Gilmer (Texas) man can't slither his way out of this ticket


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Sylvilagus Aquaticus
August 28, 2004, 04:17 AM
http://www.news-journal.com/news/newsfd/auto/feed/news/2004/08/25/1093491795.18121.5174.7635.html

08-26: Gilmer man can't slither his way out of this ticket

By WES FERGUSON


The only good snake is a dead snake, as Ricky Huey sees it.

So when he spied a water moccasin Tuesday crossing Texas 300 at the Clear Creek bridge, five miles southeast of Gilmer, he pulled over and got out his pellet gun.

"I thought I'd sit on that creek bank in the shade for a little while and doctor me some snakes," said Huey, a 45-year-old Gilmer resident.

To doctor a snake, he explained, you shoot it dead.

Huey had been doctoring snakes for 15 to 20 minutes when an off-duty police officer saw him with his gun and called for backup.

"He said he thought that little old pellet rifle was an AK-47," Huey said. "He got out with his hand on the gun yelling, ‘Put the gun down!’ ”

When state troopers, sheriff's deputies and the off-duty officer searched his truck and couldn't figure out what to charge him with, Huey said, they called in the game warden, who cited him for shooting snakes without a hunting license.

This infuriated the snake doctor. He said he'd never pay the $25 to $500 ticket.

"I ain't got nothing but time," Huey said. "I'll sit there in that Upshur County Jail and let them feed me for as long as it takes."

The game warden, Jeff Cox, said Tuesday's incident was a special circumstance. He said he wouldn't cite a person for shooting a snake while defending one's back yard, but Huey was killing for sport and doing it in a public place.

Cox said neighbors started calling 911 as soon as they heard shots, and were frightened by Huey walking up and down the highway with his rifle.

"It wasn't like I'm out on patrol and see this guy on the side of the road and decide to pull over and hassle him. It kind of put me on the spot when I got a call to come and assist," Cox said. "It seemed like, well, because of all the circumstances here something needs to be documented."

By law, game wardens regulate the hunting of snakes, frogs, turtles and all other animals.

"Honestly, I had a lot of second thoughts about it," Cox said. "I could have handled it with a warning and could still go that route."

That was Tuesday. On Wednesday, Huey and Cox met before Justice of the Peace Arnold Grimes. After a pleasant discussion, Grimes gave Huey deferred adjudication. If he's not cited for hunting without a license in the next 30 days, his record will be clean.

Through it all, the snake doctor kept one secret about his actions on the creek bank.

"I didn't tell them this: I done shot two of them," Huey said.

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RooK
August 28, 2004, 04:34 AM
That's just plain funny. Kind of stupid on the warden's part though. Some people around here carry .22s and jump out of cars to shoot possums crossing the road at night. Guess it's just 'one of those things,' too bad urban people haven't been exposed to it.

Sylvilagus Aquaticus
August 28, 2004, 04:48 AM
Gilmer isn't exactly a thriving Metroplex.

In fact, the main claim to fame is the annual Yamboree.

Regards,
Rabbit.

Backwoods
August 28, 2004, 09:41 AM
Let's see, 30 days and he's free and clear? Sounds to me as though he basicly did "slither out of" the situation.

A tad bit of over reaction on the part of the responding officer. I've no problem with them exercising caution until they get the facts. After that, the proper course would have been to explain that he's stampeding the sheeple and please go away.

There was no mention of prior record or getting smart ass with the offcer. Looks like somebody made a small mountain out of a molehill and the system just couldn't stand the thought of just cutting the guy loose without "official" action, minimal as it was.

Don in Ohio

LawDog
August 28, 2004, 09:58 AM
Something doesn't altogether ring true on this one.

If the neighbors called 911 because they were hearing shots, then he wan't using a pellet gun.

Since when do game wardens regulate snakes? Last summer I drilled three cottonmouths out on the river near where the local kids dipping hole is, and the only thing the local game warden told me was to save the hides for belts. He didn't know me from Adam, didn't know I was a cop. And I was using a .410, which only qualifies as a 'pellet gun' in the most technical sense of the term.

