okay folks! line up to play Whack-a-Spiff! only 25 cents


June 16, 2005, 10:38 PM
alright, heres your chance to smack me upside the head.

so i go to the bank to deposit the checks from agents to my office. and just for funsies i decided to open carry. so i'm standing in line when a lady approaches me and asks me to leave because 'weapons are not allowed'. i asked her if it was the policy of this particular bank, and she would not (could not?) say if it was law (which i know it isnt) or policy. but i was polite (as was she) and complied with her wishes.

i came back to the office (right across the parking lot), disarmed, did a quick check of the state laws to make sure i wasn't wrong, and went back to deposit the checks.

and i've just spent about the last hour studying the various laws and discovered that the prohibition of weapons (open or concealed) in financial institutions was repealed in 1998.

now heres where i need the help of everyone (please stop smacking me upside the head now, thank you! :D ) ; should i let it go at this? only carry concealed while in there? or should i deliver the following letter to the branch manager:

RE: Possession of weapons in a financial institution

On the afternoon of Thursday June 16, 2005, I was asked to leave the Wells Fargo branch on the corner of Minnesota and Benson Blvd’s by what I assume was a Security Manager, because I was lawfully carrying a holstered weapon on my hip, commonly referred to as 'open carry.'

The person I spoke with was very polite, and asked that I exit and leave my weapon in my vehicle. I asked a couple of questions, trying to ascertain if this was because of some unwritten policy, or perhaps a misinterpretation of law. Unfortunately no satisfactory answer was given.

I did comply however, and disarmed while doing my business in the bank. To make sure I wasn’t breaking the law I did research the matter, and did discover that at one time, possession of a weapon (concealed or open) was unlawful while in a financial institution. This section of the law was repealed in 1998. There is no doubt in my mind that you will have this researched on your own to verify this.

I mentioned to the lady from security that if it is indeed mere policy of this particular bank, then the entrance to the bank does need to be posted with a sign stating such. There is a state statute that advises the sign be 12”x12” and be placed in conspicuous places so that all who enter can see it.

Considering that Alaska has very common sense laws regarding firearms, and that open carry is indeed lawful anywhere that concealed carry is lawful, it would surprise me if the Wells Fargo financial institution does post a sign prohibiting weapons.

And the reason it would surprise me is that anyone with an ounce of common sense would realize that only those who are mindful of obeying the law would ever abide by this. Criminals know that much as well. A law-abiding person such as myself would follow the direction to be unarmed while in your institution, but a criminal will not.

I implore you to ask yourself “What do I know about those who lawfully carry concealed (or openly for that matter) a weapon?”
- Are you aware that permit-holders have submitted fingerprints to the State and undergone both state and federal background checks to ensure they have no criminal record?
- Are you aware that permit-holders have passed firearms training and know proper weapons handling?
- Are you aware that permit-holders have enjoyed the privilege of Alaska’s laws regarding concealed carry and the justifiable use of deadly force fully explained by either a representative from the District Attorney’s office or the Anchorage Police Department?

I do understand that a financial institution does have legitimate concerns to protect its interests from criminals, and this is where the apprehension of customers that are armed comes from. However the safety of the individual customer is compromised if they are expected to conduct their business without having the best means available to defend themselves at hand. Would Wells Fargo’s liability insurance cover a customer that gets mugged while leaving the bank and their weapon is not on them, but secured in their vehicle? Can Wells Fargo ensure my safety while I am disarmed and conducting business on their premises?

Please feel free to write me a letter if you wish to express the concerns of your financial institution regarding this matter.

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June 16, 2005, 10:51 PM
Send the letter. There are lots of banks...

June 16, 2005, 10:55 PM
Send the letter, then call the Corp. Office with your complaint Wells Fargo may not change their stance, but my bank did a quick turn around on a poor policy (not gun related) when I called 'em a few weeks back.

June 16, 2005, 10:56 PM
You know my thoughts Spiffy - send it!! :)

June 16, 2005, 11:14 PM
i think it is written in a way that is likely to be effective (non-confrontational and helpful) but it needs some editing

specifically, the ending should be a little more firm in indicating that they have some actions they need to take.

e.g. they need to contact that branch and let them know the law
or they need to update their policy and hang signs
or they need to apologize to you for the inconvenience

it's also not clear who you're sending the letter to. are you sending it to the person responsible for security for all of wells fargo? to someone in alaska?

if the former, then they'll only be concerned about their corporate policy, and they won't care about alaska. you'll want to be a bit more clear that they are violating the law and incurring liability, and not you. (you said as much, but you'll wnat to beat them over the head with it a few more times)

if it's the latter, then they may be a lot more concerned with keeping your business. you don't want to threaten to tell all your gun totin buddies to boycott, but you could mention that the number of people in AK who are sympathetic to carry is proportionally high

June 16, 2005, 11:35 PM
Cite the section of the law that was repealed and the act that repealed that section.

