HPD Responds to missing equipment


Averal "Junior" Burnett, charged with one count offorcible rape, appeared before Lamar County Circuit Court Judge Tony Mozingowhere he was denied bond again Monday morning.

Details of his work history and training were addressed by stateprosecutors during the motion hearing.

The former Hattiesburg Police officer was questioned abouttactical equipment issued to him by HPD that was still in his possession.

According to law enforcement officers, despite not being employedby HPD for nearly 18 months, items such as flash-bangs, tear gas canisters,night-vision equipment and a shotgun were recovered when officers searched ahome connected with Burnett.

“We were contacted by the Mississippi Bureau of Investigationsabout items they had found during their investigation,” said Hattiesburg PoliceLt. Jon Traxler. “At that time, we began working with them trying to find outhow he had that property with him, of course, the thing about the flash bangs,and the tear gas canisters those are used not only in tactical situations, butthey are also used in training scenarios and those are considered expendableitems of inventory,” said Traxler.

According to Hattiesburg Police Departmentofficials, the investigation is still ongoing and they would not list any morespecifics about missing equipment.