Firearm Project, North Charleston, SC

Brian Freskos filed this request with the North Charleston Police Department of North Charleston, SC.
Status
Completed

Communications

From: Ben Hallman

Hi,

Pursuant to the state’s public records law, I am requesting access to and copies of records from your agency. I have broken the request into three parts, each of which details the records that we are seeking. As expressed below, the date range for each part of this request is January 1, 2010 to the present:

1) Detailed information on stolen guns

It is our understanding that law enforcement agencies keep detailed records about firearms that were reported stolen by the citizens they serve. We are therefore requesting the following for each case of reported firearm theft in your jurisdiction:

-- The police report number and/or incident number for the firearm theft
-- The serial number, make, model, caliber, type and any other descriptive information for each firearm that was reported stolen

If possible, I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one firearm. If a spreadsheet is provided, please provide the record layout and/or code sheet. If such a spreadsheet is not available, please provide any other records that contain this information.

2) Detailed information about crime guns

Second, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that were used in crimes, found at crimes scenes or other incidents, seized during investigations, or otherwise recovered or taken in by officers, including the make, model and serial number of each gun. We are therefore requesting the following:

-- The following records regarding firearms used in crimes in your agency’s jurisdiction, found at crime scenes, seized during investigations or otherwise recovered or taken in by your agency: the make, model, and serial number of each gun; the date of the crime and/or incident from which it was recovered or seized; the police report number for the crime and/or incident; the type of crime the firearm was used in; and the address where the crime was committed and/or the incident occurred. Please include firearms for all offense and incident types, including homicide, robbery, assault, traffic stops, etc.

If your agency maintains a spreadsheet or database containing these records, we ask that you please provide that database. I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one case, the same as part 1) “Detailed information about stolen guns.” If a spreadsheet is provided, please also provide a record layout and/or code sheet. If a spreadsheet or database is not available, please release any other records containing the information we seek.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

3) Detailed information on lost, stolen or unaccounted for law enforcement guns

Finally, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that, while owned by the department or under the control and/or in the possession of their employees, went missing, were lost or stolen, or are otherwise unaccounted for. Therefore we request the following:

-- Any and all records of department-issued firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or are otherwise unaccounted for.

-- If your department does not issue firearms, then we ask for any and all records of firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or otherwise became unaccounted for while under the control and/or in the possession of one of your employees.

The records should include but not be limited to the following:

• The make, model, serial number and caliber of each firearm
• The location and address where the firearm was lost or stolen
• The date of the loss or theft.
• The date the loss or theft was reported
• Whether each lost or stolen firearm was recovered
• If the lost, stolen or missing firearm was recovered, the date and location of the recovery
• A description of how the firearm was lost, stolen or went missing
• Whether negligence on the part of the employee is/was suspected in the loss or theft of the firearm
• Whether the employee in control of the firearm retired, was terminated or otherwise left the department, and if so, the date and circumstances of the employee’s departure and whether his or her gun was retrieved and/or recovered.
• Any other individual reports and findings on the individual lost, stolen or missing firearms

The records should include but not be limited to audits, inventory reports, databases, internal reports, memos, internal affairs investigations, emails or other correspondence, and/or any other records.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

Please label each record in a clear manner. As a news organization, we will be making information obtained from this request available to the general public and are not requesting it for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you informed me of the total charges before completing my request. We request that if you send an invoice, you make it out to The Trace.

I would prefer the requested information be sent via an e-mail attachment if available, or a mailed CD-ROM if not. If standard mail must be used, we ask that you send the request to the following address:

The Trace (at WeWork)
Attn: Brian Freskos
428 Broadway
New York, NY 10013

Thank you in advance for your help with this request. I look forward to receiving your response. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me on my cell phone: (919) 522-6354

Sincerely,

Brian Freskos

From: Woodall, Beth

Please find attached an EXCEL spreadsheet which covers the response to Section 1 of your FOIA above-referenced.

As for Section 2, we do not capture all the data requested. If we recover a gun, then Evidence has it, but not for guns used in crimes.

I am still awaiting responsive data from the third section.

I hope this information is useful.

