The Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (OIG) announced today the release of a report examining the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ (BOP) armory munitions and equipment. These armories contain items such as firearms, ammunition, chemical agents, stun munitions, badges, and communications equipment, which are used for routine assignments, emergency response, and training.
The OIG identified several deficiencies in BOP’s controls and practices for safeguarding armory munitions and equipment that increase the risk that these materials could be lost, misplaced, or stolen without being detected. Specifically:
- We found weaknesses in BOP’s controls over tracking, issuing, and reporting on both active and expired armory munitions and equipment, as well as BOP institutions’ compliance with existing policies. Most significantly, we found that the Security Officer can move inventory in and out of the armory, and change information in BOP’s armory tracking system, without leaving any record that a change in inventory occurred. We also identified unauthorized chemical agents and ammunition among BOP institutions’ armory inventories, and in many instances we were not able to determine if the munitions the institutions were maintaining were authorized and met BOP’s required minimum quantities because BOP’s lists of authorized munitions are outdated and otherwise inadequate.
- We found inaccuracies in the BOP’s armory inventories. Specifically, information in BOP’s armory tracking system and the accompanying inventory and test fire reports was neither complete nor accurate, and we identified inventory errors that BOP institutions should have identified during their quarterly physical inventories, but did not.
The report released today makes 14 recommendations to improve BOP’s handling of armory munitions and equipment. BOP agreed with all 14 recommendations.
Today’s report, which contains information that has been redacted because the BOP considered it to be law enforcement sensitive, is available on the OIG’s website at the following link: https://oig.justice.gov/reports/2016/a1617.pdf.