Quantcast
  1. Sign up now and join over 35,000 northwest gun owners. It's quick, easy, and 100% free!

Losing your stolen handgun by police destruction ?

Discussion in 'Legal & Political Archive' started by ob1, Feb 2, 2010.

  1. ob1

    ob1 49th parallel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    543
    Has this ever happened to you ?

    I had a residential burglary back in the early 90's where I lost a number of my handguns. Everything I have is photographed with serial numbers recorded. Every several years or so, I call the Police Dept. just to see if there has been any activity on their computers relating to the serial numbers of these guns. While I know the standard thing to do is to just wait for the Police to contact you when something is recovered, I've never felt patient enough to just wait and hope.

    Sure enough, a couple days ago, I contacted the Portland Police property room to do a check and one of my pieces popped out on their data base. The person I was talking to transferred me to a Supervisor to hand out the bad news. "Uh, yes sir, our records show that we recovered one of your handguns from a voluntary turn-in (one of those turn in your guns for a gift card programs, I suspect) We apparently had it in our custody for six months then sent it to be melted in '97 when we sent you a letter but, didn't receive a reply from you."

    As you can guess, I would have been at the property room
    minutes after getting such a letter, which never came.

    Have any of you had a similar experience ?
     
  2. Dan-Dee Sales Inc

    Dan-Dee Sales Inc Sweet Home, Oregon, United States Active Member

    Messages:
    606
    Likes Received:
    56
    No, but our Police Department does the same thing. There is little effort by them to find the owner of a firearm. That is my opinion. We have sold hundreds of firearms from our local department and it is possible that some of them should have been returned to their owner. What address does the Police Department have on you? Have you moved in the yast few years? How many days after sending it, did they destroy it?
     
  3. ob1

    ob1 49th parallel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    543
    I have been at the same address for decades, nope they can't use that one. I suppose it wont amount to anything, but I can't shake the feeling that the city owes me a gun. I asked if they had a copy of a registered letter that they should have sent me to which I was told........(long pause) "uhh... well, this was quite a long time ago. If it still exists we would have to get it from the archive". I said , "yes please I want a copy of that". Nothing yet. To add to the sting of this, I am sure I have called on this since '97 and was told "no activity". Makes me go hmmm.

    I was never told how long they held on to it before "destruction". Makes me wonder after hearing about the mischief that has gone on in certain evidence rooms and in other agencies when there is something like a big seizure by the customs service.
     
  4. TonsOfOregonBrass

    TonsOfOregonBrass Sandy, OR Active Member

    Messages:
    903
    Likes Received:
    48
    Never had that happen to me and i hope i never do. Sorry about that, i wouldn't doubt it if a letter wasn't sent.
     
  5. slingshot1943

    slingshot1943 salem or Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,085
    Likes Received:
    321
    I had some tools stolen from a job site in Corvallis. I made a police report with all serial numbers. A couple months later I got a letter saying I could go to a warehouse in Tigard and go through a bunch of tools looking for my serial numbers. Like I could afford to take a day off work to try to find a few hundred dollars worth of tools. The public sector does not do what most people think they do. Seems like more and more money buys less and less in public service.
     
  6. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,200
    Likes Received:
    4,406
    A) That is just one of the many things wrong with these "no questions asked" gun turn-ins.
    B) I'd be hollerin' up a storm and calling my lawyer.
    C) The next time you hear about a gun turn-in, start writing letters to the editor.

    Sorry for your loss. I hope you can get somebody to pony-up!!
     
  7. ob1

    ob1 49th parallel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    543
    Well I am sure that will all change now that it's getting all that extra tax money from measure 66/67.....yuk yuk
     
  8. Dan-Dee Sales Inc

    Dan-Dee Sales Inc Sweet Home, Oregon, United States Active Member

    Messages:
    606
    Likes Received:
    56
    our department only has to wait 60 days after sending out a letter. At least our department makes an effort to have the correct address or phone number. I am sure that our small towns would put more effort into it.
     
  9. elsullo

    elsullo Portland Oregon New Member

    Messages:
    1,199
    Likes Received:
    51
    A few years ago I contacted the Portland Police Recovered Property dept. to ask if my stolen license plates had been recovered from the other stolen truck that they had ended up on. They stated that they only destroy plates that are stolen. Too bad for me, I got to buy NEW plates with a new number, sixty bucks down the toilet. Too much trouble for them to keep my plates for me to pick up.

