Open Carry/ LEO perspective


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franconialocal
June 16, 2010, 09:11 PM
This article has got me a little concerned. It's about a California LEO (Chief) and his thoughts/concerns about open carry. Sentence No. 3 states that open carry is the practice of carrying unloaded (ok, this may or may not be depending on the individual), but I think this Chief is a little mis-informed. Thoughts?? Maybe the thinking on this topic is just the California mindset v. NH?? LET'S KEEP THIS POST RESPECTFUL AND PROFESSIONAL IN NATURE SO IT DOESN'T GET LOCKED plz.......

http://www.apbweb.com/news/9-opinion-editorial/1609-open-carry-a-threat-to-officers.html

I am a LEO and definately in a different camp of thought from this Chief. All due respect to your position and rank sir....this is just not the case here in NH. Most of my interactions with the open carry folks in the state (including myself!!) have been respectful and cordial. Frankly, the gun I CANT see is the one I'm more concerned with. I've seen other posts about this topic as well, but I wanted to point out this specific article.

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9mmepiphany
June 16, 2010, 09:26 PM
Sentence No. 3 states that open carry is the practice of carrying unloaded (ok, this may or may not be depending on the individual), but I think this Chief is a little mis-informed

he is a Police chief in CA, writing on behalf of the California Police Chiefs Association for a CA audience.

in CA, Open Cary is always unloaded, otherwise it would be a violation of Penal Code Sect. 12031. this is done without a permit, but you are allowed to carry a loaded mag.

a CCW permit is for concealed and loaded carry of a concealable firearm

i'm not advocating a position on Open Carry, just defining the reference of his position

FIVETWOSEVEN
June 16, 2010, 09:32 PM
Yesterday I saw some guy open carrying in my neighborhood. Surprised me and brought a smile to my face. Only downside that it was just a Glock.

gc70
June 16, 2010, 09:39 PM
If Chief James is very concerned about unloaded open carry, I suppose he would have a conniption over concealed carry. Nevertheless, law enforcement officers seem to muddle through in the free states that allow concealed carry.

Deanimator
June 16, 2010, 09:51 PM
If the thugs in California who trade CCW credentials for political favors and money don't like unloaded open carry, let them start issuing concealed carry credentials to any non-criminal citizen, instead of just to their corrupt friends and business associates.

I'm sure they'd treat voter registration cards and driver's licenses as favors to be bought and sold if they could.

basicblur
June 16, 2010, 09:59 PM
Guess we ought to differentiate between LEOs and the Chief of Police?

Most LEOs I know think you're crazy if you're not armed and willing to defend yourself. Police chiefs, being the pragmatic animals they are, often have a completely different view than those under him.
After all, the chief has to answer to his masters (city council, mayor, etc) and usually sees which way their wind blows before he takes a stance.

Hadn't really thought about it, but once heard a discussion 'bout various top LE positions. Someone stated you’d probably find more sheriffs who think in line with the folks they serve than any other top LEO. The reason given was sheriffs are the only top LEOs that are elected (they answer to their constituents)-all other top LEOs are appointed, etc and only answer to their bosses, often not caring what "the people" think.

Manco
June 16, 2010, 11:04 PM
All I can say is that I don't understand his position. Is he trying to say that he'd feel safer if he simply didn't know whether anybody was armed? I mean, my point of view is that anybody could be carrying concealed at any time, whether legally or illegally, so open carry makes no difference to me. It's simply the truth of the matter, and I think that those who are opposed to actually being able to see firearms being carried are perhaps unknowingly trying to enable themselves to be in denial of the truth that if somebody wanted to kill you, they could do so any moment, whether it's with a scary-looking firearm or, say, an innocuous-looking shovel they just carried out of the local hardware store.

Denial is never a good thing because while it makes some people feel safer, it actually puts them in greater danger due to their lack of awareness and vigilance, and in this case it stomps on our right to defend ourselves, putting us in greater danger, too. :fire: I guess like so many of the people he is supposed to protect and serve, this particular police chief is afraid of guns.

