PUNTA GORDA, Fla.- A Charlotte County Sheriff's deputy arrested the Punta Gorda Airport manager of Hertz Rent-a-Car for stealing a handgun accidentally left inside a rental car by a customer. Douglas John Orr, 32, of 22573 Bolanos Court, was charged with Grand Theft of a Firearm.
CCSO received a call Saturday from a Punta Gorda resident who rented a car from Hertz at the airport to drive to Georgia. He said he went to pick up belongings from his deceased father that included a 1911 Springfield Armory .45 caliber firearm with a loaded magazine. He said he returned the rental car Friday and accidentally left the handgun in its leather case. He told the deputy he went to the airport and talked to a Hertz clerk who said they did not find a firearm but took him to the car he rented, searched and found nothing. The clerk called manager Orr, who said he located the weapon and turned it in to CCSO.
The victim called CCSO and talked to a deputy who checked and said there was no report of a handgun being turned in. The victim went back to Hertz and talked to Orr at 12:45 p.m. Saturday. Orr told him he found the gun in his rental car, put it in a plastic bag and turned it in at the CCSO front office. The victim called a CCSO sergeant who said she would investigate further and call him back. The sergeant contacted Orr who said he placed the gun in a white plastic bag with a sticky note to it with the information and dropped it off at the CCSO Administration building front door. A check again could not locate the missing gun. The CCSO office is located across the street from the airport and is closed on the weekends.
The sergeant made contact again with Orr who was very adamant that he did not have the weapon and said he was getting upset about the type of questioning. Orr was asked to meet with deputies and when he arrived, he said he had something to tell the deputies. He said he was disappointed in himself and wanted to retract his comments made on the phone earlier. Orr stated the gun and holster were in the trunk of his car but he threw away the ammunition. Deputies retrieved the gun from his car and returned the gun to the owner. Orr was arrested and taken to the Charlotte County Jail; he posted a $2,500 bond and was released.