Skip to comments.Warwick Township Cop Assaults, Kidnaps and Imprisons Me Over My Request for Business Card
Posted on 01/11/2010 9:00:29 AM PST by SWAMPSNIPER
So I was out at lunch with classmates from a pistol instructor course this afternoon. As usual, I open carried my Glock 23. I ordered a sausage parm sandwich and was filling up my 20 oz soda from the fountain when the guy in the next booth turned and asked if I was from around here. Yes, I answered. Did he know me from somewhere? No. This was getting creepy. I didnt answer him. Who ARE you? Then: Who ARE you? Has a complete stranger ever asked you such an open-ended and personal question? It was a first for me. I had no idea what information he wanted and wasnt about to give him my name or biography. I dont understand the question, I told him. He didnt like this answer.
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If memory serves me correct, Bucks County’s sheriff is a virulent anti-gun jerk, and uses any excuse to confiscate lawfully carried firearms and to revoke CC permits, the law be damned.
RKBA abuse ping.
Yep, familiar with the POS from Bucks.
I hope the NRA will investigate and help this guy with his legal defense. We are losing more and more of our freedoms everyday because we aren’t standing together to fight this stuff in a non-violent constitutional manner.
The common citizen is an easier mark than the common criminal.
I don’t know of one case like this the NRA has helped in their legal defense. Doesn’t mean they haven’t but I know of none.
Regardless if whether it’s illegal, assaulting a law enforcement officer would have been a severe temptation in this case.
OR it’ll start out that way, then the LEO will shoot the hubby, followed by a press conference where the PD PR guy will explain the complete propriety of the officer’s actions, despite their tragic outcome.
You can sometimes beat the rap, but you can’t beat the ride. The cop may have been an ass but he did initially back down and Mr. Opencarry had to push things rather than walking away. Opencarry now has an arrest record that he will be explaining for the rest of his life and I think he’s happy about it. He can now prove that he’s a legitimate second amendment crusader who has suffered greatly at the hands of government thugs. From his own account of the incident, I conclude that he is guilty of being whiny.
I’m sure it happened, but also sure the poor oppressed RKBA-exerciser left out some very pertinent information. He readily admits “I have a bad attitude,” and I expect that he displayed this in ways that went substantially beyond what he shares with us here, and may well have given the officer at least some plausible reason for asking for his ID. It’s pretty telling that the pistol course instructor, who was comfortable with (and maybe actively encouraging) heading off to a restaurant with open-carrying students, didn’t have a problem with the off-duty officer’s actions. Also that the off-duty officer had dropped the matter entirely and just let poor oppressed RKBA-exerciser go eat his lunch in peace, when poor oppressed RKBA-exerciser decided he just had to re-open and escalate the encounter.
I’m all in favor of people open-carrying and helping get the general public comfortable with the idea of ordinary citizens carrying guns as they go about their daily lives. But when people act like jerks while open-carrying, they do the RKBA movement a lot more harm than good.
Years ago I was working the drawer in the hardware store and a guy came in wearing Levis and a cowboy shirt. Right in front of the counter he started to turn toward me, raising his shirt tail. I saw the bottom end of a holster and I drew on him. His eyes got big as saucers and another employee hollered "don't shoot, he's a deputy". He had his badge on his belt by the holster but I sure as Hell couldn't see it right away. He actually apologized and admitted he did something stupid. He asked me how I got the old S&W out from under my shirt so fast and I told him "lots of practice.
We ended up on good terms. I know I'd have gone to jail in a lot of places. He is lucky I didn't panic and shoot, I know people who would have, some of them cops.
Cops take an oath to the Constitution, if they don't mean it they need to find another line of work.
Exactly. If you want to promote public support for RKBA by open carrying in public places, you’ll have a lot more impact if your behavior is utterly above reproach, especially when some other people’s behavior isn’t. Sounds to me like he had an opportunity to convince a bunch a random restaurant customers that people who open-carry are nice, normal, stable folks, who are sometimes subjected to unreasonable questioning by police officers, and instead managed to accomplish just the opposite.
HUH?!?!?! A customer came into your store, you happened to catch a glimpse of his concealed, holstered gun, and you drew your gun on him???? Wow! I'd a lot rather run into the off-duty police officer described in this blog post, than run into you! I routinely carry concealed in Pennsylvania, and I'd press charges against anyone who drew a gun on me just because they caught a glimpse of my gun.
He is lucky I didn't panic and shoot
So are you. You'd be spending many years in prison if you had, as well you should be.
I think memory serves you wrong.
Since the early 1980s I go up to the sheriff's office in Doylestown every five years to renew my concealed carry permit and it's always a cordial breeze. In fact, one time I was chatting with a deputy up there and I mentioned that Philadelphia doesn't necessarily recognize CC permits and he told me to sue the city if they ever harassed me.