RETG
June 16, 2010, 11:32 PM
Came across a guy open carrying today in front of me, in a Maverik station. No one appeared to pay any attention; then again, I was not wearing a jacket either. I saw it and didn't think that much about it, until he turned around and I noticed he had a concealed weapons badge in front of the holster on the belt. He looked at me, noticed my handgun, but also noticed my badge did not look like his badge and I swear the guy blushed and stopped for a second or two. I believe he was waiting for me to say something.

Why do people wear those idiotic badges?

Blue Brick
June 17, 2010, 12:04 AM
I only open carry, but I live in Arizona.

gc70
June 17, 2010, 12:26 AM
No one appeared to pay any attention; then again, I was not wearing a jacket either.

He looked at me, noticed my handgun, but also noticed my badge did not look like his badge and I swear the guy blushed and stopped for a second or two.

Why do people wear those idiotic badges?

I assume you are a LEO. You are accustomed to people seeing your gun and badge and not reacting adversely. The average citizen seems to have a vague sense that gun + badge = LEO = no cause for alarm. Even a concealed carry badge probably prompts the same response as a real LEO badge since most citizens don't closely inspect badges for authenticity.

NavyLCDR
June 17, 2010, 12:29 AM
Why do people wear those idiotic badges?

Just a wild guess here.... maybe..... because they are idiots?

He looked at me, noticed my handgun, but also noticed my badge did not look like his badge and I swear the guy blushed and stopped for a second or two.
http://www.clsinc.net/bikepictures/Emoticons/laugh2.gif

The Expert
June 17, 2010, 12:40 AM
Most people respect the badge. Everybody respects the gun … Robert DiNiro

762NATO
June 17, 2010, 12:56 AM
I've never seen anyone "wearing" a CC permit ("badge" or whatever it is they have in your state), but if they do, I assume it is because they do not feel truly free to exercise their freedoms. They want to practice their right to carry but they also feel like they need to legitimize it to others. As for him blushing at your badge, he probably feels that cops really don't approve of ordinary citizens carrying guns. After all, that's the message he's been sent all his life by the TV.

gunnutery
June 17, 2010, 02:15 AM
An officer has more authority to check on whether a driver is legally driving a car than to stop an individual to verify if the individual has the right to carry a gun.

His statement here is quite flawed. IMO if there are laws regulating something (like how guns are to be carried), an officer has all authority to check into its lawful use or ask for a valid permit (if applicable). When I see kids walking down the street smoking, I can stop them to ascertain whether they are legally old enough to do so.

General Geoff
June 17, 2010, 02:58 AM
I can stop them to ascertain whether they are legally old enough to do so.

Most states only prohibit the purchase, not the possession or usage, of tobacco products by minors.

gunnutery
June 17, 2010, 05:34 AM
Iowa prohibits the use and possession of tobacco products by minors.

DRZinn
June 17, 2010, 08:38 AM
The police officer who approaches an "open carry" subject must rapidly assess the subject's behavior without knowing if the individual has a permit to carry a gun or a gun license.
The police officer who approaches any individual must assess the subject's behavior without knowing if the individual has a concealed weapon. So what?

NavyLCDR
June 17, 2010, 09:57 AM
IMO if there are laws regulating something (like how guns are to be carried), an officer has all authority to check into its lawful use or ask for a valid permit (if applicable).

And the answer to that is to deregulate the carry of guns like Vermont, Alaska and Arizona! Then we won't be wasting police officers time' with all this permit crap! I am glad there is no permit required to open carry in Washington. An officer sees me walking down the street with a handgun in a holster they have NO lawful authority to check into anything regarding my gun. And I am also glad the Washington State supreme court has ruled as such, as well. (State v. Casad).

indykappa
June 17, 2010, 11:52 AM
An officer has more authority to check on whether a driver is legally driving a car than to stop an individual to verify if the individual has the right to carry a gun.

yeah, this line bothered me as well...if someone in THIS country is walking around with a gun, the odds are that they have a RIGHT to do so. the vast majority of folks are not felons, nor mentally unstable. therefore, by way of the 2nd Amendment, they would have the RIGHT to possess a firearm.

of course, i'm preaching to the choir here.

i am sure that california is a beautiful place. i would love to visit there sometime. but i get alot of california amenities (mountains, oceans/beaches) here in north carolina, combined with a lower crime rate and cost of living.

eye5600
June 17, 2010, 01:27 PM
If Chief James is very concerned about unloaded open carry, I suppose he would have a conniption over [loaded] concealed carry.

