Search finds cache of illegal weapons in Sidney

·2 min read

Jul. 9—Sidney Police said a man from their village was jailed after a search of his home revealed a large cache of illegal weapons.

According to a media release, the Sidney Police Department assisted a Department of Homeland Security Investigation unit on Thursday, July 8, as they executed a federal search warrant at 243 Johnston Circle in the village. The search warrant was the culmination of a joint investigation, spanning almost a year, into the illegal possession and manufacture of firearms in the village.

During the search, six handguns and 18 rifles and/or shotguns, readily capable of firing ammunition, were recovered. Four of the weapons were of the type commonly referred to as "ghost guns," having no serial numbers, the release said. Also recovered were 41 high-capacity magazines, capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Several of those were magazines that are commonly referred to as "drum" magazines, which can hold upwards of 50 to 100 rounds of ammunition. A large assortment of parts for the manufacture of AR15 style rifles were seized as well, including barrels, upper receivers, lower receivers, and butt stocks. More than 18,000 rounds of assorted ammunition were also seized at the residence.

Police said the investigation began in July 2020 with an anonymous tip that a village resident with a prior felony conviction was in possession of firearms. It was also believed the person might be manufacturing AR style rifles to sell. After an initial investigation revealed the tip may be valid, Sidney police requested the assistance of federal investigators, the release said.

The subject of the investigation, Jordan J. O'Neill, 35, Sidney, was taken into custody on July 8. Because of a prior felony conviction, O'Neill is prohibited from possessing firearms. Police charged him on July 8 with one count of first-degree criminal possession of a weapon (possession of 10 or more firearms), a class B felony; and 41 counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon (possession of a large capacity ammunition feeding device), a class D felony.

O'Neill was arraigned in village of Sidney Court and sent to jail on $125,000 cash bail or $250,000 bond. Police said the investigation is still open and more charges and arrests are expected.

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