Wearing masks is illegal???


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GhostRider66
May 26, 2005, 02:35 PM
http://apnews.myway.com/article/20050526/D8AAUV9G0.html

Man Arrested for Wearing Grinch Mask

May 26, 11:47 AM (ET)

WHEELING, W.Va. (AP) - City and county attorneys are defending Wheeling police who arrested a man for wearing a Grinch mask while walking along a city street.

Norman Eugene Gray, 42, was arrested Tuesday. He was arraigned and released on a personal recognizance bond.

Officers saw Gray about 8:45 a.m. Tuesday, told him to take the mask off and not put it on again. Gray removed it and asked why he could not wear it, according to Wheeling police reports. Officers told him wearing masks in public is illegal.

Gray said he felt he had a right to wear it and said it was not illegal. He put the mask back on and was arrested. The mask was confiscated.

Wheeling City Solicitor Rosemary Humway-Warmuth and Ohio County Prosecutor Scott Smith said masks as well as dark window tinting in vehicles can pose a safety hazard to law enforcement officers and hinder efforts to identify criminal suspects.

"When we think about masks, we don't always think of Halloween," Humway-Warmuth said.

Smith said wearing a mask or hood in public is a misdemeanor under state law, punishable by a fine of up to $500 or up to a year in jail, or both. Children up to 16 years old can wear masks. Traditional Halloween masks, safety gear used in occupations, theatrical productions, civil defense or protection from bad weather also are legal.

---

Information from: The Intelligencer, http://www.theintelligencer.net

Wow! Just wow!

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Vernal45
May 26, 2005, 02:36 PM
Masks today, Guns tomorrow.

Henry Bowman
May 26, 2005, 02:38 PM
Yes, 'tis true in many states. Kind of like "burger tools." In some cases it originated as an anti-KKK law. It is generally overlooked on Halloween and during extremely cold weather (ski masks). I remember my father telling me about such laws when I was a kid (1960s) and remember being astonished at the time.

garyk/nm
May 26, 2005, 02:39 PM
So I guess the THR costume party idea is a no-go? :p
What idiocy.

Vern Humphrey
May 26, 2005, 02:40 PM
No doubt they're busy arresting baseball catchers, scuba divers, surgeons, welders and similar dangerous criminals. :evil:

2nd Amendment
May 26, 2005, 02:43 PM
A hood? I have a couple slickers and what would best be described as a cape(stop the snickering ya bums) which have hoods. They are quite handy when it, umm, rains...snows...little things like that. And if I put on a pair of sunglasses whoa buddy, I am incognito. :rolleyes:

RaggedClaws
May 26, 2005, 02:43 PM
Kind of like "burger tools."

You need a mask to make burgers? :neener:

Henry Bowman
May 26, 2005, 02:48 PM
You need a mask to make burgers? You do if I'm cookin'. meant: "burgler tools."

Also the prohibition may be limited to "in public." A quick check indicates that Ohio does not have such a law.

Standing Wolf
May 26, 2005, 03:27 PM
"When we think about masks, we don't always think of Halloween," Humway-Warmuth said.

Those individuals think? I'm waiting to be convinced.

GhostRider66
May 26, 2005, 03:31 PM
To keep this gun oriented: This is exactly the same mentality that is used by the gun-control types. I wonder exactly how effective this law is as a deterrent to all of the potentially masked villians out there. "Hmmm...gonna rob a liquor store today. Mask or no mask? Better not wear the mask. Sure would hate the extra charge and possible jail time." :barf:

dasmi
May 26, 2005, 03:38 PM
Gray said he felt he had a right to wear it and said it was not illegal. He put the mask back on and was arrested. The mask was confiscated.
Well thank God they got another evil mask off the streets. It's for the children.

RaggedClaws
May 26, 2005, 03:40 PM
Henry,

I know you meant burglar tools, I'm just messing wit ya :p

Harry Tuttle
May 26, 2005, 03:42 PM
Once again we are saved from the nefarious actions of those wierd, "fun loving" people. Why next week, the grinchy dood might don a helmet and drive past a lake with a thermos full of....

