Paperwork is missing for some Oklahoma law enforcement charities

Many of the state's law enforcement charity organizations have failed to file the proper paperwork to continue receiving funds.

BY MICHAEL BAKER Published: May 31, 2010
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Several Oklahoma-based law enforcement charities have not filed required paperwork with the secretary of state's office.

As of April 10, at least four law enforcement charities — Oklahoma Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, Oklahoma Reserve Law Officers Association, Association of Oklahoma Narcotic Enforcers and Oklahoma State Game Warden's Association — had let registrations lapse.

According to Oklahoma law, registration is required for a charitable organization to solicit or accept donations "from any person in this state by any means whatsoever.”

The Oklahoma Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association's registration expired Dec. 20, 2004.

But the charity raised $272,826 in 2008, according to tax documents filed with the Internal Revenue Service. And professional fundraiser Community Safety, based in Minnesota, filed paperwork in March showing it was raising money for the group. According to tax filings, the association's telemarketer pocketed 84 percent of the money it raised.

"It would just be a simple oversight. We just haven't done it,” an association official said about the missed filing. "I'm glad to hear that; we can take care of that.”

The Oklahoma Reserve Law Officers Association's registration expired May 29, 2008. A year later the group filed IRS tax papers showing it raised $56,018 in contributions, gifts, grants and similar donations. The group spent $32,040 on fundraising. A message left with a contact phone number on the tax documents was not returned. Ongoing Coverage: Watchdog Database: Oklahoma charities



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