QUEENS — Residents of a Rego Park co-op were shocked to hear their neighbor had been keeping a small arsenal in his one-bedroom apartment that sources said would be enough to take “down the building.”
Guo Shou, 33, was arrested and charged with reckless endangerment and criminal possession of a weapon roughly 8 a.m. on Feb. 8 after authorities discovered a cache of weapons in his apartment at 65-60 Wetherole St., police said.
His arsenal included 14 licensed handguns, 225 pounds of gunpowder, over 45,000 rounds of multi-caliber ammunition, bullet-making equipment, assault rifles and bulletproof vests, according to the Queens District Attorney’s office.
The weapons were laying in plain sight and unsecured, authorities said.
“It’s so scary,” said Shaitali Biswas, a stay-at-home mom who has lived in the seven-story building on a quiet Rego Park block for about a year. She did not know Shou. "I have a 5-and-a-half-year-old daughter," Biswas added.
The building is located less than two blocks from P.S. 139.
The weapons were discovered when officers conducted a routine administrative pistol licensee review at Shou's apartment, according to the Queens DA.
During the visit, prosecutors said, the officers saw the gunpowder, an assault rifle and ammunition laying in plain sight.
It was not clear why Shou was in possession of so many weapons but Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said that he does not have a federal firearms license as a gun dealer and is not licensed to sell or manufacture firearms or ammunition.
“It is extremely disturbing to find such a lethal arsenal of this magnitude in a residential community — especially one less than two blocks from an elementary school," Brown said in a statement.
"Alone, the amount of gunpowder discovered was capable of igniting and causing significant damage to not only the defendant’s apartment but to neighboring apartments and the building’s exterior walls, as well as injuring or killing anyone unfortunate enough to be in the vicinity," he added.
Neighbors said Shou lived in the building for about 4 years with his girlfriend in an apartment that belonged to her parents.
They did not seem to have any suspicious visitors and appeared to be working from home, neighbors said.
“They were nice and quiet,” said a super at the building, who did not want to be identified. "Just a normal couple, they never said anything weird or suspicious."
Shou, who was arraigned Tuesday night, faces up to 7 years in prison if convicted.
He is held on $250,000 bail and is due back in court on Feb. 24.
Shou's attorney declined to comment.