CRANBERRY JUICE!!!!!!!!!!!!
:what:

GhostRider66
May 26, 2005, 04:00 PM
This must really play hell with the annual Mardi Gras celebration.

goalie
May 26, 2005, 06:18 PM
I hope wearing my goalie mask in the public ice arena is still OK here in Minnesota. I'm ugly enough without having to go "Glenn Hall" or "Turk Broda" in the crease.

:p

El Tejon
May 26, 2005, 06:48 PM
Laws forbidding masks were started in the North to combat the horrific evil of the Ku Klux Klan.

Alex45ACP
May 26, 2005, 07:04 PM
There are cameras that can match up your face with a database. These cameras will be deployed all over the USA in a few years, and wearing a mask would hinder the police state.

mons meg
May 26, 2005, 07:08 PM
In OK, the no-mask law has a clause specifically for Halloween and other celebrations, costume parites, and the like. Interestly enough, wearing a mask during a burglary is declared prima facie evidence of intent.

cropcirclewalker
May 26, 2005, 07:58 PM
The way it looks, the law is intended to allow LEOs to recognize bad guys. (For their safety) So he took off the mask, looked them in the puss then put it back on. They knew he was not a BG thus eliminating the need for the application of the law to him.

I think hes gonna walk.

I am in the market for some of those glasses with the big nose and mustache to wear when I have to drive around and through the lou (or other big city with the facial recognition equipment). I wonder if they would consider that a mask.

TheFederalistWeasel
May 26, 2005, 08:38 PM
OCGA Title 16, Chapter 11, Section 38 (16-11-38)

(a) A person is guilty of a misdemeanor when he wears a mask, hood, or device by which any portion of the face is so hidden, concealed, or covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer and is upon any public way or public property or upon the private property of another without the written permission of the owner or occupier of the property to do so.

(b) This Code section shall not apply to:

(1) A person wearing a traditional holiday costume on the occasion of the holiday;

(2) A person lawfully engaged in trade and employment or in a sporting activity where a mask is worn for the purpose of ensuring the physical safety of the wearer, or because of the nature of the occupation, trade, or profession, or sporting activity;

(3) A person using a mask in a theatrical production including use in Mardi gras celebrations and masquerade balls; or

(4) A person wearing a gas mask prescribed in emergency management drills and exercises or emergencies.

cropcirclewalker
May 26, 2005, 09:12 PM
Mr. Weasel,

Sounds like if I ever go back to Georgia I will have to shave off my full beard.

SaintofKillers
May 26, 2005, 09:23 PM
Well I guess I will have to throw away my Cat in the Hat hat and giant sunglasses.

I am really starting to wonder how much of this :cuss: I can take.

A man has got to know his limitations.

sm
May 26, 2005, 09:39 PM
Hello...is the DC Police Dept? Yes I want to report illegal activities up on The Hill. The Problem? Oh it seems we have a LOT of folks up there wearing masks.
Yeah they are supposed to be upholding the Constitution and all - instead they are hiding behind faces of tyranny...

Hawkmoon
May 26, 2005, 09:52 PM
Interestly enough, wearing a mask during a burglary is declared prima facie evidence of intent.
Really?

I must be slow in the head, but I would have thought that the act of commiting a burglary would be all the indication necessary to demonstrate intent. Does this mean if someone is caught in the act of burglarizing a house but is not wearing a mask, the authorities DON'T have prima facie proof that the person "intended" to commit the burglary during which they were arrested?

Bad guy: "Gosh no, Officer, I most certainly didn't intend to burglarize this house that I just broke into. I mean, it's not like I was wearing a mask or anything illegal."