I recommend to everybody in Pennsylvania: Go get your CC permits today! All you need is proof of county residency (call the sheriff and inquire about what satisfies proof of residency) and about $24. (I believe they also ask for three "references", so have the names and addresses of three friends handy.) You do not need to state any "reason" for wanting the permit (other than self defense) and you don't need to take any courses or have a hunting license or anything else. There are NO requirements other than to be 21+ and not a convicted criminal. You don't even need to own a gun.
I urge everybody in Pennsylvania to go get your CC permit today. You can fill out the form and be in and out of the sheriff's office in 20 - 30 minutes (at least, that's how it is in Bucks County), with your cc permit in your wallet. No waiting. It really is a breeze.
There is no point in your packing if you're going to stand there and say, "you go first". You'd be safer unarmed!
Sometimes it takes cases like this for the states Supreme Court to remind it’s police officers of what the statutory law is.
Personally, I would not open carry. To me it’s not worth the hassle. Someone is always calling about a man with a gun and hanging up. Then you got to go see what’s going on, observe the carrier to see if they doing anything may warrant a contact.
Off work, I want to be as inconspicuous as possible. Some argue for deterrance, I like the element of surprise.
In all the years I carried at work very few people ever knew about it. It isn’t something you can get complacent about,there has to be a thread of awareness all the time. You read about cops who leave their gun in a restroom stall, got to wonder where their mind is.
Sooo, you see a holster on a otherwise nonthreatening person and you draw...? Maybe go on alert and position yourself for cover, pull a roscoe on a citizen who is legally armed and non-threatening you may find yourself in jail, or worse. Cop should have squared you away back then, in my opinion.
Even “years ago” many states had CCW permits, undercover LEOs etc.
Be very careful, don’t be afraid.
Ya, you have to condition and discipline yourself with your weapon so that being separate from it would feel as strange as having no clothes on.
Some police officers are just not gun folks. I work with guys that won’t carry off duty at all. Their choice, but I don’t go anywhere without it.
The deputy blew it, he forgot he was packing. His wallet should have been on the other side so his gun wouldn't show when he reached for the wallet.
Plus, as far as I’m aware, a LEO can ask anybody in public for their ID without any requirement for RAS or PC. Now if this guy is plain clothes he shouldn’t have had any problem displaying a badge to prove that it was a LEO asking for the ID.
I think both open and concealed serve their purposes. Open can un-demonize guns and gun-owners in the eyes of the public (except in a scene like this one). I think concealed is better for normal defensive carry, like you.
I do object to the licensing rules that demand more from a concealed carrier than an open carrier. Why does the gun or the owner become more prone to bad aim or using his gun illegally just cause he puts it in his pocket?
Police can ask for ID whenever they wish. However, the person does not have to provide it unless there is a specific crime the person is reasonably suspected of committing. I did not read the full article yet. I will.
Didn’t the Wyoming (Nevada?) SCOTUS case about a guy on the street come out that you have to ID yourself to a LEO if asked?
What happens when two a-holes collide...
Yep. And so can any random citizen, as long as the First Amendment right to free speech is still in force. Of course, you're not required to respond by producing the ID unless the requester identifies him/herself as a LEO and provides proper evidence to back that up. And this off duty officer did let the request drop . . . until the poor oppressed RKBA-exerciser finished up his lunch and decided to reopen the matter by going over to the still-lunching off duty officer and demanding his ID. Judging from the whole story as it's presented here, I suspect that demand was made in a sufficiently aggressive manner that, combined with the openly carried weapon, made it at least within reason to arrest him and charge him with disorderly conduct.
The officer's main error, as far as I can tell from the obviously biased article, was in not being perfectly clear about what "hat" he was wearing when he initially asked "Who are you?". I'm still not sure if he intended the original request for verbal identification to be a formal request from a LEO, or a random question from a citizen which the requestee was free to decline to answer. The fact that he was lunching with a uniformed police officer, but was not in uniform himself, made his identity and role a bit unclear, and he was at fault for not making himself perfectly clear in that regard. The requestee couldn't really have known at the outset whether he was an off-duty or plain clothes LEO who had legal authority to demand identification, or a non-LEO friend of his LEO lunch companion who figured he could get away with making pushy demands like this because his friend is a LEO. This careless error on the part of the requesting LEO is what's likely to get the poor oppressed RKBA-exerciser a "not guilty" verdict when he gets his day in court.
That’s basically what I was thinking. The officer was remiss in not identifying himself as a LEO (and may also have shown questionable judgment on how do deal with legal open carriers). The other guy seemed to think that even if the other guy was a LEO, he needed RAS or PC to ask for ID, which I believe is not presently correct, plus he re-escalated the situation after the other guy was willing to let it go. Fault on both sides.
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