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Officials: "Missing" Gun Of Former Dallas Sheriff Was In Property Room

DALLAS (CBSDFWC.COM) - Officials with the Dallas County Sheriff's Department issued a press release today explaining that a gun loaned to former Sheriff Lupe Valdez, and was said to be missing, has been found in the property room.

In a statement earlier this month it was said that, "it is possible that this weapon could have been stolen or misplaced during Sheriff Valdez's moving transition."

Lupe Valdez
(credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for HBO)

Apparently that was not the case. Today officials said that while a previous audit "failed to locate the weapon" another check of inventory at the department ended with "the missing Berretta 9mm handgun" being found.

Officials say the gun was turned in on January 2, 2018, but was not entered into the inventory. Valdez has been notified about the gun being recovered.

Part of the DSO statement today also said -

"Sheriff Brown and the Sheriff's Department offer their sincere apologies to former Sheriff Lupe Valdez for any distress and hardship that was created as a result of the Department's mistake."

After the mishap the department is said to be investigating how the "oversight" happened and "will be taking steps to implement measures to insure this type of incident does not occur again."

Valdez was Dallas sheriff for 13 years before stepping down to enter the governor's race against Republican Greg Abbott.

Valdez, who won the nomination after a primary runoff in May, is a heavy underdog in the race. Texas hasn't sent a Democrat to the governor's mansion in 28 years. If elected the former sheriff would become Texas' first Hispanic and openly gay governor.

Lupe Valdez issued the following statement:

"This incident further illustrates the importance of gun owner accountability and firearms safety. Thank you Sheriff Brown for your leadership and diligence in resolving this issue.

"As I have previously stated, I have been a responsible gun owner for over 40 years. Throughout my law enforcement and military career I have always followed protocol when returning issued property.

"As a law enforcement officer, I made a commitment to keep the public safe and will continue to do so. My opponent considered this a slam dunk, thinking this would distract from his unwillingness to keep our communities safe from gun violence, but I will not be strong armed from keeping him accountable for his failures or be silenced on the need for gun reform."

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