My thought precisely.

A lot of cops and just about every COP seems to think it's all about them and the excuse is "it's dangerous out there." Hey, guys, we're out there too.

To be fair, cops spend a lot of time in neighborhoods where they are seen as a hostile force, especially in urban areas. That ramps up the gain on their antennas a lot. If you're in drug county, and you see a gun, you best pay attention. But, you know, that's their problem, and I don't see that they should make it my problem.

Deanimator
June 17, 2010, 01:40 PM
To be fair, cops spend a lot of time in neighborhoods where they are seen as a hostile force
If someone ACTS like a "hostile force", they really shouldn't be surprised that they're perceived and treated like a hostile force.

Why on earth would the residents of Berwyn Heights, MD view the cops who raided their mayor's home, shot his dogs, and made the family lie in the blood of the dead and dying dogs as anything BUT a "hostile force"? Neither the mayor nor anyone in his family committed a crime and have not been charged with one. The cops who raided the home were COMMENDED for their actions. To the best of my knowledge, they've never even admitted fault, much less apologized.

Jefferson Herb
June 17, 2010, 01:58 PM
You will find a lot of beautiful country on the coast from mendicino county north to the Canadian Border.
I had someone talk of a sheriff in Wyoming,who Answered to voters,Governor and God.As it was told,He told the Feds that any operations in his county would go thru him.Is there anyone who can elaborate?
It was supposed to go back to old times in England,ie the High Sheriff,who is the top LEO in the county.
Back to topic,open carry unloaded is like carrying a pocket full of quarters,weighing you down when folding money is just as good;unless it's in a good heavy sock.

FIVETWOSEVEN
June 17, 2010, 02:13 PM
I'd be more worried about some guy wearing baggy pants halfway down his rear-end and tattoo'ed with gang signs than a open carrier.

Gouranga
June 17, 2010, 06:08 PM
I'd be more worried about some guy wearing baggy pants halfway down his rear-end and tattoo'ed with gang signs than a open carrier.

Seems to me, at least with open carry an officer KNOWS the guy is armed and KNOWS when he is reaching for his weapon. Anyone else, they could be reaching for their cell phone on their belt, or it could be a 45 tucked in the belt, who knows.

Personally, if the cop is in such a neighborhood that he/she has to watch each and every bystander to see if they intend to shoot them, I would think they would understand WHY the law abiding citizens would want to carry concealed weapons then. Heck if the cop don't feel safe, why should we?

NMGonzo
June 17, 2010, 07:15 PM
Yesterday I saw some guy open carrying in my neighborhood. Surprised me and brought a smile to my face. Only downside that it was just a Glock.
Glock better than a rock.

It's what I see the most here in my town.

smallbore
June 18, 2010, 08:47 AM
personal freedom v. political correctness

searcher451
June 21, 2010, 08:02 PM
Was with the family at a local eatery this past weekend and spotted an open carry guy come in and head to the counter to order up some breakfast. I noted the revolver that was strapped on his belt, next to his cell phone and a Leatherman, I think, and pointed it out to my son. Must say that the first thing we both thought about was the thread regarding the guy who was robbed because he was open-carrying in his neighborhood. But ... it was good to see locally, and no one paid it any mind whatsoever, which also was good to see.

Ragnar Danneskjold
June 21, 2010, 08:15 PM
I assume you are a LEO. You are accustomed to people seeing your gun and badge and not reacting adversely. The average citizen seems to have a vague sense that gun + badge = LEO = no cause for alarm. Even a concealed carry badge probably prompts the same response as a real LEO badge since most citizens don't closely inspect badges for authenticity.

That's a good point. Not quite good enough to buy a CCW badge, especially since most people I have seen wearing them look like anything but LEOs with regards to the rest of their appearance. But it is an interesting angle to the CCW badge idea. You're right that to most citizens, holstered gun+badge = cop. That can go a long way in avoiding the "OMG there's a guy with a GUN!!" 911 calls from soccer moms.