Thank you,
Beth Woodall
Legal Department

On Dec. 6, 2016:
To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 14, 2016. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

---

On Nov. 14, 2016:
Hi,

Pursuant to the state’s public records law, I am requesting access to and copies of records from your agency. I have broken the request into three parts, each of which details the records that we are seeking. As expressed below, the date range for each part of this request is January 1, 2010 to the present:

1) Detailed information on stolen guns

It is our understanding that law enforcement agencies keep detailed records about firearms that were reported stolen by the citizens they serve. We are therefore requesting the following for each case of reported firearm theft in your jurisdiction:

-- The police report number and/or incident number for the firearm theft
-- The serial number, make, model, caliber, type and any other descriptive information for each firearm that was reported stolen

If possible, I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one firearm. If a spreadsheet is provided, please provide the record layout and/or code sheet. If such a spreadsheet is not available, please provide any other records that contain this information.

2) Detailed information about crime guns

Second, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that were used in crimes, found at crimes scenes or other incidents, seized during investigations, or otherwise recovered or taken in by officers, including the make, model and serial number of each gun. We are therefore requesting the following:

-- The following records regarding firearms used in crimes in your agency’s jurisdiction, found at crime scenes, seized during investigations or otherwise recovered or taken in by your agency: the make, model, and serial number of each gun; the date of the crime and/or incident from which it was recovered or seized; the police report number for the crime and/or incident; the type of crime the firearm was used in; and the address where the crime was committed and/or the incident occurred. Please include firearms for all offense and incident types, including homicide, robbery, assault, traffic stops, etc.

If your agency maintains a spreadsheet or database containing these records, we ask that you please provide that database. I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one case, the same as part 1) “Detailed information about stolen guns.” If a spreadsheet is provided, please also provide a record layout and/or code sheet. If a spreadsheet or database is not available, please release any other records containing the information we seek.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

3) Detailed information on lost, stolen or unaccounted for law enforcement guns

Finally, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that, while owned by the department or under the control and/or in the possession of their employees, went missing, were lost or stolen, or are otherwise unaccounted for. Therefore we request the following:

-- Any and all records of department-issued firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or are otherwise unaccounted for.

-- If your department does not issue firearms, then we ask for any and all records of firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or otherwise became unaccounted for while under the control and/or in the possession of one of your employees.

The records should include but not be limited to the following:

• The make, model, serial number and caliber of each firearm
• The location and address where the firearm was lost or stolen
• The date of the loss or theft.
• The date the loss or theft was reported
• Whether each lost or stolen firearm was recovered
• If the lost, stolen or missing firearm was recovered, the date and location of the recovery
• A description of how the firearm was lost, stolen or went missing
• Whether negligence on the part of the employee is/was suspected in the loss or theft of the firearm
• Whether the employee in control of the firearm retired, was terminated or otherwise left the department, and if so, the date and circumstances of the employee’s departure and whether his or her gun was retrieved and/or recovered.
• Any other individual reports and findings on the individual lost, stolen or missing firearms

The records should include but not be limited to audits, inventory reports, databases, internal reports, memos, internal affairs investigations, emails or other correspondence, and/or any other records.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

Please label each record in a clear manner. As a news organization, we will be making information obtained from this request available to the general public and are not requesting it for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you informed me of the total charges before completing my request. We request that if you send an invoice, you make it out to The Trace.

I would prefer the requested information be sent via an e-mail attachment if available, or a mailed CD-ROM if not. If standard mail must be used, we ask that you send the request to the following address:

The Trace (at WeWork)
Attn: Brian Freskos
428 Broadway
New York, NY 10013

Thank you in advance for your help with this request. I look forward to receiving your response. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me on my cell phone: (919) 522-6354

Sincerely,

Brian Freskos

------
Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com<mailto:requests@muckrock.com>

For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock
DEPT MR 30074
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA 02144-2516

PLEASE NOTE: This request is not filed by a MuckRock staff member, but is being sent through MuckRock by the above in order to better track, share, and manage public records requests. Also note that improperly addressed (i.e., with the requester's name rather than "MuckRock News" and the department number) requests might be returned as undeliverable.
------
[http://email.requests.muckrock.com/o/eJwNzDsSgjAQANDTmDKzn_wo0jlew5ElEQYhuEDh7aV_84bsfTBTJsCARIgAwM5SiMQWkQJYT487h-huDrR8z7Ifu11OmbXJbKUtZsypeu8EQkGJNMTEqQhX5r6mXnxlc7HlOQ2Z0XUdGs37VlYpuumv6RWvTY9Rxpd-rr6ttun7D7YXLq8]

From: Ben Hallman

That data is perfect. Thank you so much Beth, and please pass along my thanks to anyone who also assisted. As for part 2, could we get the make, model, serial number and case number for the firearms in evidence?

