Audits done by the Oklahoma State Auditor and Inspector’s Office from 2009 to 2014 show many district attorneys’ districts did not have written formal policies governing seized property. Also, in many cases, local law enforcement agencies did not keep an inventory of seized items.
The audits included cases where:
* Seized money was spent before it was forfeited in court. (District 25; Okmulgee and McIntosh counties)
* Forfeiture cases were never filed for seized money that was listed as forfeited. (District 27)
* Seized money was used to pay for retirement plaques and a retirement party, as well as doughnuts for a “spring roundup.” (District 3: Kiowa, Greer, Jackson, Tillman, Harmon counties)
* No documented evidence could be found that a pickup truck listed as sold at auction had been sold or money from the sale had been deposited. (District 6: Caddo, Stephens, Grady and Jefferson counties)
* Seized guns and money could not be accounted for (multiple districts).
* A local law enforcement agency sold seized guns at auction without the knowledge of the district attorney. (District 20: Murray, Carter, Johnston, Marshall and Love counties)
* Forfeited items were returned to their owners without the district attorney’s knowledge. (multiple districts)
* Money from forfeitures was being spent on court costs. (District 4: Grant, Garfield, Kingfisher, Blaine and Canadian counties)
(Editor’s note: This story was corrected on January 8, 2015. The statement “Forfeiture cases were never filed for seized money that was listed as forfeited. (District 25)” was changed to reflect the right district, which is District 27.)