The other day I received a certified letter from the Phoenix Pawn Shop Detail that they had seized a weapon from a local pawn shop I had reported stolen nearly 3 1/2 years ago. Since I had very, very little contact or dealings with the Pawn Shop Detail I really didn't understand the garbage one has to go through to get a stolen weapon back. Since the weapon was not suspected of having been used in the commission of a crime there is a hearing set up later this month. The pawn shop owner/representative, the person who pawned or sold the gun to the shop and I go into the hearing and plead our cases and then the Judge will decide who gets the weapon. The letter stated, and I confirmed with my Attorney, the pawn shop owner/rep has least to show and I have the most to show. I have to show proof of prior ownership, etc. An interesting fact about Arizona law is that the pawn shops are NOT required to do a stolen weapon check on any weapon. They must merely ascertain the age of the seller to be over 18 on general merchandise and 21 years of age on firearms and maintain inventories to include the name and address of the person selling a gun. They are only required to have a buyer fill the necessary BATF forms. The Pawn Shop Detail has legal authority to enter any pawn shop, unannounced and check inventories, records and serial numbers and this is how they found mine. I have little doubt that I can show sufficient prior ownership but I'm not sure if I want the weapon back since I have no idea what it has been used for the past 3 1/2 years. I just don't like the idea that if I do not go and plead my case the pawn shop owner/rep gets the gun. Surprisingly the 'possession of stolen goods' issue is NOT enforced in this case. Can you believe it? That idea just floored me to know that. (here in Arizona, considering the value of the gun, it would be reduced to a misdeanor, anyways). I bring this situation up to let everyone know that their state laws may be similar. I think it stinks. Even though I can't find my original sales receipt I think all I should have to do is show proof of a police report, an insurance statement of partial reimbursement, statements from witnesses who know I once owned the gun, the weapons manual with the serial number listed in it, and photos, etc......send them in and it'd be done with and I would be told when to pick up my weapon. But, NO! The creep of a pawn shop owner/rep gets his shot of keeping my gun. The stolen gun issues here are one reason I hesitated from buying from a private individual I don't know (even at gun shows). I have purchased many a gun from various pawn brokers thinking they did stolen gun checks prior to buying and selling. I now know I was wrong.