Skip to comments.Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier
Posted on 12/31/2009 9:46:30 AM PST by Still Thinking
It's open season on gun carriers.
A case out of the First Circuit has some painful lessons for gun carriers in Georgia. A United States Circuit Court of Appeals last week upheld the constitutionality of pointing a gun at any citizen daring to carry, lawfully, a concealed weapon in public.
The First Circuit Court of Appeals is the Court just below the United States Supreme Court in the New England states. The case stems from a lawyer who sued a police officer after he was detained for lawfully carrying a concealed weapon while in possession of a license to carry concealed. According to the case opinion, the lawyer, Greg Schubert, had a pistol concealed under his suit coat, and Mr. Schubert was walking in what the court described as a "high crime area." At some point a police officer, J.B. Stern, who lived up to his last name, caught a glimpse of the attorney's pistol, and he leapt out of his patrol car "in a dynamic and explosive manner" with his gun drawn, pointing it at the attorney's face.
(Excerpt) Read more at examiner.com ...
True, and an admonishment to that effect would have been a more proportionate response.
No argument from me.
The moral here is never put yourself in a position where you could be vulnerable to a thug cop.
Exposing your legally-concealed firearm does just that.
And even that response would be permissible only if the incident occurred in a state where open carry is taboo. Despite requiring licenses for concealed carry, many states allow open carry with no license. If this occurred in one of those states, even that slim thread of an excuse is gone.
I’m thinking this attorney went out specifically to start the ball rolling for a lawsuit.
And he got what he wanted.
I’m normally not a big fan of lawsuit trolling, but if it results in a hesitancy of cops to treat the armed among their masters as automatic suspects, I’ll live with it.
Lawyer, walking around in "high crime area", and just happens to have his "concealed" handgun visible to passing officer. I suspect that the lawyer was also dressed a bit like a gang banger, and was trying to curtail police stops of armed gang bangers.
Article says he was wearing a suit. (Presumably not a “law suit”) Don’t know if the author knows what he’s talking about or just assuming.
I was merely pointing out that there are indeed a fraction of cops out there who are thugs.
Since I prefer to avoid as many unpleasant events in my life as possible, I would elect to make sure that my legally concealed firearm was never unconcealed. That way I don't have to deal with thug cops.
But that's just me.
You’re wise to do so. I don’t intend to suggest disagreement with you, but with the cop’s actions (if they’re as reported).
In a simpler age, the verdict would have been clear: the cop was/is a moron, was entirely too full of himself, and over-reacted.
But, then, these are the Obama years.
Right. Now all we have to say is "The cop acted stupidly."
The “concealing” was pathetic, and the response was disproportionate and ridiculous ... but disproportionate responses are not necessarily unconstitutional.
Lawyers are often a hammer in search of a nail.
99/100 is a fraction....and when it comes to thug cops, I find they are the norm rather than the exception. I too would take steps to secure my weapon to avoid having to deal with a douche.
I don’t bang on the glass at the zoo gorilla exhibit, I don’t take a rake to a hornet’s nest, I don’t leap in to the isle and knock over the pope, and I don’t go to rough neighborhoods looking to provoke someone who is more often than not going to be a dick.
This lawyer seemed to get exactly what he was looking for.
eventually the cops are gonna pick on a BG instead of a citizen whose gone to great lengths to ask the state 'pretty please'...
BGs typically dont ask permission, nor do they hesitate, they just start shootin to eliminate the threat...
Probably trolling for a lawsuit...BUT...the officer did a poor job....and so did the court. How can the court say it was appropriate to arrest (detain in the car) a person specifically for doing something that was legal?
What is it about the 2nd ammendment that is so confusing to people. Even if the cop was scared, concerned, whatever...this guy had the right to carry a gun. If he was dressed poorly, looked suspicious, was in a bad part of town, whatever, why does that give him the right to even ‘investigate’ the validity of his concealed carry license. Unless he stopped the guy for littering, jaywalking, etc., he has no business investigating the gun.
The court has now established that the mere presence of a gun is no probable cause to investigate the possibility the gun may be illegal. Its like getting pulled over because there is a possibility the car you are driving might be stolen.
What happens when a cop stops a guy for carrying a legal gun, and finds drugs in the pat-down? Is that admissable in court?
Sorry, I just don’t get it. Guns are legal - protected in the constitution, legally sold all over the place, and if I want to strap a holster to my belt, in the open, I should be able to.
BTW, I’m not a ‘gun nut’...only own uno rifle.
Yeah, what was he thinking wearing something like that? He was just asking for it.
(Do I really have to to add a sarcasm tag?)
Gotta be careful walking around in the Castro district in SF. If you drop your keys, just kick them along the ground till you get out.
Little gator was wrong cop was right.......
Well keep on thinking there, still thinking!
Obvious profiling. This cop just has something against suits......
You didn’t read the full article, DID YOU?!
There is no law requiring the gun be concealed. Carry is carry.
No, but neither do we know that open carry isn’t legal in the state in question.
