Home Table of Contents

§ 34-104. Disposition of personal property or money or legal tender

Oklahoma Statutes AnnotatedTitle 11. Cities and TownsEffective: November 1, 2021

Oklahoma Statutes Annotated
Title 11. Cities and Towns (Refs & Annos)
Chapter 1. Municipal Code (Refs & Annos)
Municipal Departments and Services
Article XXXIV. Police Departments
Effective: November 1, 2021
11 Okl.St.Ann. § 34-104
§ 34-104. Disposition of personal property or money or legal tender
A. Any chief of police or designee is authorized to dispose of personal property or money or legal tender as provided in this section or the ordinances of the municipality, which has come into the possession of the police department of the municipality if:
1. The owner of the personal property or money or legal tender is unknown or has not claimed the property after any required notice;
2. The property or money or legal tender has been in the custody of the chief of police for at least ninety (90) days; and
3. The property or money or legal tender or any part thereof is no longer needed to be held as evidence or for any other purpose in connection with any litigation. In the event the property, money or legal tender was seized by the police department in connection with a criminal investigation or arrest, this determination shall be made by the court which has jurisdiction over the criminal offense, if an information or indictment is pending, pursuant to Section 1321 of Title 22 of the Oklahoma Statutes, or by a prosecuting authority if charges have been disposed of or have been declined.
B. The municipality may file an application in the district court in which the situs of government of the municipality is located requesting the authority of the court to conduct a sale of the personal property which has a market value. The application shall contain a list describing the property, the date the property came into the possession of the municipality, and the name of the owner and the person in last possession, if different, and the address of the person, if known. The court shall set the application for hearing not less than fifteen (15) days after filing of the application.
C. In any instance where the property has an actual or apparent value of more than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($250.00), at least eleven (11) 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 and person last in possession of the property at the address as listed in the application. If the owner of any property with an actual or apparent value exceeding Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) is unable to be served written notice by first-class mail, notice shall be provided by one publication at least three (3) days prior to the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the property is in custody. The notice shall contain the place and date of the hearing and a description of the property, or the location of a list available for review during business hours in which the property is described and any known owner identified. 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 municipality to dispose of the property as follows:
1. Donate the property having value of less than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) 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, after at least five (5) days' notice of the sale has been published;
3. Transfer the property to a third-party agent under contract with the municipality 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.
If the means of disposition involve a sale or donation to the third party, the chief of police or designee 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. All money or legal tender which has come into the possession of the municipality pursuant to the circumstances provided for in subsection A of this section shall be transferred by the chief of police or designee to the municipal clerk or municipal treasurer for deposit in the municipal general fund. Prior to any transfer, the municipality shall file an application in the district court requesting the court to enter an order authorizing the chief of police or designee to transfer the money for deposit in the municipal general fund. The application shall describe the money or legal tender, the date the same came into the possession of the police department, and the name of the owner and the address of the owner, if known. Upon filing the application which may be joined with an application as described in subsection B of this section, a hearing shall be set not less than fifteen (15) days from the filing of the application. Notice of the hearing shall be given as provided for in subsection C of this section. 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. The notice may be combined with a notice to sell personal property as provided for in subsection B of this section. 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 in this subsection.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, if authorized by ordinance, the municipality may transfer any currency received into a depository account for the benefit of its known or unknown owners prior to any court order for disposition of the money or legal tender.
F. Except as provided in this subsection, 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, the possession of which is prohibited by law. By order of the trial court, any property filed as an exhibit or held by the municipality as evidence or as contraband shall be destroyed or sold or disposed of, pursuant to the conditions prescribed in the order. To the extent the provisions of this section do not apply, the court shall follow the procedures in Section 1321 of Title 22 of the Oklahoma Statutes. No forfeiture proceeding shall be necessary to authorize the destruction of property that cannot be returned lawfully to its owner.
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. The municipality may require that only property in which the finder relinquishes any future claim to its ownership will be stored in municipal police property rooms.
H. The municipality may provide by ordinance that a percentage of the money or legal tender deposited in the municipal general fund as provided in subsection D or E of this section may be paid as a finder's fee for services rendered to any person who found the unclaimed personal property or money or legal tender and delivered it to, or registered it with, the chief of police or other agent of the municipality.
I. The municipality may provide written notice at the time of arrest or detention that certain property is available for return within ninety (90) days, if the property was not seized as evidence. If the property is or appears to be worth less than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($250.00), no further notice is required prior to obtaining a court order for disposition of the property in accordance with this section. A notice left with a detainee's personal property at the detention facility shall be presumed to have been returned to the detainee at the time of his or her release and shall satisfy the officer's obligation to deliver a receipt to the detainee in connection with an arrest for a public offense.

Credits

Laws 1983, c. 294, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 1983; Laws 1985, c. 73, § 1, emerg. eff. May 16, 1985; Laws 1989, c. 255, § 4, emerg. eff. May 19, 1989; Laws 1990, c. 44, § 1, emerg. eff. April 5, 1990; Laws 1995, c. 45, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 1995; Laws 1998, c. 234, § 3, eff. Nov. 1, 1998; Laws 2003, c. 91, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2003; Laws 2005, c. 56, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2005; Laws 2010, c. 73, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2010; Laws 2012, c. 166, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2012; Laws 2021, c. 455, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2021.
11 Okl. St. Ann. § 34-104, OK ST T. 11 § 34-104
Current with legislation of the Second Regular Session of the 58th Legislature (2022) effective through October 1, 2022. Some sections may be more current, see credits for details.
End of Document