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geeknow
12-20-2008, 6:30 AM
Here's the short version;
12(ish) years ago, a handgun was stolen from my apartment. it was duly reported as such at the time. Approximately 6 months ago, I received a bunch of calls from the local DA, local Public Defender, and a local Police Detective notifying me that 1. the gun was recovered on the person of a bad guy and 2. that I needed to testify at the trial.

Great.

During this whole mess I was informed that I would receive my property back once the case had been resolved, permission by the DA (WTF?) had been granted to return MY property, a fee had been paid to the state (to re-register the same gun that I already paid to register), and I had received a "law enforcement gun release" letter from the DOJ.

Well, I did all that and still no gun.

Now I have been told by the PD property room that they will not release my property until the detective that worked the case sends them some "paperwork". The property guy wouldnt tell me what "paperwork" they need, he only informed me that if the detective doesnt fill it out in time, that they WILL destroy my property on the 30th day.

Just to keep the facts straight, the DOJ letter was dated 12/17/08. That means that they will destroy MY property on 01/18/08. The only (according to them) person that can release my gun is the detective (who is now on vacation for the holiday's).

I am considering just showing up at the PD, waving my letter around, stomping my feet, and demanding my property be released immediately. Likely, that will not end well.

My questions for the brain trust are;
1. Can they put additional release requirements beyond the DOJ?
2. Given the circumstances, what would you do to recover your property?

Thanks,
g

gbp
12-20-2008, 6:51 AM
Something similar to this happened to me. I had paperwork signed by the judge, the da, my attorney and all of the paperwork from the doj and the chief of police was still not willing to release the guns to me. he said he needed a personal call from the da to release them and the magazines. i finally got the da to call this guy directly and sort it out. the next issue was that only one person had the keys to the property room and he was on vacation. all of this pushed the time limit on the doj paperwork to within days of expirey but i did get my property back.

all i can say is good luck and i know what you're going through.

geeknow
12-20-2008, 7:00 AM
Something similar to this happened to me. I had paperwork signed by the judge, the da, my attorney and all of the paperwork from the doj and the chief of police was still not willing to release the guns to me. he said he needed a personal call from the da to release them and the magazines. i finally got the da to call this guy directly and sort it out. the next issue was that only one person had the keys to the property room and he was on vacation. all of this pushed the time limit on the doj paperwork to within days of expirey but i did get my property back.

all i can say is good luck and i know what you're going through.

yeah, it's kind of a wringer right now. I guess I knew it was going to be, though. During the first call I made, the PD stated that they normally dont return confiscated guns. Rather than argue with him about property rights, I simply stated that it was my intention to see that my property was returned to me and that the type of "property" had no bearing.

CSACANNONEER
12-20-2008, 7:09 AM
I new someone who went to pick up a gun from an LASO station with court orders to have it released to him. He is an attorney for a state LE agency. The SO refused to release the brand new Kimber to him. He actually had to use his cel phone to call the judge and explain the situation to him. Well, the judge, who had signed the order, wasn't too pleased and ended up talking to the deputy who was refusing to comply with his orders. Needless to say, the gun was finally released but, even then, the SO tried to keep the mags and holdster because they were not named in the judges orders. Well, the judge did speak to the property clerk again and the attorney finally recieved everything. Remember, he had the judges numbers preprogramed in his phone, he was an attorney for a state LEA, he had a court order to release property to him and the LASO still refused to release it until the judge personally talked with some deputy who was probably threatened jail time unless he complied with the orders. We have a great legal system, don't we?

If they illegally destroy your property, I wonder if you could sue them for damages?

Good luck!

alex00
12-20-2008, 7:17 AM
If you have the name of the detective, call and ask to speak to his supervisor. You should be able to make arrangements with his supervisor to have the necessary paperwork filled out. In law enforcement, being on vacation seldom means unreachable. His supervisor should be able to contact him by phone and complete the necessary paperwork.

If you don't have his name, the Deputy District Attorney that handled the case should be able to give you the detective's name.

geeknow
12-20-2008, 7:52 AM
If you have the name of the detective, call and ask to speak to his supervisor. You should be able to make arrangements with his supervisor to have the necessary paperwork filled out. In law enforcement, being on vacation seldom means unreachable. His supervisor should be able to contact him by phone and complete the necessary paperwork.

If you don't have his name, the Deputy District Attorney that handled the case should be able to give you the detective's name.

Been there done that. Yes, I know the Detectives name (i've spoken with him more than once). Yes, he does have a supervisor who told me that his detective is on vacation and that he (the detective) is the only one who can send the "paperwork".

My gut tells me that this is nothing more than a stall tactic.

To the poster that told of a gun finally returned, but stripped. That is my fear too (other than not getting my property returned at all). I have heard many stories of guns coming back from the PD property room totally stripped bare.

As I was present at the trial, courtesy of a few subpoenas, I know that the gun was loaded with a round in the chamber at the time of arrest. That would indicate the presence of magazines. I want them too. We will see.

I have received many suggestions via PM to contact this person or that person with "connections". While I appreciate them, the idea of needing a "connection" to accomplish this chaps me. I am the victim. This is the law. It is there for me too.

alex00
12-20-2008, 8:35 AM
Been there done that. Yes, I know the Detectives name (i've spoken with him more than once). Yes, he does have a supervisor who told me that his detective is on vacation and that he (the detective) is the only one who can send the "paperwork".

My gut tells me that this is nothing more than a stall tactic.

There may be a legit reason, but I can't think of one. Have you contacted the clerk for the judge that heard the case, and gave the order to release?

cadurand
12-20-2008, 8:47 AM
Man, I feel lucky.

I had a pistol stolen (well a few actually) while I was living in Fremont, Ca.

5 or so years go by and I get call from the Fremont Police saying one of my pistols has been recoved by another local police department. The Fremont cop gave me the phone number of a cop in the other city and said to call them to arrange to pick up my pistol. He didn't know which pistol had been recovered at this time.

So I call the other police department and get a very nice Sgt who says "It's a Desert Eagle, 50 cal I think. Come up and get it."

And that's what I did. No hassles, just had to show my ID to prove who I was.

It sounds like I was pretty lucky. The biggest hassle was the original call from Fremont PD came in the middle of the night. When I asked the cop why he was calling me at 3am he said "Because that's when I work."

geeknow
12-20-2008, 8:47 AM
There may be a legit reason, but I can't think of one. Have you contacted the clerk for the judge that heard the case, and gave the order to release?

In this situation, it doesnt work that way. The DA had to authorize the gun to be released (she did), then the case had to be settled (it was). Then I had to go to the DOJ website, print out a "law enforcement release", fill it out, send a check to cover another background check (I am an FFL, have a COE, and have been Live Scanned already by the DOJ, and none of that mattered), which I have done. Then the DOJ sent me a copy of the "release" which states both that the case is over with and that I can get my gun back (which i have in hand). The judge that heard the case had nothing to do with holding up or returning my property.

I did all of that.

The Police Department is refusing to return my property until their detective says it is ok and the clock is ticking (as they have informed me).

This is crap.

alex00
12-20-2008, 9:12 AM
Outside of calling the commander of the detective bureau, I don't have any more suggestions. I can't believe they would be so willing to destroy a gun that they know belongs to you, while you are in the process of getting a release. It sounds like dirty pool to me.

Sig226
12-20-2008, 9:14 AM
This may be extremely naive, but perhaps the ATF can help you out?

I mean your pistol is effectively being stolen from you according to our state's DoJ at this point....

Or maybe Internal Affairs might be interested in officers not following state law or dept. policy?

Colt
12-20-2008, 9:35 AM
During this whole mess I was informed that I would receive my property back once the case had been resolved, permission by the DA (WTF?) had been granted to return MY property, a fee had been paid to the state (to re-register the same gun that I already paid to register), and I had received a "law enforcement gun release" letter from the DOJ.

Well, I did all that and still no gun.

Now I have been told by the PD property room that they will not release my property until the detective that worked the case sends them some "paperwork". The property guy wouldnt tell me what "paperwork" they need, he only informed me that if the detective doesnt fill it out in time, that they WILL destroy my property on the 30th day.



Do you have all of this in writing, complete with signatures of the folks giving you the run-around? If not, ask these folks to sign something to the effect of what they're telling you. If they won't put it in writing, ask why not.Then start sending copies of said signed documents to anyone and everyone that may help...

Good luck.

