• If you enjoy the forum please consider supporting it by signing up for a NES Membership  The benefits pay for the membership many times over.

P'town police investigate missing firearm

Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
That's always been an unsettling part of this. The PD refuses to fill in that detail and I suspect that the fact the "victim" is one of them is possibly guiding decisions on that front. Even if it is not, the appearance that it is is bad and they should fess up.


It is never prudent or intelligent to release too much information on an active investigation..... maybe......just maybe.... there is a relationship between the suspect and a relative of the LEO who may have access to the residence which would explain the lack of forced entry...... just sayin'
 

cekim

NES Member
Rating - 100%
3   0   0
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
29,885
Likes
4,687
Location
Clowns->Here<-Jokers
It is never prudent or intelligent to release too much information on an active investigation..... maybe......just maybe.... there is a relationship between the suspect and a relative of the LEO who may have access to the residence which would explain the lack of forced entry...... just sayin'
Shh, stop trying to bring logic and reason into this... [laugh]
 

terraformer

NES Member
Rating - 100%
32   0   0
Joined
May 17, 2008
Messages
16,931
Likes
2,664
It is never prudent or intelligent to release too much information on an active investigation..... maybe......just maybe.... there is a relationship between the suspect and a relative of the LEO who may have access to the residence which would explain the lack of forced entry...... just sayin'

That's a reasonable assumption. And probably accurate [wink] but then how did the kid get to the gun, or the ammo, if the presumably minor and unlicensed "relative" was not supposed to have access to it either? Maybe because he had access to it when he wasn't supposed to??? [wink]

I get there is more here. I do get it. But there is a glaring hole that those of us who know the law realize could be being actively abused to protect someone who wouldn't otherwise be protected.

In the guy's defense, the case law here is pretty clear (well, MA clear...) that you need to lock up things like ammo but you can use key locks and so long as the keys are not next to the cabinet and you took reasonable precautions, the statutory obligations are met. This may have been what happened and the presumably older relative found the keys. I just hope what happened comes out, otherwise the cynics will think someone got preferential treatment.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
That's a reasonable assumption. And probably accurate [wink] but then how did the kid get to the gun, or the ammo, if the presumably minor and unlicensed "relative" was not supposed to have access to it either? Maybe because he had access to it when he wasn't supposed to??? [wink]


A "legally" secured firearm can still be easily obtained by a determined teenager who knows where it is located.
 
Rating - 98.3%
58   1   0
Joined
Jan 4, 2009
Messages
456
Likes
50
Correct me if I'm wrong. I believe the laws pertaining to securing firearms in ones home were overturned this winter. I seem to remember a State cops son taking a gun out of his home and pointing it at a friend.
Again you don't know the particulars of he case yet you're going to slam a gun owner for having his gun stolen. Careful what you wish for.
 

M1911

Moderator
Rating - 100%
27   0   0
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
39,570
Likes
7,814
Location
Near Framingham
That's a reasonable assumption. And probably accurate [wink] but then how did the kid get to the gun, or the ammo, if the presumably minor and unlicensed "relative" was not supposed to have access to it either? Maybe because he had access to it when he wasn't supposed to??? [wink]
Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it is secured in accordance with Massachusetts law? Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it can still be stolen? Do you agree that a trigger locks properly applied can still be removed from a handgun given sufficient time and motivation?

Why are you assuming that the victim in this situation did something wrong? Because he's a cop?
 

terraformer

NES Member
Rating - 100%
32   0   0
Joined
May 17, 2008
Messages
16,931
Likes
2,664
Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it is secured in accordance with Massachusetts law? Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it can still be stolen? Do you agree that a trigger locks properly applied can still be removed from a handgun given sufficient time and motivation?

Why are you assuming that the victim in this situation did something wrong? Because he's a cop?

I have already stated the gun is not the point of what I said. It is the ammo I have been talking about. He apparently took that too.
 
Rating - 100%
12   0   0
Joined
May 16, 2009
Messages
3,271
Likes
2,948
Location
SE Mass
My personal opinion..................

