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

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Sylvilagus Aquaticus, Aug 28, 2004.

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  1. Sylvilagus Aquaticus

    Sylvilagus Aquaticus Member

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    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!’ â€

    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.
     
  2. RooK

    RooK Member

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    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.
     
  3. Sylvilagus Aquaticus

    Sylvilagus Aquaticus Member

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    Gilmer isn't exactly a thriving Metroplex.

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

    Regards,
    Rabbit.
     
  4. Backwoods

    Backwoods Member

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    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
     
  5. LawDog

    LawDog Moderator Emeritus cum Laude

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    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
     
  6. Bruce H

    Bruce H Member

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    I smell a real attitude problem with Mr. Huey.
     
  7. glocksman

    glocksman Member

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    never mind.
     
  8. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

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    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 ****.
     
  9. tyme

    tyme Member

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    Lame. The stuff that passes as a crime (and as news) these days is mind-boggling.
     
  10. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    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.
    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 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.
     
  11. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

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    "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.
     
  12. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Tax dollars at play.
     
  13. Bruce H

    Bruce H Member

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    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.
     
  14. Stand_Watie

    Stand_Watie Member

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    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
     
  15. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    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.
    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.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2004
  16. Stand_Watie

    Stand_Watie Member

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    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?"
     
  17. 2nd Amendment

    2nd Amendment member

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    I smell a real attitude problem with Mr. Huey.

    Yup. Ain't it great! :)
     
  18. 4570Rick

    4570Rick Member

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    LawDog


    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.
     
  19. tcsd1236

    tcsd1236 Member

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    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?
     
  20. wingman

    wingman Member

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    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.
    ;)
     
  21. sendec

    sendec member

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    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:
     
  22. 2nd Amendment

    2nd Amendment member

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    Oh dear Lord.:rolleyes:
     
  23. tyme

    tyme Member

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    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:
     
  24. R.H. Lee

    R.H. Lee Member

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    From your point of view, civilians and non-leos with firearms are ALWAYS suspicious, right?
     
  25. sendec

    sendec member

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    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)
     
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