By ALAN RAPPEPORT Staff Writer
LONGPORT - Police Chief Scott Porter was swamped fielding calls last week from people inquiring about the 1921 Thompson submachine gun that the department plans on selling.
The borough announced last week it would sell the antique weapon that has been sitting unused in the department's armory. Since then, Porter has received more than three dozen calls from all over the country, he said.
"We've had quite a few calls," Porter said, noting that people from as far as the Bahamas have telephoned him. "Just inquiries. A few asking the condition of the weapon, serial numbers, stuff like that."
In 1930, the borough acquired the 1921 Thompson submachine gun when an owner of the famed gun-making company came to the area, met Police Chief Richard DePamphilis and decided to send him a gun as a gesture of good will, according to Richard DePamphilis Jr., 77, who followed him as chief.
Only about 15,000 guns of this model were made, and the borough is hoping to sell it for upwards of $35,000.
The Police Department is still figuring out how it will go about selling the gun, which requires a special license to own and operate.
"It's not going back on the road," Porter said, explaining that he anticipated selling the gun to a collector or museum.
The Police Department is also planning to sell three Springfield M1 rifles that are stored in the armory, Porter said. Each has an estimated value of $1,000.
The borough hopes to use the revenue to buy new side arms and other equipment for the department.
Edited by ftc3906, 20 July 2004 - 12:41 PM.