From: Woodall, Beth

Regarding your inquiry into our Section Two response, I am told that the EXCEL spreadsheet previously provided to you contained all of the data we capture.

From: Woodall, Beth

Please find attached the City's responsive documents to Section Three of your FOIA request regarding lost or stolen firearms assigned to police officers.

Thank you,
Beth Woodall
Legal Department

From: Woodall, Beth

Hi Brian,

This was just forwarded to me by an evidence tech. I am not altogether sure whether it’s the same spreadsheet I sent you the other day, so I’m forwarding it on. If it’s a duplicate; my apologies. If it’s new data, then I think this wraps this FOIA up!

Thank you,
Beth Woodall
Legal Assistant

January 9, 2017
North Charleston Police Department
Public Information Officer
PO Box 62558
North Charleston, SC 29419

This is a follow up to a previous request:

That data is perfect. Thank you so much Beth, and please pass along my thanks to anyone who also assisted. As for part 2, could we get the make, model, serial number and case number for the firearms in evidence?
---

On Jan. 9, 2017:
Please find attached an EXCEL spreadsheet which covers the response to Section 1 of your FOIA above-referenced.

As for Section 2, we do not capture all the data requested. If we recover a gun, then Evidence has it, but not for guns used in crimes.

I am still awaiting responsive data from the third section.

I hope this information is useful.

Thank you,
Beth Woodall
Legal Department

On Dec. 6, 2016:
To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 14, 2016. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

---

On Nov. 14, 2016:
Hi,

Pursuant to the state’s public records law, I am requesting access to and copies of records from your agency. I have broken the request into three parts, each of which details the records that we are seeking. As expressed below, the date range for each part of this request is January 1, 2010 to the present:

1) Detailed information on stolen guns

It is our understanding that law enforcement agencies keep detailed records about firearms that were reported stolen by the citizens they serve. We are therefore requesting the following for each case of reported firearm theft in your jurisdiction:

-- The police report number and/or incident number for the firearm theft
-- The serial number, make, model, caliber, type and any other descriptive information for each firearm that was reported stolen

If possible, I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one firearm. If a spreadsheet is provided, please provide the record layout and/or code sheet. If such a spreadsheet is not available, please provide any other records that contain this information.

2) Detailed information about crime guns

Second, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that were used in crimes, found at crimes scenes or other incidents, seized during investigations, or otherwise recovered or taken in by officers, including the make, model and serial number of each gun. We are therefore requesting the following:

-- The following records regarding firearms used in crimes in your agency’s jurisdiction, found at crime scenes, seized during investigations or otherwise recovered or taken in by your agency: the make, model, and serial number of each gun; the date of the crime and/or incident from which it was recovered or seized; the police report number for the crime and/or incident; the type of crime the firearm was used in; and the address where the crime was committed and/or the incident occurred. Please include firearms for all offense and incident types, including homicide, robbery, assault, traffic stops, etc.

If your agency maintains a spreadsheet or database containing these records, we ask that you please provide that database. I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one case, the same as part 1) “Detailed information about stolen guns.” If a spreadsheet is provided, please also provide a record layout and/or code sheet. If a spreadsheet or database is not available, please release any other records containing the information we seek.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

3) Detailed information on lost, stolen or unaccounted for law enforcement guns

Finally, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that, while owned by the department or under the control and/or in the possession of their employees, went missing, were lost or stolen, or are otherwise unaccounted for. Therefore we request the following:

-- Any and all records of department-issued firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or are otherwise unaccounted for.

-- If your department does not issue firearms, then we ask for any and all records of firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or otherwise became unaccounted for while under the control and/or in the possession of one of your employees.

