Two felons arrested for having guns stolen from Monticello firm

Two felons arrested for having guns stolen from Monticello firm

CHAMPAIGN — Two convicted felons are in the Champaign County Jail for allegedly possessing guns that were stolen earlier this week from a Monticello business.

Champaign police Sgt. David Griffet said a Champaign narcotics officer received a tip Thursday about a person who was near an apartment complex in the 2000 block of Moreland Boulevard who had "a large amount of guns."

"We were aware there had been a recent burglary at the Blue Ridge Backwoods in Monticello where 19 guns were stolen. We were given vehicle information and found it unoccupied in a driveway in Garden Hills," Griffet said.

The car had been backed into a driveway in the 1200 block of Gertrude Avenue. Around 3 p.m., police were watching the house when Ryan Anderson, 30, came out of the home.

"Anderson was seen coming out and starts to walk away to the west," Griffet said.

Moments later, Christopher Hollingsworth, 26, emerged from the house.

"He goes to the passenger side of the door, opens it and closes it and also walks to the west. He is stopped and detained," Griffet said.

Police officers obtained a search warrant for the Honda, which they towed to the police department. In the car were three handguns in a black bag in the back seat, a Benelli 12-gauge shotgun in the back seat that was covered with a jacket, and a .45-caliber loaded revolver under the front seat.

"They were all from Blue Ridge Backwoods," Griffet said.

Police also found a sixth gun in an attached garage at the home on Gertrude, which is where Anderson's father lives. He gave police permission to search, Griffet said. That gun, a .40-caliber handgun, had also been stolen from Blue Ridge Backwoods, he said.

Griffet said the burglary at the Monticello sporting goods and hunting equipment store happened late Tuesday or early Wednesday. Monticello Police Chief John Carter was not immediately available for comment.

Champaign County court records show both Hollingsworth and Anderson have been to prison in the past.

Hollingsworth has prior convictions for unlawful use of weapons by a felon from 2009 and possession of cannabis from 2007.

He also has pending felony charges of possession with intent to deliver cannabis and possession of a controlled substance stemming from a December arrest.

He listed an address on County Road 1600 N, although Griffet said Hollingsworth is homeless.

Anderson has prior convictions for aggravated battery, possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and resisting a peace officer. He listed the Gertrude Avenue home as his address.

Hollingsworth was charged Friday with three counts of unlawful use of weapons by a felon and two counts of aggravated possession of stolen firearms. He appeared with Urbana attorney Brian King, who asked Judge Jeff Ford to set a probable cause hearing for May 6. Ford set Hollingsworth’s bond at $200,000.

Anderson was charged with being an armed habitual criminal, unlawful use of weapons and aggravated possession of stolen firearms. Ford set his bond at $200,000 and continued his case to next Friday to give him time to hire his own lawyer.

If convicted of the most serious of all the charges, the men face mandatory prison sentences of between six and 30 years.

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