Doing the Right Thing

A guy with a pistol in his car is involved in an accident where he had to go to a hospital turns his gun over to police for safekeeping.  Most of us agree it’s the right thing to do if your car is going to be towed, and sitting on a lot god knows where, likely with shattered windows.  Guy goes back a few days later to get his gun, and he’s told he can’t have it until the police finish running ballistics test on it, to make sure it hasn’t been used in a crime.

What message does that send to the next guy?  We’re constantly harped on by the anti-gun people about being responsible, and when we are, we get kicked in the teeth for it.  No doubt the gun control groups would argue “the responsible thing is leaving your gun at home, neanderthal!” but they’ve lost that argument.  The Fayetteville Police are insuring the next person to come along won’t do the right thing, and we’ll risk having a gun stolen and ending up on the streets.

14 thoughts on “Doing the Right Thing”

  1. Seems like lawsuit time to me. Cause near as I can tell that is theft. Maybe he should file a Stolen firearm report with the police being listed as the criminal who stole the firearm.

  2. I agree his rights were violated. That said, his is a very poor argument. Carrying a cheap, unfired pistol for protection, and worrying about the loss of value from firing? Stretch, at best, and a foolish practice, at worst.

  3. Which is one of the reasons I have locking cases (from in all the vehicles. If I’m conscious, I’ll grab the case, lock my weapon in it (away from prying eyes) and TAKE IT WITH ME.

    Plus, I can secure handguns in the vehicles, out of sight, when I need to go somewhere they are unwelcome.

  4. Apparently policy reads something like “Firearms taken into custody must if possible be tested…” OK, so perhaps “into custody” should be “into evidence” or something.

    Yes, as applied it seems silly – and yes, if something similar happened to me I would be upset or more. But it is not outrageous.

    This (it is old but still) seems more worrisome. If you are above average intelligence, some police departments may reject you:

  5. The police also ran the guys name, address, phone number, license data, license plate, vehicle ID number, SSI (if they got it) and DNA for all I know through the databases.

    Running the gun through mostly useless ballistics tests is just one more insult to his, and our, freedoms.

    He really should have just taken it with him.

  6. Seems like a fabricated presumption of criminal activity.

    What if you had an antique knife that you turned over? Would they test the blade for blood and tissue?

    What if you handed over an expensive video camera for safekeeping with the police? Would they review the contents of the recordings to see if there was illegal material? Since a video recorder can be considered as a tool used in the act of a crime such as recording pedophilia, could the police check your camera as well?

    Maybe their policy is to view the contents of your digital camera to look for pictures of kidnapped or missing children.

    Just because “they’ve done it for years” doesn’t make it right. If allowed, the police can make-up any reason they want to for the “common good” and “public safety”.

    My point is that we must contest and challenge every infringement on our civil liberties at the instant they are violated. For too many years, organizations and groups of people have lied and trampled on our rights with nary a whimper from the people from under their feet.


  7. There was one comment on this article that I really liked.

    It was the one which asked whether this same police department bothers to do ballistics testing on every new firearm they acquire for duty issue, and for every new firearm which is personally purchased by their department staff, since according to their logic, any new firearm could be used in a crime before leaving the factory or the dealer.

  8. Thanks, redwagon.

    As you might have guessed by now how some police chiefs think, every legal gun owner “theoretically” could have used his or her firearm in a crime which has yet to be even reported or discovered.
    This is why these same police chiefs will view every legal gun owner as a potential criminal suspect no matter what, and yet the anti-gun crowd often tries to say that legal gun owners are the ones who are paranoid.

  9. I’m pretty sure it’s a 4A violation, no probable cause. Much of redwagons big list would have the ACLU up in arms if it were done.

  10. “We’re constantly harped on by the anti-gun people about being responsible, and when we are, we get kicked in the teeth for it.”

    Exactly right.

    Like the poor sap on his way to go target shooting, who was stopped at a police checkpoint near LAX airport, and volunteered to the cops he had a truck-full of firearms. Of course the cops reacted by arresting him, seizing his firearms, searching his home, and charging him with every possible violation they could think of.

    Months later virtually every major charge the cops had invented against him were dismissed, but the poor bastard still had to plead out to a couple of minor charges the cops managed to pin on him.

  11. I recall that truck-full of firearms at LAX story. Did that guy get any of guns back or what?

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