To all of us on THR, a person with a holstered gun is at most cause for a quiet smile, and probably not even something to pay attention to at all. But to your average mini-van driving PTA-member mom, any gun not in the possession of a cop is on par with a nuclear device. If one decides to smokescreen those people into not freaking out....I can't really blame them.

sv51macross
June 21, 2010, 08:59 PM
But then aren't we as guilty as the antis who would lie and manipulate statistics and facts to push a point? I mean, smokescreening is smokescreening.

wideym
June 21, 2010, 09:13 PM
If I read or hear one more officer/chief use the "officer safety" quote I think I'll throw up! If they wanted a truely safe enviroment they wouldn't have become an LEO in the first place.

Also that crap about officers having more authority to check whether a driver is legally driving a car than to check if a person is legally carrying is just pure BS. Officers cannot just pull over anyone to check their driving status, they must have committed an offence while driving, just like an open carrier must commit an offence while open carrying.

Ragnar Danneskjold
June 21, 2010, 09:16 PM
But then aren't we as guilty as the antis who would lie and manipulate statistics and facts to push a point? I mean, smokescreening is smokescreening.

Guilty of what?

Just as I refuse to condemn a man for not acting to stop an armed robber even though I personally would do so, I also refuse to condemn a man for thinking of only himself while carrying. I'm not putting the weight of the RKBA on anyone's shoulders unless they take it upon themselves. If someone wants to carry a firearm and try to minimize the chance they will be hassled needlessly, that's their prerogative.

Blakenzy
June 21, 2010, 09:44 PM
Law enforcement officers are taught that guns are a dangerous and deadly threat to their safety and the safety of the public they serve.

Maybe they should be taught that before freaking out, to focus on the subject in question, the behavior and demeanor, not only on what tool he/she happens to have on his/her belt.

The police officer who approaches an "open carry" subject must rapidly assess the subject's behavior without knowing if the individual has a permit to carry a gun or a gun license.

Isn't the point of open carry the fact that you DO NOT require a license to do so? Isn't having to "rapidly assess the subject's behavior" part of the job by default regardless of circumstances?


The officer knows only that he or she must detain the subject only long enough to determine whether the gun is unloaded.

Well, if the silly requirement of having the gun unloaded were amended, then the unpleasant interaction of the cop choosing to detain, check and manipulate the weapon of every OCer he comes across would never take place to begin with. That is just an excuse for harassment.


An officer has more authority to check on whether a driver is legally driving a car than to stop an individual to verify if the individual has the right to carry a gun.
And rightly so, seeing that "driving a car" is not a basic, Constitutionally recognized and protected Right (yet).


This whole issue is just a culture clash that can only be resolved through education and understanding between all parties.

Cajun
June 22, 2010, 09:16 PM
My question is in the State of California why in the hell would you open carry an unloaded firearm what is the point of carrying an unloaded firearm? I am just about willing to bet that the bad guys firearm isn't unloaded and I'm sure that he isn't gonna be open carrying either!!

Ragnar Danneskjold
June 22, 2010, 09:51 PM
It's funny yet sad to see people arguing back and forth about what officers are taught when most of you have never even been through police training.

DRZinn
June 22, 2010, 10:21 PM
I'm sorry, did I miss the argument about what cops are taught?

Lucky Derby
June 23, 2010, 12:50 AM
People OC in CA unloaded because:
1. It is the only way for them, in most cases, to carry a firearm. They may have a loaded mag/ammo with them, just not attached to the firearm.
2. They are trying to make a RTKBA political statement. For the time being it is legal for them to do so in this manner.

Gouranga
June 23, 2010, 08:22 AM
It's funny yet sad to see people arguing back and forth about what officers are taught...

It is reflected by their outward behavior as well as a multitude of LEOs who have chosen to post in board such s THR about their training. As LEOs are actual people. a lot of folks actually are friends/family of them and tend to talk to them about their experience/training/POV.

