I’ve said before that the police have a tough job to do. I respect the hell out of them, and while I know they do have some bad actors in their ranks, I also know that those bad actors represent a tiny minority of those who wear the uniform.
In fact, most issues I’ve seen with the police stem not from corruption, but incompetence. Stupidity is far more common everywhere than maliciousness, and police aren’t immune to that.
But when the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office in Arizona reports 50 weapons missing after an audit, one has to wonder whether it’s maliciousness or incompetence at work.
More guns are found to be missing from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office.
In October, after a shootout on the I-17, two guns stolen from MCSO were found in the suspect’s vehicle. Sheriff Paul Penzone soon after announced the department knew it had 29 missing firearms.
On Friday, Sheriff Paul Penzone announced an additional audit done with the help of the ATF found the number of missing guns was actually much higher. He says fifty guns have gone missing or have been stolen from MCSO.
The weapons include:
-29 fully automatic weapons,
-20 short barrel shotguns,
-1 short-barreled rifle.
Penzone said there is no indication that ANY of those weapons have gone missing since he took office, and blamed the “previous administration” for not being able to account for all the weapons.
“It is unacceptable for any law enforcement agency to be this negligent to not keep accurate records and to allow for weapons to be distributed in a matter that doesn’t have any oversight or accountability,” said Penzone.
Of course, when Penzone talks about the “previous administration,” he’s talking about controversial Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Arpaio, a Republican, was a controversial figure who focused on tough policing and enforcement of immigration laws, among other things. He drew a lot of attention to Maricopa County during his tenure.
And, he makes a convenient scapegoat for the Democrat currently holding the office.
Now, maybe Penzone is right. Maybe they were accounted for last when Arpaio was in office and simply weren’t there when Penzone took office. I don’t know the details of the audit.
What I do know is that a sheriff’s department has apparently lost 50 firearms, all of which are NFA weapons that I can’t even buy over the counter without special permission from the government. No doubt, these are currently in criminal hands. I’m even skeptical as to many of them still being on this side of the border, to be honest.
It’s hard to look at this and not think at least some level of corruption is involved, but how much of it not being seen until now was additional corruption and how much was incompetence?
Frankly, we’re not likely to know.
Yet remember, there are people out there who think you should be punished if you have a weapon missing and fail to report it. Think about that double standard for a moment and realize why so many of us refuse to just roll over for those laws.