..............is that I am opposed to the current storage laws in the Commonwealth, but they are the current law of the land and all law-abiding folks need to comply, especially those in public safety who should know better anyway. I think the part that everyone has a problem with is that the officer and his department have indicated that there is no sign of forced entry. Well, after nearly 30 years in public safety, I can say that I never met any teenagers capable of B&E without some forced entry signs. The department's dual statements that the firearm was properly secured AND there were no signs of forced entry to the premises are incongruous with each other. In short, it does not pass the "smell" test. If there are some strange circumstances surrounding the taking of this firearm in this case (a family member for instance), the officer and department SHOULD make a thorough, public explanation of the storage circumstances. The fact that this officer is also their firearms instructor tells me that he, of all people, should go above and beyond the average effort to secure his firearms. I think that the argument that details cannot be released due to an ongoing investigation is BS. A major crime investigation (rape, murder, armed robbery, etc.) warrants withholding SOME key details for investigative purposes, but this does not fall into the major crime category. My father spent a career as a Boston PO. I grew up with his gun belt sitting on the dresser when he was home. No one dared touch it or he would take his leather belt and administer a couple of whacks with it. I guess times have changed. It is NOT appropriate for anyone to disparage the reasons that members are asking these questions. The questions are legitimate and they deserve honest answers. In all frankness, if this theft had occurred to a civilian rather than a LEO, a civilian would have to answer these very questions publicly and would probably lose their LTC anyway.
Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it is secured in accordance with Massachusetts law? Do you agree that a handgun with a trigger lock on it can still be stolen? Do you agree that a trigger locks properly applied can still be removed from a handgun given sufficient time and motivation? Why are you assuming that the victim in this situation did something wrong? Because he's a cop?
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Messages
13,890
Likes
212
Location
Haverhill, MA
Okay folks - here's a lesson in reporting accuracy:

The Provincetown Police Department has opened an internal investigation into a missing and loaded semi-automatic pistol owned by patrolman and firearms instructor Thomas Steele.

Steele, an officer with the department since 2001, reported the Sig Sauer .44-caliber gun as either stolen or lost from his Provincetown home at 4:20 p.m. on Feb. 24, said Provincetown police Staff Sgt. Warren Tobias. The weapon was last seen about two days before.

First, they said it was loaded. It was not. Second, they F'd up the caliber. The majority of reporters don't pay enough attention when getting info on a story to write it accurately.

I've been on the receiving end of innaccurate reporting and nothing P's me off more. Instead of knee jerking to believe what's written, try waiting for a little more information before firing off your own volley. Chances are the first round of information is going to be bad in some way, shape or form.

I'll get off the soap box now....
 

M1911

Moderator
Rating - 100%
27   0   0
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
39,570
Likes
7,814
Location
Near Framingham
Lynne, in my direct experience dealing with a reporter from an obscure, local newspaper (The New York Times), if they spell your name right they're having a good day. Any accuracy beyond that is likely due to pure chance or failure of the reporter to grind his axe.
 
Rating - 100%
12   0   0
Joined
May 16, 2009
Messages
3,271
Likes
2,948
Location
SE Mass
We understand................

I think just about everyone here understands that reporting in general, and the reporting here in particular, is horrible. Personally, I want to give this officer the benefit of the doubt. I have completely discounted the reporting thus far as inaccurate and unreliable. Nevertheless, it is incumbent on this officer and his department to HONESTLY and publicly detail the circumstances surrounding the storage and security of this firearm in this particular case. Otherwise, they invite intense scrutiny and legitimate questions.

Now, if this is simply a case of someone (friend/family) having a key to his place and doing something they should not have done, then say so. But to drop the BS statement that the firearm was secured properly AND there were no signs of forced entry invites intense scrutiny. For that matter, if there HAD been signs of forced entry, I wouldn't be asking the questions I am now asking.







Lynne, in my direct experience dealing with a reporter from an obscure, local newspaper (The New York Times), if they spell your name right they're having a good day. Any accuracy beyond that is likely due to pure chance or failure of the reporter to grind his axe.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Messages
13,890
Likes
212
Location
Haverhill, MA
Lynne, in my direct experience dealing with a reporter from an obscure, local newspaper (The New York Times), if they spell your name right they're having a good day. Any accuracy beyond that is likely due to pure chance or failure of the reporter to grind his axe.

Yeah, that about sums it up pretty well. [grin]
 

Len-2A Training

Instructor
Instructor
NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 98.6%
71   1   0
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
53,939
Likes
13,462
Location
NH
Lynne, in my direct experience dealing with a reporter from an obscure, local newspaper (The New York Times), if they spell your name right they're having a good day. Any accuracy beyond that is likely due to pure chance or failure of the reporter to grind his axe.

