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(A) The Chief of Police is authorized to sell personal property, other than money or legal tender of the United States, which has come into his or her possession in any manner if:
(1) The owner of the personal property is unknown or has not claimed the property;
(2) The property has been in the custody of the Chief of Police for at least 90 days or for other minimum time, as may be required by state law, whichever is less; and
(3) The property or any part thereof is no longer necessary to be held as evidence or for any other purpose in connection with any litigation.
(B) The Chief of Police shall file an application in the District Court of the county requesting the authority of the Court to conduct a sale of the personal property which has a fair market value of more than its face value. The Chief of Police shall attach to the application a list describing the property, including any identifying numbers and marks, the date the property came into the possession of the Chief of Police, and the name of the owner and the person in last possession, if different, if known.
(C) In any instance where the property has an actual or apparent value of more $250, at least ten days prior to the date of the hearing, written notice of the hearing shall be sent by first-class mail, postage prepaid, to each owner at the address as listed in the application. If the owner of any property with an actual or apparent value exceeding $500 is unable to be served written notice by first-class mail, notice shall be provided by one publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the property is in custody. The notice shall contain a brief description of the property of the owner and the place and date of the hearing. The notice shall be posted at the assigned place for the posting of municipal notices, and at two other public places in the municipality.
(D) If no owner appears and establishes ownership to the property at the hearing, the Court shall enter an order authorizing the Chief of Police to dispose of the property as follows:
(1) Donate the property having value of less than $500 to a not-for-profit corporation, as defined in Title 18 of the Oklahoma Statutes, for use by needy families;
(2) Sell the personal property for cash to the highest bidder, at least five days after notice of the sale has been published;
(3) Transfer the property to a third-party agent under contract with the governing body of the Chief of Police for sale by Internet or other electronic means, regardless of whether the sale structure or distribution site is within the State of Oklahoma; or
(4) By any other means as determined appropriate by the court, including but not limited to, destruction.
Regardless of the means of disposition, the Chief of Police shall make a return of the donation or sale, and the order of the Court confirming the donation or sale shall vest title to the property in the recipient or purchaser. After payment of Court costs and other expenses, the remainder of money received from the sale of the personal property shall be deposited in the Municipal General Fund.
(E) (1) All money or legal tender of the United States which has come into the possession of the Chief of Police pursuant to the circumstances provided for in division (A) above shall be transferred by the Chief of Police to the Municipal Clerk for deposit in the Municipal General Fund. Prior to any transfer, the Chief of Police shall file an application in the District Court, requesting the Court to enter an order authorizing the Chief of Police to transfer the money for deposit in the Municipal General Fund.
(2) The application shall describe the money or legal tender, the date the same came into the possession of the Chief of Police, and the name and address of the owner, if known.
(3) Notice of the hearing shall be given as provided for in division (C) above. The notice shall state that, upon failure of anyone to appear to prove ownership to the money or legal tender, the Court shall order the same to be deposited in the Municipal General Fund.
(4) The notice may be combined with a notice to sell personal property as provided for in division (B) above. If no one appears to claim and prove ownership to the money or legal tender at the hearing, the Court shall order the same to be transferred to the Municipal General Fund, as provided herein.
(F) The provisions of this section shall not apply to any dangerous or deadly weapons, narcotic or poisonous drugs, explosives, or any property of any kind or character, which the possession of is prohibited by law. By order of the trial court, any property filed as an exhibit or held by the municipality shall be destroyed or sold or disposed of, pursuant to the conditions prescribed in the order.
(G) The municipality is hereby authorized to establish a procedure for the registration of “lost and found” property. The procedure shall give the finder of any property the option of relinquishing any future claim to found property at the time its possession is surrendered to the police or other agent of the municipality, or of retaining possession of the property after registering its description and the finder’s identity with the Police Department or other agent of the municipality. Only property in which the finder relinquishes any future claim to its ownership will be stored in municipal police property rooms.
(H) The provisions of this section shall not apply to animals.
(I) The Chief of Police is hereby authorized to destroy or donate to charity those unclaimed personal property items which individual items have no apparent fair market value and which have been in the possession of the Police Department for more than 90 days.
(Prior Code, § 14-207) (Ord. 1278, passed 2-7-84; Am. Ord. 1578, passed 10-21-97; Am. Ord. 1829, passed 9-1-09; Am. Ord. 1879, passed 1-21-14)