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2 Investigators, BGA: Seized Gun Went Missing At Dolton Police Department

(CBS) -- A gun goes missing from the police evidence room in south suburban Dolton, a suburb plagued with corruption and misconduct allegations.

So, what exactly happened to that missing gun? You'll be surprised what 2 Investigator Pam Zekman and the Better Government Association discovered.

Dolton resident Pierce Cole legally owns a shotgun and what he believes is an antique German Luger pistol.

"This was my grandfather's weapon when he was in the war," Cole says. "This has a lot of sentimental value."

BGA Logo
Better Government Association logo. (Credit: BGA)

But after Cole let his friend, Farren Caridine, stay in his Dolton home while on parole for a DUI, corrections officers came to the home to check on Caridine and seized both guns -- even after Cole explained that the guns were his.

"They didn't say anything. They just arrested Farren," Cole says.

The weapons charges were later dismissed and a judge ordered the guns returned to Cole.  But the handgun was missing by then.

More than two years later, after Dolton police asked the Cook County Sheriff's Office for help, the mystery of the missing handgun was solved.

Dolton records show the handgun was not even inventoried by Sgt. Anthony Bankhead.

"It was forgotten about -- that's all," Sgt. Bankhead said when asked about the oversight.

After sheriff's police questioned Bankhead, he produced the missing gun from his office drawer.

"And now I'm thinking this guy wanted to steal it," Cole says. "What is it worth?"

Cole thought his gun was a German Luger, the type he saw selling online for thousands of dollars. It turns out his gun is an American version worth a few hundred dollars.

Zekman asked Sgt. Blankhead if he took the gun because he thought it was an antique.

"No, I don't want to comment on it," he replied. "I'm not a gun fanatic."

Andrew Schroedter from the Better Government Association says it doesn't matter what the gun was worth.

"We're talking about a weapon here and that's the bottom line. A weapon went missing and there has to be accountability,"  Schroedter says.

Cole, who works at the U-S Post Office, said if he got caught with undelivered mail he would be "terminated immediately."

Sgt. Bankhead is a watch commander and supervisor at the Dolton police department.  He declined to comment on the status of the investigation into the missing gun.

"I don't know what's going on with it. I haven't heard anything more from the chief," he says.

The Dolton Police Chief said possible disciplinary action is under review. That action could range from a suspension to Sgt. Bankhead being fired.


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