $100 each and that he didn’t know they were stolen. However, he allegedly eventually admitted that he had stolen the guns from the 16-year-old, but maintained that he didn’t know the guns were stolen property.
Hailey Police Lt. Steve England said in an interview that the 16-year-old and two other juveniles involved in the case have been arrested and that police have recovered all nine of the stolen weapons, which were found at various locations throughout the valley.
England said police also recovered ammunition stolen from the same mid-valley home.
Lerma-Quintero faces up to 14 years in prison if convicted of the felony grand theft charge. He has posted bail and is due in court again for a preliminary hearing, in which the state must provide probable cause for the felony charge.