WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
said Wednesday it is changing its ways after an audit showed that the agency
was losing guns and laptops, often through carelessness.
According to a Justice Department audit released Wednesday, the inspector
general reported the ATF was unable to account for 76 weapons and 418
laptops over the past five years.
The report said the rate of loss had tripled since the last audit was
conducted by the ATF's then-parent agency, the Treasury Department.
"It is especially troubling that ATF's rate of loss for weapons was nearly
double that of the FBI and DEA," the report said.
ATF Director Michael Sullivan said he agreed with most of the report's
"We are revising our procedures of reporting losses of weapons or laptops,"
Of the 76 missing weapons, 35 were stolen from agents' homes, hotel rooms or
vehicles, the report said. Some of the others were left in public places or
lost in shipping -- or their losses were still unexplained.
Two of the stolen guns were used to commit crimes, the report said. One was
used to shoot through the window of a residence, and the other was recovered
from suspects arrested on burglary charges.
The inspector general determined that 53 percent of the weapon losses were
the result of employees' carelessness or failure to follow ATF policies.
Of the 418 laptops, 50 were reported stolen.
The report said that in most cases, it was not clear whether the missing
laptops contained sensitive or classified information. Seven did; 13 did
"ATF could not provide adequate information" about the contents of the other
398, the report said, and therefore, "ATF could not assess what damage these
losses could have had on ATF's operations or national security."
Few, if any, of the missing laptops had the data encrypted, according to the
The ATF has nearly 5,000 agents, more than 7,500 laptops and more than
22,000 weapons, the report said.
all i can say is that this is hysterical the guys that are suppose to make protect us from criminals obtaining guns can't even keep up with their own weapons.