Personally, I prefer it when they spell my name wrong! [smile]

Let someone else take the heat! [laugh]
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
Correct me if I'm wrong. I believe the laws pertaining to securing firearms in ones home were overturned this winter. I seem to remember a State cops son taking a gun out of his home and pointing it at a friend.


Incorrect....the case was dismissed but the law was not overturned.
 

M1911

Moderator
Rating - 100%
27   0   0
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
39,570
Likes
7,814
Location
Near Framingham
Incorrect....the case was dismissed but the law was not overturned.

Agreed. While some other judges might view that case as a precedent, there has been no decision yet at the appellate level, so that particular decision is not in any way binding. There is a similar case that is in the process of being appealed.

In other words, the law is still in effect.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
Well, after nearly 30 years in public safety, I can say that I never met any teenagers capable of B&E without some forced entry signs.

Thank you for your service but....Did you ever work the streets? Or are you a fireman commenting on forensics? I have investigated hundreds of B&E's with no signs of forced entry.

If you enter through an unlocked door there are no signs of forced entry. If you open a unlocked window and enter and then close the window there is no sign of forced entry.

I will give you a hint....what if a young relative were to leave a door unlocked for a friend to enter? It would still be a B&E with no signs of forced entry.


The department's dual statements that the firearm was properly secured AND there were no signs of forced entry to the premises are incongruous with each other. In short, it does not pass the "smell" test.

Really?

If there are some strange circumstances surrounding the taking of this firearm in this case (a family member for instance), the officer and department SHOULD make a thorough, public explanation of the storage circumstances.

Why? And compromise the investigation.

I think that the argument that details cannot be released due to an ongoing investigation is BS. A major crime investigation (rape, murder, armed robbery, etc.) warrants withholding SOME key details for investigative purposes, but this does not fall into the major crime category.

Details of any investigation should be left out of the media until the investigation is complete or the publics help is needed or there is a public safety issue.

In all frankness, if this theft had occurred to a civilian rather than a LEO, a civilian would have to answer these very questions publicly and would probably lose their LTC anyway.

Residential B&E's where firearms are stolen occur everyday. How many have you read about where the homeowner had to "explain publicly" what had happened. How many of these homeowners suffered sanctions as a result?

Research it and let me know.
 
Rating - 100%
12   0   0
Joined
May 16, 2009
Messages
3,271
Likes
2,948
Location
SE Mass
Thank you for your service but....Did you ever work the streets? Or are you a fireman commenting on forensics? I have investigated hundreds of B&E's with no signs of forced entry. If you enter through an unlocked door there are no signs of forced entry. If you open a unlocked window and enter and then close the window there is no sign of forced entry. I will give you a hint....what if a young relative were to leave a door unlocked for a friend to enter? It would still be a B&E with no signs of forced entry. Really? Why? And compromise the investigation. Details of any investigation should be left out of the media until the investigation is complete or the publics help is needed or there is a public safety issue. Residential B&E's where firearms are stolen occur everyday. How many have you read about where the homeowner had to "explain publicly" what had happened. How many of these homeowners suffered sanctions as a result? Research it and let me know.
This is part of the problem here. The official police statement is that everything was secure AND no signs of forced entry were evident. The inclusion of the part about the lack of forced entry is either not germane to this particular incident or was carefully crafted to provide cover. For what and for whom I cannot say. I touched upon the possibility of someone else with access to the premises above. Your response seems to intimate that this may indeed be the case. If so, it would be prudent for the COP and the officer to state that a family member/friend/acquaintance/whatever had legitimate access to the premises and may have taken the firearm without permission. No need to name names. A blanket statement like this does not harm the investigation. I know that by now every person with real or potential access to the premises has been interviewed and knows they are under a microscope, so such a statement would not jeopardize anything, as long as this is true. Although probably not important to this particular conversation, I feel compelled to state my qualifications, since you have publicly questioned them. I have 10 years on the LEO side and 17 years on the FD side. Furthermore, I had extensive training in lock picking and intrusion detection for my counterintelligence duties years ago.
 

GSG

Rating - 100%
23   0   0
Joined
Jun 18, 2007
Messages
5,825
Likes
557
I have already stated the gun is not the point of what I said. It is the ammo I have been talking about. He apparently took that too.

If a full magazine is in the gun, but a trigger lock is on, it's still lawfully stored.

If there are some strange circumstances surrounding the taking of this firearm in this case (a family member for instance), the officer and department SHOULD make a thorough, public explanation of the storage circumstances. The fact that this officer is also their firearms instructor tells me that he, of all people, should go above and beyond the average effort to secure his firearms.

