Deputy attempts to justify seizing CCW handguns during traffic stop


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JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 02:45 PM
Under no circumstances will I return to my vehicle with a loaded weapon still in yours, so don’t get the idea that it is violating your rights for me to hold onto your gun for a few minutes.

I remove the magazine and unload the weapon. I will then take all of the bullets out of the magazine. I will re-approach your car, explain that you are/aren't getting a citation, I am handing you a bunch of bullets to be put straight in the cup holder, and that I am going to place your firearm in the back seat and the magazine a few feet away from it. I then explain that under no circumstances are you to mess with that weapon until I am out of sight. I then return to my vehicle and leave.

Complete essay at: http://mikesbales.hubpages.com/hub/Concealed-Carry-A-Police-Officers-Prospective#comment-11096464

I would encourage commenting at the bottom of the article if you choose to do so. I left a lengthy one .

BTW... you don't have to register to comment

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Double Naught Spy
November 19, 2012, 02:51 PM
I don't know Missouri law, but in many states, the cop has the authority to do exact that which is being described regardless of whether a person likes it or not.

I have been disarmed a couple of times and got a kick out of the OK cop who handed my loaded guns back to me about 2 minutes after removing them. I was out of state at the time.

Personally, I don't care about the officer's feelings anymore than s/he cares about mine. So long as everyone abides by the law and correct legal procedures, everything will be as it should be.

JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 02:56 PM
In "must inform" states the cop knows about the firearm. Very few states are must inform, though. The only way he's going to know in any other state is if the citizen informs him, which he is not required to do under the law. Don't know = no confiscation.

smalls
November 19, 2012, 03:02 PM
Police may disarm you during a stop in any state, and what he's doing is within his rights. In a state with no duty to inform he may still ask you, and you must tell him if you are armed.

That's not the problem, though. It's his attitude towards people legally carrying a gun, and his distrust for those people.

Actually, he IS illegally searching your serial number, though.

JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 03:09 PM
No... there is no law in states that are not "must inform" that requires you to answer positively to this question. You can stare at him, you can tell him there is nothing illegal in the car, you can even blow him kisses, but you do not have to answer the question unless he has probably cause, or even the lower level of Reasonable Articulable Suspicion that a crime is occurring or about to occur. Even then, you always have the RIGHT to remain silent.

fatcat4620
November 19, 2012, 03:15 PM
No... there is no law in states that are not "must inform" that requires you to answer positively to this question. You can stare at him, you can tell him there is nothing illegal in the car, you can even blow him kisses, but you do not have to answer the question unless he has probably cause, or even the lower level of Reasonable Articulable Suspicion that a crime is occurring or about to occur. Even then, you always have the RIGHT to remain silent.

Lying to a cop about having a weapon in your possession is not really setting yourself up for success.

firesky101
November 19, 2012, 03:27 PM
Lying to a cop about having a weapon in your possession is not really setting yourself up for success.
I saw nothing about lying in the post. He was recommending what most lawyers do. Do not provide any information you are not legally obligated to.

JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 03:35 PM
"lying"?

That's what I love about 'net forums.

fatcat4620
November 19, 2012, 03:38 PM
I saw nothing about lying in the post. He was recommending what most lawyers do. Do not provide any information you are not legally obligated to.

Every time I have been pulled over I have been asked if I had any weapons. Telling him no, refusing to answer or blowing him kisses IMHO is not setting yourself up for success.

Skribs
November 19, 2012, 03:48 PM
Okay, I do not want some cop telling me to put bullets into my sticky, grimy cup holder that's had plenty of root beer spilled in it with very little cleanup. It's one thing to disarm and clear, but to completely unload the magazine and require the bullets and the gun be placed separetly (he said "back seat") is a bit too paranoid.

It would get more complicated if there are people in the back seat.

Checkman
November 19, 2012, 03:52 PM
A War-story.

I've been a police officer for twelve years. All in Idaho and all with the same department. I am also a permit holder.

Here in Idaho ,when I run somebody's driver license, I am informed when I get my return whether or not somebody has a concealed carry permit. The holder does not have to inform me that they have a permit - the state tells me. I have a permit and I've run myself - guess what I have a concealed carry permit.

When I learn that an individual has a permit I may or may not ask if the person is carrying based on a case by case basis. Many factors will be taken into account. The overwhelming majority of my contacts with permit holders are uneventful and I almost never even bring it up. Why should I if they aren't doing anything illegal?

The only time I've pointed my weapon at a permit holder (who was carrying at that time) was a drunk who got into an argument with his neighbors, went back into his house, strapped on his shoulder holster with his (loaded) Walther PP in the holster, then put on a jacket over it. He then went back outside and began yelling at the same neighbors (and anyone else who was listening) that he was now carrying and would take down anyone who wanted to try to take him (or words to that effect). As he was screaming he kept pulling back his jacket and brandishing the holstered Walther.