Ford8N
12-20-2008, 9:45 AM
I hope LEO's understand why civilians dislike "The Man". And it is a lie if this "detective" is the only one who can release the private property. Bald face LIE!

weekend_plinker
12-20-2008, 10:08 AM
I would Say go Back to the judge and have him call the superviser and talk with him, abought your property

JDoe
12-20-2008, 10:35 AM
Cut and paste (emphasis mine) from http://www.fbi.gov/hq/cid/civilrights/color.htm

In the case of deprivation of property, the color of law statute would be violated by unlawfully obtaining or maintaining a person’s property, which oversteps or misapplies the official’s authority.

Color of Law

U.S. law enforcement officers and other officials like judges, prosecutors, and security guards have been given tremendous power by local, state, and federal government agencies—authority they must have to enforce the law and ensure justice in our country. These powers include the authority to detain and arrest suspects, to search and seize property, to
bring criminal charges, to make rulings in court, and to use deadly force in certain situations.

Preventing abuse of this authority, however, is equally necessary to the health of our nation’s democracy. That’s why it’s a federal crime for anyone acting under “color of law” willfully to deprive or conspire to deprive a person of a right protected by the Constitution or U.S. law. “Color of law” simply means that the person is using authority given to him or her by a local, state, or federal government agency.

The FBI is the lead federal agency for investigating color of law abuses, which include acts carried out by government officials operating both within and beyond the limits of their lawful authority. Off-duty conduct may be covered if the perpetrator asserted his or her official status in some way.

HowardW56
12-20-2008, 10:47 AM
What agency has the gun?


Here's the short version;
12(ish) years ago, a handgun was stolen from my apartment. it was duly reported as such at the time. Approximately 6 months ago, I received a bunch of calls from the local DA, local Public Defender, and a local Police Detective notifying me that 1. the gun was recovered on the person of a bad guy and 2. that I needed to testify at the trial.

Great.

During this whole mess I was informed that I would receive my property back once the case had been resolved, permission by the DA (WTF?) had been granted to return MY property, a fee had been paid to the state (to re-register the same gun that I already paid to register), and I had received a "law enforcement gun release" letter from the DOJ.

Well, I did all that and still no gun.

Now I have been told by the PD property room that they will not release my property until the detective that worked the case sends them some "paperwork". The property guy wouldnt tell me what "paperwork" they need, he only informed me that if the detective doesnt fill it out in time, that they WILL destroy my property on the 30th day.

Just to keep the facts straight, the DOJ letter was dated 12/17/08. That means that they will destroy MY property on 01/18/08. The only (according to them) person that can release my gun is the detective (who is now on vacation for the holiday's).

I am considering just showing up at the PD, waving my letter around, stomping my feet, and demanding my property be released immediately. Likely, that will not end well.

My questions for the brain trust are;
1. Can they put additional release requirements beyond the DOJ?
2. Given the circumstances, what would you do to recover your property?

Thanks,
g

bandogg
12-20-2008, 10:56 AM
What kind of handgun is it.

You should go raise hell at the station :mad:

falawful
12-20-2008, 11:10 AM
Not sure of the value of the gun to you, but I'd bring an attorney with you and quietly tape the conversations.

If that doesn't work, sue and make sure they're served before the deadline.

I'd be past rational thought on this one...

Titans
12-20-2008, 11:22 AM
I had a pistol stolen (well a few actually) while I was living in Fremont, Ca.

Off topic but did anybody here have there pistols in a safe? Or were they just stored somewhere? Only reason i'm asking is to get an understanding of how "secure" a safe can be for firearm storage and how often safes get broken into...if that's the case.

sorensen440
12-20-2008, 11:29 AM
Makes me wonder if the firearm in question went on vacation with the detective or if maybe they jumped the gun and destroyed it already

CSACANNONEER
12-20-2008, 11:51 AM
Makes me wonder if the firearm in question went on vacation with the detective or if maybe they jumped the gun and destroyed it already

No, it's probably a nice weapon and a higher ranking officer wants to just take it home.

Meplat
12-20-2008, 11:52 AM
Who had the keys Andy or Barney?:rolleyes:



Something similar to this happened to me. I had paperwork signed by the judge, the da, my attorney and all of the paperwork from the doj and the chief of police was still not willing to release the guns to me. he said he needed a personal call from the da to release them and the magazines. i finally got the da to call this guy directly and sort it out. the next issue was that only one person had the keys to the property room and he was on vacation. all of this pushed the time limit on the doj paperwork to within days of expirey but i did get my property back.

all i can say is good luck and i know what you're going through.

Meplat
12-20-2008, 12:05 PM
It sounds like dirty pool to me.

It sounds like someone likes that gun to me.:mad:

berto
12-20-2008, 12:09 PM
Call the same PD and report a stolen gun.

hoffmang
12-20-2008, 12:14 PM
You're going to have to keep moving up the chain until you get someone fired. I'd suggest going back and bringing pen and paper. Get the person's name and number then ask exactly who has to give which exact paperwork on which day and that person's number. State very clearly that if they destroy your property due to their own foul up, you'll fire an attorney and have him file a 44 USC 1983 action. I'd suggest sending a letter certified mail or fedex/ups very promptly outlining the problem, the facts, and the threat ASAP. If you have written proof and proof of delivery you'll stand a very good chance of them either complying or recovering from them and teaching them a lesson.

-Gene

geeknow
12-20-2008, 1:13 PM
You're going to have to keep moving up the chain until you get someone fired. I'd suggest going back and bringing pen and paper. Get the person's name and number then ask exactly who has to give which exact paperwork on which day and that person's number. State very clearly that if they destroy your property due to their own foul up, you'll fire an attorney and have him file a 44 USC 1983 action. I'd suggest sending a letter certified mail or fedex/ups very promptly outlining the problem, the facts, and the threat ASAP. If you have written proof and proof of delivery you'll stand a very good chance of them either complying or recovering from them and teaching them a lesson.

-Gene

Thanks!

JDay
12-20-2008, 2:29 PM
Here's the short version;
12(ish) years ago, a handgun was stolen from my apartment. it was duly reported as such at the time. Approximately 6 months ago, I received a bunch of calls from the local DA, local Public Defender, and a local Police Detective notifying me that 1. the gun was recovered on the person of a bad guy and 2. that I needed to testify at the trial.

Great.

During this whole mess I was informed that I would receive my property back once the case had been resolved, permission by the DA (WTF?) had been granted to return MY property, a fee had been paid to the state (to re-register the same gun that I already paid to register), and I had received a "law enforcement gun release" letter from the DOJ.

Well, I did all that and still no gun.

Now I have been told by the PD property room that they will not release my property until the detective that worked the case sends them some "paperwork". The property guy wouldnt tell me what "paperwork" they need, he only informed me that if the detective doesnt fill it out in time, that they WILL destroy my property on the 30th day.

Just to keep the facts straight, the DOJ letter was dated 12/17/08. That means that they will destroy MY property on 01/18/08. The only (according to them) person that can release my gun is the detective (who is now on vacation for the holiday's).

I am considering just showing up at the PD, waving my letter around, stomping my feet, and demanding my property be released immediately. Likely, that will not end well.

My questions for the brain trust are;
1. Can they put additional release requirements beyond the DOJ?
2. Given the circumstances, what would you do to recover your property?

Thanks,
g

Call the DA that handled the case and have them call down there and order it released to you, thats what I had to do to get back some recovered property in the past.

ETA: If you have a property release letter in hand just show up with your lawyer, they will have no choice but to comply.

Librarian
12-20-2008, 2:30 PM
up, you'll fire an attorney and have him file a 44 USC 1983 action.

Would that be 42 USC 1983? 44 looks like a typo...
TITLE 42 > CHAPTER 21 > SUBCHAPTER I > § 1983

§ 1983. Civil action for deprivation of rights

Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress, except that in any action brought against a judicial officer for an act or omission taken in such officer’s judicial capacity, injunctive relief shall not be granted unless a declaratory decree was violated or declaratory relief was unavailable. For the purposes of this section, any Act of Congress applicable exclusively to the District of Columbia shall be considered to be a statute of the District of Columbia.

hoffmang
12-20-2008, 3:02 PM
Typo on my part. 42 USC 1983 is what I meant. It came right after my other typo in that sentence - fire should be hire.

-Gene

geeknow
12-22-2008, 8:36 AM
**UPDATED**

I showed up at the station on Sunday (a calendar day is a calendar day, right?), asked for the Sgt in charge, and waited. And waited. And waited. After a really long time (or until they decided that I really wasnt leaving), an officer called me up and said that he was the Sgt in charge. OK, moving in the right direction.

