I wish to extend my sincere thanks to the Coeur d’Alene Police Department (CPD) for their efforts in recovering my antique .357 Smith & Wesson “Highway Patrolman.” I only find it typical for many to share their negative experiences with law enforcement, so I thought it would be refreshing to share a positive one for a change.
In 2013 I returned from an intense annual military training exercise only to discover that my .357 grew legs and walked out of my home. Of course I would never wrongfully accuse anyone of stealing. I also figured by the time I discovered it was missing, it was probably either in Canada or Mexico, so the chances of recovering my .357 were slim to none. Nevertheless, I filed a police report anyway in case it fell into the hands of some imbecile who would use it in a crime. After all, any idiot bold enough to jack a firearm would probably be bold enough to use it in a crime. I do have to give them some credit for their boldness — not for their brains.
Now you won’t believe this and I still can’t believe it. Just here recently (four years later), I got a call from the CPD telling me they recovered my .357. It seems as though it found its way into one of the local pawnshops. Since it was not being held as evidence, I was able to claim it the very same day the CPD contacted me.
The CPD was very courteous, polite and professional in helping me recover my missing property. As a matter of fact, my past dealings with the CPD officers and employees have been nothing less regardless to whether the situation was pleasant or unpleasant.
I’m certain most of you already know this, but you are not required to register a firearm in this great state of Idaho. However, it is a good idea to document the brand, model and serial number; that was my saving grace. It also came in real handy when my stepfather’s hunting rifles also grew legs and walked out of my parents’ home quite a few years back. Interesting enough how they also found their way to a pawn shop.
Finally, NOT a word to the wise, but a word of warning to you morons out there with sticky fingers. The pawn shops DO make police reports of many items that go across their counter, especially firearms. So, if you think you can rip us hardworking citizens off then cash your chips in at the local pawnshop — think again.
Again, many thanks to the fine men and women of the Coeur d’Alene Police Department for both your efforts in my case and for what you do to keep this great community safe.
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Robert F. Mitcham is a Coeur d’Alene resident.