Big surprise the neighbors called 911. The call came in and I was first on scene. The guy was screaming and yelling and began to pull the Walther out the holster when he saw me. I drew my sidearm and told him (in a loud and possibly slightly squeaky voice) to leave that weapon in the holster or I would (yes those were the exact words I used) shoot him (also my exact words). Fortunately he followed my orders and other officers arrived within moments.

That guy was arrested for Disturbing the Peace, Brandishing and Aggravated Assault (a Felony in Idaho) and he lost his permit.

The guy was an idiot. The Walther PP was confiscated and after the case was adjudicated he never came back for the pistol. Eventually it and many other firearms were sold off to a local dealer.

But that is the only time I have had a negative contact with a concealed carry permit holder in twelve years of law enforcement. I consider that to be a good thing.

That's my war-story. I will act on a case by case basis.

mljdeckard
November 19, 2012, 03:54 PM
Surrendering your rights when you don't have to isn't either.

In Utah, the law recently changed, and we no longer have to inform police if we are carrying. There is a school of thought that goes along with what I just stated above. You should never surrender your rights. HOWEVER, Utah cops are overwhelmingly pro-gun. I have never heard of any stupid shennigans from cops who pulled over people who were carrying. The vast majority of the time the driver is told to leave the gun where it is and not make any sudden moves. (The very few times I have been pulled over in recent years, it has gotten me out of tickets. They realize that as a permit holder you won't have any wants or warrants, and know that there will be no fun had with you.)


But if I ever had a cop jerk me around, take my gun, play with it, commit unsafe acts with it, anything to that effect, I will inform him upon returning it that I am changing my policy to not informing, and telling my students the same thing. I will also be notifying all of his supervisors that as a result of his untrusting and disrespectful actions, I will no longer be notifying, and encouraging everyone I know to do the same.If the members of his agency no longer trust us to me armed and responsible, we no longer trust them enough to compromise to enhance their safety. Respect works both ways.

silicosys4
November 19, 2012, 04:10 PM
My first time volunteering information about my legally concealed firearm upon being pulled over was also my last.
The serial # was illegally run, and I was muzzle swept by the officer when he returned it..admittedly unloaded.
I do not like the attitude of the officer who wrote the article. It reeks of an "I'm the only person qualified to handle YOUR gun" attitude...
I can tell by the tone of the article that people are not people to the author, they are potential threats, and are required to be under his control at all times.

What sense does it make to harass legal carriers of firearms? The guy that's going to shoot him in the face isn't going to tell him all about the gun he's going to do it with, before he does it.

This is all about increasing the amount of control a LE officer has over a citizen who is fully legal...and this officer should be admonished for his attitude.

JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 04:12 PM
Every time I have been pulled over I have been asked if I had any weapons. Telling him no, refusing to answer or blowing him kisses IMHO is not setting yourself up for success.

Depends upon your understanding of the word "success."

You're welcome to shout it from your car roof top. Many other CCW holders view it differently.

Sam Cade
November 19, 2012, 04:16 PM
In Ky we have to display our CCDW license if requested and carrying concealed.

I usually open carry but inform that I am armed on the rare occasion that I have non work related contact with LEOs.

I've been asked to surrender my weapon a couple times (both times by very young KSP troopers) and have always refused.

JackBurtonJr
November 19, 2012, 04:23 PM
I've been asked to surrender my weapon a couple times (both times by very young KSP troopers) and have always refused.

More details, Sam... you can't keep us hanging in the middle of a story such as that :)

HorseSoldier
November 19, 2012, 04:28 PM
In Alaska you are required to inform LEOs during traffic stops or other contacts if carrying concealed. In practice it is just way, way less of an issue than internet civil libertarians make it out to be. I've never had anyone get bent out of shape during a traffic stop based on their requirement to inform or requirement to surrender the weapon for the duration of the stop.

longknife12
November 19, 2012, 04:29 PM
Only been stopped once in mega years...a New Mexico State Trooper.... I volunteered the CCW. Never asked to show or give it up. We had a nice conversation and I went on my way.For a younger officer, he demonstrated old school ways.
This was just just east of Raton and the guy was a pleasure to deal with!
Dan:cool:

Sam Cade
November 19, 2012, 04:32 PM
More details, Sam... you can't keep us hanging in the middle of a story such as that :)

Not much story.

KSP: Sir, I'd take to take control of your pistol for both your safety and my own.

Me: No.

KSP: *Confused Look* *steps away and keys radio*

KSP: Have a nice day and slow it down.

