West Virginia State Treasurer Riley Moore stopped by the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Workplace Thursday afternoon to current the division with an unclaimed property verify that got here from a gun public sale held by Moore’s workplace.
In keeping with the state’s Unclaimed Property Code, yearly regulation enforcement companies are in a position to flip over unclaimed, seized, or outdated firearms of their possession to the Treasurer’s Workplace for public sale.
The weapons embody these which are older or not utilized by the division, or which were legally seized by regulation enforcement and saved in proof rooms for an prolonged time frame.
Sheriff Perry Palmer mentioned there are different methods to eliminate unusable weapons, however turning them over to the state “makes it straightforward for us as a result of they’ve higher methods and means to public sale off the firearms.”
The State Treasurer’s Workplace held its tenth unclaimed property firearms public sale Sept. 21. A record-high variety of regulation enforcement companies — a complete of 19 police departments, sheriff’s workplaces and state police detachments — turned over property for the public sale that raised almost $90,000.
From the sale of the weapons it turned over, the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Division obtained $8,802 that Palmer mentioned will return into the division’s common fund for use for varied issues like gear and coaching.
“We’ve now been in a position to enhance, 12 months after 12 months, the variety of completely different regulation enforcement companies across the state which are collaborating on this, and we’ve had some record-breaking years round this — generally elevating $150,000 for various companies across the state,” Moore mentioned.
“This 12 months we had extra regulation enforcement companies than anytime beforehand take part on this, which is great as a result of these firearms would usually simply be destroyed in the event that they didn’t undergo this public sale course of that we do.”
In March, Moore’s workplace held an public sale that raised a complete of $141,000 to learn collaborating companies. Final 12 months’s public sale raised almost $110,000 for regulation enforcement.
The auctions should not open to most of the people. Solely pre-registered federal firearms license holders are in a position to attend and bid on the weapons, which Moore says is a win-win for all events.
“The cash is ready to be returned to the regulation enforcement company after which these firearms are purchased usually by gun outlets that then refurbish them and resell them, so there’s no cash misplaced there and everyone type of wins,” he mentioned. “It’s been a very good occasion for all of the completely different regulation enforcement companies across the state.”
West Virginia is the one state treasurer’s workplace within the nation that permits for this public sale course of to learn regulation enforcement companies, based on Mike Comer, deputy treasurer of information and safety.
“There’s lots of methods to attempt to assist fund the police and this is likely one of the ways in which we’ve been ready to try this,” Moore mentioned. “We’re proud to have the ability to assist our police forces across the state of West Virginia to guard and serve the communities they work in.”