Where the Guns Are

New clues emerge in a decades-old crime mystery.


A 38-year-old riddle might be solved beneath topsoil in Amesbury. It dates to September 20, 1970, when five antiwar radicals broke into the National Guard armory in Newburyport and stole weapons including 400 rounds of ammunition and, it’s been said, dozens of M1 Garand rifles. Three days later, they held up a Brighton bank for $26,000, and one of them killed Boston cop Walter Schroeder.
All were captured, but the guns ‘n’ ammo were never recovered. And now the convicted shooter, William “Lefty” Gilday Jr., apparently is talking. According to two sources inside the state Department of Correction, Gilday (who lives in the state prison’s hospital unit in Shirley) has been blabbing that the weapons are buried in Amesbury, where he originally ditched them, he says. If true, that’d debunk the National Guard, which to this day maintains no guns were ever stolen. We should hope so: Three of the convicted robbers are out of jail now.