LEO: "Oh. Okay, son. You can leave. Have a nice evening."

davec
May 26, 2005, 10:03 PM
Most of these types of laws have their origins at preventing the Klan from marching with hoods.

http://www.splcenter.org/intel/intelreport/article.jsp?aid=335&printable=1

At least 18 states have "anti-masking" laws that make it a crime to wear a mask in public. Most of the laws were passed between the 1920s and the 1950s, in reaction to waves of violence perpetrated by the Klan.

Public officials argued that the laws were needed to protect the public from Klan intimidation and violence and that banning masks would aid law enforcement in identifying criminals.

But there are countervailing First Amendment issues at stake. In a series of cases, the Supreme Court has made it clear that citizens have the right to communicate and associate anonymously, without fear of harassment or reprisals by others who oppose their views.

JohnKSa
May 26, 2005, 10:27 PM
No doubt they're busy arresting baseball catchers, scuba divers, surgeons, welders and similar dangerous criminals.I suspect that if you walk down the street wearing any of the above masks you'd probably attract police attention eventually. :D

RevDisk
May 26, 2005, 10:38 PM
City and county attorneys are defending Wheeling police who arrested a man for wearing a Grinch mask while walking along a city street.

Personally, I would have handed over the Grinch mask. Obviously, the police officers in question are more entitled to be wearing it. :neener:


Odd, I've worn masks before without police doing anything about it. I have neck gaiters issued to me by the Army that I've worn, as well as polar fleece balaclavas. I'll be darned if I'm gonna follow any govt dress code when they're not paying me to wear funny looking clothing.

That's it. From here on out, I'm gonna wear a k-pot and mask everywhere! :D

CGofMP
May 26, 2005, 10:45 PM
I guess hooded outfits are out too huh?

Lotsa unabombers running round I guess....

http://www.rhsager.com/photos/uncategorized/unabomber.gif


Other OBVIOUS criminals:
http://www.fiftiesweb.com/tv/lone-ranger-1cmda.jpg http://www.defensetech.org/archives/images/joint%20helmet.jpg http://www.military.com/Data/EQG/mk21_large.jpg http://www.airmaskn95.com/images/man-mask1.jpg http://eprentice.sdsu.edu:16080/j042/ward/worldquest/images/sars_mask_c.jpg

Additional charges filed for CONSPIRACY to mask:
http://cache.corbis.com/thumb/14/57/68/14576860.jpg http://www.menziesera.com/media/images/batman.jpg

Jury Nullification anyone?

Denko
May 26, 2005, 10:49 PM
The wearing of a mask should require a background check. A limit of one mask purchase per month would ensure public safety.

gunsmith
May 26, 2005, 10:56 PM
I will not even if you ask.
I will not do it on a dare,I will wear it everywhere.
I will wear it in the jail,I will wear it out on bail.
I will wear it in my school (I don't like the golden rule).
I really love my Grinch like mask and DR Seuss he is a gas!
:evil:

Kevlarman
May 26, 2005, 11:35 PM
Wait a minute, so if there's a blizzard out and you need to go to the store for some milk, you can't wear a ski mask to protect yourself from frostbite?

gc70
May 26, 2005, 11:42 PM
From the sound of it, the gentleman in question metaphorically thumbed his nose at the cops by putting the mask back on and the cops promptly invoked their right to enforce a because-it's-Thursday-and-we-feel-like-it law.

Of course we wouldn't want normal citizens to be able to avail themselves of the anonymity of a mask, but I'm sure there is an exception for law enforcement.

beerslurpy
May 27, 2005, 12:15 AM
I'm surprised they didnt arrest him for stealing christmas.

I was under the crazy impression that people could still be arrested for committing crimes whether or not they were wearing masks. Unless its one of those special masks that makes you invulnerable or something. I mean, its not like the police can have a warrant for some guy and go to his house and if he answers in a wookie mask, they will be like "oh sorry mister chewbacca, you arent the droid we're looking for" or maybe they would because the weak minded are easily swayed by the power of the force. There are limits to the awesome law-evading powers of even an expensive latex mask.