:confused:

LawDog

Bruce H
August 28, 2004, 10:34 AM
I smell a real attitude problem with Mr. Huey.

glocksman
August 28, 2004, 11:41 AM
never mind.

M2 Carbine
August 28, 2004, 11:56 AM
Needing a license to shoot snakes???

BS

I can see how this happened if it started with an off duty police officer that didn't know the difference between a pellet gun and an AK.

Sounds like everyone involved is as dumb as cow ****.

tyme
August 28, 2004, 01:31 PM
Lame. The stuff that passes as a crime (and as news) these days is mind-boggling.

JohnKSa
August 28, 2004, 05:08 PM
If the neighbors called 911 because they were hearing shots, then he wan't using a pellet gun.I've had folks ask me if I was shooting a .22 rifle when I'm practicing with a pellet gun. Some pellet guns make more noise than you'd expect--and some .22LR rifles are pretty quiet.When state troopers, sheriff's deputies and the off-duty officer searched his truck and couldn't figure out what to charge him with, Huey said, they called in the game warden, So, that's what it's come to. We've got a situation with 2 or 3 different flavors of LEO standing around trying to figure out how to charge a guy shooting an airgun and they can't do it without bringing in another flavor of LEO. That's pretty chicken******** if you ask me. Sounds like the judge agreed.I smell a real attitude problem with Mr. Huey.I think most folks would get something of an attitude after sitting around while a bunch of LEOs fish for a law to charge you with.

M2 Carbine
August 28, 2004, 08:38 PM
"So, that's what it's come to. We've got a situation with 2 or 3 different flavors of LEO standing around trying to figure out how to charge a guy shooting an airgun and they can't do it without bringing in another flavor of LEO. That's pretty chicken******** if you ask me. Sounds like the judge agreed."
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ya John "That's pretty chicken******** " all right.

The judge should have thrown the whole thing out and had a serious talk with those Keystone Cops.

Standing Wolf
August 28, 2004, 08:42 PM
Tax dollars at play.

Bruce H
August 28, 2004, 10:58 PM
Just wha tdid the snakes ever do to Mr. Huey. I would have loved to be the judge. If he was going to dress and eat them fine. Killing for the fun of it is a whole nother matter.

Stand_Watie
August 29, 2004, 12:02 AM
Since when do game wardens regulate snakes? Last summer I drilled three cottonmouths out on the river near where the local kids dipping hole is, and the only thing the local game warden told me was to save the hides for belts. He didn't know me from Adam, didn't know I was a cop

I think that anything here in Texas that isn't human or microbe falls under one category or another of legal standing. I think that they have one category for "vermin" which is completely unprotected, but I don't know if any of our snakes are considered vermin. I will say that most Texas residents I know consider cottonmouths to be "kill on sight" critters and I've never heard of a game warden citing anyone before for killing them. Even feral hogs, which have a special citation in the Texas game book as "legal to take using any method" require a hunting license for sure on other people's property and I think even on your own property. Art Eatman could tell you for sure, though.

I will say that Mr. Huey reminds me of some people I know who absolutely know what they are doing is right, and in those instances their 'to hell with the law' attitude won't let them walk away from an encounter with a game warden without the maximum penalty being levied, when a friendly smile and a "sorry for scaring the sheeple, I'll move along now if that's what you want" would have allowed them to go about their business with no legal difficulty. I'll admit, knowing what I do of water moccasins, if I were the game warden involved, even if I were sure he was in violation of the law, I'd be inclined to just ask mr. huey to take his snake shooting somewhere where people weren't complaining.

Did you know some of the old timers call copperheads 'highland moccasins'? Apparently juvenile moccasin have a pattern almost identical to copperheads, and they don't turn completely black until older. From everything I've read they're much more aggresive though...here's a copperhead I tagged this spring mowing the yard

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?s=&postid=967041

JohnKSa
August 29, 2004, 12:21 AM
Just to clarify, Mr. Huey was breaking the law by hunting without a license. He was not breaking any other laws. In fact, as long as you're not discharging a firearm or actually hunting from your vehicle, it's perfectly legal to hunt snakes along a public road right-of-way.

Had he been stopped by a game warden, I would have expected him to be cited or warned for not having a license.