Why? How would that statement sound?

"Hi, I'm Thomas Steele of the Provincetown Police Department. My pistol was recently stolen from my house, and some people have questions about it, so I want to clear the air. For the record, I keep my pistol in my top left dresser drawer with a trigger lock on it. The key to the trigger lock is in my nightstand drawer, and on Tuesday nights when my girlfriend comes over for dinner I leave the back door unlocked so she can come in. Not the back door to the basement, but the one near the kitchen, that has the frilly curtains on the door. I don't own a gun safe, so if you want to break in my house again to get some more guns, please do it when I'm not home to save me some headache. I work 3rd shift with Tuesday and Wednesday off."

What good could possibly come from making the victim of a crime reveal such personal info about their life and how they lawfully store their property?
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
This is part of the problem here. The official police statement is that everything was secure AND no signs of forced entry were evident.


Which is already saying too much and compromises the investigation.

Your response seems to intimate that this may indeed be the case. If so, it would be prudent for the COP and the officer to state that a family member/friend/acquaintance/whatever had legitimate access to the premises and may have taken the firearm without permission.


One of the best investigative tools you have is when the suspect feels comfortable. Stating publicly who the suspects are is never smart. The family member may not be the one who went into the house but simply provided the appropriate intel. This scenario still leaves a suspect who is not the family member and is not the person who was charged with receiving the gun.

Follow...

Many investigations are solved with the help of intel gathered on the streets from either informants and/or people who hear things while seated in restaurants, bars etc.... the motivation for these people to pass this info to the police is varied. Some do it out of greed (because they get paid for it) others do it out of revenge, others do it because they feel it is the right thing to do. Sometimes it is important to know what the motivation is. The hard part is attempting to figure out how these people learn the information that they are giving and if it is factual and/or accurate. This is sometimes difficult. By giving out aspects of the incident/investigation in the press you do not know whether someone is speaking from actual knowledge of the incident or of what they read in the paper or heard in the media. This can lead to false leads and hundreds of manhours spent looking in the wrong direction.

A proper police investigation is about solving the crime swiftly and professionally. Not satisfying the curiosity of an internet forum.
 
Rating - 100%
3   0   0
Joined
Feb 18, 2007
Messages
7,658
Likes
750
Location
Live Free or Die
I think the point some people are making is that if this was one of th "normal" (MA) citizens the information would be flowing a lot more freely, as would the criminal charges.
 
Rating - 100%
12   0   0
Joined
May 16, 2009
Messages
3,271
Likes
2,948
Location
SE Mass
Well, I thought we were having a logical discourse here. My mistake. There is no need to be facetious. What part of my comments could possibly be construed this way? All I've said is if the firearm was properly secured, but was pilfered by someone with access to the premises, then say so. No need for obfuscation.






If a full magazine is in the gun, but a trigger lock is on, it's still lawfully stored.



Why? How would that statement sound?

"Hi, I'm Thomas Steele of the Provincetown Police Department. My pistol was recently stolen from my house, and some people have questions about it, so I want to clear the air. For the record, I keep my pistol in my top left dresser drawer with a trigger lock on it. The key to the trigger lock is in my nightstand drawer, and on Tuesday nights when my girlfriend comes over for dinner I leave the back door unlocked so she can come in. Not the back door to the basement, but the one near the kitchen, that has the frilly curtains on the door. I don't own a gun safe, so if you want to break in my house again to get some more guns, please do it when I'm not home to save me some headache. I work 3rd shift with Tuesday and Wednesday off."

What good could possibly come from making the victim of a crime reveal such personal info about their life and how they lawfully store their property?
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
I think the point some people are making is that if this was one of th "normal" (MA) citizens the information would be flowing a lot more freely, as would the criminal charges.

Really? How often (comparably) do you see media coverage and criminal charges of a residential Breaking and Entering and the theft of legally owned firearms?

I can think of at least a dozen houses and incidents in the last few months in my area alone. No media, no criticism, no charges.[thinking]
 
Rating - 100%
12   0   0
Joined
May 16, 2009
Messages
3,271
Likes
2,948
Location
SE Mass
And I agree with much of what you state here. Again, I reiterate that I take issue with that additional comment about the lack of forced entry. Don't blame the messenger here. Maybe the COP should have stopped when he said that the investigation had revealed that the firearm was properly stored, but he did not. At least then people could speculate it was a smash and grab.