The records should include but not be limited to the following:

• The make, model, serial number and caliber of each firearm
• The location and address where the firearm was lost or stolen
• The date of the loss or theft.
• The date the loss or theft was reported
• Whether each lost or stolen firearm was recovered
• If the lost, stolen or missing firearm was recovered, the date and location of the recovery
• A description of how the firearm was lost, stolen or went missing
• Whether negligence on the part of the employee is/was suspected in the loss or theft of the firearm
• Whether the employee in control of the firearm retired, was terminated or otherwise left the department, and if so, the date and circumstances of the employee’s departure and whether his or her gun was retrieved and/or recovered.
• Any other individual reports and findings on the individual lost, stolen or missing firearms

The records should include but not be limited to audits, inventory reports, databases, internal reports, memos, internal affairs investigations, emails or other correspondence, and/or any other records.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

Please label each record in a clear manner. As a news organization, we will be making information obtained from this request available to the general public and are not requesting it for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you informed me of the total charges before completing my request. We request that if you send an invoice, you make it out to The Trace.

I would prefer the requested information be sent via an e-mail attachment if available, or a mailed CD-ROM if not. If standard mail must be used, we ask that you send the request to the following address:

The Trace (at WeWork)
Attn: Brian Freskos
428 Broadway
New York, NY 10013

Thank you in advance for your help with this request. I look forward to receiving your response. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me on my cell phone: (919) 522-6354

Sincerely,

Brian Freskos

------
Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com<mailto:requests@muckrock.com<mailto:requests@muckrock.com%3cmailto:requests@muckrock.com>>

For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock
DEPT MR 30074
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA 02144-2516

PLEASE NOTE: This request is not filed by a MuckRock staff member, but is being sent through MuckRock by the above in order to better track, share, and manage public records requests. Also note that improperly addressed (i.e., with the requester's name rather than "MuckRock News" and the department number) requests might be returned as undeliverable.
------
[http://email.requests.muckrock.com/o/eJwNzDsSgjAQANDTmDKzn_wo0jlew5ElEQYhuEDh7aV_84bsfTBTJsCARIgAwM5SiMQWkQJYT487h-huDrR8z7Ifu11OmbXJbKUtZsypeu8EQkGJNMTEqQhX5r6mXnxlc7HlOQ2Z0XUdGs37VlYpuumv6RWvTY9Rxpd-rr6ttun7D7YXLq8]

---

On Jan. 5, 2017:
To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 14, 2016. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

---

On Dec. 21, 2016:
To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 14, 2016. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

---

On Dec. 6, 2016:
To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 14, 2016. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

---

On Nov. 14, 2016:
Hi,

Pursuant to the state’s public records law, I am requesting access to and copies of records from your agency. I have broken the request into three parts, each of which details the records that we are seeking. As expressed below, the date range for each part of this request is January 1, 2010 to the present:

1) Detailed information on stolen guns

It is our understanding that law enforcement agencies keep detailed records about firearms that were reported stolen by the citizens they serve. We are therefore requesting the following for each case of reported firearm theft in your jurisdiction:

-- The police report number and/or incident number for the firearm theft
-- The serial number, make, model, caliber, type and any other descriptive information for each firearm that was reported stolen

If possible, I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one firearm. If a spreadsheet is provided, please provide the record layout and/or code sheet. If such a spreadsheet is not available, please provide any other records that contain this information.

2) Detailed information about crime guns

Second, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that were used in crimes, found at crimes scenes or other incidents, seized during investigations, or otherwise recovered or taken in by officers, including the make, model and serial number of each gun. We are therefore requesting the following:

-- The following records regarding firearms used in crimes in your agency’s jurisdiction, found at crime scenes, seized during investigations or otherwise recovered or taken in by your agency: the make, model, and serial number of each gun; the date of the crime and/or incident from which it was recovered or seized; the police report number for the crime and/or incident; the type of crime the firearm was used in; and the address where the crime was committed and/or the incident occurred. Please include firearms for all offense and incident types, including homicide, robbery, assault, traffic stops, etc.

