Skip to comments.Brad Krause West Allis Wisconsin Open Carry Case - Feb 17 Hearing Results
Posted on 02/17/2009 10:10:18 AM PST by Secret Agent Man
Was in the courtroom today to hear the ruling from municipal judge Paul Murphy regarding Brad's case.
For a quick rundown, WI is an open carry state. Brad was on his property planting a tree, and was wearing a holstered firearm in plain sight. A neighbor calle West Allis police asking about the legality of open carry. The result was two squads being dispatched and BRad being drawn on by two officers, handcuffed for 45 minutes whiel the police tried to figure out what to charge him with (as open carry is the only legal way to carry in WI). They charged him with disorderly conduct and confiscated his weapon and holster.
The result today was the judge had a couple months in between the first date to today to read over briefs filed by both Brad Krause and his attorney Steve Kane, and the city attorney's office, to which he'd be issuing a ruling on whether BRad was guilty or not guilty of 'disorderly conduct while armed'. (I would point out the whole reason the police charged Brad with 'disordery' conduct was the mere fact he was armed. So in reality the charge against Brad was more accurately, 'being armed while armed.')
The courtroom apparently was pretty packed for a West Allis Tuesday morning. I would estimate a good 50-ish people were there for this one case.
Basically the judge seemed to go back and forth while issuing his reasoning before the verdict. First citing the idea that city governments can't pre-empt state constitutional rights was one avenue of thought. Then being upset that the legislature and our Attorney General (who ducked this issue) could clear all of this up by either issuing a ruling (AG) or clearing up the laws pertaining to carrying them in WI. Then discussing how e felt bad for the police because they don't really know what to do about this. Then steering back into the fact that people being offended doesn't trump constitutional rights. Making a statement to the effect that it is not lawful to use ordinances and statutes to deprive someone of their constitutional rights. Finally discussing whether Brad, simply by carrying was being disorderly or not. It looked like at some times it would go the city's way, and some times it appeared he would rule in Brad's favor.
The end result was that Brad was found not guilty of 'disorderly conduct while armed'. The judge made it clear that this is most likely not the end of this case because he believed whatever side 'lost' would probably appeal to a higher court. Certainly if Brad lost an appeal would be in the works. It is unclear at this early point if the city of West Allis will appeal or not. If I were to bet on it, IMPO, they will.
The issue of returning his weapon and holster are a separate issue per the judge, and it will be up to Brad to get his property back from the police department. There is a chance that he will have to go to court to get a court order, if they do not return it to him after he again submits a request to them to have it returned to them.
The ironic thing is that his weapon is the same weapon the West Allis police use, and his ammo was the same that they use. The only difference is that he has a superior holster than they do (positive retention) that makes it almost impossible for someone other than Brad to remove the gun.
So the end result to day is that there is a win for Brad. It probably is not over, he still needs to get his property back, and deal with the legal bills. But it's definitely a good day in Wisconsin, for every gun owner out there. Because the issue is not just about guns. It is a larger issue about rights, constitutionally guaranteed rights, that can't be taken away by local government just because they say they can (pre-emption). It is about not being able to have your rights taken away because someone else is offended or uncomfortable about you simply exercising your rights. It is a much bigger issue than just guns.
Thanks for the report.
He needs to sue the city for everything.
This is simply not acceptable.
How’s Brad getting along with that neighbor these days?
GREAT REPORT, Man! I hope Brad follows that Georgia US District Court ruling that such a seizure was a Fourth Amendment violation but that is a different Circus and would not be binding on WI. I’d love to see Brad follow several avenues here and ratchet this all up to SCOTUS (quick before the balance changes!). I almost hope the town appeals so a precedent is set when he wins all the way up the chain.
Is the name of the complaining citizen (future candidate for subject) known?
In IL the law specifically states that one can be armed while on ones own property. I carry a copy of the Statute with me.
I hope he can sue the crap outta the city.
West Allis used to be a nice place! I bought my first two pedal steels from West Allis Music.
Great report! Thanks. It will be interesting to see how the corrupt MSM will end up spewing this. Any bets on how the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel will try to swing opinion? (Here’s a clue: They hate guns with a white-hot passion.)
The guy was rightly found not guilty, with what possible reason do they presume to retain a private citizen’s confiscated property?
Thanks for the report. I was intending to do the same thing a few years back. I went to talk to our local sheriff and realized I wouldn’t be picked up... he was completely on my (our)side. Juneau County Wisconsin at the time.
How does a prosecutor appeal a "not guilty" verdict? I trust that there is no double jeopardy in Wisconsin.
At least the judge could read the Constitution, which is more than we can say for a majority of the USSC in the Kilo case.
Great report. Good outcome.
Brad MUST sue for
1. his legal bills
2.being deprived of the use of his property without cause
4. whatever punitive amount he and his attorney decides is appropriate
5. to force the law drones to take classes so this doesn’t happen again.
6. for civil rights violations where applicable.
“Thanks for the update, sounds like an intelligent judge.”
I must disagree. The decision shouldn’t have taken 5 minutes. The man is on his own property minding his business and not bothering anyone. Even IF he wasnt on his own property it is an open carry state. How can peaceably carrying a holstered gun on your own property be creating a disturbance. THE JUDGE IS A COMPLETE MORON. It is troubling that this OBVIOUSLY open and shut case should be so hard to decide.
Thank you for the after action report. A tentative “win” for the good guys.
Nice report. As a fellow Wisconsinite, I am closely following this case.
I wonder if theyd have still arrested him if it was a toy gun.