Lost & Found Property
Property and Evidence
Claiming your property
Property classified as “found” or “safekeeping” (with the exception of firearms) may be claimed by appointment, between the hours of 8am – 5pm, Monday through Thursday.
Items turned into our agency as Found Property are maintained for 90 days. All unclaimed property after this time period, is set for disposal. Call this office if you are missing an item. We will search the inventory and let you know if we have an item matching the description. It is important to provide us with proof of ownership for certain items. These instances will be evaluated on an individual case basis. To view the current listing of unclaimed property, please click here.
Safekeeping Property (excluding firearms)
Items held for safekeeping must be retrieved within 90 days or they will be eligible for destruction after this time period. If you are listed on the property report as the owner you must bring the property report and a photo ID. If you are not listed as the owner, you must contact the officer who completed the property sheet. He / she must authorize, in writing, the property be released to you. A valid ID will be required to pick up property.
Per FSS 925.11, if the suspect of a case is found guilty by jury, the property must be held for four years after sentencing, regardless of who owns the property. If the suspect pled in court or charges were dropped, or if the case is closed with no further investigation possible, the property can be released with written authorization from the detective or officer assigned to the case. A certified copy of a court order can also release property. Certain items can’t be returned once they have been impounded by our agency. Vehicle tags and suspended driver’s licenses are two of the most common items in this category. If either have been seized, you must contact the Department of Motor Vehicles of the state the tag or driver’s license was issued and find out how to obtain a new one.
The release of firearms is governed by how the weapon is classified: Evidence, Safekeeping or Court Order (domestic injunction). If you are uncertain as to the classification assigned to your property, check with the detective or officer who is handling the case. Firearms are disposed of under a separate statute (FSS 790).
Before the release of any firearm the following must be completed:
- The person claiming the firearm is subject to a background check to ensure they’re not a convicted felon, are not wanted or have an outstanding domestic violence injunction and must fill out a Firearm Reclamation Form provided by our agency.
- A check of Ocoee Police Department records must be completed to determine the background information on the case. If any discrepancies or questions about the information is discovered, the weapon will not be released until the issue is resolved.
- The officer or detective who seized the weapon must authorize the release.
Firearms taken as evidence will not be returned without instructions from the State Attorney’s Office or by Court Order, unless the case was Non-Pros or there is a final judgment of acquittal. Proper ID must be presented. According to FSS 790.08, the charges must be concluded.
Firearms which are not evidence (i.e. safekeeping, death investigation, suicide, found property, etc.), shall not be released without authorization from the officer / detective or their supervisor.
Firearms subject to court ordered domestic injunctions
Release requires a court certified copy of the order lifting the injunction prepared by the judge who issued the injunction. There are no exceptions.
Q. What are the operating hours of the Evidence Section?
A. We are open Monday through Thursday 8am – 5pm. The Ocoee Police Department is located at 646 Ocoee Commerce Pkwy. The Evidence Section can be reached at 407-554-7220.
Q. Do I need an appointment to pick-up property?
A. Yes, appointments are generally arranged Monday through Thursday (8am – 5pm). Calling ahead (407-554-7220) is to ensure that your property is ready and that someone is available to return it to you. If you were issued a case number, please have it available.
Q. Do I need to bring identification?
A. Yes, you will need a valid picture ID.
Q. Can someone else other than myself pick up the property for me?
A. Yes, you may authorize another person to pick up your property with a notarized letter of authorization. The letter must include our department name, the case number issued to you, the name of the person you are granting authorization to, your name (both printed and signed), the date and a stamp and signature of a Notary.
Q. Can I get my property back if I am a minor?
A. Your property will only be released to a parent or guardian, who must show legal proof of guardianship.
Q. How long is property held?
A. Different property is held for different amounts of time: Evidence is held until such a time it is no longer needed for trial or the statute of limitations expires. Statutes of limitations vary depending on the crime/incident type. Some items however, can be released per court order or authorization from the State Attorney’s Office, or in some cases the case officers’ authorization. Found Property is held for at least 90 days unless it’s claimed by the owner. After 90 days, property is disposed of accordingly per Florida State Statute.
Q. What happens to unclaimed property?
A. Property (including bicycles) which remains unclaimed by the legal owner will be disposed of by destruction, conversion to department property, or public auction per Florida State Statute.
More questions? Contact the Evidence Section:
Evidence & Property Section
Ocoee Police Department
646 Ocoee Commerce Pkwy
Ocoee, FL 34761