Missing Car, Stolen Rifle, What Next?


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Spiggy
January 6, 2006, 01:10 AM
yup, my genius of a freind had his rifle and ammo packed and ready to go to the range with me today, when early this morning we found his CAR WAS MISSING.

Well, we called the police and they gave us the mechanical BS and we really thought the car was stolen! after putting up some stuff the police just sat aruond with their thumbs in their mouths.

As it turned out, my freind's dad took the car out the night before and left the lights on... the battery went out and his dad called a towtruck to take it to the local garage to have the car looked at. The Mechanics opened the trunk for some reason and uncovered a Mosin-Nagant M44 and freaked out... what made it worse was a locked green case of ammunition... which according to the mechanics, they thought was a bomb.

Long story short, the police went and confiscated my freind's gun and ammo... and they wont give it back. What do we do now?

Small notes:
The rifle was stored disassembled with the appropriate locks on, the ammo crate was also locked and the parts were stored in a seperate locked box also in the trunk.

Our state is CA and if you're gonna bash us for that, despite THR rules, I'm gonna have to ask you to get bent.

Added note:
This is where the interesting part starts... the police did not leave any forms or documents stating the rifle was confiscated... HMMM!

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Sindawe
January 6, 2006, 01:22 AM
Our state is CA and if you're gonna bash us for that, despite THR rules, I'm gonna have to ask you to get bent.Well, I've been told several times that I rather twisted individual, and thats sorta like being bent. So can I bash? :D

Just my opinion, but several things that should be addressed.

1. Regarding the cops refusing to give back the weapon and ammo. Its Lawyer time, one who will go after the cost of hiring him to get your friends property back.

2. Who holds title to the car that was borrowed and died? If not the father, what the frell is he doing borrowing his kids car w/o telling him? If the father, why is the kid storing his weapon in the car?

3. Why on earth would the mechanics need to get into the trunk for a dead battery, unless the battery has been relocated there. Sounds to me like its time to find a new shop AND let the old one know why they no longer have a customer.

Good luck on getting the rifle back. Write off the ammo.

odysseus
January 6, 2006, 01:28 AM
What REASON are the police telling you as to why they are not releasing the rifle (YOUR PROPERTY) to you? They better have a good one. Do they want some better proof it is yours? They are probably running the numbers to see if it stolen.

Regarding:
3. Why on earth would the mechanics need to get into the trunk for a dead battery, unless the battery has been relocated there. Sounds to me like its time to find a new shop AND let the old one know why they no longer have a customer.

Many european cars, like most model BMWs have the battery in the trunk from the factory. It actually is the better place to have it. :D

Spiggy
January 6, 2006, 01:28 AM
police have not said anything, they're still picking their noses

the vehicle is a Honda accord

right, I'm analyzing the situation, I'm open to lawyer referals if you all have any.

the car belons to my freind, the father was just borrowing it... and like any responsible father that forgets to charge the battery, took it to get it fixed instead of... *cough* Jumper cables

modifiedbrowning
January 6, 2006, 01:40 AM
Lawyer up.

odysseus
January 6, 2006, 01:44 AM
police have not said anything, they're still picking their noses

I am always curious about that when I have heard of this. Acutally it's not uncommon to have to wait a little time with departments, and I doubt a lawyer would do much since it has been only +-24hours. If he goes down to claim his property at the police station, what are they saying? They don't have it? They aren't saying anything? Hmmm...

Kim
January 6, 2006, 02:54 AM
Why did they take the rifle and ammo. What law was broken. Sounds like the police stole your friends property. I'd sue the mechanic place for your pain and suffering or something.

TarpleyG
January 6, 2006, 10:07 AM
The squeaky wheel gets the grease. Have your friend bug the ever-living ****** out of them and they will have no choice but to give it back.

Greg

benEzra
January 6, 2006, 10:43 AM
Point out to the police that the rifle was illegally confiscated, and that theft of a firearm is a Federal felony. Promise to report the theft to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms if the firearm is not returned, so then they'll be not only on the hook for theft of a firearm, but possession of stolen property.

Would be even better if you could have a lawyer point this out to them, incorporating citations from the relevant Federal statutes.

