WILMINGTON — The North Carolina Department of Public Safety has issued new requirements for law enforcement officers when it comes to securing weapons specifically originating from the 1033 program — a program that gives civilian law enforcement agencies surplus military equipment.
According to a memo addressed to all law enforcement agencies from David Farmer, law enforcement support services supervisor state point of contact federal 1033 program, beginning Feb. 1, 2018, “North Carolina is required to implement a secondary locking device policy for all Federal 1033 weapons when assigned to officers.”
Farmer said that this new requirement is due to an increased number of thefts from patrol vehicles.
At the beginning of October, a Wilmington Police Department officer had a weapon stolen from a vehicle – the weapon stolen was a Colt M4 fully automatic rifle. Wilmington Police Department Spokesperson Linda Thompson said that the new regulations have nothing to with this incident since the weapon stolen was not a 1033 weapon.
Thompson said that WPD will comply with whatever the state requires when it comes to the new regulations.
“Since these weapons are or have been converted from fully automatic it is imperative North Carolina minimizes the potential for theft of loss,” Farmer said in the memo.
The new requirements do not recommend what method weapons are secured and the memo states it can be as simple as, “a cable with lock mounted in the trunk area or a security box or a locking rack in the patrol car.”
Michael Praats can be reached at Michael.firstname.lastname@example.org