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Good afternoon,

You all have likely received e-mails and/or phone calls from constituents who are questioning why the Washington State Patrol is inquiring about recent gun sales, specifically involving AR-15 rifles.

The WSP has a rifle that is unaccounted for from our inventory and we cannot discount the possibility that it was stolen. Out of an abundance of caution, we opened a criminal investigation and entered the weapon into the statewide computer system as stolen.
As we do in virtually every investigation, we sought information from people we considered knowledgeable, in this case, licensed gun dealers.

The letter to dealers was simply a request for cooperation, and there is no legal requirement for the dealers to provide such information. This is no different than when we canvass the area of a crime seeking information that may assist in solving the case.

We clearly have caused concern as to our intentions with those involved in gun sales. We sincerely regret any alarm that was caused or confusion about our motive. We are not creating any sort of registry of these transactions; we are merely trying to solve this specific case.

We are still interested in receiving information about this missing weapon, and are asking anyone who has knowledge of unusual transactions, involving AR-15s or their components to provide that information to the WSP.

Our Criminal Investigation Division is working with the National Rifle Association (NRA) to provide clarification regarding the initial letter and the reasoning behind the request. We hope that resolves the concern from the NRA and puts their members at ease. We are also actively engaged with the media on this topic in an effort to provide transparency.

Thank you,
“Service With Humility”
Captain Jason Berry
Government and Media Relations


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  1. Translation…

    We are pathetic pansies.

    Maybe we lost a gun, maybe we didn’t- honestly, we’re not really sure. Like all LE agencies we have dozens to hundreds of firearms floating around. Maybe they went to an LEO, maybe an ex-LEO, maybe they disappeared to some sting we were trying to run, maybe one of guys sold it for money.

    We really have no fuckin’ clue where most of our tactical safe is from day-to-day. Let alone what we “confiscate” and enter in to evidence. Or don’t…

    Regardless, we want to start a gun database (ok, not real guns, just those AR popguns owned by you delusional twats, but it’s a start…)

  2. “The WSP has a rifle that is unaccounted for from our inventory and we cannot discount the possibility that it was stolen.”

    You see, Magoo was right. This is what happens when idiots get guns.

  3. As a Washington State criminal defense attorney, I am no apologist for the Washington State Patrol. I’ve watched with glee as they stepped on their collective dick in more than one scandal, but I do appreciate that they are quickly backing away from anything resembling gun control. They messed up, and they’re owning up to it.

    We’ll never see an apology like this from the ATF.

  4. Well I for one am surprised they are apologizing. Normally (if you can consider any government agency normal) they just say nothing or blame some made up strategy to track something imaginary.

  5. All this effort over one missing rifle. Gee, when a citizen suffers a break in and not one but an entire collection of firearms are taken, they must go into a frenzied state of concentrated investigative activity that would make ferret on coke look sedate.

    Um, color me skeptical. This doesn’t come close to passing the smell test.

  6. Wouldn’t it have been easier to say “If you’ve had a transaction involving a Brand-X AR styled rifle with the serial number 9999xxxx please give us a call. If you haven’t, then thanks for your time. Sincerely, Your Local Police Dept.”

    There’s be thousands less serial number to go through wouldn’t there?

    • That makes sense. That’s exactly what doesn’t work in government. You probably don’t work there they don’t hire people with common sense.

    • +1 on that — give out the serial number to the dealers, instead of “tell us all the serial numbers you’ve dealt with.” That goes beyond a rookie mistake.

      Smells of dead fish.

  7. Given that the WSP’s usual job is handing out speeding tickets on northbound I-5 north of Seattle in the morning (yeah, it is opposite the commute now that you mention it), I’m stunned they had the time to do all this. I did think the lack of a serial number in the requests was kind of odd, but it was a simple oversight as the gs-12 ‘clerk’ called in sick the day they were supposed to log in the serial numbers, so they never quite got around to it. Anyway, if you have an Ar-15 with WSP stamped on the stock, give ’em a call. From a pay phone… wearing gloves.

  8. Uh… there is a system for checking for lost or stolen guns already in place. I believe it is part of the NICS systme is it not? So you report it and then the system does the work. One doesn’t need to make that big of a fiasco as these idiots did.


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