HankB
January 6, 2006, 10:54 AM
Long story short, the police went and confiscated my freind's gun and ammo... and they wont give it back. What do we do now?Report the gun and ammo as stolen - which they apparently were.

armoredman
January 6, 2006, 10:59 AM
Report the gun and ammo as stolen - which they apparently were.
Ditto - lawyer. Move.

Molon Labe
January 6, 2006, 10:59 AM
Is it just me, or does it sound like there's more to the story?

bruss01
January 6, 2006, 12:53 PM
What kind of ignoramus pays for a $60 tow instead of jumping the car themselves?

Do you have any proof the cops took the gun? Did they admit this, or is this strictly the word of the shop guys? Maybe the shop guys took the rifle and made up a story about the cops taking it.

I hear the recommendations about "lawyering up". If you're like most hardworking people, you can ill afford $2000 in legal fees to recover an $80 gun. Some cop somewhere will be enjoying that Mosin-Nagant - that's why no paper trail was left. "Rifle, what rifle would that be, sir?" Yes this sucks, but life isn't fair. My advice, the friends father (who is responsible for this whole mess) buys his kid a new Mosin - Path of least resistance, and $80 puts the whole affair behind you all in the most efficient manner. The cops know this and some of them do exploit the economics of the situation.

Camp David
January 6, 2006, 01:04 PM
Is it just me, or does it sound like there's more to the story?
The part about mechanics going into the trunk "for some reason" to fix a battery makes me leery about validity of the story...most car trunks lock and one needs key to open it... if I stored a rifle in my trunk I would lock it in addition to covering weapon with blanket or some such... so I think the story needs more detail...anyway...seems that "freind's dad" is the liable party here as it was he who took car to mechanic... make "freind's dad" get gun back from police!!!!!!

ccw007
January 6, 2006, 01:29 PM
Is it just me, or does it sound like there's more to the story?

I too cannot help to think there is more to this story.

Otherguy Overby
January 6, 2006, 02:28 PM
I don't know for sure about current Honda Accords, but they used to be sold with a special key for service people that would only work for the door lock and ignition. It would not open the glove compartment or trunk. There was also a key lock on the truck release that could not be locked/unlocked with said special key.

Molon Labe
January 6, 2006, 02:45 PM
Here are the parts that are bothering me:

As it turned out, my freind's dad took the car out the night before and left the lights on... the battery went out and his dad called a towtruck to take it to the local garage to have the car looked at.I've done this a number of times. Each time I just jump started it. Why didn't the tow truck driver jump start it? Why did he take it to a garage?

The Mechanics opened the trunk for some reason and uncovered a Mosin-Nagant M44 and freaked out... what made it worse was a locked green case of ammunition... which according to the mechanics, they thought was a bomb.Oh, come now. First of all, a Mosin is not an intimating firearm, especially one that's disassembled. Sorry to stereotype, but I couldn't imagine a car mechanic freaking out over the sight of a disassembled C&R rifle. Secondly, after seeing the rifle a reasonable person would assume the crate contains ammunition, not a "bomb."

Long story short, the police went and confiscated my freind's gun and ammo... and they wont give it back.Sorry, but the police are not going to move someone's car because someone says it might contain a bomb. At the very least they would need a search warrant. And they would certainly need more evidence than someone saying, "In the trunk there was a box next to an old-looking, disassembled gun. I bet there was a bomb in the box!" And if the police did think there was a bomb in it, they would never move the car; they would call the bomb squad.

This story is ridiculous. :rolleyes: You need to get your facts straight.

ccw007
January 6, 2006, 03:22 PM
I don't know for sure about current Honda Accords, but they used to be sold with a special key for service people that would only work for the door lock and ignition. It would not open the glove compartment or trunk. There was also a key lock on the truck release that could not be locked/unlocked with said special key.

A Toyota I had had this key, but it also had a trunk release button in the car. It kind of rules out any good the key would do. I guess they figured the theifs would not figure this out :scrutiny:

Desertdog
January 6, 2006, 03:24 PM
What kind of ignoramus pays for a $60 tow instead of jumping the car themselves?
An ignoramus that has AAA towning and no knowledge of how a car works. The tow truck driver would get more for a tow than a jump, so why provide information that a jump was all that was needed?

