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 deputy who is handling the case. If you need more information regarding the release of firearms and weapons, contact the Evidence Unit at (954) 765-4351.
All persons entering the Evidence Unit to claim a firearm are subject to a background check for prior felony convictions. Firearms may not be released to a convicted felon. If there is any question about the adjudication of a charge(s), the weapon will not be released until the issue is resolved. Ammunition is not returned due to safety concerns, unless a court order specifies otherwise.
Per Florida statute 925.11 and 925.12, if the suspect in a felony case is found guilty by jury, or if they pled in court, the weapon must be held until the sentence has been fully served, regardless of who owns the property. If the suspect was "Acquitted" of all charges, the property can be released with certified copy of a court order authorizing release or written authorization from the detective or deputy responsible for the case.
Only a certified copy of a court order authorizing release or a special release from BSO's Legal Department is acceptable.
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.
To obtain a court order for release of a firearm
A private attorney can arrange for a court order, or you can contact the Clerk of the Courts office at the Broward County Courthouse and request a Demand for Hearing packet. Once the packet is filled out and returned, the Clerk's office will schedule a date for a hearing. For more information, see the Clerk of the Court's web site.