That's not what I'm irritated about. What irritates me is that an off-duty cop saw some guy with a "rifle" alongside the road and over-reacted. YES, over-reacted! In TX, it is perfectly legal to openly carry a loaded long gun in public. Given that Mr. Huey was not breaking any laws (other than not having a hunting license), calling for backup and then pulling a gun on him would definitely be considered over-reaction. Especially since this is a fairly rural area and hunting is not exactly an unusual activity. :rolleyes:

My suspicion is that Mr. Huey mouthed off to the cop and the cop decided that he was going to teach him a lesson. The embarassing fact that he had just called for backup to do an armed takedown on someone with an airgun probably figured in to this determination. He got creative and decided that if he couldn't charge him, he'd call someone who could.

If you look at the Game Warden's reaction, he's almost apologetic."It wasn't like I'm out on patrol and see this guy on the side of the road and decide to pull over and hassle him. It kind of put me on the spot when I got a call to come and assist,"Now THAT's a reasonable reaction. He's doing his best to say that he would have let the guy alone except that he was put on the spot by the off-duty cop with a burr up his butt.

BTW, after my initial post, I was contacted by a person from Gilmer. He did a little checking and was told that there were no complaints/911 calls regarding this situation. It was completely initiated by the off-duty cop.

Stand_Watie
August 29, 2004, 12:55 AM
That's not what I'm irritated about. What irritates me is that an off-duty cop saw some guy with a "rifle" alongside the road and over-reacted. YES, over-reacted! In TX, it is perfectly legal to openly carry a loaded long gun in public. Given that Mr. Huey was not breaking any laws (other than not having a hunting license), calling for backup and then pulling a gun on him would definitely be considered over-reaction. Especially since this is a fairly rural area and hunting is not exactly an unusual activity.

I live about 40 miles southwest of there, and I'd say your assesment is right on the money. My reaction, and the reaction of all the people I know around here to seeing a guy next to the road with a rifle is to stop, roll down the window, and say "Hey there Vern, whatcha shootin' today?"

I know that gun-shy sheeple do exist around here, but they're a lot fewer and further between than in a lot of the places I've lived. My own neighbor is a coyote killing maniac who patrols our road dawn and dusk with his 30.06 on the seat next to him ready to spring from the car and dispatch any coyote he sees to happy hunting ground, and all my other neighbors (not to mention myself) are happy for the public service. I don't believe our local game warden has ever given him any more than a passing "hey, how ya doin' Richard?"

2nd Amendment
August 29, 2004, 01:32 AM
Yup. Ain't it great! :)

4570Rick
August 29, 2004, 02:50 AM
If the neighbors called 911 because they were hearing shots, then he wan't using a pellet gun.


In the earley 1980s, while living in an apartment in S. PRK, I was doing a little target practice in my living room with a Sheridan 5mm pellet rifle. I had a pel trap on the patio so I would have a measured 25 meters distance. After a half hour of plinking, there came a knock at my front door. When I opened the door, a young LEO announced he was responding to "Shots fired" and asked if I knew anything about it. I explaned my target practice, the pel trap, and the pellet gun. He said the caller reported the sound of "gun fire" and could he see the pellet rifle. I invited him in and he checked out the set up. He was impressed with the shot group and was about to leave with just a warning not to shoot in the apartment when he saw my other guns in a gun cabinet. He asked if he could see them and, having nothing to hide, I said; "Sure." He checked my Blackhawk, sniffing to see if it were fired lately. It wasn't. Next, he picked up my 10-22, again, sniffing to see if it had been fired. Then he picked up my Browning BPS 12 Ga and, holding the shotgun with the 30 inch barrel pointing up, lifted the receiver to his nose to take a whiff. Did I mention the officer was 6'3"? When he shoved the muzzle of my BPS through the acoustic ceiling, I reached out and took it away from him drawing it back out of the ceiling. :fire:
He was about to play the "Big Tough Cop" card when I suggested he call his watch comander and explain the hole in my ceiling. :rolleyes: He decided to call it a draw and left. I cleaned my shotgun then went to the hardware store to get the stuff to repair my ceiling.

