View Full Version : Police recovered my gun

07-31-2005, 11:49 PM
I just got a letter from a nearby police dept that said they had a revolver that the DOJ said was mine. My ex-wife made me sell of all my guns alittle over 25 yrs ago. She got the money - somehow the police got the gun & its still registered to me. What do I need to do & say to get it back?


08-01-2005, 3:10 AM
did you sell the gun to someone and then it got stolen from them and now you are trying to reclaim it as yours?

50 Freak
08-01-2005, 8:57 AM
If your wife sold the guns, regardless if she or you kept the money. They no longer belong to you. Registered or not.

Some poor smuck bought the gun. Never changed the registration. Probably got it stolen and now the cops are contacting you as your name was the last one associated with the gun.

If you know the smuck that bought the gun, I'd contact him and let him know where the gun is. He will probably have to register it in order to get it out of the pooky. Otherwise I'd never pick it up. Most likely it will be destroyed.

Think this over carefully. If you claim the gun to be yours, you will be claiming that the gun was yours and that you are the rightful owner (responsible for all things that may have happened and associated with this firearm). You sure you want to pick up a weapon with an unknown history?

08-01-2005, 9:02 AM
I didnt know they had a system to track handguns 25 years ago. http://calguns.net/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

08-01-2005, 9:25 AM
The old-fashioned way of tracking guns worked for the first new purchaser.

The agency involved checks with the manufacturer, who tells them whom it was shipped to (usually the wholesaler), who tells them whom they sold it to (usually an FFL), who has the records on whom they sold it to (usually the first purchaser). They can then sometimes track down the first new purchaser.

If the gun shop's gone out of business, they'll have sent their paperwork to the BATF(E), who can then look it up. Otherwise, they have to keep the records going back 20 years, and sometimes they keep them longer. There are often problems with paperwork stored in sub-optimal conditions, as it can get molded, mouse-nested, whatever.

Without a registration system like California's, the trail often goes cold after the first purchaser, as the gun can be sold in multiple private party transactions, often with no paperwork at all.

Even if it's sold PPT across states, there's no way the BATFE can know who sent and who received it unless the first buyer can tell them the details. The receiving FFL will have the paperwork, but there's no link to them from the original seller, at that point.

This is my understanding of how it works. Any corrections are appreciated.


08-01-2005, 6:29 PM

I saw you also post the same topic on rec.guns - or at least I think that's you?


08-02-2005, 12:48 PM
The gun was found in a room w/a poor soul that had killed themself, the gun wasn't used in the incident, the family didn't want the gun & gave to it the police in 2001, the police were cleaning out the evidence rm & called me. They called me a while ago but only asked questions. They are now looking into the legalities of returning the gun to me. I have the DOJ gun release app filled out & ready to go just as soon as the case is closed.
Thanx 4 all the replies.