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Thread: Police holding my guns..

  1. #1
    Member mntransplant's Avatar
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    Question Police holding my guns..

    I'm posting it here because i have no idea where it should go so please bear with me (Mods feel free to move it wherever you see fit).
    I have a few pistols at my dads house in Minnesota. About 8 months ago somebody burglerized his house and stole all the guns (among other things). Well slowly but surely the guns are showing up at the police Depts. The problem is this. Most of the police Depts just hold the pistols until the case that they were involved in is completed. I got word from Inver Grove Heights PD that all of my guns had been recovered and were being held at the St Paul PD. Unfortunately nobody at SPPD had notified me. So i called to see what i had to do to get my guns back, and was told i had to "write a nice letter to the chief of police" in order for him to consider it. Now *** should i have to "write a nice letter" asking for them back?
    Can anyone help me out on a link, idea, website etc.. etc.. that will give me a legal backing or a legal leg to stand on? I am a NRA life member but am currently looking up my member number so that is in work. Any other ideas? This whole situation seems stinky to me..
    -At what point does "against all enemies foreign and domestic" apply to politicians?

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    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    well one good thing, they wont get robbed at the police department! so you know where they are being held safely.

    Ray

    Just write a professional letter. dont be rude or grabby sounding in it. be like, "thank you for recovering my firearms... so on so on.."
    Semper Fi!

  3. #3

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    I lost a very desirable handgun to theft many years ago. If it suddenly appeared in a PD somewhere, I'd happily write a nice letter to the chief. Heck, I'd get on my knees and kiss his feet in thanks for a job well done.

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    Moderator hunt_ak's Avatar
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    I've heard it can be VERY difficult to get them back. If a letter and some mild coaxing doesn't work, I'd call DAILY and simply ask for information and after a while, they might get tired of hearing from ya....

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    That really doesn't sound right! I hope someone is playing with you on the "Write a nice letter to the Chief" deal. I would start with the PD you dealt with on the initial theft. You will need case #s or report. Maybe someone there can help with this at this PD.
    The big thing with this is to have your ducks in a row. With all your paperwork in order. Anything that shows you are the owner.
    I can tell you that you do have to be somewhat patient and nice. You may need to wait for a case to be adjudicated before it can be released. Give that a try. If you can't get anywhere with that, pm me, I have a few ideas after that.

  6. #6
    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    That doesn't sound right at all. Typically APD is glad to get the guns back to the rightful owner (once ownership has been confirmed). I'd ask for someone with more brass on their chest than who you talked to the first time. Maybe it is more difficult with an owner out of state....
    AKmud
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  7. #7

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    Good luck. I spent some time in the People's Republic of Minnesota and was very glad to get back to the good 'ol US of A. When I lived there you had to write a nice letter just to purchase a handgun, and I don't believe they had to say yes. Hmmmm, or was it called the UMSR?
    "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything."

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    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackfoot View Post
    Good luck. I spent some time in the People's Republic of Minnesota and was very glad to get back to the good 'ol US of A. When I lived there you had to write a nice letter just to purchase a handgun, and I don't believe they had to say yes. Hmmmm, or was it called the UMSR?

    this cant be the same Minnesota i came from, where i could buy rifles from convience stores in the 80's
    Semper Fi!

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    Member ksbha4's Avatar
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    If your dad has a copy of the police report and a list of the serial numbers, then the police cannot legally hold onto the guns once any case that the guns are involved with has been adjudicated. That process can take several years if any of those stolen guns became used in a crime so be patient, but try to find out which case numbers those guns are listed under and keep up with court proceedings. You may have to contact the District Attorney who is prosecuting the case and make sure that the guns do not get forfietted to the state. It's a pain but there is no reason you shouldn't get those back.
    Ask not what your government can do for you. Ask how your government can go away and get out of your life

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Based on personal experience back in the mid-80's...

    Guns stolen in Soldotna and taken by thugs up to Anchorage where they were traded for drugs. Thugs were caught, convicted and tossed in prison for the theft but they could never "remember" where the place was they traded the loot.

    About 15 years later, a police officer from Anchorage PD calls and says he needs to get our guns back to us. What? We didn't even know the PD had recovered any of the guns, but apparently 4 pistols showed up as they were confiscated during other crimes. They sat in APD's evidence locker for over a decade. APD sent them down to the trooper post in Soldotna where they were picked up in person. It was very nice to see that Walther P-38 that my dad bought for $5 from a WW-II vet when he was a kid.

    I wish the other dozen missing guns would reappear, but somebody probably picked them up in private sales or at pawn shops and doesn't even know they own a stolen gun. Most of them were family heirlooms and didn't have any significant market value. Some shotguns and a couple rifles in addition to all the handguns were in the mix.
    Winter is Coming...

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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Certified mail, return receipt and keep copies of ALL your correspondence with them about this matter. Donít concede or agree with anything, just keep saying you want your property back. When they say things like we need to keep them for whatever simply say ďI want them backĒ and send them another certified letter saying the same. Donít forget to keep sending the letters so they canít say you abandoned them. In time you will get them back if you keep on it. In my case Phoenix PD got to buy me a bunch of guns because they destroyed my property (evil guns you know) rather than return them and I had done all the above paperwork.
    Andy
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    They don't have to listen to you, or tell you anything, and it's unlikely they will do either.