This trend will not be abated until people start resisting the unlawful actions of thug cops by any means at their disposal.
My understanding from the class I had to take to get my Michigan Concealed Pistols License was that if you flash your gun you could lose your CPL.
My sarcasm tag didn’t post........my bad......:(
Hope ya’ll know me better than that........:o)
That's my understanding as well, but I believe there's a legal distinction between "flashing", "displaying" and poor concealment.
“...Hope yall know me better than that...”
I thought maybe you had fallen and hit your head...or maybe I had...
1. It’s not necessary to point the gun at the suspect. Draw it if you think you may need it, but pointing it the suspect’s head when he doesn’t have his weapon in his hand is way overkill.
2. You don’t aim your gun at someone’s head either, face or not. You aim for the torso.
This officer sounds like a total moron.
If the court’s ruling is correct, then when this officer travel’s outside his jurisdiction, he could be treated the same way for carrying a concealed weapon.
I believe most agencies would turn a blind eye to an officer having a concealed weapon. Now, it seems they would be wrong to have a policy like that.
How can they verify the I.D.?
If this cop is right, it rewrites the rules for a lot of people, and the court should be aware of that. This is just plain idiotic.
I hope the attorney takes this to the Supreme Court, and the Supreme Court addresses the lower courts and the officer for the moronic behavior/ruling they have exhibitied.
LOL.....reading that I thought I did !!
Snowed in for the day, made a pizza and drinking some home brew, just me not reviewing my post as usual before I hit SPEW !
Stay safe and Merry New Year !!!
It is important that cops understand they are to respect peoples’ constitutional rights. When the cop jumped out agressively after seeing the gun, I can understand that. You don’t confront an armed man with a howdy if you want to survive as a cop. The gun was not concealed so he was right to make the assumption he was dealing with an armed criminal until he saw the registration.
However, not only did this cop act unprofessionally when presented with the gun documentation, he has a judge who has just pronounced that anti-constitutional behavior and attitude as dandy. He is probably unprofessionally rude and crude with citizens in this way every day on his beat.
So, there needs to be an education program for the cops in Georgia to understand and respect the second amendment rights of legally armed citizens and there has to be penalities for the unprofessional harassment of gun owners. There should be merely a ticket given to the concealed carry guy if his his gun is visable even though he took measures to conceal it, presented his documentation, etc.
WRONG! There is precisely such a law in Texas.
I Do Not Have a Firearms License. What Can I Do?
Q: Can I carry a handgun openly, without concealing it?
A: No! Georgia is one of the minority of states that requires a firearms license to carry a pistol openly outside of your home, car, or place of business.
Please be sure to read the history of Georgias licensing law and find out why a license is required to carry a handgun openly. It is not what you think.
Method of Carry
Q: Do I need to carry my firearm concealed or may I carry openly?
A: Under the law, a firearms license holder may carry a firearm openly or concealed in any location that is not off limits. However:
It is quite possible that a given law enforcement officer in a given jurisdiction may not have been properly briefed on (or may not have understood) the changes in the law brought about by HB89 and thus may still choose to challenge or even arrest someone carrying openly in the new locations, believing they are doing the right thing under the law. The legality of detaining people openly carrying firearms is the subject matter of two federal lawsuits filed by GCO.
Interesting stuff at their site, georgiacarry.org
So, the officer felt threatened or privileged? Not really following you.
His question was clear to me ... I see tigers at the zoo but I don’t feel threatened by them and I wouldn’t feel threatened if I saw a glimpse of a gun being carried by someone that did not appear to be up to something.
Good for the cop. A real man can handle himself without a gun. If the lawyer is too afraid to go out without a weapon he is either a punk or a pansy.
Then what about the cop?
So? The incident occured in MA and the news source is out of GA. Did you even bother to read the article?
Texas may not honor a person’s right to carry as they choose but they are in the minority of states.
Hmm, that puzzles me.
In Michigan a CPL (concealed pistol license) is in the system along with drivers license and plate registration. Therefore, if a cop 'lights up' and pulls over a vehicle he knows if the registered owner has a CPL just by running the plates.
Now, in this instance, the cop was in his cruiser when he spotted the citizen. Why couldn't he verify the concealed carry license along with the drivers license (valid state ID) and case closed?
Do not all states have this interchange of information or ability of officers to verify information from within their vehicles?
I have a concealed carry permit from my state.
My state requires you to carry your firearm concealed. If it bulges out but is covered by clothing that is OK.
I don't know where you get the idea that the law is anything that you say it is. Good luck with that.
The officer confirmed that the lawyer had a facially valid concealed carry permit, then impounded the firearm, and left the permit holder defenseless in a high crime area after telling the lawyer that he was the only one allowed to have a firearm in his beat.
The court upheld this insane bit of illogic by saying that the officer had no way to immediately check the records to see if the permit was valid (presumably it might have been revoked, I suppose. This makes no sense to me, because if the officer thought the permit was not valid, why would he have left the lawyer without arresting him?
This is a truly bad court decision, but what do you expect from the New England States.