Anyway, some cops are retards. I could have told you this beforehand. Wouldnt it have been enough to merely see that the guy under the mask was not a wanted criminal and then go on their way? Or is this too much like common sense?

Archie
May 27, 2005, 12:42 AM
How many of you who think 'mask control' is a demonically inspired plot by the leftwing socialist - etc. have called or written your state legislator person thingie and suggested it be repealed?

That's one thing I like about these United States, what gets writ into law can get un writ.

Sic'em. Be polite.

igor
May 27, 2005, 06:42 AM
I'm surprised they didnt arrest him for stealing christmas.

beerslurpy, u o me a double cortado, a new keyboard, a bunch of monitor wipes and two aspirins for my aching ribs. :p :D

GhostRider66
May 27, 2005, 09:43 AM
(a) A person is guilty of a misdemeanor when he wears a mask, hood, or device by which any portion of the face is so hidden, concealed, or covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer and is upon any public way or public property or upon the private property of another without the written permission of the owner or occupier of the property to do so.

The vagueness of this portion would make me even more nervous. It seems that it would be widely open to interpretation of the officer. Sun glasses, shooting glasses (gun-related), etc. might certainly qualify. Also, I wonder how this applies to women wearing ordinary makeup. I've seen some who really layer it on and I'd bet you couldn't recognize them in a before/after lineup without it. Just seems like another excuse to bring a charge on someone they couldn't get otherwise. I wish they would keep it simple. Commit a burglary, robbery, assault, etc, get arrested and charged for that. I just don't see the justification here.

Henry Bowman
May 27, 2005, 10:00 AM
(sorry,I am not a real gunsmith) You're not really much of a poet either, are you? ;)

thorn726
May 27, 2005, 02:30 PM
so i was outside a little club, around midnight, with a few other non threatening types.
four young men approach, start standing around us. this club is in a heavy drug area (16th and mission for the SF people)
now these guys are talking amongst themselves, sort of using our group as cover to make themselves look like they arent just "on the corner"

WELL- i am having a smoke, one of these guys comes right next to me leaning on the wall- he's looking at me, you know , putting some pressure on me- well he has a mask on. like a ski thing, covering everything but his eyes.

I WAS FRIGHTENED. i am not that small a guy, but this angry looking dude next t ome, face totally covered, i am thinking- this guy could just stab me and i will have no clue whatsoever what he even looks like.

the guy knew he was scaring me a little, kept standing there, looknig at me, standing tough, eventually he went away but it was very not fun, and i really was extra frightened by the mask, the fact that he knew no one could ID him.

also- in the city, there are so many criminals who have warrants, get let out without bail, etc, who would love to be able to hide their faces all the time.

stuff like that makes me see there is some decent logic to laws regarding masks

GhostRider66
May 27, 2005, 03:12 PM
Thorn,

I understand your fear and I have no doubt that there are those that would use masks as you indicated. However, because they do and because people may fear certain things is hardly a basis for condemning what, in and of itself, is a harmless or mundane act because it may be used by some as and aid in committing or getting away with another crime is, at least in my estimation, very dangerous. If we begin to pass laws based on what may or may not cause fear but in most circumstances actually poses no threat then where would we end up. Actually and in great probability being black, young, male or Hispanic could be judged criminal. I've read a number of stories on how many people fear those of a percieved 'dangerous' demographic more than those not from said demographic. However founded or unfounded a fear may be (while no actual threat is posed) should add little weight when considering criminal acts. It's just too slippery a slope to go down.

thorn726
May 27, 2005, 03:34 PM
well i dunno man but letting folks walk around city streets at night in bad bad hoods with their faces covered, i dunno, seems like a license to commit crimes.

trying to link this to racial issues is a REAL stretch.

what legit reason is there in SF (never below 45 degrees) to wear a face mask other than needing to hide your appearance to rob???

there are pletny of exceptions to the law, not like a parade or street party mask wearer is going to jail.....................

RevDisk
May 27, 2005, 04:02 PM
what legit reason is there in SF (never below 45 degrees) to wear a face mask other than needing to hide your appearance to rob???