Spiggy
January 6, 2006, 04:32 PM
New Updates!

my freind's mom recieved a phonecall from the "police" stating that they currently have the firearm. She (anti-gun) has no idea what's going on and just found out my freind stored a rifle in his trunk.

my freind did not recieve any paperwork whatsoever about the confiscated firearm.

Why the hulluva would a technician open the trunk for a battery replacement when the battery is in the front... needless to ask when it came to wheel alignment

his dad is not very bright

fairfax1
January 6, 2006, 05:41 PM
A Toyota I had had this key, but it also had a trunk release button in the car. It kind of rules out any good the key would do. I guess they figured the theifs would not figure this out :scrutiny:

If you take your main car key, insert in into the trunk lock, and turn it left (not right like you would to open the trunk) it will lock and prevent the trunk release button from working. The Valet key then cannot get into the trunk at all.:cool:

ccw007
January 6, 2006, 05:42 PM
If you take your main car key, insert in into the trunk lock, and turn it left (not right like you would to open the trunk) it will lock and prevent the trunk release button from working. The Valet key then cannot get into the trunk at all.:cool:

I guess you can tell I never read the owner's manual :D

QuickDraw
January 6, 2006, 10:44 PM
I'm sorry,I can't believe that many people "don't
know whats going on".
So when he calls the cops up,what do they say?
Nothing,as in silence?
They must say something.

QuickDraw

Spiggy
January 7, 2006, 12:38 AM
I found a temporary lawyer(my uncle), we will be grabbing my freind and going to the police station tommorow, then we'll be going to the garage from where the car was being worked on.

Unfortunately my freind takes after his dad and is also not very bright (I think the term was sheeple?)

Now if this happened to me, I would've marched there with a pitchfork and donuts immediately

Thanks for the input guys

bruss01
January 7, 2006, 12:26 PM
Spiggy,

You're a little light on the details, friend. When posting, I take into account the obvious questions that those who read the post might ask, and try to answer them in advance. I always appreciate it when others do the same, and so far you're not demonstrating that this is the way you think when making a post.

For instance, you said the cops called, admitted they have the rifle. OK. So that rules out theft and lies by the shop guys. So what did they say - "big misunderstanding, come by and pick it up anytime?" or "If you're wondering where your rifle went, we confiscated it. You'll never see it again. Goodbye."

If you're going to tell the story, for pete's sake, TELL THE STORY!

As an aside, I never take a vehicle to be worked on (where the vehicle will be out of my direct line of sight) unless it has been emptied of all personal posessions. No tools, no roadside kit, no cell phone or GPS. I'd certainly never take it in with a firearm in it. Potential for theft is way too high. It's bad enough they steal spare tires and air bags (which are worth a surprising amount). Things you'll never miss until the 1 time in a million you need them. As far as a shop or a mechanic you can "trust"... is there really such a thing these days? Maybe in a small town where reputation is everything (provided you live there) but in the world at large, no, there is not.

Also there are no "NRA" or any gun-related bumper stickers on my vehicle. No copy of "The Rifleman" left in the console. The last thing I need is for the minimum wage guy who changes the oil, who may have shady friends, having access to my vehicle registration address (in glove box) and driving by my house the next time I'm out of town, looking for some guns to steal. I'm especially not going to advertise the fact that I'm sprucing up the truck in preparation for a road trip. I try to tell the wife to think like this, but she is so chatty and trusting, rarely thinks what anyone might do with the "conversational" data she is doling out so freely. Maybe I'm paranoid but I don't see a reason to take chances when a little information discipline is so inexpensive.

Spiggy
January 8, 2006, 12:42 AM
Gun and Ammo has been located!