I outlined the steps that were explained to me, showed proof of following those steps (OK from the DA, OK from the DOJ, etc), and asked for my property.

He said that it doesnt work that way. Surprise, surprise. I informed him that I was not surprised to hear this as each and every person at HIS department had a different interpretation of "how it worked". I continued that, as he was in charge, his version of "how it works" certainly would be correct. Then, with pen in hand, I asked him how to get my firearm back.

Here's the steps;
1. get the OK from the DA - check
2. wait for case to conclude - check
3. get the OK from the DOJ - check
4. go to PD, locate detective that worked the case - WTF?
5. once said detective is located, surrender DOJ letter - WTF?
6. once validity of the letter is confirmed, and my identity confirmed (smells like a wants/warrants check), a "green" letter will be issued to me - WTF?
7. with said "green" letter, go and locate the property room, present letter, cross fingers, and receive what's left of my property.
8. he then stated that, per law, I only have 30 calendar days to recover my property, starting the day the DOJ letter was written - I am aware of this

9. and the best part for last ... "property" is only released Tues, Weds, Thurs between the hours of 12:30-4pm - WTF?

At this point, I informed him that, regardless of his departments policies, I intended to receive my property and as the State provided me a window of 30 calendar days, I expected no less from his department. Using their rules as an example, in this 30 day calendar period, his department only actually releases property for 14 days. What's worse, they only provide a 3-1/2 hr window per day in which to do so.

As I began to articulate what I thought was a solid argument that their policies in effect prohibited citizens from lawfully recovering property and neither complied with the spirit nor the letter of the law as pertains to the return of stolen propery, the Sgt decided to be helpful.

So, tomorrow @ 12:30p, I have an appt with both the Sgt and the Detective (who will have the "green paperwork" completed by then) who will accompany me to the property room and make sure that my property is returned.

While it seems that my stuff will be mine again shortly, I am extremely dissapointed with the departments policies. Had I not been so forceful in my assertation of my rights and their responsibilities, I am positive that I would never see my property again.

I will try to get a written copy of their department policy steps for further reveiw.

HowardW56
12-22-2008, 9:05 AM
Which agency is it? WHAT DEPARTMENT?


**UPDATED**

I showed up at the station on Sunday (a calendar day is a calendar day, right?), asked for the Sgt in charge, and waited. And waited. And waited. After a really long time (or until they decided that I really wasnt leaving), an officer called me up and said that he was the Sgt in charge. OK, moving in the right direction.

I outlined the steps that were explained to me, showed proof of following those steps (OK from the DA, OK from the DOJ, etc), and asked for my property.

He said that it doesnt work that way. Surprise, surprise. I informed him that I was not surprised to hear this as each and every person at HIS department had a different interpretation of "how it worked". I continued that, as he was in charge, his version of "how it works" certainly would be correct. Then, with pen in hand, I asked him how to get my firearm back.

Here's the steps;
1. get the OK from the DA - check
2. wait for case to conclude - check
3. get the OK from the DOJ - check
4. go to PD, locate detective that worked the case - WTF?
5. once said detective is located, surrender DOJ letter - WTF?
6. once validity of the letter is confirmed, and my identity confirmed (smells like a wants/warrants check), a "green" letter will be issued to me - WTF?
7. with said "green" letter, go and locate the property room, present letter, cross fingers, and receive what's left of my property.
8. he then stated that, per law, I only have 30 calendar days to recover my property, starting the day the DOJ letter was written - I am aware of this

9. and the best part for last ... "property" is only released Tues, Weds, Thurs between the hours of 12:30-4pm - WTF?

At this point, I informed him that, regardless of his departments policies, I intended to receive my property and as the State provided me a window of 30 calendar days, I expected no less from his department. Using their rules as an example, in this 30 day calendar period, his department only actually releases property for 14 days. What's worse, they only provide a 3-1/2 hr window per day in which to do so.

As I began to articulate what I thought was a solid argument that their policies in effect prohibited citizens from lawfully recovering property and neither complied with the spirit nor the letter of the law as pertains to the return of stolen propery, the Sgt decided to be helpful.

So, tomorrow @ 12:30p, I have an appt with both the Sgt and the Detective (who will have the "green paperwork" completed by then) who will accompany me to the property room and make sure that my property is returned.

While it seems that my stuff will be mine again shortly, I am extremely dissapointed with the departments policies. Had I not been so forceful in my assertation of my rights and their responsibilities, I am positive that I would never see my property again.

I will try to get a written copy of their department policy steps for further reveiw.

geeknow
12-22-2008, 9:13 AM
Which agency is it? WHAT DEPARTMENT?

Not going to name names publicly at this time. But, as it is a California police dept, it should abide by the rules set forth by the California DOJ.

DDT
12-22-2008, 9:23 AM
Good luck. Good to hear that they are going to try and help without you having to bring a lawyer down.

geeknow
12-22-2008, 9:35 AM
Good luck. Good to hear that they are going to try and help without you having to bring a lawyer down.

I am pretty sure that they would get spanked should their policy receive much scrutiny. I just tried to help them understand this.

I, personally am sad that they are "helping". This implies that they are doing something special for me. They shouldnt be. There should be no help required. The rules are clear. I am not asking for special consideration. I am going through all of this excercise for the guy in line behind me.

Vacaville
12-22-2008, 9:45 AM
Good job Geeknow. Sad thing is that this means that there have probably been many people in this department's jurisdiction who don't get their property back because they didn't go through all the hoops you have. These guys are treating a victim like a criminal, and then they wonder why people have issues with LE. Please let us know when you get the gun back and we'll all celebrate.

geeknow
12-22-2008, 9:51 AM
Good job Geeknow. Sad thing is that this means that there have probably been many people in this department's jurisdiction who don't get their property back because they didn't go through all the hoops you have. These guys are treating a victim like a criminal, and then they wonder why people have issues with LE. Please let us know when you get the gun back and we'll all celebrate.

Sadly, I KNOW there are many others in the same spot as me. The Property officer told me so. If this isnt a clear indication that their policy is full of the south end of a noth bound mule, i dont know what is.

hoffmang
12-22-2008, 10:20 AM
The one key rule dealing with bureaucracy or customer service; the squeeky wheel that can hold them accountable gets the service. Taking notes means holding them accountable. Asking for supervisor is the same.

-Gene

geeknow
12-22-2008, 10:44 AM
The one key rule dealing with bureaucracy or customer service; the squeeky wheel that can hold them accountable gets the service. Taking notes means holding them accountable. Asking for supervisor is the same.

-Gene

True, as is the reverse. When dealing with bureaucracy, unless you make a stink, nothing gets done.

Sad.

Matt C
12-22-2008, 12:18 PM
Just saw this, but it looks like you are getting your stuff back. I had to jump through the same hoops (worse actually) and then pay a $60 "administrative" fee for each gun that I was picking up. This after the guns were taken from me for no good reason by the same department holding them. Did I mention I already had a COURT ORDER for them to release my guns? And at 20+ guns the fees add up... Anyway just be glad they are helping you now, they really don't have too and they don't have much to lose by screwing you.

JDay
12-22-2008, 3:23 PM
Just saw this, but it looks like you are getting your stuff back. I had to jump through the same hoops (worse actually) and then pay a $60 "administrative" fee for each gun that I was picking up. This after the guns were taken from me for no good reason by the same department holding them. Did I mention I already had a COURT ORDER for them to release my guns? And at 20+ guns the fees add up... Anyway just be glad they are helping you now, they really don't have too and they don't have much to lose by screwing you.

I would have raised hell had a PD charged me $1200 to get my property back that was illegally confiscated. And yes I know you went through a lot just to get it back but letting them get away with this kind of stuff just lets them know that they can.

Fjold
12-22-2008, 3:33 PM
Take a lockable case with you so that they can't give you any grief about how you are going to transport it.

becxltoo984
12-22-2008, 3:41 PM
Daily calls to the detective who handled the case !

Salty
12-22-2008, 4:14 PM
Imagine if they acted this way every time someone tried to claim a stolen car, or bike (both of which I have claimed and was in and out in under 15 minutes).

jtv3062
12-22-2008, 4:19 PM
Man, I feel lucky.

I had a pistol stolen (well a few actually) while I was living in Fremont, Ca.

5 or so years go by and I get call from the Fremont Police saying one of my pistols has been recoved by another local police department. The Fremont cop gave me the phone number of a cop in the other city and said to call them to arrange to pick up my pistol. He didn't know which pistol had been recovered at this time.