All this because some blissninny couldn't tell the difference twixt a pellet gun and a powder burner.

tcsd1236
August 29, 2004, 09:19 AM
Some people around here carry .22s and jump out of cars to shoot possums crossing the road at night. Guess it's just 'one of those things,' too bad urban people haven't been exposed to it.
What exactly is sporting about shooting a waddling little critter thats just trying to get from one side of the road to the other without getting run over? Do people down your way just like killing things for no good reason?

wingman
August 29, 2004, 09:30 AM
In the 50's at the ripe old age of 10, maybe 11 friends and I walked the streams shooting snakes and stop at the local filling station for a cold coke,
set our rifles by the door, local cops/game warden would wave as they drove by, guess things have changed although I dident notice.
;)

sendec
August 29, 2004, 12:19 PM
A NPS Rark Ranger was murdered by a guy walking down the road with a rifle. "Blissninnies" "panicked" at the sight of a guy with a gun and the rest is history. There are other examples, but I guess once again we'd rather whale on the JBTs

Look, I understand that people with guns can do no wrong and that anybody who doesnt agree is a sheeple, but all of this could have been avoided if he had gotten the correct license. I do not know who appointed him Saint Patrick of Gilmer, but every snake out there does'nt need to be killed. Furthermore, I'd bet our hero does'nt understand things like ex parte statements. He just talked himself intto a contempt of court citation with his bragging, if I know judges, which I do.

Good to see him exercising his Constitutional right to be an ass:rolleyes:

2nd Amendment
August 29, 2004, 03:10 PM
Oh dear Lord.:rolleyes:

tyme
August 29, 2004, 03:16 PM
sendec, citation? Was that even in TX? Yours doesn't sound like a very definitive description of the situation.

One solved murder is worth harassing everyone who carries a rifle? Or just the people who are reported to the police by shrill blissninnies?

But then I suppose you think the harassment of MVpel for daring to open carry in a bookstore was justified, too. He might have just killed a park ranger, after all. :rolleyes:

R.H. Lee
August 29, 2004, 03:19 PM
A NPS Rark Ranger was murdered by a guy walking down the road with a rifle. "Blissninnies" "panicked" at the sight of a guy with a gun and the rest is history. There are other examples, but I guess once again we'd rather whale on the JBTs
From your point of view, civilians and non-leos with firearms are ALWAYS suspicious, right?

sendec
August 29, 2004, 04:23 PM
You guys are funny. Joe Kolodski, Jeremiah Locust, look it up yourself. Then look up Kris Eggle, shot and killed by a rifle-carrier in Organ Pipe, then look up Platt and Mattix, they were carrying rifles in public as was the North Hollywood robbers, the guy in San Ysidro who shot up the Mcdonalds and then look up Malvo et al and the guy in the clock tower in Texas and then Donald Harvey......

Sheesh, read a paper. You blissninnies. Not everybody with a gun is a good guy.

(edited to correct grammar, at least some of it)

2nd Amendment
August 29, 2004, 04:30 PM
And this is relevent how? Nobody here claimed everyone was a good guy. Only that the cops over-reacted. Your cited incidents merely show the exception to the rule: Most people ARE the Good Guys. But by your logic they are ALL supposed to pay the price for the actions of a tiny few so you and yours can feel safer?

Sorry, no. I don't have a vendetta against you folks but I also am not willing to sacrifice my own rights and respect so you can sweat a bit less in your chosen profession.

sendec
August 29, 2004, 04:44 PM
These were all guys out in public with rifles.

According to your logic, LEOs should "assume" everybody is OK, at least until those people start launching bullets. Sorry, by then it is too late.

I dont see the relevance of the rifle carrying issue. He was'nt charged with a weapons offense, just hunting w/o a permit. There was no mention of mistreatment which people here are quick to allege. He could have been using a bow and arrow, or grabbing them by hand and , the statutes being equal, he would have still been cited.

Sylvilagus Aquaticus
August 29, 2004, 05:42 PM
Y'know, I posted this article originally because I thought it was funny on several fronts, mostly because I grew up near the place and know the kind of folks involved on all ends of it.

If y'all want to argue semantics, go see how many angels you can make dance on the head of a pin somewhere else.

