Crime & Courts

32 firearms missing after Lincoln County house break-in

Sandra Lynn Gaul
Sandra Lynn Gaul Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office

Lincoln County sheriff’s investigators are asking the public’s help in finding 32 rifles, shotguns and handguns stolen during a house break-in in Vale on Oct. 10. The firearms are valued at $21,300.

Authorities arrested a Lincoln County woman in connection with the break-in and theft but haven’t found the firearms. A credit card also was stolen.

Sandra Lynn Gaul, 46, was charged with one felony count each of breaking and entering, larceny of a firearm, possession of stolen goods and possession with intent to manufacture a schedule II controlled substance, and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia. She was jailed on $50,000 bail.

Investigators arrested Gaul on Monday after spotting her in a car on Gastonia Highway, near Gaston-Hillside Drive. Investigators had already obtained warrants against her after Gaul was identified on store security footage as the woman trying to use the stolen credit card at several stores in Gastonia.

Sheriff’s investigators also charged Billy Schronce, 59, of Lincolnton, with felony possession of a schedule II controlled substance. He was jailed on $10,000 bail. Schronce was in the car with Gaul, the sheriff’s office said.

Anyone with information about the firearms is encouraged to call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 704-732-9050 or Lincolnton/Lincoln County Crime Stoppers at 704-736-8909. Crime Stoppers offers a reward of up to $1,000 for tips that lead to an arrest.

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067, @jmarusak