So I call the other police department and get a very nice Sgt who says "It's a Desert Eagle, 50 cal I think. Come up and get it."

And that's what I did. No hassles, just had to show my ID to prove who I was.

It sounds like I was pretty lucky. The biggest hassle was the original call from Fremont PD came in the middle of the night. When I asked the cop why he was calling me at 3am he said "Because that's when I work."

I feel luck also. My glock was stolen from my apartment in Antioch, a few months goes by and I get a call from APD to come and get it. this was back in 93-4.

man good luck Geeknow.

Matt C
12-23-2008, 11:24 AM
I would have raised hell had a PD charged me $1200 to get my property back that was illegally confiscated. And yes I know you went through a lot just to get it back but letting them get away with this kind of stuff just lets them know that they can.

And what would you (or I) do about it exactly?

HowardW56
12-23-2008, 11:26 AM
And what would you (or I) do about it exactly?

I would pay the $1200.00 and then file a claim with the city...

Sniper3142
12-23-2008, 5:02 PM
Maybe you should have made the return of your legally owned property a requirement for your testimony in the case.

It seems like some POS LE people like to screw with the firearm owning public.

Maybe they need a reminder that they too are only human beings and citizens of this nation.

FreedomIsNotFree
12-23-2008, 11:58 PM
Maybe you should have made the return of your legally owned property a requirement for your testimony in the case.

It seems like some POS LE people like to screw with the firearm owning public.

Maybe they need a reminder that they too are only human beings and citizens of this nation.

A witness in a case does not have the ability to negotiate terms of their testimony. Once subpoenaed, he is legally required to testify and any funny business at that point could result in a contempt of court criminal charge.

Seesm
12-24-2008, 1:03 AM
Let us know what happens.... you need to NOT wait till the last minute and CALL EVERYONE (lawyers, DOJ... etc etc whoever can or may help you) You should not be HELPED... its your property that was legally aquired.. Done deal.

Bruce
12-24-2008, 6:27 AM
O.K. So what happened yesterday, geeknow?

geeknow
12-24-2008, 7:49 AM
So, issue #1 - the firearm was returned.

But the whole thing was, well, wierd.

I showed up at the appointed place and time, walked into the main lobby..and was greeted by name on sight by an officer that I had never seen before in a city that i spend no time in. :TFH:

After a bit of paperwork shuffling, they brought my gun up and handed it over. Well, most of it anyway. First thing i noticed missing was the mag. When i asked about it, they said that was all they had. I mentioned that, as I was sitting in the courtroom at the time of trial, I couldnt help but notice the part where all parties agreed that the gun was loaded when they found it. If it was loaded then, then they should have the mag. Off they went and came back with (ta-da) my mag. During that time, I had the chance to clear the weapon and put it in my lockable case (thanks, whoever suggested that).
Another surprise. No springs or firing pin. When I asked about this, they stated that it was SOP to take those parts out for examination by their firearms people in preparation for trial. I didn't challenge this policy as I am not 100%, but I dont think the springs will tell you more than the barrel (which was intact). OK, so where's the springs? Off they go and return with a little envelope clearly labeled with all my parts.

While it is only my gut, I do believe that the red carpet was rolled out for me and the process was streamlined to hustle me out the door. Further, I do believe that their policy regarding custody and return of firearms to their owners is designed to keep from returning those firearms, and if pressed to, return them in an inoperable status.

So, now that this part is over, I am going to do what I can to smooth the way for the guy in line behind me.

To all who offered advice, thank you.

Matt C
12-24-2008, 7:51 AM
I would pay the $1200.00 and then file a claim with the city...

You really think they would pay on a claim after following department procedures approved by their in house council? No way. Then there is small claims, which is a joke, I would lose. So now I'd be out another $1k is time and fees with nothing to show for it but another slap in the face. No thanks.


Congrats to geeknow for getting his stuff back and not letting them screw him more than absolutely required.

fairfaxjim
12-24-2008, 8:19 AM
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I'll repeat what I've always said.

LE Agencies, particularly those in metropolitan or urban areas, are at the agency level VERY anti civilian gun posession. It is a political thing, as the Chiefs are all political animals, appointed and serving at the whim of politicians. Politicians use removing guns and getting more police as their anti gang and crime mechanism. Police Chief gets more officers from the politicos and has to be anti-gun to keep his job. Department from Chief on down though command staff have become totally guns+civilians=(no job+no increased budget+no new officers). All of the leftist anti-gun politics in this state, and other large cities, has had a cumulitive effect on this. This becomes embeded in all of these silly little dept. policies. You can bet that since geeknow made such a fuss that he got through all thier little roadblocks, they will "fine tune" their policies to prevent that in the next case. Once they have their hand on a firearm, it is (to quote the great COPS line) "another gun off the street" and they don't want to give it back. They really don't care that there are definite procedures and time limits in the existing Penal Code. The DOJ BS of having to get another background check to release the gun is one of these "policies" that has come about to further this agenda.

To take this beyond returning legally owned property, and you will find that a lot of what we believe is lack of knowledge on the part of street LEO's regarding firearms laws is really the result of this LE agency anti-civilian firearm politial agenda. LEO's are actually trained that ANY civilain in posession of a firearm is a danger to officer safety, that they must be disarmed immediately and completey, and that pretty much anything goes in accomplishing that. This has been going on long enough now that many of the senior officers that used to know different are now retired or in the command staff (where they have to follow the agenda to keep moving up). A few officers come to the job with gun and gun law knowledge, but many are there for the job, and only know what they are trained. And, believe me, they are trained to "get that gun off the street."

Fire in the Hole
12-24-2008, 8:28 AM
fairfaxjim: I think you pretty much nailed it. I speak as one of the "old school salts", that the dept. was glad to see retire, as I with my allies would speak up, when we were given fud or bs, having no fear of hindering our advancements. As the lead training instructor, I put together a training sylabus on current CCW laws, what defined a firearm as legal or illegal, etc. Many times I asked for permission to have an hour at training days to give this class. My request was always denied. As one manager told me point blankly: "Instruction on laws and procedures, comes from the top-down. Not from the bottom-up."

hoffmang
12-24-2008, 10:03 AM
You really think they would pay on a claim after following department procedures approved by their in house council? No way. Then there is small claims, which is a joke, I would lose. So now I'd be out another $1k is time and fees with nothing to show for it but another slap in the face. No thanks.


Congrats to geeknow for getting his stuff back and not letting them screw him more than absolutely required.

File a tort claims act claim with the State. Worst case is they don't pay you. If you do the filing work yourself you have a decent chance of actually recovering the bogus fees. Never be afraid to ask the various departments or courts for copies of example successful filings. It's basically a public records act request.

-Gene

45DAVID1
12-24-2008, 10:07 AM
One question... Since the gun was stolen so many years ago how do you know that the magazine recovered with the gun is actually your magazine? You made a big deal about it but for all we know that magazine was never yours. You should have taken the gun and bought another one.

ke6guj
12-24-2008, 10:25 AM
what are you saying, that the crook could have swapped out the OP's mag for a different one, and that since it could have been a different mag recovered, then the OP loses any rights to the mag that was with the gun.

It appears that the LEA was trying to play games with the OP, by first retaining the mag when they gave him the gun. Then, when questioned about it, they produced it. Then, they "forgot" to give him his bag of parts for the gun. Just smells fishy.

JDay
12-24-2008, 9:29 PM
One question... Since the gun was stolen so many years ago how do you know that the magazine recovered with the gun is actually your magazine? You made a big deal about it but for all we know that magazine was never yours. You should have taken the gun and bought another one.

Why? The magazine probably holds more than 10 rounds.

Librarian
12-24-2008, 11:10 PM
While it is only my gut, I do believe that the red carpet was rolled out for me and the process was streamlined to hustle me out the door. Further, I do believe that their policy regarding custody and return of firearms to their owners is designed to keep from returning those firearms, and if pressed to, return them in an inoperable status.

So, now that this part is over, I am going to do what I can to smooth the way for the guy in line behind me.

Congrats on persistence and getting through the maze. And who knows? Maybe you did make it easier for the next guy.

geeknow
12-25-2008, 7:47 AM
One question... Since the gun was stolen so many years ago how do you know that the magazine recovered with the gun is actually your magazine? You made a big deal about it but for all we know that magazine was never yours. You should have taken the gun and bought another one.

