According to a statement released by the Sheriff’s Office, “During the investigation, partially because there was a lack of paperwork and partially because of human error, the employee never heard about an investigation into a missing M-16 rifle. It wasn’t until he was reading in the newspapers that DCSO had a missing assault rifle that his memory was sparked, he went to his gun safe to check, then made the call to his superior.” The statement continued, “His employment never ceased and the gun was never on the streets being used for criminal purposes. He simply forgot it was there.”
The Sheriff’s office had no idea that this M-16 was missing until the 2013 federal audit.
They got the rifles in 1998. They didn't use one for anything until 2006. And then for training. Yeah, really needed them, didn't they?