An Elvis fan went too far in the quest for memorabilia during Elvis Week festivities at Graceland. Someone broke into a glass display case at the Elvis After Dark Exhibit last week and stole a gun belonging to the King of Rock and Roll.
The Smith and Wesson handgun was valued at $30,000, a police report said. According to the report, the thief was seen on surveillance video shaking the case before removing the glass and walking away with the gun. The report said the theft happened Tuesday August 14, 2007 around midnight but wasn't noticed by exhibit officials until Friday August 17th. Police collected the surveillance video and blood evidence left on the display case to use as evidence in the investigation.
Officials with Elvis Presley Enterprises had no comment about the theft.
Update August 21:
Elvis Presley's black 9mm Smith & Wesson pistol was removed by a man from a display case at the "Elvis after Dark" museum. The man, wearing goofy sunglasses atop his head, just reached into the case and took the black 9 mm Smith and Wesson.
But, by pure luck, the gun was recovered and turned in to police Monday. Seems one Travis Brookins was cleaning the portable toilets behind the Elvis After Dark museum last Thursday when he found what he thought was a toy gun, dropped into that horrendous muck.
He took the piece home, cleaned it up and probably didn't think much else about it until news reports surfaced Monday.
"He called us and said he thinks he had the gun and brought it to us," Memphis police Lt. Jerry Gwyn said. Turns out it was the same gun, police said, smelling a little better. It's now in their property room.
Surveillance video shows the thief -- wearing extra-long shorts and a camouflage T-shirt -- pushing open the glass case and snaking an arm in to snag the gun.
At some point, he must have stopped by the toilet on the way out, a decision perhaps sparked by adrenaline.
And that's when police believe he got fumbly fingers.
"It's a good possibility who ever took it accidentally dropped it in there," Gwyn said. "Of course, whoever dropped it wouldn't go in there."
The thief is still on the run, and police wonder if he's even from around here.
As anyone who's toured Graceland knows, the King was a fan of guns, even setting up a shooting gallery behind the house.
The folks at Graceland weren't saying much Monday, perhaps over embarrassment at the ease of the theft.
Update August 22
You can watch the video of the stealing of the gun from the security tapes.
Source: Various / Updated: Aug 22, 2007