OK folks, good update:

I called up the police for my freind(he's a lazy poor-dumb bastard, I swear), and we located his gun... the Mechanics had opened the trunk of his car (for some unknown reason) and really did believe the ammo case was a bomb, partially thanks to my freind's radio clock we bought from a yard sale three weeks ago (talk about coincidence). The mechanics called the police and the police came and took the odd device (a case of 7.62x54R and an alarm clock sitting on it) and saw the rifle case underneath... the rifle was found and also taken. After some lawsuit threats, the police decided to waver the bull-honkey fees (looking roughly $80) for the rifle, alarm clock, and ammo and allow my freind to pick up his rifle on monday.

Next on the list, I intend on threatening lawsuits to the mechanics for opening the trunk for no good reason.

Molon Labe
January 8, 2006, 11:26 AM
You initially said the car was missing. So I assume the cops must have towed your friend's car from his house?? If so, did the cops have a search warrant to go on the property and get the car?

Did the cops think the box was a bomb? If so, why didn't they call the bomb squad?

miconoakisland
January 8, 2006, 01:08 PM
I have been in the auto service industry for years and have found that whatever is in a vehicle isn't worth a job to any mechanic. With so many different cars out there, it is not uncommon to pull a trunk release instead of a hood release.
I'm in SE NC and I guess most shade-tree mechanics are more ignorant than shifty.
You can't jump start a car with a bad alternator.
You gonna sue garage for opening the trunk??!!
Just how starving is the lawyer?
The alarm clock is ontop of a case of ammo? Even after being jolted during the tow?
Father left lights on overnight? Didn't he hear the chimes? Or see the lights?
Friend just leaves a rifle in a trunk? I'm betting the trunk was crammed with crap.
The Accord trunk release is where/near traditional hood release and easy to mistake.
You can threaten a lawsuit until your face turns blue, but it's not your car, not your rifle, not your business. You weren't put upon.
Seems like an over-abundance of stupid people in your area.

Rumpled
January 9, 2006, 06:31 AM
Due to many problems with firearm returns in CA (most never were apparently) a new law was passed a year or so ago.
To have YOUR firearm returned to you, you must go thru an eligiblilty check as if you were buying it. Jurisdictions may, by law, charge for this.
LA County, I hear, is $54 per firearm. You might also have to pay a state fee of $25 like DROS.

Steelcore
January 9, 2006, 12:29 PM
M44 $50
Ammo $ 80
total $130

Drop it.Not worth worrying over.
this is why I keep an M38 and ammo in my truck.
If it gets stolen or confiscated I'm not out much.

Molon Labe
January 9, 2006, 01:36 PM
If it gets stolen or confiscated I'm not out much.Well, except your dignity.

If there is an injustice, it should be fought on principle. It doesn't matter how little money is involved.

Spiggy
January 10, 2006, 03:46 AM
car was with the mechanics when my freind's dad picked it up and drove it home... without knowing that there was a rifle in the truck, and now it's missing.


Currently he's fighting his parentals about the missing gun and not doing what I tell him to go and pick up the damn thing.

Jim Diver
January 10, 2006, 06:49 AM
Want the truth? Someone broke the law. You are only allowed to have a gun in your car in PRK if you are going to or from a place that allows gun possession. ie. Home to the range, home to 2nd home, home to gun smith, etc. Home to the range to the store is not allowed. Allowing the gun to go with the mechanic when it was towed means the law was broken.

Tell your friend to invest in a copy of "How to own a gun and stay out of jail" Ca version.

Rumpled
January 10, 2006, 04:48 PM
Jim Diver
Your restrictions only apply to CA defined assault weapons and handguns.
Though many espouse the more conservative approach, driving around with the typical unloaded longgun is fine.

belton-deer-hunter
January 10, 2006, 05:04 PM
see you are lucky my rifle was stolen out of my truck well they caught the guy but now i have to wait 30-60 more days with it already being over a month for the police to get a dissposal order sense they have had it for more than 15 days. so what it boils down to is my gun is spending 80 days is police lock up and ten out on the street and i havent seen her in over 30 god the law sucks i jsut want my gun back now all the cops kept saying is "you will get you gun back just be patient with us"

Spiggy
January 11, 2006, 03:44 AM
did I note the part where the bolt was out and the gun was pretty much in peices?

Gun is currently being held at $53... ammo we will ditch, we can buy another case for $40

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