Regarding your question, the big clue for me was my initials that were engraved into the baseplate some 12 yrs ago by me.;)

geeknow
12-25-2008, 7:49 AM
Why? The magazine probably holds more than 10 rounds.

No, this never came into play.

HowardW56
12-25-2008, 7:51 AM
Now that you have retrieved your gun, are you going to tell us which agency had the gun?

geeknow
12-26-2008, 6:52 AM
Now that you have retrieved your gun, are you going to tell us which agency had the gun?

I dont think that would be prudent at this time. Yes, I did get my gun back, but this isnt over.

foxtrotuniformlima
12-26-2008, 9:07 AM
Glad you got it back. Sorry it was such a PITA. BTW, what kind of handgun is it ?

MrTenX
12-26-2008, 10:35 AM
Un effing believeable!
Is there any doubt we are not dealing with a bunch of tyrants throughout this state.

I can remember while working at Sherwood International in the 80's on a number of occassions people coming in with firearms in pieces still in PD evidence bags buying the parts they needed to reassemble them.

Thanks for sharing your story.

45DAVID1
12-26-2008, 10:43 AM
Regarding your question, the big clue for me was my initials that were engraved into the baseplate some 12 yrs ago by me.;)

Well then, it obviously was yours:D

geeknow
01-02-2009, 6:10 AM
So, this is turning into a world class mess.

After all of the nonsense that I had to go through to get my gun back, I found that it had been permantly rendered inoperable by the Police Dept.

I took this little gem to my smith to have him give it a thorough looking over (remember, the homies have had it for the last dozen years. do they have armorers?), and he found that the top half of the breech face had been pounded off with a punch, thus rendering the gun a freaking paperweight. The top half of the breech was included in the little envelope and cataloged on the outside. I must have missed it while i was arguing with them about my firing pin, springs, and mags. This sucks.

So to review. They delayed returning my property, then returned it minus mags, then returned the mags (after a hassle), then returned the parts (after another hassle), and somewhere along the way, destroyed my property.

Good job, Police.

OK guys, now what? let it go? pursue it further? I am out of bright ideas.
g

Afmo
01-02-2009, 6:34 AM
So, this is turning into a world class mess.

After all of the nonsense that I had to go through to get my gun back, I found that it had been permantly rendered inoperable by the Police Dept.

I took this little gem to my smith to have him give it a thorough looking over (remember, the homies have had it for the last dozen years. do they have armorers?), and he found that the top half of the breech face had been pounded off with a punch, thus rendering the gun a freaking paperweight. The top half of the breech was included in the little envelope and cataloged on the outside. I must have missed it while i was arguing with them about my firing pin, springs, and mags. This sucks.

So to review. They delayed returning my property, then returned it minus mags, then returned the mags (after a hassle), then returned the parts (after another hassle), and somewhere along the way, destroyed my property.

Good job, Police.

OK guys, now what? let it go? pursue it further? I am out of bright ideas.
g

sue for the value of the gun.

yellowfin
01-02-2009, 6:41 AM
Sue for value of gun, time of trouble (your wages times amount of time spent on this), and punitive damages.

geeknow
01-02-2009, 6:41 AM
sue for the value of the gun.

Yeah, that is one thing to do. Problem with that is that while the "value" of the gun isnt tremendous, that is not what I'm "out". What I have been deprived of in its most base sense is what the police are there to provide. The problem is the policy. How do you "sue" that?

Afmo
01-02-2009, 6:44 AM
Yeah, that is one thing to do. Problem with that is that while the "value" of the gun isnt tremendous, that is not what I'm "out". What I have been deprived of in its most base sense is what the police are there to provide. The problem is the policy. How do you "sue" that?

unfortunately, i don't think you do "sue" that. My opinion is that at this point, since the gun is destroyed, its about getting every cent you can from the PD and hoping that it goes smoother for the next guy.

Of course, depending on how into it you want to get, you could file a lawsuit challenging the policy, though on what grounds i'm not sure.

yellowfin
01-02-2009, 6:46 AM
Press charges for vandalism, perhaps?

Afmo
01-02-2009, 6:52 AM
Press charges for vandalism, perhaps?

If it were me, i don't think I'd attempt this route. It probably wouldn't go anywhere since they'd probably claim that it was "rendered inoperable during the course of the investigation" or something to that effect.

Fire in the Hole
01-02-2009, 7:03 AM
Before you can sue, if you decide to go that route; you must file a "Board of Control Claim" at least that's what the state calls it. Your city or county may have another word for it. Basically it's a form you obtain from the city that seeks reimbursement (not punative damages) for damage done to your property at the hands of a city or county employee. Include photos of your damaged gun, along with a letter from your gunsmith stating the specific damages. The city will either pay up, or deny the claim. It may take awhile to process. Then you can sue in small claims court. You will have to file a discovery motion through the court to the PD demanding to know the name(s) of the person(s) that altered your gun, and under who's direction/authority. This process will require patience, and a little work. It kind of boils down the the value of the gun and the value of your time. Plus court costs if you loose.

Tarn_Helm
01-02-2009, 7:08 AM
I new someone who went to pick up a gun from an LASO station with court orders to have it released to him. He is an attorney for a state LE agency. The SO refused to release the brand new Kimber to him. He actually had to use his cel phone to call the judge and explain the situation to him. Well, the judge, who had signed the order, wasn't too pleased and ended up talking to the deputy who was refusing to comply with his orders. Needless to say, the gun was finally released but, even then, the SO tried to keep the mags and holdster because they were not named in the judges orders. Well, the judge did speak to the property clerk again and the attorney finally recieved everything. Remember, he had the judges numbers preprogramed in his phone, he was an attorney for a state LEA, he had a court order to release property to him and the LASO still refused to release it until the judge personally talked with some deputy who was probably threatened jail time unless he complied with the orders. We have a great legal system, don't we?

If they illegally destroy your property, I wonder if you could sue them for damages?

Good luck!

If you give undereducated average human beings a gun, a club, a badge, and orders to protect and serve, this is what you get, because (let's all say it now together) "POWER TENDS TO CORRUPT, AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY."

The power of life and death over another person IS absolute power, in case you are wondering how to interpret that phrase.

You get lots of folks who hear the first part "protect" and ignore the second part "SERVE."

The next thing you know, they think the "SERVE" part refers to EVERYONE BUT THEM, i.e., we should serve their needs rather than the other way around.

Power and human nature:
http://www.guncite.com/gun_control_gcnobody.html
http://www.gunscholar.org/gunban.htm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-taU9d26wT4

It is about power and human nature, not the legal system.

The same thing that happens when a person gets drunk tends to happen when he gets drunk with POWER.

He thinks he's more authoritative, smarter, better looking, and more (fill in the blank) than everyone else who is now beneath him.

It's human nature.
:(

As much as I respect law enforcement, LEOs are only human.
:shrug:

Good luck.

You'll need a lot of it.
:(

geeknow
01-02-2009, 7:16 AM
I do feel obligated to do something. I'm just not sure what. Like I said somewhere in an above post, part of this excersise was to get my stuff back (check), the other part was to make this easier for the guy in line behind me. I havent done this part yet.

So, the fact is I am out one gun courtesy of the police. If I let this slide, this situation could arise again as an argument that the policy is valid, as evidenced by compliance, if challenged again down the road. I do not want this. But I want to be smart about it.

Filing a claim with the city will get it on record, but is this the correct fist step administratively? I think that this needs to be in front of the city council in order to affect policy change. Or is it better to pursue this through the city atty?

Fire in the Hole
01-02-2009, 7:25 AM
I do feel obligated to do something. I'm just not sure what. Like I said somewhere in an above post, part of this excersise was to get my stuff back (check), the other part was to make this easier for the guy in line behind me. I havent done this part yet.

So, the fact is I am out one gun courtesy of the police. If I let this slide, this situation could arise again as an argument that the policy is valid, as evidenced by compliance, if challenged again down the road. I do not want this. But I want to be smart about it.

Filing a claim with the city will get it on record, but is this the correct fist step administratively? I think that this needs to be in front of the city council in order to affect policy change. Or is it better to pursue this through the city atty?


You have to do things in proper order. If you went to the city council, the first thing that they would ask is if you had already exhausted the channels I've laid out for you. If not they will refer it back down, and this will cost you more time, and make it appear that you don't know what you are doing.

brassburnz
01-02-2009, 7:43 AM
Sounds to me like you've been deprived of property without due process. This is a violation of your civil rights under the 4th Amendment of the Constitution. Call the ACLU! :thumbsup: I'm sure they'd be willing to help.:eek:

Kid Stanislaus
01-02-2009, 7:46 AM
......the next issue was that only one person had the keys to the property room and he was on vacation.