If your agency maintains a spreadsheet or database containing these records, we ask that you please provide that database. I would be grateful if this data was collated into a spreadsheet where each row represents one case, the same as part 1) “Detailed information about stolen guns.” If a spreadsheet is provided, please also provide a record layout and/or code sheet. If a spreadsheet or database is not available, please release any other records containing the information we seek.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

3) Detailed information on lost, stolen or unaccounted for law enforcement guns

Finally, it is our understanding that law enforcement agencies maintain detailed records about firearms that, while owned by the department or under the control and/or in the possession of their employees, went missing, were lost or stolen, or are otherwise unaccounted for. Therefore we request the following:

-- Any and all records of department-issued firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or are otherwise unaccounted for.

-- If your department does not issue firearms, then we ask for any and all records of firearms that were lost, stolen, went missing or otherwise became unaccounted for while under the control and/or in the possession of one of your employees.

The records should include but not be limited to the following:

• The make, model, serial number and caliber of each firearm
• The location and address where the firearm was lost or stolen
• The date of the loss or theft.
• The date the loss or theft was reported
• Whether each lost or stolen firearm was recovered
• If the lost, stolen or missing firearm was recovered, the date and location of the recovery
• A description of how the firearm was lost, stolen or went missing
• Whether negligence on the part of the employee is/was suspected in the loss or theft of the firearm
• Whether the employee in control of the firearm retired, was terminated or otherwise left the department, and if so, the date and circumstances of the employee’s departure and whether his or her gun was retrieved and/or recovered.
• Any other individual reports and findings on the individual lost, stolen or missing firearms

The records should include but not be limited to audits, inventory reports, databases, internal reports, memos, internal affairs investigations, emails or other correspondence, and/or any other records.

The date range for this part is also January 1, 2010 to the present.

Please label each record in a clear manner. As a news organization, we will be making information obtained from this request available to the general public and are not requesting it for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you informed me of the total charges before completing my request. We request that if you send an invoice, you make it out to The Trace.

I would prefer the requested information be sent via an e-mail attachment if available, or a mailed CD-ROM if not. If standard mail must be used, we ask that you send the request to the following address:

The Trace (at WeWork)
Attn: Brian Freskos
428 Broadway
New York, NY 10013

Thank you in advance for your help with this request. I look forward to receiving your response. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me on my cell phone: (919) 522-6354

Sincerely,

Brian Freskos

------
Filed via MuckRock.com
E-mail (Preferred): requests@muckrock.com<mailto:requests@muckrock.com>

For mailed responses, please address (see note):
MuckRock
DEPT MR 30074
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, MA 02144-2516

PLEASE NOTE: This request is not filed by a MuckRock staff member, but is being sent through MuckRock by the above in order to better track, share, and manage public records requests. Also note that improperly addressed (i.e., with the requester's name rather than "MuckRock News" and the department number) requests might be returned as undeliverable.
------
[http://email.requests.muckrock.com/o/eJwNzE0OgyAQQOHTlCVhGAdkwcamvUbDX6oRnYiaXr8kb_nyZU9kxOK1AqtAOQ0AOEpLI0pSzpAcpuf0ek_0GFQrx13O65TbndbGaZWJNzH7OMRAFovRIZpks4ZeRKKEJmOIom_bZ8keNbgRRPPxx5xDrR3duV1zmkOrneZdcvv-AQmZLQc]

From: Ben Hallman

Hi,

Thanks so much for your help with this request! I really appreciate it.

Sincerely,
Brian

From: Brian Freskos

Hi Beth,

We are formatting the stolen firearm data that you sent Jan. 9 and realized the serial numbers might be missing leading zeros. For example, a serial number that is actually "01345" will appear as "12345." This happens the column is formatted as "General" instead of as "Text," and it presents an issue when we try and compare the firearms with data from other departments.

Would it be possible to provide the data again with the leading zeros present?

From: Brian Freskos

Hi Beth,

I wanted to followup on my last. Do you know, if a gun is marked as Recovered in the data, does that mean that it was previously reported stolen somewhere?

Thank you,
Brian

From: Woodall, Beth

I have asked the question of several people and cannot get a straight answer. Not necessarily stolen, could be recovered from being lost. That’s the best I can do.

From: Brian Freskos

That's great! Thank you so much!

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