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Audit shows $3.3 million worth of items unaccounted for at Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office

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Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office

OKLAHOMA COUNTY, Okla. – A recent audit of the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office found that more than $3.3 million worth of items were unaccounted for.

An Oklahoma state auditor found that of the 7,844 items listed on inventory at the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office, 3,041 items could not be located or reviewed.

However, the audit report points out that although more than 3,000 items could not be located or reviewed, it doesn’t necessarily mean that all of those items are not in possession of the sheriff’s office.

The items that were unable to be located or verified had a total cost of $3,362,003.45.

In the report, the following expectations were noted:

  • Documentation was presented during the audit reflecting 308 items, which totaled $141,967.03 that were disposed of, but never removed from inventory. The Sheriff’s office did not follow the proper disposal process which requires Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) approval for removal as outlined in Title 19 O. S. § 178.2. See Appendix 2.

  • Forty-four (44) items were properly disposed of through the BOCC, but were still included on inventory for a total amount of $165,550.84. See Appendix 3.

  • Thirty-one (31) computers totaling $15,421.88 could not be located for physical inspection or they did not have an identifying asset tag on them, but they were reviewable through a network access print-out provided by the Management Information Systems Department. See Appendix 4.

  • Not all items assigned to vehicles were verifiable via inventory and/or serial number. As a result, 214 items totaling $269,619.36 were reviewed based upon internal maintenance build sheets. See Appendix 5.

According to the report, state auditors were unable to locate 18 vehicles; however, they were told that those vehicle were disposed of by the sheriff’s office, but the documentation supporting that was not provided.

State auditors were also unable to locate and verify 23 fire arms that were on file.

Interim Oklahoma County Sheriff P.D. Taylor responded to the audit saying:

This audit brought many things to light as it relates to processes and procedures regarding inventory and its tracking and disposition. Through the years, due to staffing issues across the agency, Sheriff Whetsel felt the need to reduce the property division from six employees to three. This move placed a strain on the property division to maintain adequate controls and records for the agency. Since March 2, 2017, the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) has added two additional staff in the property division. This process also brought to light that the property supervisor had some confusion on how to properly complete the paperwork necessary to dispose of property where it would be removed from inventory. A new supervisor has been installed over the area, and training opportunities are being identified to educate personnel on all facets of property acquisition and disposal as controls and procedures are being reinstituted. The OCSO is also in the process of identifying a member from every division to be assigned as an Inventory Officer to aid in the continual and annual accounting of inventory. This process will ensure a more accurate and seamless tracking of inventory throughout the agency without overloading any one specific division. Procedures are also being developed wherein internal purchase requisitions will be required to pass through property prior to submission to the finance division to aid in accountability and awareness of inventory needs. It is the intent of the agency at the conclusion of this audit to review the accurate inventory list and remove those items that have been previously disposed, identify those items needing disposal and correcting the inventory list to match those items on hand. This will give the agency a fresh start from an inventory perspective from the previous 2 administrations spanning the last 37 years where this particular area may not have received the appropriate level of attention.

Read the full audit and see the complete list of unverified/missing items here