The inclusion of that second part by the COP plainly leads down one of two possible paths, either covering for improper storage or someone with inside knowledge. Either way, the COP let the cat out of the bag. Now people are asking legitimate questions based on that statement.








Which is already saying too much and compromises the investigation.




One of the best investigative tools you have is when the suspect feels comfortable. Stating publicly who the suspects are is never smart. The family member may not be the one who went into the house but simply provided the appropriate intel. This scenario still leaves a suspect who is not the family member and is not the person who was charged with receiving the gun.

Follow...

Many investigations are solved with the help of intel gathered on the streets from either informants and/or people who hear things while seated in restaurants, bars etc.... the motivation for these people to pass this info to the police is varied. Some do it out of greed (because they get paid for it) others do it out of revenge, others do it because they feel it is the right thing to do. Sometimes it is important to know what the motivation is. The hard part is attempting to figure out how these people learn the information that they are giving and if it is factual and/or accurate. This is sometimes difficult. By giving out aspects of the incident/investigation in the press you do not know whether someone is speaking from actual knowledge of the incident or of what they read in the paper or heard in the media. This can lead to false leads and hundreds of manhours spent looking in the wrong direction.

A proper police investigation is about solving the crime swiftly and professionally. Not satisfying the curiosity of an internet forum.
 
Rating - 100%
50   0   0
Joined
Jan 9, 2009
Messages
1,134
Likes
177
Re: "forced entry":

Rumor (and I stress rumor) around town has it that the perpetrator was known to the officer and had access to the house. Regardless of MA storage laws, the thief is the one that deserves the blame and consequences.
 
Last edited:
Rating - 98.3%
58   1   0
Joined
Jan 4, 2009
Messages
456
Likes
50
I cant believe this is still going on. Its obvious this has an anti LE spin. Regardless of the circumtances you're all ready to hang someone for a law that is ridiculous. I for one do not like being told how things are supposed to be handled within my own home.
Second, what the helll does any of this have to do with you. If it were you or a friend on the other side I'm willin to bet you would be singing a different tune.
I know this man personally and he' not only a LEO he's also an avid shooter just like us. Let it go.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Messages
3,435
Likes
400
Maybe the COP should have stopped when he said that the investigation had revealed that the firearm was properly stored, but he did not. At least then people could speculate it was a smash and grab.


So you would rather have speculation than fact?



The inclusion of that second part by the COP plainly leads down one of two possible paths, either covering for improper storage


How is this covering for improper storage. You do realize that the storage laws in Ma have nothing to do with preventing firearms from theft..right? So ergo...what would your issue be?


or someone with inside knowledge.

Bingo!!

Either way, the COP let the cat out of the bag. Now people are asking legitimate questions based on that statement.

No... People are asking nosy questions in an attempt to discredit a respected member of law enforcement and not lay blame where it belongs and that is with those who broke in and stole the gun.








 

M1911

Moderator
Rating - 100%
27   0   0
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
39,570
Likes
7,814
Location
Near Framingham
Well, I thought we were having a logical discourse here. My mistake. There is no need to be facetious.

You are new to the forum. You have repeatedly made such unjustified personal attacks with no justification whatsoever. If you want to stick around, stop it. And in the meantime, stop grinding your anti-cop axe. It's getting tiresome (and I'm not even a cop).
 
Last edited:

GSG

Rating - 100%
23   0   0
Joined
Jun 18, 2007
Messages
5,825
Likes
557
I think the point some people are making is that if this was one of th "normal" (MA) citizens the information would be flowing a lot more freely, as would the criminal charges.

People in this very thread have made remarks about people getting guns stolen that weren't all over the news and who weren't charged for the "crime."

Well, I thought we were having a logical discourse here. My mistake. There is no need to be facetious. What part of my comments could possibly be construed this way? All I've said is if the firearm was properly secured, but was pilfered by someone with access to the premises, then say so. No need for obfuscation.

In my post, I wasn't trying to be unkind. Tone can be hard to convey in writing, I'm sorry if you were offended.

My point is that a detailed explanation of how his gun was stolen isn't going to help anyone in this situation.

A gun is simply property, no different than anything else (or shouldn't be seen that way, but I digress). If someone breaks into my house and steals my flatscreen TV, I don't want anyone knowing how the security of my home was successfully violated. That's all.
 
Top Bottom