An internal report from the Police University of Applied Sciences on missing weapons has sparked debate in state politics. “I cannot confirm the reports that 90 weapons have disappeared from the Police University of Applied Sciences,” said Interior Minister Tamara Zieschang (CDU) during the government questioning in the state parliament.

Several media outlets reported on an internal letter from the university of applied sciences to the State Office of Criminal Investigation (LKA). According to the letter, the whereabouts of several pistols, revolvers and automatic rifles are unclear. Former employees of the university of applied sciences who were once responsible for storing the weapons were questioned to clarify the matter, it was said.

The State Audit Office had previously discovered significant discrepancies in the weapons inventory of the teaching materials collection during an on-site inspection at the Aschersleben University of Applied Sciences. There was a “significant security risk” and there were both fireable and non-fireable weapons, it said. The teaching materials collection is used for training purposes and has been in existence since 1997.

Zieschang told the state parliament that they are now checking back to the very beginning which weapons were loaned to them by the State Criminal Police Office. However, the Interior Ministry had already ordered in 2000 that the collection of teaching materials at the university of applied sciences should be reduced to 18 weapons and that “all weapons in excess of this should be handed over to the Technical Police Office for disposal, i.e. destruction.”

The reason: According to Zieschang, the Technical Police Office inspected the teaching materials collection in the first half of 2000. At that time, the size had “taken on the character of a weapons exhibition,” said the CDU politician. Therefore, the decree was issued to reduce the collection to 18 weapons. The extent to which the remaining weapons were sent to the Technical Police Office is being examined. Additional weapons “may therefore no longer be at the police university,” said Zieschang.

The Interior Committee of the State Parliament is to meet for a special session on Thursday. The events are part of a series of significant deficiencies in the storage of evidence in the evidence management. Recently, violations have been reported in the context of the State Criminal Police Office’s comparative weapons collection, which is used for training purposes. In recent years, for example, 274 weapons were not destroyed as intended despite orders from the public prosecutor’s office.