The NYPD recently discovered ghost guns in an East Harlem day care during a bust, which led to the charging of an 18-year-old.
Officials have reported that Karon Coley, along with two other minors, has been indicted on various charges which include criminal possession of a weapon, endangering the welfare of a child, and manufacturing a gun.
According to sources, the licensed day care on East 117th Street is owned by Coley’s mother, who has not been arrested by authorities.
According to authorities, the inquiry was initiated after a cluster of people, including a few underage individuals, were caught buying ghost guns and printing 3D firearm components using materials purchased from online retailers. It is suspected that the suspects were following online tutorials to create these untraceable weapons.
Law enforcement officials discovered a 3D printer, 3D printing tools, plastic filament, and two fully printed firearms behind an unlocked door of a day care facility. In addition, they found a printed assault pistol in the final stages of assembly and an extra 3D printed lower receiver. Furthermore, there were reportedly fraudulently obtained credit cards present at the scene.
According to officials, a pair of the firearms were found to be loaded with live ammunition.
NYPD Commissioner Edward Caban has urged parents to take action and monitor their children’s online activities. He emphasized the importance of being aware of what their kids are up to on the internet. Additionally, he addressed those who believe that printing 3D guns is a viable option for the future, stating that they are mistaken. His message is clear – it’s time for everyone to take responsibility and ensure the safety of our communities.
The day care center was being run from an apartment that was owned by Coley’s mother.
According to Rebecca Weiner, the NYPD’s deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, ghost guns and 3-D printed firearms, when produced with expertise, can function similarly to commercial firearms. However, in the possession of teenagers, they can cause an equivalent amount of harm and destruction.
On Wednesday night, Coley faced arraignment and was given a bail amount of $350,000 in cash or $500,000 in bond.
Adams pointed out that there are teenagers who own 3D printers and instead of using them to create harmless toys, they are using them to produce firearms. “You’ve got an 18-year-old in his room, 3D printer. He’s not making little robotic toys. He’s making guns,” Adams emphasized.
In February 2021, the day care was granted a license to operate and underwent an inspection this past February. The inspection revealed three violations, which were promptly addressed with minor changes.
Adams expressed deep sorrow at the thought of believing that you are leaving your child in a secure place, only to discover that it is actually a hazardous environment where someone is manufacturing a firearm.
The recent bust has been making headlines, almost two weeks after four young children who were attending day care in the Bronx, were treated for an unidentified substance.
It’s believed that 1-year-old Nicholas Dominici, one of the victims, passed away due to exposure.
During the investigation, law enforcement discovered illegal drugs hidden beneath a trap door and a significant amount of fentanyl, which was kept close to sleeping mats used by children. Additionally, they uncovered various tools used by drug traffickers to mix and press drugs into bricks.
The city’s day care inspection process is set to undergo a thorough review, according to officials. They have expressed their intention to scrutinize the process more closely.
According to Adams, their primary goal is to assure parents who drop off their children at these centers that they are committed to maintaining a high level of vigilance. They will continuously adapt their rules to keep up with the evolving strategies of bad actors who may attempt to harm the children. Their aim is to create a safe and secure environment for children, and they are determined to achieve this goal.
According to officials, the rise in the usage of privately manufactured firearms is alarming. In 2021 alone, nearly 290 such guns have been seized and it is noteworthy that an increasing number of them are being produced via 3D printing technology.