The police department of a California city is facing accusations of severe incompetence after the agency’s police chief left her Glock handgun in a restaurant bathroom. City police later searched the home of an innocent man with the hopes of recovering the lost weapon, and went on to detain the man’s children on false child endangerment charges.
San Luis Obispo Police Chief Deanna Cantrell left her Glock 42 handgun in the bathroom of an El Pollo Loco earlier this month. After she determined she had forgot the weapon and that it was missing from its last known location, she asked restaurant staff to check surveillance camera footage for anyone who might have taken it.
Cantrell apparently determined that an area man named Skeeter Mangan took the weapon at the time, but the San Luis Obispo police later received an anonymous tip alleging that an thus-unnamed man from Moro Bay may have come into possession of the handgun. The police chief took a full two hours to report the weapon missing in accordance with the law, having realized the gun was unaccounted for at noon and finally following the legal procedures for missing firearms after 2:30pm.
Police executed a supposedly lawful search of the home, failing to find the Glock. When the weapon couldn’t be located in the man’s possession, officers took “protective custody” of the Morro Bay man’s children, on the extremely flimsy and outrageous basis of the man’s home being “filthy.” It’s unclear if San Luis Obispo officers will face repercussion for their seemingly retaliatory seizure of an American’s children.
Later, Mangan’s brother-in-law revealed that his relative was in fact in possession of the weapon, after which police officers finally recovered the sidearm.
Police Chief Cantrell later published a video apologizing for her actions and lack of transparency throughout the incident.
In perhaps the most bizarre twist of the story yet, San Luis Obispo City Manager Derek Johnson praised Cantrell for her “integrity throughout the incident,” even though he ordered her to be fined $1,600 for violating city police pertaining to weapons.
Meanwhile, the state of California continues to enforce heavily restrictive laws against law-abiding citizens, as local police officers lose their weapons in restrooms.
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