Give a small person just a little bit of authority and they'll tell a bald faced lie to support if just about every time.

MP301
01-02-2009, 8:05 AM
Sorry this happened to you, but I really really hope you dont just let it go. This kind of stuff really pisses me off and if it happened to me, I would lock onto it like a pitbull. Wrong is wrong and way wrong is not acceptable!

What they did was not legal in any way shape or form that I can see. It might be Policy, but a policy can be illegal and will continue until someone calls them on it. I would even go so far as to look at public records and find others who have had the same treatment that you got and then look into lawsuit.

Maybe you may even get some help from somewhere on an obvious anti gun issue, who knows.

Even small claims cases are cheap to file, you can do it yourself and they have to show up to court or lose...and are not allowed to bring an attorney You can Subpeana everything you need records wise during the process...they will help you at the court. Who do you sue? Everyone that had anything to do with this problem. Dont just sue the Police Dept, sue the individuals...be a PITA to them as much as possible.

I think I would even consider filing a police report, with that agency, for the damage to your gun. The are legally obligated to investigate it and probably wont which may be more in your favor. Whats the worse that could happen? Just being a major pain may be enough for them to knock their crap off.

Ok, i feel better now... give em a hard way to go my friend! I am generally very pro law enforcement and i think thats why this tweaks me so much..

M1A Rifleman
01-02-2009, 8:09 AM
I may be wrong, but I hunch that the PD may figures that since it was stolen, it is then a "crime gun", which I think requires destruction under a recent State Law that was created to prevent guns from being auctioned off or sold to dealers by PD Depts. They figure that you would have received compensation from your insurance etc. What I am sure of is they will make it difficult to get anywhere on the idea that you will just give up and go away. I like the idea of filing a claim with the City first. Get the Claims form from either PD or the City Clerk as you should have enough information that the firearm was yours and PD did destroy. With luck, you wil get apyment and can purchase a new gun.

geeknow
01-02-2009, 8:14 AM
I am generally very pro law enforcement and i think thats why this tweaks me so much..

Me too. That's why this is such a stinker. I was talking about this to one of my local LEO's. From his standpoint, any gun off the street is a good thing. While he recognized that occasionally one of the "good guys" gets rolled up in the mess, they see this as a benefit big picture wise.

So, "for the good of the people", they are willing to sacrifice the rights of the same.

How benevolent.:mad:

geeknow
01-02-2009, 8:16 AM
[QUOTE=M1A Rifleman;1845028]I may be wrong, but I hunch that the PD may figures that since it was stolen, it is then a "crime gun", QUOTE]

Maybe, but the gun was found on the person of the bad guy, NOT used in a crime. This was the sole reason the the DA allowed the gun to be released in the first place.

Fire in the Hole
01-02-2009, 8:47 AM
I may be wrong, but I hunch that the PD may figures that since it was stolen, it is then a "crime gun", which I think requires destruction under a recent State Law that was created to prevent guns from being auctioned off or sold to dealers by PD Depts. They figure that you would have received compensation from your insurance etc. What I am sure of is they will make it difficult to get anywhere on the idea that you will just give up and go away. I like the idea of filing a claim with the City first. Get the Claims form from either PD or the City Clerk as you should have enough information that the firearm was yours and PD did destroy. With luck, you wil get apyment and can purchase a new gun.


Not exactly so. The LE can determine a gun to be a "Crime Gun" as you call it, but they have to petition the court for an order of destruction based upon public nusiance. They usually do this semi-annualy, and many guns are on this list at the same time. With the judge's signature, they ship them off for a melt or grind down. They don't just bang on them, and then keep them.

Blue
01-02-2009, 8:52 AM
They should destroy the criminal not the gun! :mad:

yellowfin
01-02-2009, 8:57 AM
If you give undereducated average human beings a gun, a club, a badge, and orders to protect and serve, this is what you get, because (let's all say it now together) "POWER TENDS TO CORRUPT, AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY."

The power of life and death over another person IS absolute power, in case you are wondering how to interpret that phrase.

You get lots of folks who hear the first part "protect" and ignore the second part "SERVE."

The next thing you know, they think the "SERVE" part refers to EVERYONE BUT THEM, i.e., we should serve their needs rather than the other way around.

Power and human nature:
http://www.guncite.com/gun_control_gcnobody.html
http://www.gunscholar.org/gunban.htm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-taU9d26wT4

It is about power and human nature, not the legal system.

The same thing that happens when a person gets drunk tends to happen when he gets drunk with POWER.

He thinks he's more authoritative, smarter, better looking, and more (fill in the blank) than everyone else who is now beneath him.

It's human nature.
:(

As much as I respect law enforcement, LEOs are only human.
:shrug:

Good luck.

You'll need a lot of it.
:(
Which is why we need official oppression laws in this state to keep them in line. Misguided destruction or power trip, either way needs to be punished under law. A badge or nameplate needs to stop being an exemption from the law-- destroy someone's property, you pay for and/or go to jail, regardless of what title is in front of your first name.

AKman
01-02-2009, 8:58 AM
They should destroy the criminal not the gun! :mad:

+1e6

Blue
01-02-2009, 9:08 AM
What kind of gun was it anyways?

jtv3062
01-02-2009, 9:10 AM
Not exactly so. The LE can determine a gun to be a "Crime Gun" as you call it, but they have to petition the court for an order of destruction based upon public nuisance. They usually do this semi-annually, and many guns are on this list at the same time. With the judge's signature, they ship them off for a melt or grind down. They don't just bang on them, and then keep them.

So it sounds like the op irritated someone at the Pd.
In my opinion the Pd purposely damaged your firearm before giving it back to you. If the PD had gone through proper channels your firearm would have been melted with a group firearms.

I would sue based on the information fire in the hole gave
If you shot that firearm would it have caused you bodily harm?

ke6guj
01-02-2009, 10:06 AM
Even small claims cases are cheap to file, you can do it yourself and they have to show up to court or lose...and are not allowed to bring an attorney You can Subpeana everything you need records wise during the process...they will help you at the court. Who do you sue? Everyone that had anything to do with this problem. Dont just sue the Police Dept, sue the individuals...be a PITA to them as much as possible.

IIRC, if the PD has an attorney on the payroll, the attorney can represent the PD in court. They just can't go out and hire an attorney to represent them for just this case.

bohoki
01-02-2009, 10:19 AM
i'd really like to know the make and model of firearm

it shouldnt have any bearing on the case but if it turns out to be a raven .25 it would tell me how far you should go

if you wish to keep that private i can understand

could you answer these?

is the company that made your gun still in business?

what caliber is it?

Fire in the Hole
01-02-2009, 10:44 AM
IIRC, if the PD has an attorney on the payroll, the attorney can represent the PD in court. They just can't go out and hire an attorney to represent them for just this case.

It's called the City Attorney's Office.

glockman19
01-02-2009, 10:53 AM
You're going to have to keep moving up the chain until you get someone fired. I'd suggest going back and bringing pen and paper. Get the person's name and number then ask exactly who has to give which exact paperwork on which day and that person's number. State very clearly that if they destroy your property due to their own foul up, you'll fire an attorney and have him file a 44 USC 1983 action. I'd suggest sending a letter certified mail or fedex/ups very promptly outlining the problem, the facts, and the threat ASAP. If you have written proof and proof of delivery you'll stand a very good chance of them either complying or recovering from them and teaching them a lesson.

-Gene

Additionally, I'd call the ATF and tell them the gun has not been returned. Your PD is violating Federal Law. Hello Conscent Decree.

good Luck

ke6guj
01-02-2009, 10:58 AM
Additionally, I'd call the ATF and tell them the gun has not been returned. Your PD is violating Federal Law. Hello Conscent Decree.

good Luck

read in full. OP did get the gun returned, but apparantly the PD damaged the gun.

IGOTDIRT4U
01-02-2009, 11:06 AM
Makes me wonder if the firearm in question went on vacation with the detective or if maybe they jumped the gun and destroyed it already

That's what I was thinking, too.

ProlificARProspect
01-02-2009, 11:06 AM
I think He should file for vandalism if they claim that it was "rendered inoperable during the course of the investigation or before", then they will open a can of worms. That would mean the charges of the criminal would have to be revised, from gun charge to only stolen property....since the gun was "inoperable" he only had a stolen piece of medal;)IMHO

You Sir have nothing to lose, they should handle this a lot better.

