What to do if You have a Lost or Stolen Firearm

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What should you do if your gun is stolen? This is a question that responsible firearms owners ask, as well as those who are anti-gun or neutral but curious on the issue of guns.

By the very nature of its theft, a stolen firearm is now in the wrong hands — it’s in the hands of the criminal element. The thief may not have any immediate malicious intent with your gun. He may just want to sell or pawn it. But regardless, the owner of the stolen firearm does have some culpability.

Owner’s Responsibilities

First think about how you store and secure your firearms, so that on the day your firearm is stolen, you can have confidence and integrity when you contact the authorities to tell them what happened. Show them the reasonable precautions you took and the responsibility you took regarding your firearms ownership. At the end of the day, sometimes the bad guys win even if you have taken all precautions — they may break into your home and steal the entire safe or lockbox you keep your firearms in.

Record of Your Firearms

In addition to storage precautions, it’s important to keep an accurate record of the firearms you own. Take pictures of all your firearms showing the serial numbers, or take multiple pictures from different angles and include a close-up of each serial number.

Other possibilities are a written list that you keep in a safe-deposit box or an email list that is stored to the cloud so you will not lose the list if your computer is stolen as well as your firearms. Good records will definitely help law enforcement track the activity of the criminal element if your stolen firearm does turn up somewhere, and it may result in your firearm eventually being returned to you.

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