Standing Wolf
June 16, 2005, 11:35 PM
...they may be a lot more concerned with keeping your business.

One sincerely hopes so!

I'm not sure how banking is in Alaska, but here in Colorado, we've got about as many banks as we used to have corner filling stations. Banks compete.

June 17, 2005, 12:58 AM
i was planning on delivering the letter to the actual branch manager in person, i don't think it would do a lot of good to hand it off right to the security department.

i'm actually a bit hesitant to press this further, but maybe with some editing of the letter i will feel more comfortable. reason i am uncomfortable is that this is NOT the bank i do my personal business with. this is the bank my employer works with, and i am the unfortunate soul that has to do the deposits (apparently the powers that be don't trust our accountant to remit the checks and deposit them) every day.
so if i raise cain over this, they might wind up calling my boss, who knows i carry, but would (as all bosses do) want to make sure they are happy, not me.

part of me though feels that it doesnt matter what reason i am there for, and its not likely that i'll have this responsibility taken off my head. seems that i am the only one in the office who can maintain any sense of professionalism with our accountant.

i have searched for the actual statutes that were repealed, but all i can find is some obscure blurb about it on packing.org, i'm probably not looking in all the right places though. and the sections they now refer to havent been updated in the online database. so i would have to find the hardcopy down at the municipality or wherever they keep all those records.

i didnt really get the feeling that i was dealing with a bleating sheep however. i'm positive it was just a misinterpretation of the law. i'd have had less of a problem if the person i talked to just said 'its our financial institutions policy...' rather than try to insinuate that its actual law.

June 17, 2005, 01:22 AM
it sure didn't sound like you were raising cain. like i said, your letter was very nonconfrontational and fact-oriented.

branch manager is a good plan. I wouldn't deliver a letter to him though by hand. I'd hand him the law you can't find and keep the conversation verbal.

be sure to tell him while he's watching you make your deposits

June 17, 2005, 08:33 AM
There's actually a pretty good chance that the woman who asked you to disarm WAS the branch manager...I know that the bank I worked for didn't have any type of 'security' manager in the branches, just at the corporate office. If in fact the person who asked you to leave was the branch manager, then a conversation with her might be in order...with a follow up letter to your nearest regional office (and the president of that region). You'll get better response out of the regional president than dealing with someone at the corporate office out of state.

June 17, 2005, 09:15 AM
Do they ask policemen to leave? You're no different.

June 17, 2005, 01:47 PM
i appreciate everyones input, and after a night to sleep on it, i have decided to just let the matter go. i'm anxious to see whether or not they will post signs, i doubt they will.

the reason i think the woman i talked with was in security, is because just before she came up to me, i heard a door open and shut. to be honest, it was a door i'd never realized was there. its not hidden, just doesnt really look like a door. and the uniformed security i've seen there were standing right in front of that door.
there was also something a little subtle about how she approached me and the manner she talked. i didnt get the hint she was the manager, in fact, if it was a manager, i'm positive they would have introduced themselves as such.

June 17, 2005, 05:47 PM
Why one letter? Send copies to the home office, the branch manager, the security manager, etc...

ALso, stress that you were making a deposit, and that you prefer to be armed while making the deposit. If they do not agree with that, will they provide an armed escort for you?

Spreadfire Arms
June 17, 2005, 06:54 PM
i tried something similar once a few years back.

Texas does not have a law prohibiting the carrying of long arms in your car, in plain view or concealed, loaded or not.

so i drove around the west side of yuppie Austin (West Lake Hills) in a pickup truck with an empty gun rack that is affixed to the rear window of the cab. no window tint so the rack is in plain view and empty.

people were their normal rude selves, don't let you merge, tailgate you, honk at you, etc. :mad:

ok. go home and stick my AK-47 in the rack with a 30 round magazine. weapon was unloaded, seeing this was an experiment and i had my CHL and was carrying a pistol anyway.

went around the same area and this time saw people let me merge and didn't tailgate me. nobody honked either. :)

big difference.....i think i'll try it again sometime! :neener:

June 17, 2005, 06:59 PM
I think open carry is stupid because of the unwanted attention it will draw.

You found that out the hard way.

June 17, 2005, 07:17 PM
Since it's Alaska, you can just carry concealed, but it is still a crock ...

Per my understanding, even in the Criminals Republic of ************ the carrying of large amounts of cash is considered grounds for a "May Issue" permit to carry.

So let me ask ... where the heck are you going to carry large amounts of cash if not to the bank ???? :banghead:

(unless of course, you are going out to make a drug deal, in which you probably don't care about laws against carrying a gun :rolleyes: )

I guess I need to double-check the MT statutes and open carry into our bank sometime ... (hardly ever go in there since my paycheck is direct deposit). If Mr. M---- doesn't like it, I can just close my (considerable) accounts :p

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