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California Angler Reels in ATF Agent’s Gun, Badge Lost 22 Years Ago

LA County Sheriff's Department

A California angler recovered a backpack containing an ATF agent’s long lost gun and badge from a drought-stricken lake.

Castaic Lake, located in the Sierra Pelona Mountains northwest of Los Angeles, is experiencing near-record lows. Sections of the lake once covered with water are now down about 150 feet, which led a local angler to discover a backpack in the mud that contained some important missing items.

The bag contained a corroded Smith & Wesson pistol, an ATF badge, a pager and a watch, all belonging to an ATF agent who lost the bag during a casual fishing trip to the lake nearly 22 years ago, according to authorities.

“We knew it’d been there a while when we saw the old pager,” Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Johnny Jones told the LA Times.

Another indicator the stuff is old: The badge is marked Department of the Treasury (The ATF shifted to the Department of Justice in 2003).

Authorities said they contacted the agent, who still works with the ATF. He said he lost the backpack when his boat tipped over while fishing on the lake back in 1992. He said he felt safer having the items with him in the boat than leaving them in his open-faced vehicle.

The agent also said his buddies gave him a lot of grief when he first lost his gun and badge to the lake.

Sounds like the ball busting is about to start up again.

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California Angler Reels in ATF Agent’s Gun, Badge Lost 22 Years Ago