    I said, "Oh yeah, by the way, did the pistol stolen from me two years ago ever turn up?" And I gave them the info. and case number. They said that yes it did, they had had it for about eighteen months. I asked why I had not been notified, as my phone and address had not changed. They stated clearly that their policy is that they don't have to notify anybody about anything.

    Maybe policies are different in other juristictions, but the Portland Police bureaucrats believe that you have no right to be notified when stolen guns are recovered. But I'm not bitter.......................elsullo :complain:
     
  10. TonsOfOregonBrass

    TonsOfOregonBrass Sandy, OR Active Member

    Messages:
    903
    Likes Received:
    48
    Nope, you definitely didn't come across as bitter. In fact you sound like sunshine and puppy dogs. Good thing you are happy about it, I would have been pretty upset.:winkkiss:
     
  11. clearconscience

    clearconscience Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,590
    Likes Received:
    7,133
    Yeah I would call a lawyer and see what options you have. There should be a rule to the gun turn ins to check serial numbers and do back ground checks.

    And I would look into the legality of the PD sending you a letter, if they did.
    I would ask for proof.

    Did you ever get paid for the stolen property? If so I would imagine you would have to give the money back.

    That's just never a good situation. I would always be sure to either have my gun on me, or lock them to a safe secured to the floor/wall.
     
  12. Murphy

    Murphy Oregon Member

    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    16
    I have a similar story that happened to a good friend of mine. PPB handled the situation as good as yours.

    His vehicle was impounded due to a pedophile/child rapist/murderer who performed some vehicle service.

    His vehicle was in the impound lot for 7 years. One day my friend called and inquired as to the status. He was informed that they sold it at auction earlier that year.

    End result was he was NEVER notified by the PPB, was out a vehicle and wasn't compensated for his seized property.

    He tried to hire a lawyer but he was unable to find one who would take the case due to the insane amount of money it would take to fight this.
     
  13. Deavis

    Deavis Mid Willamette Valley Active Member

    Messages:
    694
    Likes Received:
    81
    The LE property disposition of seized items is all about efficency of getting rid of property as fast as possible as it adds up quick. I have met more than one property clerk and they want to purge fast. I have also been on the other end of the stick on a property audit as an LEO and seen agencies who accidentally fried arms that should have gone back to victims (recovered stolen gun accidentally fried) - BTW - in EVERY case the PD paid for the gun.... when it was the PD fault for frying it.

    As I read these posts about gun owners and LE - I am sure there is a LOT that is un-told about what really happened etc....

    But let me tell you another story about getting someone's gun back......

    I seized a Colt SP-1 one day from a meth addict/bomb maker/freak with about 20 other guns. It was a really early model (no Forward assist/three prong/no forward assist cuts on bolt). I did an ATF trace on it and it came back to being sold to Joe Mitharooni (not his real name) in the summer of 1966 at a now defunct Salem surplus store, who when they gave up their license and went out of biz, had to turn all their records over to ATF.... so ATF actually had it.

    As Smitharooni was not a real common name.... I was able to track him down in Central Oregon, OVER 40 YEARS later, called him and asked him about his SP-1.

    Turns out he bought it in the summer of 1966 after basic and before AT and his next 4 tours in Vietnam. Since he trained on the M14 and knew he was getting a M16 when he got to 'Nam he wanted to get some familiarization before he went. He went... flew UH-1Ds for 4 years, got shot down and got some m16 small arms time. He told me he was pretty attached to that rifle and it should have been in his gun safe at his ranch.... a little checking and he realized he had left it out, behind the door kinda thing, shooting coyotes, a few contractors had come by doing some work, rifle went missing and we ended up with it.

    Needless to say - He got it back and I was glad I went the extra mile to get it to him.

    When I read the cops are anti gun type posts.... kind of irks me... There are a lot of people who work real hard for you..... and usually (as evidenced) for not a lot of appreciation.
     
