ROGERS COUNTY, Okla. -- Sheriff's deputies are working to clear out a packed evidence room where hundreds of guns and other weapons have been kept, some for the past few decades.
Undersheriff Jon Sappington said the Rogers County Sheriff's Office is currently storing somewhere between 400 and 500 guns, knives and other weapons that deputies have collected from crime scenes over the years.
"Maybe it's a burglary. Maybe we served a protective order, and we took it for safekeeping," Sappington said. "We're trying to get them back to their owners, but at this point no one's claimed ownership."
Sappington said his office has worked from their records to notify the last known owners, and those people have until March 23 to claim their belongings. A court hearing will be held that morning at 9:30 at the Rogers County Courthouse, where a judge may transfer ownership of the guns to the sheriff's office. It can then do whatever it wants with the guns, according to Sappington.
"We'll make a decision as far as whether to surplus those, destroy those, how to best move forward," he said.
Some of the guns that the deputies have collected date back to the early 1980s. The cases they're associated with have long since closed, though, so Sappington said the sheriff's office is trying to free up space for additional evidence.
"Our evidence room is just piling up," he said, "and we're running out of room to put anything."
Past owners can also contact the Rogers County Sheriff's Office to reclaim their belongings by calling 918-342-9700.