The release of firearms is governed by how the weapon is classified: Evidence, Safekeeping or Court Ordered Domestic Injunction. If you're uncertain as to the classification assigned to your property, check with the detective or officer who is handling the case. Firearms are disposed of under a separate statute, F.S.S. 790 therefore no finders claim may be made on found firearms.
Release of a Firearm
Before the return of any firearm the following must be completed:
- Person claiming a firearm are subject to a background check to ensure they are not a convicted felon, are not wanted, or have an outstanding domestic violence injunction.
- A check of Winter Garden Police Department records must be completed to determine the background information on the case. If there is any question about the adjudication of a charge(s), the weapon will not be released until the issue is resolved.
- The officer or detective who seized the weapon must authorize the release.
Ammunition is not returned at the same time due to safety concerns, unless a court order specifies otherwise.
Evidence firearms will not be returned without instructions from the State Attorney's Office or a Court Order, unless the case was "Nol Prosse" or results in a judgment of acquittal. Proper photo identification must be presented and pursuant F.S.S. 790.08, the charges in the case must be concluded.
Firearms on non-evidentiary nature (safekeeping, death investigations, suicidal incidents, etc.) shall not be released without direction from the designated case agent or their supervisor.
Firearms Subject to Court Ordered Domestic Injunctions
Release requires a certified copy of the court order lifting the injunction prepared by the judge who issued the injunction. There are no exceptions.