State Treasurer Riley Moore today announced his Office’s recent unclaimed property firearms auction raised nearly $5,000 for the Roane County Sheriff’s Office – funds to be put towards improving safety and law enforcement efforts in the local community.
“Our Office has now conducted ten unclaimed property firearms auctions since 2014, with last month’s auction topping a new record high number of law enforcement agencies turning over outdated and unclaimed firearms,” Treasurer Moore said. “I’m proud we offer this program to directly fund state and local law enforcement agencies.”
The Roane County Sheriff’s Office received $4,963.50 from the State Treasurer’s Office’s most recent auction, which occurred September 21 in Charleston.
“Since becoming Sheriff in 2022, we’ve made it a priority to participate in community outreach initiatives, such as visiting our schools and working with staff to make sure the buildings are safe and secure,” Roane County Sheriff Philip Dever said. “To continue keeping Spencer and the surrounding communities safe, we must invest in new equipment, vehicles, radios and body armor. I’m grateful for these funds from the State Treasurer’s Office’s firearms auction.”
The recent firearms auction raised nearly $90,000 to benefit the 19 participating law enforcement agencies – a new record high number of police departments, sheriff’s offices and police detachments turning over property for the auction. The auction raises funds by selling outdated, unclaimed or old firearms, ammunition and related accessories in police inventory to qualified bidders.
The auctions are not open to the general public; only pre-registered Federal Firearms License Holders can attend and are eligible to bid.
Under West Virginia’s Unclaimed Property Code (Chapter 36, Article 8A), state and local law enforcement agencies are allowed to turn over any unclaimed, seized or outdated firearms in their possession to the State Treasurer’s Office for auction.
These include weapons that are older and no longer used by a department, or that have been seized as evidence and sitting in storage rooms for an extended amount of time following the disposition of a case. They can also include weapons taken from individuals who are not legally allowed to own firearms.
Once law enforcement certifies they cannot find a lawful owner of the firearms, they can be turned over to the Treasurer’s Office for auction.
The proceeds from the auction are then returned to the submitting agency for use.