If it were me, i don't think I'd attempt this route. It probably wouldn't go anywhere since they'd probably claim that it was "rendered inoperable during the course of the investigation" or something to that effect.

Fire in the Hole
01-02-2009, 11:15 AM
I think He should file for vandalism if they claim that it was "rendered inoperable during the course of the investigation or before", then they will open a can of worms. That would mean the charges of the criminal would have to be revised, from gun charge to only stolen property....since the gun was "inoperable" he only had a stolen piece of medal;)IMHO

You Sir have nothing to lose, they should handle this a lot better.



That "Vandalism" report will end up in the round file so fast, there will be a giant sucking sound. The OP should just follow my simple and clear advice. But them I guess I'm biased.

Dr Rockso
01-02-2009, 11:17 AM
I took this little gem to my smith to have him give it a thorough looking over (remember, the homies have had it for the last dozen years. do they have armorers?), and he found that the top half of the breech face had been pounded off with a punch, thus rendering the gun a freaking paperweight.
I'm having a hard time visualizing what exactly they did to the gun, but if you can prove that the PD did it (and not the homies) I would think they'd have to acquiesce.

tyrist
01-02-2009, 11:51 AM
What you guys are complaining about is not law enforcement...it is the politicians of the city who put such procedures in place. Get the politicians changed out and then maybe the department can just follow state law (which would rule by the way).

Vacaville
01-02-2009, 12:26 PM
When all is said and done, go sell it back to them for $100 in one of their buybacks.

Ford8N
01-02-2009, 12:32 PM
What you guys are complaining about is not law enforcement...it is the politicians of the city who put such procedures in place. Get the politicians changed out and then maybe the department can just follow state law (which would rule by the way).

I agree, but during the Nuremberg trials, "following orders" was not a defense for what was right.

FreedomIsNotFree
01-02-2009, 4:40 PM
Before you can sue, if you decide to go that route; you must file a "Board of Control Claim" at least that's what the state calls it. Your city or county may have another word for it. Basically it's a form you obtain from the city that seeks reimbursement (not punative damages) for damage done to your property at the hands of a city or county employee. Include photos of your damaged gun, along with a letter from your gunsmith stating the specific damages. The city will either pay up, or deny the claim. It may take awhile to process. Then you can sue in small claims court. You will have to file a discovery motion through the court to the PD demanding to know the name(s) of the person(s) that altered your gun, and under who's direction/authority. This process will require patience, and a little work. It kind of boils down the the value of the gun and the value of your time. Plus court costs if you loose.


There is no discovery process in small claims actions. You are correct in that a "claim" must be submitted to the City/PD before civil action can commence...actually, I'm not sure if that is required in small claims court...I know for a fact that it is required in Superior Court civil actions that seek damages over the small claims limit.

Even if not required, I believe it would be a good move to sent a request for compensation to the City Attorney before filing anything to give them the opportunity to make it right. Just be sure to send the request via USPS certified mail with return receipt. Include a description of the issue along with your gunsmith's written statement that the gun has been rendered permanently inoperable.

Yankee Clipper
01-02-2009, 8:08 PM
Me too. That's why this is such a stinker. I was talking about this to one of my local LEO's. From his standpoint, any gun off the street is a good thing. While he recognized that occasionally one of the "good guys" gets rolled up in the mess, they see this as a benefit big picture wise.
So, "for the good of the people", they are willing to sacrifice the rights of the same.
How benevolent.:mad:
It's O.K. to screw some of the "good guys" so a firearm doesn't end up in the hands of of someone that "may be" a criminal? In what dark place does this "local LE" keep his head?
Geeknow you were victimized by the ‘perp’ that stole YOUR fire arm - your property!
You were victimized again by the local LE department that refused to return YOUR property after you got the O.K. from all the appropriate legal entities.
You were victimized again when they destroyed YOUR property.
I would suggest you take as many concurrent legal avenues to get your property replaced that are available to you. (You were required to jump through multiple concurrent hoops to acquire the appropriate release forms and then do practically the same thing with the local LE.)
In short, use all the tools at your disposal: THEY have, and will, used all theirs!

Experimentalist
01-02-2009, 10:04 PM
I'm confused as to the nature of the damage done to your firearm.

This is a handgun, correct? Semiauto? (it does take a magazine, so the answer is yes).

If by "breech face" you mean the portion of the slide that supports the case head, then why not just buy another slide? It may require some fitting, but it's not a lost cause.

If by "breech face" you mean part of the chamber, then why not just buy another barrel?

Can you elaborate on the mechanical condition of the gun (including make, model, etc.)?

I appreciate the broader issues surrounding this experience, and can appreciate your frustration. But looking at it purely from a gunsmithing perspective it seems salvageable.

salint
01-02-2009, 10:43 PM
He shouldn't have to buy anything for his gun because the police shouldn't have destroyed his property in the course of their investigation.

CABilly
01-03-2009, 5:18 AM
It sounds like the police broke the law by destroying your property within your 30-day recovery window. I'd work that angle with the DoJ (or whichever agency, someone mentioned FBI and color of law abuses?) while pushing for compensation.

At the very least, I hope you can get some heads rolling or cause someone some major greif. What will it take to get it through to them that you're an honest citizen and not a criminal?

Spyder
01-03-2009, 7:13 AM
Even if it WAS .25 Raven, the fact remains that the police destroyed his item. For some its about money and compensation. For some its about doing the right thing or righting wrongs.

hoffmang
01-03-2009, 7:58 AM
The OP needs to file a tort claims act claim immediately so that he can later sue the PD for the value of the firearm.

Though for unrelated purposes, this explains it pretty well:
http://www.pai-ca.org/pubs/522901.htm

-Gene

yellowfin
01-03-2009, 11:25 AM
At what point can it be taken to the next level, Gene? Definitely restoring our protagonist's property is the main objective, but also in getting the PD and anyone like them out of the habit of doing this and out of the mindset not only that they can get away with it but that they should even think it to be a good idea to try. There must be something more than "Oh well, write him a check and get him out of here."

SteveH
01-03-2009, 11:51 AM
Call the PD ask for the telephone number for "Risk Management" submitt your claim. This one is pretty clear cut.

SteveH
01-03-2009, 11:54 AM
If it were me, i don't think I'd attempt this route. It probably wouldn't go anywhere since they'd probably claim that it was "rendered inoperable during the course of the investigation" or something to that effect.

Vandalism is a specific intent crime people. Damage to property is only one of the elements of the crime. You have to meet them all for it to be vandalism.

Matt C
01-03-2009, 12:07 PM
Had I not been so forceful in my assertation of my rights and their responsibilities, I am positive that I would never see my property again.

Had you not pissed in their cheerios you would probably have a working gun. I can't say I blame you though. You just have to realize what a massive underdog you are when you are fighting city hall.

GuyW
01-03-2009, 12:28 PM
I may be wrong, but I hunch that the PD may figures that since it was stolen, it is then a "crime gun", which I think requires destruction under a recent State Law that was created to prevent guns from being auctioned off or sold to dealers by PD Depts.

Do you have a link to that law? There was a recent thread here about Orange County wasting resources by melting perfectly good guns...

.

hoffmang
01-03-2009, 12:35 PM
At what point can it be taken to the next level, Gene? Definitely restoring our protagonist's property is the main objective, but also in getting the PD and anyone like them out of the habit of doing this and out of the mindset not only that they can get away with it but that they should even think it to be a good idea to try. There must be something more than "Oh well, write him a check and get him out of here."

You have to show a pattern to go further. The best the OP can do is get a check for his actual damages. The Tort Claims claim will generally get an organizations legal guys to look at the situation and mail out a check.

-Gene

motorhead
01-03-2009, 12:45 PM
make sure you ask for replacement value at todays panic inflated prices. iirc, gene will know, you have to exhaust your administrative remedies before you sue big brother.

lostmytarget
01-03-2009, 8:25 PM
Hi fellas,
New guy here.
And lets be clear I don't know sheeeit about such things as this.

That said......

I would think the PD property room guy would simply state in a court room the following nonsense.

"Thats the way it came in here"
We didn't do any damage to his weapon. We dissasembled it. But thats the way we got it.

And you would have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. They were lying.
(At best.... Mistaken)

Hopefully. You have the data to refute that possibilty IF it were to come up.

I feel for you man. Ya got burned.