  14. ob1

    ob1 49th parallel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    543
    There seems to be a trend here. Sounds too similar to my experience to be a coincidence. The problem seems to be that retaining an attorney would cost more than the value of the firearm, which of course they realize. Pretty disgusting that the PPB would have such little regard for personal property rights. Maybe an expose with KATU would be in order, we all know that they would be willing to help on a firearms matter. :bluelaugh:
     
  15. PMKN_PI

    PMKN_PI Milwaukie, Oregon, United States Active Member

    Messages:
    447
    Likes Received:
    187
    Its time to literally start SPITTING in the faces of public employees and SEIU members at their rallys.
     
  16. Trlsmn

    Trlsmn In Utero (Portland) Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,838
    Likes Received:
    1,186
    Confiscated gun destruction and getting guns off the street is one of the biggest lies out there, guns that don't go back to lawful owners get sold and recirculated back into the public market.
     
  17. vern357

    vern357 Near Olympia Member

    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    6
    Not sure how it works in OR, but maybe right the PD a letter stating the problem and the value of the gun, and if that doesnt maybe small claims court can help.
     
  18. elsullo

    elsullo Portland Oregon New Member

    Messages:
    1,199
    Likes Received:
    51
    Hey, the SEIU and AFSME members are the worker bees of the system, and deserve respect for functioning politely between the public rock and the bureaucratic hard spot. It's the BUREAUCRAT MANAGERS who set department policy, and they are not Union members---they OPRESS working stiff Union members who sympathize with the public. Don't blame the workers for policies framed by the managers......................elsullo :thumbup:
     
  19. ob1

    ob1 49th parallel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    543
    Weeelll.....

    After reading some of the replies from some of you I was surprised that this isn't an isolated occurrence with PPB.

    NOW... Fast forward to last Tuesday. I received a call from the same PPB Supervisor I talked with who advised me that they had destroyed one of my stolen handguns. The main purpose of the call was to tell me he found a copy of a letter the PPB had supposedly sent to notify me of their plans to destroy my handgun. From what he described, they keep a form letter on file, but.......when I asked him if they also had the documentation that they had actually mailed me, and that I had received this letter, he said, uh...no, we just send these through the regular mail, they don't want to spend the extra few bucks to send them certified or with delivery confirmation. "So, when you guys destroy someones personal property, you don't have any proof that the owner has been notified ? " , "uh...no".

    Then...comes the time to twist the blade and apply salt...

    "and oh, by the way... I did some more checking on your other handguns that were stolen. Your XXX pistol, serial number XXX, was also recovered by the PPB.".. "Oh great ! Can I come down there now to pick it up ? ",..."uh no, we destroyed that one also. For some reason, when we recovered this one it wasn't listed as stolen on NCIC (stolen property data base) so we just automatically sent this one to the foundry."..."why wasn't it recorded as stolen from my burglary report ? " .."not sure, I see that you listed it as stolen in the report"...." I see that this one had a couple serial numbers on it, maybe the person entering the report had a problem with all those numbers"

    Ok then....I've reached the breaking point now, if the City of Portland can afford to spend money on soccer stadiums and hundreds of more millions on future bike lanes, they can afford to pay the extra postage to show proof that an owner has been been properly notified that they are going to destroy his legally owned property, and maybe even spend a little more effort in entering serial numbers of stolen property in to the computer !!!!

    At this point, for those of you who have described similar incidents with Portland's "system"...please p/m me, maybe a joint complaint is in order.

    :angry::banghead::dynamite:
     
  20. Will

    Will Everett Active Member

    Messages:
    372
    Likes Received:
    54
    A few years back I got a letter from the Seattle Police department stating they had recovered a pistol registered to me. The letter provided the firearm information and contact information. I called them and was told that the pistol was recovered from a fellon in possesion of a firearm. They went on to say that when they ran a check on the pistol it didn't come up as stolen but often people don't record the serial number of there firearms and just report the model of the firearm stolen so they don't make it into the data base. I told them that I had sold the pistol in a private sale several years ago and don't have info on the person I sold it to. He told me they would send out a form I needed to fill out releasing interest in the pistol. I got the form a week latter filled it out and sent it back.

    THe SPD made an attempt to return the firearm to me even though they didn't have a record of it being stolen. They didn't question my private sale or question how a firearm registered to me got in the hands of a fellon. I was pretty pleased with the way they handled the situation.