Forget something? Or, how people are actually leaving guns behind in vacation rentals.
Some dear friends of mine own and operate a vacation rental management company. They clean, market, rent, and maintain income properties for absentee owners who provide vacation rentals to people wanting to enjoy a quiet getaway in our rural gated community. Visitors come from all over the world, from nearby Atlanta to distant Asia. And sometimes they leave firearms behind.
The first thing my friends do when they find a gun left by a renter is call a friend on the police force to have the serial number checked against the database of "hot," or stolen, guns. If the gun is clean, they inform the renter (who often as not, will simply disappear without coming back to claim it). If the gun turns out to have legal baggage attached to it, they let the police deal with it. This is also apparently an ongoing problem in Florida.
Over the weekend, Walton County Sheriff’s Deputies picked up seven guns found by cleaning crews at rental properties across the county. Since Memorial Day weekend, 20 guns have been turned into WCSO and listed in found property.
20 guns! And as in the case of my friends' forgetful renters, most of them were never claimed.
Of the seven guns left from over the weekend, two individuals have reached out to us to be returned. Guns held past 90 days are sent to be destroyed or are used for training purposes.
I'm scratching my head trying to think of a situation under which I could possibly leave a gun behind while on vacation. A toothbrush? Okay, sure. A wet swimsuit drying on the back of the bathroom door? Yep, done that. A firearm, possibly loaded, stored in the room to keep my family and me safe in case of an emergency? Not so much.