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Police Property - 2.70

2.70.010 Purpose

The purpose of this Chapter is to provide for the administration and disposition of property which is in the possession of or under the control of the police department of the Town.

2.70.020 Definitions

Unless otherwise required by context or use, words or terms shall be defined as follows: “Police property” means any property which may be seized or otherwise taken possession of by the police department of the Town and property lost or abandoned that has been found and delivered to the police department of the Town. “Police Chief” means the police chief of the Town or any officer or employee designated or assigned by him.

2.70.030 Disposition of police property
  1. The chief of police shall keep a record of all police property which may be seized or otherwise taken possession of by the police department of the Town.
  2. If any property so seized or taken possession of by the police department is of a perishable nature so as to make it inadvisable to retain possession for the length of time specified in subsection 1. of Section 2.60.020 Definitions of Chapter 2.60 Unclaimed Property of this Title 2 Administration and Personnel, the chief of police may sell such property at public auction at any time after three (3) days have elapsed from the seizure or taking possession thereof. Notice of such sale shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town or posted in the municipal building at least three (3) days before such auction.
  3. Lost property and all other property for which disposition is not provided in subsections A. and B. of this Section, which property has been taken into possession by the police department of the Town, shall be disposed of in accordance with Section 2.60.030 Procedures for Disposition of Property of Chapter 2.60 Unclaimed Property of this Title.
  4. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Section, whenever any item of lost or abandoned property has been found and delivered to the chief of police for care, control, and custody, such item shall be released to the original finder whenever a claim has been made by the finder and the following conditions have been met:
    1. The claimant, after surrendering the property, has filed a written notice with the chief of police of his intentions to make a claim on the property within sixty (60) days of the surrender of the item;
    2. The lost or abandoned property has remained unclaimed by the owner or person having a right to such property for sixty (60) days after the surrender of the property to the chief of police;
    3. The claimant must appear at the police department no less than sixty (60) days after surrendering any lost or abandoned property and prior to the expiration of ninety (90) days to request the release of such property. Failure to appear within the above time frame shall forever bar any finder’s claim to such property.
  5. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Section, certain objects and articles of property as described herein may be kept, held, or disposed of as follows:
    1. Unless ordered to the contrary by a court or otherwise required by a State or national law, firearms or other weapons which may not lawfully be kept, possessed, or retained by the owner or person otherwise entitled to the possession thereof, or which may not be lawfully released to the owner thereof, or which are unclaimed after notice to the owner, or the owner of which is not known, may be kept and used by the police department in its training program or otherwise, or may be donated to museums or historical societies, as the chief of police may order, for purposes of historical preservation. If firearms or weapons are declared surplus by the chief of police, disposition of such firearms or weapons may be made as otherwise provided in this section.
    2. If the property consists of burglar tools of any description, firearms, cartridges, explosives, armored or bulletproof clothing, or other dangerous weapons; gambling apparatus or instruments; articles or medicines for the purpose of inducing an abortion; beer, wine, spirituous liquor, or fermented malt beverages; soiled, bloody, or unsanitary clothing; solids or liquids of unknown or uncertain composition; drugs, narcotics, hallucinogenic substances, hypodermic syringes or needles, or other drug paraphernalia; any poisonous, noxious, or deleterious solids or liquids; or any other property which reasonably might result in injury to the health and safety of the public or be subject to unlawful use, the chief of police may destroy any such article.
    3. Unless otherwise provided in this Section, any lost, stolen, confiscated, or abandoned property may be reclaimed by the lawful owner upon proof of ownership and identity satisfactory to the chief of police, and he is hereby authorized to release the property to such owner when the owner gives a proper receipt therefore if claimed before such property is disposed of as provided in this section.
    4. Failure to make a claim of ownership within the time limits prescribed in subsection D. of this Section and before the sale or other disposition provided in this Section shall forever bar the owner or other person claiming ownership by, through, or under the owner from making any subsequent claims of ownership.