Cosmoline
November 19, 2012, 04:33 PM
I've also had no real problems with it. Once the officer took the firearm, unloaded it and set it on the ground. But most of the time they just want to be appraised of where the firearm is on you or in the vehicle. They know perfectly well that it's the folks who tell them where their firearms are aren't the threat. It's the other ones who are. Like the gang banger on an outstanding warrant who drew on two cops yesterday and got shot in his car.

jim243
November 19, 2012, 04:36 PM
they are potential threats, and are required to be under his control at all times.

Yes we are. That is the way they are trained, to insure the officers safety. They have no way of knowing what they are walking into until they has assesed the situation. Every stop can turn bad, that is why they are over bearing until they know they will be safey.

Exactual what you or I would do in the same situation. It's part of their job.

Jim

holdencm9
November 19, 2012, 05:03 PM
lol @ "prospective"

I normally am not one to critique anyone's spelling/grammar, especially in a blog, but that is the HEADLINE and a pretty funny mistake at that.

ETA: I really doubt that 99.99% of officers would want you to hand them your gun. If they are smart, they should know that you wouldn't have told them you had it if you meant them harm, and it is more dangerous to take it out and mess around with it (even if you leave it in the holster and hand the whole thing to him) than just leaving it where it is.

ETA 2 : The one time I was carrying AND got pulled over (I was a passenger) the officer never even asked.

Grmlin
November 19, 2012, 05:18 PM
We have to declare in N.C., didn't have to until sometime in the last few years. I have never had a problem other than a lengthy conversation about different firearms. The conceal carry permit and my retired military ID tend to help.

Ryanxia
November 19, 2012, 05:35 PM
Utter rubbish. I wonder if my State legally requires you to surrender your firearm during a traffic stop.

NavyLCDR
November 19, 2012, 05:44 PM
"I live in Missouri, and here –like in most states- you do NOT have to tell the officer that you have a weapon in the car unless he asks. That being said if I find out you have a CCW from dispatch or some other way I will not be very happy when I do ask you and find out that you are carrying a weapon. It is ALWAYS best to be straight forward about having a weapon."

This statement displays the pure ignorance of the author. He comes to my window, obtains my driver's license and papers. Goes back to his car with no concern about any firearms. He finds out that I have had a background check done, provided fingerprints, have a clean record, and have permission from the state to carry a concealed firearm. After finding that out, he is THEN going to be concerned about a legal firearm that I might or might not be carrying?!?

The Supreme Court has ruled that he does have the right to disarm if he has reasonable suspicion to believe that I am armed AND PRESENTLY DANGEROUS. After he receives the information from dispatch that I am permitted by the state to carry a concealed weapon, after all the hoops I had to jump through to get my permit, AND since he had no concern about a firearm before returning to his vehicle, exacly how is he going to justify to the judge that he had any reasonable suspicion that I was PRESENTLY DANGEROUS?

MutinousDoug
November 19, 2012, 05:45 PM
Here is the Colorado statute regarding concealed carry (I've deleted the paragraphs that aren't germane to the thread :

"18-12-204. Permit contents - validity - carrying requirements.
(1)
(a)...
(2) (a) A permittee, in compliance with the terms of a permit, may carry a concealed handgun as allowed by state law. The permittee shall carry the permit, together with valid photo identification, at all times during which the permittee is in actual possession of a concealed handgun and shall produce both documents upon demand by a law enforcement officer. Failure to produce a permit upon demand by a law enforcement officer raises a rebuttable presumption that the person does not have a permit..."

It APPEARS to me that if I am carrying and I have a CHP (Colorado acronym for a "concealed handgun permit", I am required to produce my permit and photo ID upon request.
Later in the statute, it states that a police officer may temporarily take possession of said handgun to be immediately returned upon discharge from the stop. But nowhere in the statute does it say I have to answer an officer's question: "do you have any weapons in the car?" etc. I may remain silent on that subject and be within my rights.
That said, It seems to work for me to give the officer my permit too when he requests my DL. Statistically insignificant sample: two speeding stops and one left turn from the middle lane (unfamiliar suburban rat maze) but no requests to take possession of the handgun and NO TICKETS in seven years!

dmancornell
November 19, 2012, 05:51 PM
So a cop can lie to me about anything and everything, but I cannot even tell a cop that it's none of his business if I am carrying or not? Any cop that views every civilian as a threat is a menace. Officer safety? How about my safety?

A cop went ballistic on me last year for not telling him I have a license to concealed carry. Oregon does not even require me to inform. Plus I wasn't even carrying at the time. I interrupted his tirade with "Am I free to go now?" and drove off immediately after he said yes.

runlevelsix
November 19, 2012, 06:02 PM
In Iowa we do not have the duty to inform, nor does the law provide for an automatic notification to the Officer doing the stop if we have a CCW permit.

