PARKERSBURG - The Wood County Sheriff's Department is looking for the owner or owners of a pair of apparently stolen guns recovered in a Saturday traffic stop.
But because the serial numbers have been ground down, those owners won't be getting the weapons back.
"They'll have to be destroyed," sheriff's Capt. Mark King said. "We won't be able to return them to the owner, once we find them, but it will help us prosecute the guys that had them."
According to a report from the sheriff's office, a deputy sitting in his cruiser along West Virginia 47 near Dry Run Road around 3:20 a.m. Saturday heard what sounded like multiple gunshots in the area. He conducted a traffic stop on a single vehicle that passed.
As the deputy approached, the report says, a small handgun was thrown from the passenger side of the vehicle. At that point, the passenger was asked to exit and handcuffed.
The thrown weapon was found to be a Sig Sauer 9-millimeter handgun, while a search of the vehicle yielded a six-shot, RG .22-caliber revolver with six rounds in the cylinder, the report says. Serial numbers on both weapons had been removed, leading to the belief they were stolen, King said.
William A. Nutter, 34, of 1324 Broadway Ave., Parkersburg, was arrested on a felony charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm, while Charles R. Cottle, 24, of 1557 Buck Run Road, Mineral Wells, was charged with a misdemeanor count of carrying a concealed deadly weapon.
Both men were arraigned over the weekend and released on bond, $10,000 for Nutter and $1,000 for Cottle.