California State Senator Jerry Hill is sponsoring a new state law that would require all law enforcement officers and FBI to lock up their firearms in parked vehicles. The measure comes after a series of incidents in which officers’ and agents’ handguns were stolen from their cars.
“There should absolutely be more transparency from the FBI. It’s a very serious matter. The damage a sub-machine could cause in the wrong hands could be very tragic,” Hill said.
Hill’s proposal came just after a .40-caliber Glock 27 was stolen from an agent and later found in a San Francisco home while the agent was visiting family. The weapon was allegedly his personal handgun.
More recently, a submachine gun, magazines, and bulletproof vest were stolen from an FBI agent’s car in California’s Bay Area. The FBI announced the incident last Friday and said the gun was a Heckler & Koch MP5 10mm. The crime allegedly occurred between 6 p.m. on Jan. 8 and 10 a.m. on Jan. 9 in one of three cities: Concord, Orinda or Lafayette.
Former FBI agent James Wedick said the FBI’s customary practice is to lock up a machine gun when the car is unattended. The weapon should have been placed in a locked case that was bolted to the frame of the trunk and secured with a lock and chain. San Francisco FBI spokesman Prentice Danner said, in regards to the latter incident, that the FBI is unsure how the new law will pertain to the agent in this incident but that they were aware of the law.
The FBI is currently conducting an internal investigation about the circumstances of the incident but are asking for any information that can help them locate the stolen items be directed to them or the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office.