Milstead: DPS has policies in place to track missing weapons, ammo
PHOENIX — Arizona’s top law enforcement official is ensuring residents that his department has policies in place to track weapons after a suspect used a stolen Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office weapon in a shootout on the Interstate 17 in Phoenix this week.
Arizona Department of Public Safety head Col. Frank Milstead said some of the department’s policies for protecting weapons include bringing weapons inside if a trooper leaves their vehicle outside and locking weapons inside the vehicles.
“When we inherited the Department of Public Safety,” Milstead told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Bruce St. James and Pamela Hughes, “we found problems here with accountability for weapons, missing ammunition. So we had to redevelop and put into place systems to make sure things were accounted for.”
Arnaldo Caraveo, 27, was killed on Monday after five Mesa Police officers and three DPS troopers returned fire once he fired a rifle at them.
Three troopers suffered injuries that were not life-threatening; two were taken to a nearby hospital and later released.
Milstead said Monday’s shooting was “really disconcerting” for all law enforcement leadership because the missing weapons were never reported.
“If a car is broken into, police equipment is stolen, that is all reported and a bulletin is put out statewide,” he said. “Those weapons weren’t reported and how that suspect got a hold of two, fully automatic M16s (is unclear).”
Milstead praised trooper Dan Harvey for using his vehicle to stop Caraveo near Seventh Avenue, otherwise the suspect “would’ve gotten the chance to pick the location and I would’ve had another dead trooper, I’m almost sure of it.”