That said I make it my personal policy to notify even though I don't have to. I try to see things from a Cop's perspective: They don't know me, and they deal with a lot of bad people. So I let them know that I am not up to anything squirrely by turning on my dome light at night, and placing my hands on the wheel so they can see as they approach the vehicle. By doing this and informing them I have a permit and am carrying I attempt to make sure that nothing I do makes the stop anything more than routine. Last thing I want is for them to accidentally find out on their own - I have no idea how they might react to that regardless of what the law says. Plus it's a good habit when I travel to nearby States that do have duty to inform.

akodo
November 19, 2012, 06:05 PM
Yes we are. That is the way they are trained, to insure the officers safety. They have no way of knowing what they are walking into until they has assesed the situation. Every stop can turn bad, that is why they are over bearing until they know they will be safey.

Exactual what you or I would do in the same situation. It's part of their job.

Jim

You know what? ABSOLUTELY NONE OF THAT MATTERS. I don't care what your training is, I don't care if your training tells you to run the gun's serial number and check the trunk for dead hookers, what matters isn't even officer safety. What matters is obeying the law. What matters is COPS need to obey the law.

The highest laws of the land are written to check the power of authority, which is often in direct opposition to officer safety.

If you can talk a moron into allowing you to search his car, more power to you, but this whole 'we are authorized to violate your rights in the name of officer safety' line is B.S.

If you don't like that, you should find a new job.


(incidentally, how many cops have been shot by CCWers at a traffic stop AFTER the CCWer stated he had a gun? How many cops have been shot messing around with unfamiliar firearms? I bet there is more of the latter than of the former)

NavyLCDR
November 19, 2012, 06:14 PM
Yes we are. That is the way they are trained, to insure the officers safety. They have no way of knowing what they are walking into until they has assesed the situation. Every stop can turn bad, that is why they are over bearing until they know they will be safey.

Exactual what you or I would do in the same situation. It's part of their job.

Jim

Police officers here in Washington state must all have been absent during that part of their training. I have been treated with nothing less than polite professionalism. Never been asked about a firearm, never informed them of my firearm or CPL, neither my CPL nor my firearm has had any bearing or affect at all on the traffic stop. About 50% rate of being let go with a warning rather than ticket.

The ultimate answer to all of that was for me to slow down and pay the attention to my driving that I should be.

Skribs
November 19, 2012, 06:21 PM
Yeah Navy, I've been pulled over once while carrying, and I didn't bring up the gun and there was no issue. However, I think that the officer in the original post isn't just disarming the civilian - he seems to have some very weird ideas about what's going on.

There's a difference between knowing what a civilian has and potentially disarming him until you can verify he's okay (whether or not you agree with that practice, it's still different from) and being completely paranoid. I've heard horror stories about cops who freak out at the sight of a gun and act in very paranoid, unsafe manners. This cop doesn't sound like he was being unsafe, perse, but the fact he couldn't have a loaded gun on a person within line of sight of him screams paranoia.

I can understand cops being apprehensive at a traffic stop. However, a good cop should remain calm and collected.

MErl
November 19, 2012, 06:26 PM
Here is the Colorado statute regarding concealed carry (I've deleted the paragraphs that aren't germane to the thread :

"18-12-204. Permit contents - validity - carrying requirements.
(1)
(a)...
(2) (a) A permittee, in compliance with the terms of a permit, may carry a concealed handgun as allowed by state law. The permittee shall carry the permit, together with valid photo identification, at all times during which the permittee is in actual possession of a concealed handgun and shall produce both documents upon demand by a law enforcement officer. Failure to produce a permit upon demand by a law enforcement officer raises a rebuttable presumption that the person does not have a permit..."

Yet in CO you can carry a firearm in a vehicle for self defense without a permit.
IANAL -
seems to me that the 'produce on demand' is there to make sure you do not get a ticket for carrying without a permit. You have to prove you have permission to carry the firearm you are carrying.
Is also pretty clear that if the cop specifically asks for your permit when you are carrying in walmart you are legally obligated to produce it.
In a vehicle.. Probably still obligated to answer yes and produce the permit if specifically asked. Someone carrying in a vehicle (in CO) without a permit would be under no such obligation.

SharpsDressedMan
November 19, 2012, 06:54 PM
I like to tell the cop that if I wanted to shoot him, he'd already be dead. It gives them something to think about, besides screwing with PASSIVE and legal permit holders. And I don't really care if the cop gets upset or not. AND, I used to be a cop for 20 years, and have zero tolerance for overbearing, authority-abusive cops. Disliking THOSE kind of cops is why I became one.

Robert
November 19, 2012, 06:59 PM
That's enough for this go around. There are some good answers from both sides, but there is too much chest thumping as well.

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