A Columbia man suspected of several burglaries in June — including two in which a total of 39 handguns were stolen from the Powder Horn Guns & Archery — was in the Boone County Jail facing several charges Monday.

Frank Cortez Bonaparte, 38, is suspected of robbing the Powder Horn store at 1915 Paris Road twice. Police say Bonaparte took 16 handguns from the store on June 21 and 23 and more on June 27.

Two people came to the police station with a tip about Bonaparte on Aug. 5, according to a probable cause statement.

“The guy that has this phone number is the guy that has the stolen guns,” the tipsters told police, according to the statement. They also provided photos of firearms with serial numbers matching the stolen guns. The photos were sent to them from a phone number Bonaparte had previously used to call 911.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives offered a $10,000 reward for information about the burglaries. The Boone County Sheriff’s Department posted about the offer on Facebook in June.

Bonaparte was arraigned in Boone County Associate Circuit Court on Monday afternoon. He faces charges of first-degree burglary, stealing firearms, unlawful use of a weapon and first-degree property damage. His bond is $200,000.

The recent arrest wasn’t Bonaparte’s first run-in with the law. On June 12, police arrested him on suspicion of burglarizing the Spring Mart store at 500 E. Dripping Springs Road that day and the Dollar General at 801 Vandiver Drive on June 9.

Bonaparte allegedly stole cash and lottery tickets from the Spring Mart store. He also is accused of trying to remove a safe from the Dollar General. He faces four counts of second-degree burglary in those cases.

Police arrested him at the Super 7 Motel at 1306 Range Line St. At the time of his arrest, he was allegedly in possession of cocaine.

  • I'm a former data scientist earning my master's in journalism at Mizzou with a focus on investigative reporting. I've previously worked for defense contractors, investigative reporting outlets, data science blogs, and academic research groups.

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