Rabbit.

2nd Amendment
August 29, 2004, 05:54 PM
Sorry, silly Rabbit. Once ya post it it's not yours anymore. :D

Sendec, yes, I expect officers to assume a Citizen who hasn't shot anybody yet isn't going to shoot anybody. I have every right to expect to be treated like I am OK...until I do something to prove otherwise. That is a part of what innocent till proven guilty means. If a cop doesn't feel that is the proper way to deal with a Citizen then the cop needs to find another line of work.

tyme
August 29, 2004, 06:26 PM
How did the discussion go from someone hunting snakes to someone strolling along a road with a rifle, to a list of cases where criminals committed violent crimes and had the Law called down upon them (except Kristopher Eggle, whose killers are assumed to be drug runners, right)? What relevance do those cases have? Did blissninnies call in any of those cases due to a person safely carring a gun?

It seems to me all of those cases began with a violent crime or known criminals, even the Kolodski murder which started with aggravated assault. Where is the ever-elusive case where a murderer with a rifle is investigated solely due to his carrying a rifle and is found to have murdered someone?

According to your logic, LEOs should "assume" everybody is OK, at least until those people start launching bullets. Sorry, by then it is too late.
Most of the time, police are too late. Maybe they should investigate anyone who buys the Turner Diaries (McVeigh), or anyone who watches Heat (North Hollywood Bank Robbery). If they stop one criminal, it's worth it, right?

sendec
August 29, 2004, 06:37 PM
Make certain you have the proper permits.

Apply common sense.

Take responsibilty for the outcome of your actions.

JohnKSa
August 29, 2004, 09:00 PM
The permit issue is a red herring.

1. The off-duty cop didn't stop because the guy was hunting without a license. CLEARLY he didn't because that's not even within his jurisdiction--as evidenced by the fact that he wasn't able to cite him on that offense without calling a game warden. Furthermore, there's no way anyone can tell by LOOKING that a person does or doesn't have a hunting license.

2. You may think it's common sense (and it may be wherever you are) but round here when you get out in the country it's NOT unusual to see folks stopping their trucks by the side of the road and heading out into a field with a long gun to do some hunting. The cops do NOT stop these folks and demand to see their papers just because they have a rifle or shotgun. Game wardens might, but even that's not very likely.

So, from his vehicle, when off-duty cop saw the guy by the side of the road, he had no evidence that any law was being broken, no reason to stop and way less than no reason to take the guy down at gunpoint.

Given that there was no evidence of a law being broken (until AFTER he searched the guy and found he had no hunting license) it's very hard to justify calling for backup to do an armed takedown on a guy who hasn't broken any laws.

Now as to the hunting without a license citation--read the quote by the game warden. Clearly, he's not all that enthusiastic about citing the guy. He even goes so far as to imply that if he had just been driving by, seen him and stopped it would have been "harassing the guy". Sure, the law's the law, but nobody, including the game warden and the judge really care that Mr. Huey was shooting snakes with a pellet gun.

The only one with his panties in a wad was the off-duty cop, and it's pretty clear that he went "above and beyond the call of duty" to see that Mr. Huey didn't get to leave until he figured out how to cite him for SOMETHING.

roo_ster
August 29, 2004, 09:28 PM
Off duty cop to self:
"Sonuvab!tch! I just called for backup on a guy armed with an air rifle who's plinking cottonmouths & bothering nobody. I even told folks I that he was armed with an AK! I'm gonna look like a fool if I don't pull something outta my @ss. Hey! Maybe if I call in the game warden he can find SOMETHING to charge this guy with & make me look less like a chowderhead. Yeah, THAT's the ticket. Man, next time I just keep driving and leave these huckleberrys alone..."

Stand_Watie
August 29, 2004, 11:56 PM
2. You may think it's common sense (and it may be wherever you are) but round here when you get out in the country it's NOT unusual to see folks stopping their trucks by the side of the road and heading out into a field with a long gun to do some hunting. The cops do NOT stop these folks and demand to see their papers just because they have a rifle or shotgun. Game wardens might, but even that's not very likely.

