Neighbors protest for East Kansas City pawn shop to stop selling guns

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - An East Kansas City community protested against a pawn shop in their neighborhood in an attempt to get them to move or stop selling guns.

The group, Communities Creating Opportunity, protested outside the store at 63rd and Troost today. Since Smart Pawn opened in 2011, an AK-47 and nine handguns have been stolen from the store. Police have only recovered five of those weapons.

"Criminals know they have easy access. The guns are getting into the wrong hands, which is what we were afraid of initially and it's just not working for us," said Mary Rabon, board director of Communities Creating Opportunity.

The store is within blocks of four schools, which is the main reason the group decided to protest.

Smart Pawn has declined to comment.

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