25 Handguns + Cash stolen...


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Autolycus
April 22, 2007, 12:40 AM
from police evidence room...

25 handguns missing from sheriff's office in Machias
By Diana Graettinger
Thursday, April 19, 2007 - Bangor Daily News


MACHIAS - About 25 handguns are missing from the evidence room at the Washington County Sheriff’s Department and it looks as if it may be an inside job.

The Attorney General’s Office has been notified and an investigator is expected to be in Machias the first week in May.

Two of the weapons that had been in the evidence room can be traced to one person, Sheriff Donnie Smith said Wednesday. He did not elaborate. The sheriff said that if the investigation revealed that someone in his department was involved, they would be fired. "You’re only as good as your people," he said. "They’ll be history."

Smith said he notified the Washington County Commission about the theft on Friday.

In addition, Smith said that $450 was missing from the department’s administrative office.

He notified the AG’s office of the missing money earlier this year, but it declined to investigate. Smith said that he believes the money taken also was an inside job, but said he did not believe it was either of the two women who work in the office. He plans to bring up the issue of the missing money along with the missing handguns when the AG investigator arrives.

The department discovered the missing guns after an attorney sent a letter to Smith saying his client wanted his gun back. When officials looked for it, it was gone. That’s when their investigation turned up other missing weapons.

Asked if it could be a problem of poor record keeping on the part of the former administration, Smith said he did not believe so. "It doesn’t look like the case because if it was [it would be] just one or two guns. But that many [is different]," he said.

Guns are collected at a crime scene or confiscated from individuals. Often a car stop turns up a gun hidden under the seat or a gun is removed from a home during a domestic dispute.

If the gun’s owner is neither charged nor found guilty, the gun is returned upon request.

Guns that are not reclaimed are traded on behalf of the department. "We can either trade it for ammunition or ... for guns for the department," he said.

The county could be sued. "We take possession of something we are responsible to return it," Smith said.

The new sheriff said he has instituted stricter standards for handling evidence. The only people in the department with keys are the sheriff, the chief deputy and the full-time deputies.

Smith went public because he said there would be no "coverups" in his department. Good or bad, he said, "the public has a right to know."


Link to article (http://bangordailynews.com/news/t/news.aspx?articleid=148882&zoneid=500)

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VARifleman
April 22, 2007, 12:54 AM
But remember, only the police should keep guns...

Frog48
April 22, 2007, 12:57 AM
The sheriff said that if the investigation revealed that someone in his department was involved, they would be fired.

Being fired should be the least of their concern, they should be prosecuted. However, cops cover for other cops, so who knows if they'll receive more than a slap on the wrist.

Geno
April 22, 2007, 01:10 AM
Oh Lordy sakes! This takes me back in time...I (unknowingly) solved a case of the missing pistols from the evidence lock-up back about 25 years ago.

I happened to see an off-duty police officer who I knew. He was firing these very cool Colt Mustangs...STS Mustangs. When I asked about them, in front the Under Sheriff, well, things got interesting...turns out the Under Sheriff was looking for two missing pistols...STS Mustangs! The pistols mysteriously reappeared in the evidence lockers. This was, by the way, the same cop who pulled a pistol on me...off duty. Things about that all getting clearer? This officer ended up taking an early retirement from the department.

I agree with the previous post. Retirement should not have happened. This fool stole two pistols, and assaulted me with his duty pistol! His arse should have been in prison for a very long time. At least he was not representative of the department.

thedpp
April 22, 2007, 01:14 AM
Bad cops? No thats a myth.

Nomad, 2nd
April 22, 2007, 01:20 AM
Cops are people too.

We should remember that in ALL situations. Both good and bad.

jt1
April 22, 2007, 01:32 AM
Doc2005 - I would think he should be taking a dirt nap after pulling on you.

Geno
April 22, 2007, 01:52 AM
I was 17 when it happened. He should be in prison.

busy_squirrel
April 22, 2007, 02:03 AM
I saw this and am not too happy.

Incidentally, if a gal is being a ***** on a first date, I threaten to take her to Machias and leave her on the side of the road. It's remote enough she's terrified, but close enough I don't feel bad.:evil:

LawBot5000
April 22, 2007, 02:13 AM
Cops are people too.

We should remember that in ALL situations. Both good and bad.

Yeah, we do remember this, but we also remember that they end up getting professional sanctions rather than prison time when they break the rules.

ptmmatssc
April 22, 2007, 09:19 AM
Duplicate thread

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=271656

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