    Get an Attorney, and go from there.

    Smitty of the North
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    Member chico99645's Avatar
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    I'd pay a personal visit to ATF at the Federal Building in Anchorage. Bring all documentation you have, and be as "Polite" as possible. If you can't go in person, give them a call. Tell them what happened and see if they can help you. Can't hurt

    ATF
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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    i have heard many stories of Pd's destroying stolen property and not returning it to the owner.. even though that person was standing there when they were burned.some Pd's have gone as far to say ... it is common practice

    welcome to L48 mentality.. as ADfields said.. keep 100% of your records and write daily...or you may well loose your guns.
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

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    Member bilbo's Avatar
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    AD, myson borrowed a Browning 380 7 shot from me 7 years ago.
    He ended up in ER at Prescott with this gun in a visible holster. Warned the paramedics and staff about it.
    Security took the gun.
    I called Police Station 3 days later, was told to come down a identify the pistol....went home with it that morning.
    Of course, my son told them when he was admitted he had a pistol that belonged to me, his Dad.
    went very nice.
    I still have that gun (since 1978) and sure would like to trade it for a small 9mm for my 32 yr old daughter. This gun was manu. in 1959.clean unit.
    I also had a pistol 'confiscated' from me at age 19 for no valid reason...lying on my car seat, unloaded, along with my Western Field (made by Win) .22 rifle, again unloaded. been shooting rabbits. Got the rifle back the next Monday.
    NEVER got the pistol back. It was a Fresno City Police surplus S&W Model 10 M&P. Sold at auction a couple years earlier. My elder brother bid on it for me through an FFL holder friend. Cost me $35.00 in 1966.
    This was in a small farm town, east of Fresno about 38 miles. Corrupt police department. They were very nasty. A friend who was hired there 7 years later said the Police Chief carried this same gun as a second weapon.
    I always hoped Chief Clancy would shoot his big toe (or worse) off with it someday.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    ...Get an Attorney, and go from there...
    My thoughts exactly.

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    Well years ago about 2002 I had a couple of pistols stolen from out of my government quarters on Ft Huachuca anyhow fast foward to 2006 I take a Soldier to the MP station fro an interviwe to become a MP. I was sitting in the lobby and Civilain cops (DOD) looks at me and goes is your 1st name John I go yes. He goes well the Arizona DPS (state troopers) has recovered one of your pistols a Glock last night. It is being held in Tucson and will be released once the case was done... Well I was deployed soon after and Tucson police department called my wife and said hey the pistol is being transported to Sierra Police Dept. and you can pick it up thier as long as you have power attorney. Few days later my wife called Sierra Vista police Dept they said yes they had it and to come and get when she had the time. So you all were probably thinkign this was going to end bad somewhere but it didn't.. The Police Departments were great no letters begging for it back as I said they even transported it 70 miles so my wife didn't have to go up to Tucson...

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    I think I would give em a chance before I got mad. The person was probably just giving you advice saying to write a nice letter, maybe the last guy wrote a nice letter and he got his stuff back.

  19. #19
    Member wildwill's Avatar
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    Default Write the Letter

    Write the letter and follow up with a phone call regarding the status of your property. Your problem now is it sounds like the firearms are evidence in a pending case. LE folks on the board and members of the bar that deal with these situations will all admit, that LE can hold onto your property if its evidence in a pending matter. Once the case is disposed, its your property and unless abandoned, you should get it back.

    That said, I have seen LE return property prior to trial, if they take the time to properly document--i.e. take a lot of photographs--the evidence. In some cases where it is looking like quite some time to trial, they can document and return. However, in a case where the property is a firearm, they would likely prefer to have the actual evidence--insert picture of DA holding baggy with gun inside in front of a jury--more compelling than a photo.

    Best advice, it write the letter, follow up with periodic phonce calls, always be polite, ask questions, ask the folks' names who you speak with, and sadly be patient. You should get them back, but if in a criminal matter, it will likely be after the case resolves or goes to trial. If you do not keep in touch with them, they get busy with other matters, property sits in evidence. Its more work for them to return, so do what you can to make it easy for them to return it/them to you.

    Good luck.

    Will
    www.kenailawyer.com
    Since the World is 2/3 Water and Only 1/3 Land, Figures the Good Lord Intended I Fish More Than I Plow.

  20. #20
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    While I was in the service I had left a baby browning 380 with my mother. There was an instance at home with my step father and the gun so mom thought best thing was to store it with the sherifs dept. She got a receipt etc... with make mod ser nr. I was getting ready to return from over seas and my mom went to pick up the pistol. Deputy tryed to pawn a piece of junk RG 22 cal pistol off on her. All hell broke loose. Under sheriff who was a close friend of the family bailed into the middle of things. Deputy had the browning on him as a back up weapon. He was fired on the spot and charged with theft of a firearm. Weapon was returned to my mom on the spot (unloaded).

    Couple years back friend got mixed up with drugs and got busted. His dad had a complete collection of brownings and smiths. After his dad passed away the son inherited them. They were all confestacted(sp). latter the S.O said his mother could pick up the weapons. All she got was a bunch of junk guns, plus some of them turned up in a local gun shop. One deputy I know had several of the weapons including a couple AR's. He wound up doing time also. The majority of the guns were listed as destroyed, but seems some people from the shirffs department know better.

    Gun Runner

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