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21 Quincy officers placed on administrative leave for expired gun permits

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  March 4, 2013 01:26 PM

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Twenty-one Quincy police officers have been placed on paid administrative leave pending renewal of their gun permits, according to an official in the police department.

The official, who would only speak on the condition of anonymity, said a random search found that several Quincy officers had not renewed their permits.

A Quincy Police Department spokesman confirmed that officers had been placed on leave due to the expiration of their licenses, but would not elaborate on what type of license had expired.

"It was an administrative issue that we are currently dealing with...they have been placed on paid administrative leave pending clearing of an administrative issue," said Captain John Dougan.

Dougan said 15 patrol officers and six supervisors were placed on leave, but due to the department's over 200 officers, staffing won't be an issue.

"We have plenty of personnel," Dougan said.

In the past, the department has not checked permits or licenses on an annual basis. However Dougan said the department is looking into policy changes so that officers are aware that their licenses - driver's and others - may be expiring.

"[We will] put something in place now to check, as an early warning system, so this doesn’t happen again," he said.

In Quincy, all officers are mandated to have a gun permit to work.

Recently, an outside arbitrator upheld a decision to fire officer Joseph McGunigle specifically because McGunigle’s gun permit had been revoked and he could not work without one.

The department official said the department was expediting the process to renew the permits, and officers would return to work once their permits were renewed.

Mayoral spokesperson Christopher Walker said the mayor wasn't concerned about the issue.

"It's my understanding that its an administrative issue in the Police Department. They are on top of it and it's being resolved," Walker said. "The police chief has made it clear that there will be no effect on staffing levels in their department while this is straightened out over the next couple of days."

Quincy Police Department Union President Terry Downing would not comment on the case.

City Councilor Brian Palmucci, who chairs the Public Safety Committee, could not immediately be reached for comment.

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