What legitimate use is there to have cryptological programs on your computer, other than to hide criminal content? What legitimate use is there for firearms, other to shoot innocent kids, nuns and kittens? Heck, with that logic, you might as well say why don't all law abidding persons wear devices that can track them 24/7 and monitor any of their activities?

Overstated? Somewhat yes.

The burden of proof is not on us, it is on the state to prove we are guilty. Wearing a specific type of CLOTHING is now a crime. Remember that guy that got roughed up for wearing a helmet and a vest? He committed no crimes, and got roughed up without a good reason. A person wearing a mask for any non-criminal purpuses should not have to justify themselves.

If the cops want to ask a person a few questions because they're looking out of place, fine. Reasonable. Understandable. Arresting someone for wearing a piece of clothing? Lunacy. The law should be taken off the books, and the police officers should be reprimanded for lacking judgement. (A firm slap on both wrists would probably do the job. Maybe a minute or two in the time-out corner.) They were following the letter of the law, sure. But I question their judgement in this matter.

Ironworker
May 27, 2005, 04:04 PM
" the face is so hidden, concealed, or covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer"

Ahh, so this is how Michael Jackson gets away with wearing one without being arrested for it.

BigRedBowtie
May 27, 2005, 04:31 PM
originally posted by goalie:
I hope wearing my goalie mask in the public ice arena is still OK here in Minnesota. I'm ugly enough without having to go "Glenn Hall" or "Turk Broda" in the crease.

The Gumper lives!!

for the rest of you, sorry- humor among goalies.

Who is the Gumper? (http://www.answers.com/topic/gump-worsley)

Relevant is that Gump Worsley was one of the last maskless goalies in the NHL.

Andrew Rothman
May 27, 2005, 06:40 PM
Yeah, it's really a law. Jeez.

http://www.legis.state.wv.us/WVCODE/wvacode_VOpenFile.cfm?serverFilePath=E%3A%5CInetpub%5Cwwwroot%5CWVCODE%5C61%5CWVC%2061%20%20%2D%20%206%20%20%2D%20%2022%20%20%2Ehtm

61-6-22. Wearing masks, hoods or face coverings.
(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, no person, whether in a motor vehicle or otherwise, while wearing any mask, hood or device whereby any portion of the face is so covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer, may:
(1) Come into or appear upon any walk, alley, street, road, highway or other thoroughfare dedicated to public use;
(2) Come into or appear in any trading area, concourse, waiting room, lobby or foyer open to, used by or frequented by the general public;
(3) Come into or appear upon or within any of the grounds or buildings owned, leased, maintained or operated by the state or any political subdivision thereof;
(4) Ask, request, or demand entrance or admission to the premises, enclosure, dwelling or place of business of any other person within this state; or
(5) Attend or participate in any meeting upon private property of another unless written permission for such meeting has first been obtained from the owner or occupant thereof.
(b) The provisions of this section do not apply to any person:
(1) Under sixteen years of age;
(2) Wearing a traditional holiday costume;
(3) Engaged in a trade or employment where a mask, hood or device is worn for the purpose of ensuring the physical safety of the wearer;
(4) Using a mask, hood or device in theatrical productions, including use in mardi gras celebrations or similar masquerade balls;
(5) Wearing a mask, hood or device prescribed for civil defense drills, exercises or emergencies; or
(6) Wearing a mask, hood or device for the sole purpose of protection from the elements or while participating in a winter sport.
(c) Any person who violates any provision of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned in the county jail not more than one year, or both fined and imprisoned.

rritter
May 27, 2005, 07:06 PM
So, Matt, that sounds like the law would prohibit the use of full-face motorcycle helmets in the summer. None of the exceptions seem to apply, except for professional riders who could claim the "trade or employment safety" exemption. I guess it would be legal in the winter, since it would then count as a winter sport.

TallPine
May 27, 2005, 07:28 PM
Well, Tonto ... now what do I do ....?