Also, when an officer comes out and makes statements supporting a position to remove or restrict a fundamental right of citizens in the US, he is fair game. Even more so when he/she references his "extensive training" as backup for that position.

They play to "officer safety" to shoot down OC which I find interesting considering given the normal set of tools on my tool belt when working on the house (and I have seen builders out in public with even more), if I was to go berserk, I could kill someone in a heartbeat with them yet nobody would think of freaking about that. For some reason having an legal firearm for the "officer safety" crowd seems to equate to a person either 1. Being a hostile, frothing at the mouth cop killer, or 2. Being a drunk, redneck idiot who walk around juggling his guns loaded with the safety off.

With an OC, an officer KNOW there is a weapon, he/she can see it, he/she can see exactly where the persons hands are in relation to the weapon, and I would guess across the nation, generally the folks officers arrest are not carrying holstered, openly carried firearms.

Manco
June 23, 2010, 12:58 PM
personal freedom v. political correctness

Good observation--used properly, political correctness is a deadly weapon against our freedom of speech. When you can get entire populations to keep their pie holes shut while obviously crazy stuff is going on around them, that's real power. If you can control and manipulate a man's conscience, then you'll own his soul. One other particularly powerful aspect of political correctness is that it seems to transcend all logical associations between things, bypassing more detailed and nuanced reasoning, allowing for ad hoc and non sequitur arguments to win out.

For instance, making it illegal for already illegal aliens to reside in Arizona is claimed by the power of PC to be "racist." :rolleyes: Of course we have to make sure that the rights of US citizens and legal residents of Hispanic (mainly, but there are others) background (and anybody else who could be mistaken as such) are not violated in the process of enforcing such laws, but it has nothing to do with racism. However, that's not what most opponents are saying. They're fighting for the "rights" that illegal aliens don't have, namely to live and work in the US. Even foreign governments are getting in on the act--with the US president on their side :what:, going against US law. :confused: Maybe the president is one himself. :scrutiny: Why aren't more people speaking out against this obvious insanity? What about so-called journalists who should be screaming about the emperor's nonexistent new clothes? I guess they're afraid (or even believe) that it would be "racist."

Regarding guns, obviously a great many people believe that guns are a major cause of violence. This makes no sense as guns are inanimate objects wielded by people, but it is PC to hate and place blame on guns themselves. People do this all the time without thinking or questioning the nature and validity of the associations they're making, and in the absence of valid associations, no amount of reasoning can be effective in convincing anybody of the truth. Their conscience tells them that it is wrong to kill, and because guns kill, they must be evil, and because they don't want to be viewed by others as evil, they will profess that they hate guns even if somewhere in the back of their minds they'd really like to have one (or do have one!) for self-defense (that means I'm evil, and no one must know! :uhoh: ). Conscience (abused) and political correctness versus reason and personal freedom--could there be a more epic struggle for the future of the country and maybe even mankind? :D

Manco
June 23, 2010, 01:04 PM
I'm sorry, did I miss the argument about what cops are taught?

Obviously this particular cop we're talking about has a narrow point of view, especially for a police chief who speaks to the public.

mikana
June 23, 2010, 04:53 PM
No surprise... He's a chief in CA. He misses the mark, imo, however, by implying that barring some other activity, an officer may detain an individual even long enough to ascertain if the gun is unloaded. Any detention requires reasonable suspicion that a crime is being committed or about to be committed. Simply open carrying a gun does not rise to that level. (just my opinion, anything's possible in CA)

Gouranga
June 23, 2010, 05:14 PM
Simply open carrying a gun does not rise to that level

I would concur. If we are going to hold anyone carrying something that can be used as a deadly weapon to determine their intent, are we going to hold a builder with a tool full belt? Maybe someone with a pocket knife? How about someone with a ball and bat going out with their kid (that bat can kill in a second)? How about anyone in a car? If that car has gas and a working power plant, heck it can do far more damage than any handgun.

I just love how they demonize the tool and not the human being holding it. The human factor is what makes a weapon dangerous or not.

FIVETWOSEVEN
June 23, 2010, 05:33 PM
Yep, Banning something lawful reduces crime and makes everything safer. Didn't they try that with prohibition?

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