I'm going to back John up on this. Around rural northeast texas (of which Gilmer is very much a part) somebody by the highway with a rifle is as common as a guy on a tractor pulling a bushhog, and assuming that person is going to shoot you is just as ridiculous as assuming the farmer with the bushhog intends to run you over and mulch you.

westex
August 30, 2004, 12:42 AM
Just to keep things moving along could someone cite me the law requiring a permit/liscense required to shoot snakes in this state? I must have missed it sometime in the last 50 years or so.:confused:

JohnKSa
August 30, 2004, 12:52 AM
It's not what I would call strictly enforced by any means...

The link below and the text were provided to me by an anonymous donor. ;) (Thanks k)
http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:0NLWZjWXGQAJ:www.tpwd.state.tx.us/publications/wildlife_habitat/pdf_docs/hunting_reptiles_in_tx.pdf+texas+snake+hunting+license&hl=en

HUNTING REPTILES IN TEXAS
HUNTING LICENSE REQUIRED
Section 42.002, Parks and Wildlife Code (the Code), provides that no person may hunt any animal without first
obtaining and having in one’s possession a valid hunting license. For purposes of this statute, “animal” includes any
terrestrial vertebrate; therefore, a hunting license is required to hunt reptiles.
HUNTING DEFINED
“Hunt” is defined in Section 1.101 of the Code and means “capture, trap, take, or kill or an attempt to capture, trap, take, or kill.”
HUNTING FROM A VEHICLE ON PUBLIC ROAD PROHIBITED
Section 62.003 of the Code specifically prohibits anyone from hunting any animal from a vehicle on a public road.
An officer makes a determination of whether a person is hunting from a vehicle in violation of this statute by observing the driver’s use or maneuvering of a vehicle on a public road.
If a person is driving in an abnormal, unlawful, or erratic manner, which includes driving slow enough to create a safety hazard, stopping and starting on the pavement or roadbed, shining lights in ditches, or turning crossways in the roadway in order to spot snakes lying on the opposite ledges of the right-of-way, it not only constitutes probable
cause to believe hunting from a vehicle on a public road is occurring, but such use of a vehicle is a violation of the Texas Transportation Code.
If not otherwise prohibited, it is lawful for a person to drive a vehicle to any area along the course of a public road, park the vehicle, and walk the road right-of-way to hunt snakes if they do not discharge a firearm while on the right- of-way or trespass on the privately-owned property adjacent to the road.
A first offense violation of Section 62.003 of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code is a Class A misdemeanor,
punishable by a fine of $500 - $4000 and/or confinement in jail for a term not to exceed one year. A second or
subsequent offense is a Parks and Wildlife State Jail Felony, punishable by confinement in the institutional division
of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for any term of not more than 10 years or less than two years. In
addition to imprisonment, punishment may include a fine of not less than $2000 nor more than $10,000. There is
also mandatory revocation or suspension of hunting and fishing licenses and permits. In either event, each reptile
unlawfully collected constitutes a separate offense.
HUNTING SNAKES WITHOUT LANDOWNER CONSENT
No person may hunt or catch by any means or method a snake at any time on private property without the consent
of the landowner or landowner's agent. The first offense is a Class A misdemeanor. Additionally, the person's
hunting license is automatically revoked or suspended. A second violation is enhanced to a Parks and Wildlife State
Jail Felony, with automatic revocation or suspension of the hunting license.
CRIMINAL TRESPASS
A person commits the offense of “criminal trespass” defined in Section 30.05, Texas Penal Code, if he or she enters
or remains on property or in a building of another without effective landowner’s consent. A trespass violation is a
Class B misdemeanor (a fine up to $2,000 and/or confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days), unless the
violator carries a deadly weapon on or about his person, in which event it is a Class A misdemeanor (a fine up to
$4,000 and/or a jail term not to exceed one year).

Coronach
August 30, 2004, 01:04 AM
So...I gotta ask...

If it is so all-fired common, how was this alleged JBT able to make it from point A to point B without jacking up every guy alongside the road?

As always, there is something more to the story. Dunno what it is, but if merely plinking snakes is commonplace, he would not stand out.