Twystd1

MP301
01-04-2009, 1:26 AM
IIRC, if the PD has an attorney on the payroll, the attorney can represent the PD in court. They just can't go out and hire an attorney to represent them for just this case.

I am under the impression that if you sue the "individual" involved person, that the PD's lawyer cant appear for them....but I am only going on regular folks..i dont know if gov employees are exempt

geeknow
01-05-2009, 7:49 AM
All,
Thanks for the advice, kind words, and the general feeling that I'm not alone in this.

I'll try to clear a few things up for those that have been following along.

Will the gun cause damage if used? - You bet. The part that was pounded off was the top half of the breech (this part was integrated into the frame). So, no workie - forever.

Is the comany that made it still around? - Negative, nor is the gun on the allowed list anymore.

Do I have the gun? - Yes, in several baggies.

When did the damage occur? - When I held the gun in court (Nov 08), the part had not been smashed out and the springs were there. I saw them. I worked the action. The firearm was destroyed (my word) when they "dissasmbled it as part of their investigation protocol" (their words) AFTER the verdict was reached.

I'm going to take some time, read the link provided by hoffmang, and work out a plan.

Last week I was frustrated and a little beat down about it. Upon further reflection, I have decided that this is total :censored: and this may wind up being my "cause".

Again, thanks!
g

rkt88edmo
01-05-2009, 8:04 AM
go get em

foxtrotuniformlima
01-05-2009, 8:55 AM
All,
Thanks for the advice, kind words, and the general feeling that I'm not alone in this.

I'll try to clear a few things up for those that have been following along.

Will the gun cause damage if used? - You bet. The part that was pounded off was the top half of the breech (this part was integrated into the frame). So, no workie - forever.

Is the comany that made it still around? - Negative, nor is the gun on the allowed list anymore.

Do I have the gun? - Yes, in several baggies.

When did the damage occur? - When I held the gun in court (Nov 08), the part had not been smashed out and the springs were there. I saw them. I worked the action. The firearm was destroyed (my word) when they "dissasmbled it as part of their investigation protocol" (their words) AFTER the verdict was reached.

I'm going to take some time, read the link provided by hoffmang, and work out a plan.

Last week I was frustrated and a little beat down about it. Upon further reflection, I have decided that this is total :censored: and this may wind up being my "cause".

Again, thanks!
g


Why will you not tell us what kind of gun it is ?

Usually when someone does this it's BS. Gun doesn't exist. Situation is made up. In others words, TROLL.

Put all of your advocates at ease and name the firearm and PD or just go away.

geeknow
01-05-2009, 9:05 AM
Why will you not tell us what kind of gun it is ?

Usually when someone does this it's BS. Gun doesn't exist. Situation is made up. In others words, TROLL.

Put all of your advocates at ease and name the firearm and PD or just go away.

DA Case# 08F06870
Court Case # 08WF1172

People of the State of CA vs. Rogelio Romero Espinosa

Huntington Beach, CA PD worked the case and destroyed my gun

Look up the details yourself if you dont believe me. I dont need to "prove" anything to you. In other words, I'm no troll and am offended at the insult quite frankly. As this is my thread. If you have nothing further to offer besides this, then please why dont you go away?

In fact, Mods please close down this thread. I can take it from here.
thanks

HowardW56
01-05-2009, 9:27 AM
DA Case# 08F06870
Court Case # 08WF1172

People of the State of CA vs. Rogelio Romero Espinosa

Huntington Beach, CA PD worked the case and destroyed my gun

Look up the details yourself if you dont believe me. I dont need to "prove" anything to you. In other words, I'm no troll and am offended at the insult quite frankly. As this is my thread. If you have nothing further to offer besides this, then please why dont you go away?

In fact, Mods please close down this thread. I can take it from here.
thanks

The last post asking for more information was a little strong, but you hadn't been forthcoming with any more information...

Good luck with your claim against the city...

Isn't there an exception to the roster requirement for the replacement of a firearm that was stolen?

Sig226
01-05-2009, 10:12 AM
DA Case# 08F06870
Court Case # 08WF1172

People of the State of CA vs. Rogelio Romero Espinosa

Huntington Beach, CA PD worked the case and destroyed my gun

Look up the details yourself if you dont believe me. I dont need to "prove" anything to you. In other words, I'm no troll and am offended at the insult quite frankly. As this is my thread. If you have nothing further to offer besides this, then please why dont you go away?

In fact, Mods please close down this thread. I can take it from here.
thanks


Go get em! Wish you all the best in this endeavor.

I respect your request, however I would ask you do not close this thread as some (most?) of us are behind you and anxiously await the next update...


Good luck!

eaglemike
01-05-2009, 11:16 AM
Why will you not tell us what kind of gun it is ?

Usually when someone does this it's BS. Gun doesn't exist. Situation is made up. In others words, TROLL.

Put all of your advocates at ease and name the firearm and PD or just go away.
Ummm, chill. Member since Nov 2008 and you are posting this? I've been reading this thread since it started. His choice to post info or not, and he did. Courtesy is always appreciated. Nuance is difficult to capture on the internet, but still - good gracious!

ZRX61
01-05-2009, 11:21 AM
When I was about 20 I worked on a fishing boat, bought a new knife in port one day & was stopped & seached under UK *SUS* law on the way back to the boat.
Duly charged with "posession of an offensive weapon" & got locked up for the night. Appeared in court the next morning & explained why I had the knife to the judge. He ordered the charge dropped & knife returned to me.
Walked over to the police station to get it & they coundn't find it. I was told to come back at 1pm when the arresting officer was on duty. That's when they found it in HIS locker.....
The stupid idiot actually tracked me down on the way to the boat & threatened to arrest me again "if I wasn't out of *his* town within 20 minutes".

FreedomIsNotFree
01-05-2009, 4:40 PM
Why will you not tell us what kind of gun it is ?

Usually when someone does this it's BS. Gun doesn't exist. Situation is made up. In others words, TROLL.

Put all of your advocates at ease and name the firearm and PD or just go away.

And just who do you think you are to be calling anyone a troll? You think you have been around here long enough to be telling anyone to leave? I mean, less than 30 posts in less than 3 months doesn't exactly scream credibility to me.

OnSightFirearms
01-05-2009, 4:50 PM
"Document this, bring a camcorder when you come to pick up your fire arm. "

Uh...yeah! DO NOT DO THIS...:rolleyes:

You will get nowhere and the "please turn off that camera!" conversation is gonna hijack your whole afternoon.

I might contact the Cheif of Detectives and or the DA...in writing...Certified/Registered mail. Don't for get to quantfy the weapon $$$ and politley demonstrate your desire and efforts to recoup,what the Police did such a fine job in recovering. LOL...Finally a good guy story....

Be elated NOT and as*hole...you'll catch more flies with honey....you know.

...just sayin' ...that's all.

Otherwise, good luck in your efforts. Sucks!

foxtrotuniformlima
01-05-2009, 4:54 PM
:sleep1:

eaglemike
01-05-2009, 5:04 PM
:sleep1:
speaking of trolls.............

Electric Factory
01-05-2009, 5:49 PM
Having been on vacation I just stumbled upon this thread and ready every single post. Mind blowing, depressing and worrisome. The OP's fate is potentially waiting for any one of us should we be unlucky enough to find ourselves in a similar situation.
I can't help but wonder what LEO's reading this thread think about a law abiding firearms enthusiast completely mugged by a legal system he supports. Check that, he wasn't mugged by a 'system'. He was mugged by each LE individual in the chain of events who made no distinction between the OP and a criminal.
Geeknow, I sincerely hope you find a way to recoup the value of your damaged property- and then some.

DedEye
01-05-2009, 6:06 PM
speaking of trolls.............

+1.

Go away.

Geeknow: good luck man. Reading this thread has my blood boiling and I want you to take this all the way.

M. Sage
01-05-2009, 7:05 PM
Why will you not tell us what kind of gun it is ?

Usually when someone does this it's BS. Gun doesn't exist. Situation is made up. In others words, TROLL.

Put all of your advocates at ease and name the firearm and PD or just go away.

He's got nearly 500 posts, and I recognize his name (without it coming up with a negative connotation), and no troll history. Odds of this thread being the result of someone trolling - very low.

BTW: Calling people out like that is rude, please don't do it. If he wants to tell us what was destroyed, he can, if he doesn't want to he doesn't have to. Be courteous to your fellow posters or don't post; them's the rules.

In fact, Mods please close down this thread.

Can do. Good hunting, and let us know how it turns out!