:confused:

dpesec
May 27, 2005, 07:50 PM
Please don't give the bozos in Columbus any ideas. They're just crazy enough to make this a high priority.

chas_martel
May 28, 2005, 02:09 AM
What implications does this have for the Burka wearing crowd????

They gonna keep outta Texas because of it????

Oh wait, guess not, I've seen 'em driving around Dallas.

Why do they get off the hook on this law?

thorn726
May 28, 2005, 02:35 AM
If the cops want to ask a person a few questions because they're looking out of place, fine. Reasonable. Understandable.

ultimately (although yeah a bit overstated) i have to agree outlawing clothing seems a bit ridiculous however=
what about me, not a cop, i am not tiny but not about to fight a gang of thugs.
for the incident i was describing, it was fairly frightening, and most of it was the guy KNEW he was intimidating me with the fact his ID was concealed.

WELL OK++!!! you know what? if CCW were attainable, i would not have been nearly as worried, but still i have trouble with this.
they came up too fast, too close, in a semi crowded area.
you run, you get hit in the back
he decides to clock me, theres a brick wall right behind me to smash my head on.
all of this only became apparent because i knew and he knew he was masked.
and were i a little old lady, what then? again, a gun would be nice but on some level i want not to give these guys the opportunity in the first place.
if they do something i want to be able to pick the guy from a line up.

if i can at least depend on police to stop and question people walking around high crime areas with masks on , i guess that helps

dustind
May 28, 2005, 03:07 AM
Oh great. Once again I find out that I have been committing a crime for years and did not know it. I use my motorcycle as a daily driver and I always wear a ski mask under my full face helmet. Even in the summer.

I always take the mask off about a second after the helmet, and only put it on about two seconds before the helmet, but I guess that is irrelivent and I am a criminal. Luckily no police so far have minded or known about the law.

This is just further proof that some laws should not be respected, and that "ignorance is no excuse" is wrong. No human being can remember every law that applies to them, and everyone is a criminal. How many people here have researched their state laws for every subject that applies to them? I bet most of us, even though we know a lot more about the law than the average joe, do not know a small fraction of the laws that pertain to us.

Edit: Sorry for the negative tone of that post, but stupid laws really get to me. And we have a lot of stupid laws in this country.

tyme
May 28, 2005, 03:35 AM
(4) Ask, request, or demand entrance or admission to the premises, enclosure, dwelling or place of business of any other person within this state;
...
(b) The provisions of this section do not apply to any person:
...
(6) Wearing a mask, hood or device for the sole purpose of protection from the elements or while participating in a winter sport.
So, even if I know someone in west virginia and they know who I am, it's illegal for me to ask them if I can step inside? That is one very, very poorly constructed law.

If I need protection from Oxygen and Nitrogen, can I legally wear a mask?

mrhuckins
May 28, 2005, 03:56 AM
This is a real shame. A LOT more people in my area could get dates if this wasn't a law. :neener:

cropcirclewalker
May 28, 2005, 10:31 AM
This law is an extreme joke.

(a) A person is guilty of a misdemeanor when he wears a mask, hood, or device by which any portion of the face is so hidden, concealed, or covered as to conceal the identity of the wearer and is upon any public way or public property or upon the private property of another without the written permission of the owner or occupier of the property to do so.
So the man is gonna pull me over for wearing a big nose and moustache through a facial recognition camera. What about the babe in the colored wig and big sunglasses? Selective enforcement.

So, since I am bald, I cannot wear a wig? Since I have a beard, I cannot wear a fake beard? Could be a loophole, but since I have worn my full beard since 1976, would it be a a violation if I was to shave it off?

How about a surgical mask when you walk down the street in flu season?

This is such a joke

He's gonna walk. And deservedly so.

Steve from Mi
May 28, 2005, 11:09 PM
:banghead: :banghead: http://www.record-eagle.com/2005/may/03pants.htm :cuss:http://www.record-eagle.com/2005/may/08edit.htm

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