So, something about him was odd, and caused an off-duty cop to perform a field interview on him (btw...at gunpoint? reread the story, even Huey is not alleging that happened). And at the end of it he gets charged without having a permit to kill snakes.

Oh, yes, also the issue of the 911 calls that are mentioned in the article, but which a poster claims didn't happen. (?) Again, if what he was doing was common and proper and accepted, why were the neighbors wigged out?

Sorry. I'm just not prepared to assume that the cops are JBTs in this situation based upon a newsblurb that is basically formed around the defendant's version of events.

Yeah, I'm just a company yes-man. But it pays well.

Mike ;)

JohnKSa
August 30, 2004, 02:26 AM
at the end of it he gets charged without having a permit to kill snakes.At the end, the game warden virtually apologizes and the judge lets him go with a "don't let it happen again and forget about the fine."

All I can say about the 911 calls is that a person from Gilmer told me that he was told by personal acquaintances in both the PD and Sheriff's Office that there were no 911 calls, that the off-duty officer was the sole instigator of the incident.

The Chinese make and sell an airgun which is a reasonable facsimile of an AK-47. Mr. Huey doesn't say--"He thought that airgun was a machine gun"-kind of makes me think he had one of the look-alike airguns and that's what got the cop wound up.

Tharg
August 30, 2004, 04:30 AM
ROFLMAO

WELL.... guess i get to chirp in here....

ya see... i live JUST a toss down the road from gilmer - i'm familiar w/ the road the alleged perp was on, and gawd this is funny as hell.

hey - just out of curiosity - everyone see that 48 hrs. about the gilmer lady who was missing/murdered whatever? There is nothing funnier to me than podunk (and i love its podunk-ness for the record) Gilmer Texas being on national TV.

Yeap - i know people who carry single action colts in a holster reminicent (to me) of han solo's rig.... i know people who shoot every squirrel they can find once every year and have the entire family over for squirrel stew... i know people that shoot stuff cause ... well hell - cause it just shouldn't have let me see it. (dang... i guess my I know people includes me....)

I can say w/ athority that seeing someone on the side of the road w/ a rifle is NOT common... BUT (my dad always used to say that the minute you said but - you were on the defensive... but whatever) BUT - most of the people i know wouldn't give it a second look.

I also know the mindset of friends and gf's family... and yeap - i can see someone going - yer gonna ticket me for shooting snakes w/ a BB GUN?!?!?! (for the record - most people i know hunt em w/ shotguns... )

I'm also the person shooting skeet in my backyard and letting loose the hoards of lead into our backstop in the middle pasture ... all without incident. Heck - we pistol practice in the front yard. (you can hear traffic comming LONG before they ever even know yer there)

I don't know who the "off duty cop" was - but i bet i could find out if he was from here - chances are if he was on 300 tho.... (pending on how close we are talking...) that he was a Longview cop.... and the staties that i've seen (usually only 2 or 3 ... same one's ...) they ain't exactly the cream of the crop. (one of em is a good guy)... I'll have to call my buddy on how the game warden is... but he's not lible to get a good review since my buddy doesn't always practice the law to the letter.... (something about fishing w/ hand-generators and jerk-fishin... deer and spotlites.... <shrug> dunno... rofl)

Either way - you guys made my day, i love it when theres crud about gilmer anywhere.... its just so small... i guess as far as a lil town in Texas we HAVE made it.... we DO have a superwallyworld and a DQ... <snicker>

By the way - we definitely consider ourselves east texas.... and won't have any of this NorthEast texas nonsense... <grin>

J/Tharg!

Sam Adams
August 30, 2004, 04:33 PM
In TX, it is perfectly legal to openly carry a loaded long gun in public.

Does that apply within the limits of large cities (e.g. Dallas, Houston, San Antonio) as well? I just can't imagine someone walking around on the edge of the road carrying a loaded AR-15 just being left alone.

magsnubby
August 30, 2004, 07:23 PM
Red Forman to off duty cop:DUMD @$$ !

JohnKSa
August 30, 2004, 08:59 PM
Does that apply within the limits of large cities (e.g. Dallas, Houston, San Antonio) as well?It does although it sure doesn't guarantee you won't be hassled. seeing someone on the side of the road w/ a rifle is NOT commonNearly every time I drive through that part of TX, I see at least a truck or two with someone unloading ATVs with gunracks or a couple of guys heading out with long guns, etc. I guess common is a relative term. I do fully agree with your statement that few folks would give it a second look.

Tharg
August 30, 2004, 10:34 PM
Could be yer just lucky... =)

Honestly... i've not seen much of it - and since i live out here - common would be... erm... at least once a week seeing something? Not that often.

J/Tharg!

Double Naught Spy
August 30, 2004, 11:26 PM
So RooK, here in Texas (and in some other states) it is most definitely against the law to discharge a firearm from the roadway and right of way. So 'possums and .22s would most definitely be illegal here.

From the sounds of the law information JohnKSa provided, assuming complete, hunting on foot for snakes with a pellet gun would appear to be legally, assuming no other laws are broken (reckless endangerment, hunting protected species of snakes, etc. etc.). So I am in doubt of the supposed law being broken unless the story is missing key facts.

In regard to the cop needing to call in a game warden

As noted Lawdog, game wardens in Texas most definitely regulate the hunting of snakes. As for your .410 constituting a pellet gun in the most technical sense, uh, no not exactly. A pellet gun, or BB gun, is not a firearm, but a .410 is.

JohnKSa, the issue of the cop and jurisdiction isn't legally relevant. The alleded offense most definitely took place within his jurisdiction. Texas law enforcement is a state licensed position and is called being a Texas Peace Officer. Anywhere in the state is within jurisdiction. Most don't write tickets or make arrests outside their normal area as they would then have to participate in whatever legal proceedings that might occur in the courts in the area where the crime occured. A Houston cop can write a ticket for speeding or make an arrest for a crime in Dallas if s/he so chooses, but the commute from Houston to Dallas for the legal proceedings would be a huge inconvenience.

Game wardens regulate various hunting and related issues, so that is their area of legal specialty. LEOs across the board can issue citations and make arrests for infractions to Texas law including hunting law. So a regular cop could make an arrest for a hunting violation and game wardens can make busts for such things as drugs.

From Texas Parks & Wildlife ... http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/involved/jobvac/gwcadet/

After graduation from the Game Warden Training Academy and receiving a commission as a Texas peace officer, the game warden will perform responsible field enforcement duties involving the enforcement of all provisions of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code, Texas Penal Code and relevant provisions of other Texas laws; execute and serve all criminal processes resulting from enforcement activities; provide public safety and emergency functions; safeguard departmental equipment; prepare reports of activities and present programs concerning department activities to the public; may conduct investigations of holders of permits and licenses issued by the department; maintains contact with landowners, resource users and the general public.
----

The off duty cop did not have to call in a game warden, but obviously did and I would guess he called in a warden because he wasn't terribly familiar with the relevant hunting laws, if at all.

JohnKSa
August 31, 2004, 12:23 AM
DNS,

The law broken was hunting without a license. You can't hunt ANYTHING (other than a very few carefully enumerated species under certain circumstances) without a license in TX.he called in a warden because he wasn't terribly familiar with the relevant hunting lawsThat's kind of my point. If he didn't know that laws were being broken then why did he do anything at all? If the cop, himself doesn't even know the law then how is it reasonable for him to punish the guy by the side of the road for not knowing the law?

I just plain don't like the idea that this LEO saw something that he didn't like (man with rifle by the side of the road) and even though it was perfectly legal, he made it his business to stop the guy and not let him go until he got enough LEOs involved that finally someone figured out something to cite the guy for.

LE shouldn't be a matter of personal preference. i.e."I know this is legal but it bothers me/it shouldn't be legal/I don't think it's smart/whatever."

LE shouldn't be a matter of personal vendetta. i.e."This guy mouthed off/made me look silly/wasn't properly respectful/whatever so I'm going to keep him here and do my VERY best to see that he doesn't leave without a ticket, no matter how long it takes or how many people I have to get involved."

An interesting point...

Anyone notice that Mr. Huey's name is published and so is the game warden's and the JP's. But it seems that the off-duty cop who is pivotal to the whole event didn't want his name in print. Sounds like a man proud of a job well done.

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