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Open carry..part of the problem is Police actually responding...

Discussion in 'Legal' started by wickedsprint, Apr 10, 2008.

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  1. wickedsprint

    wickedsprint Member

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    Based on what I see in terms of open carry confrontation stories, it seems the police could go a long way towards changing public perception, if they wanted to. If someone calls in a man with a gun for open carry, why aren't the cops simply saying.sir/mam this is perfectly legal in this state, is he waving it about..well if he waves it about or points it at someone call us back. The fact that they actually respond to the situation every single time simply fuels the callers self justification that their call was legitimate.
     
  2. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    I agree.

    In most parts of Arizona, I think "man with guns" calls go exactly as you describe.

    The police are citizens like you and I. They aren't lawyers, and there is a lot of law--too much for any one man to know (and that's part of the problem). Education is a big piece of what needs to happen. In states where open carry isn't common, even though lawful, the flatfoot may not even know that it is lawful. After all, if nobody does it, there must be a reason, and perhaps that reason is because it is illegal.

    Combine that with some predjudice ("I don't like it, so I'm going to find a law that lets me keep you from doing it"), and vague laws ("going to the terror of the public"), and open carry advocates in those states have a long row to hoe.
     
  3. RP88

    RP88 Member

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    a department can fix the indiscretion with a thirty-minute or less meeting about common and carry gun laws in the street.

    Even then, the police are still obliged to show up if requested for whatever reason, and even if they know that you're legally within bounds, the complaining manager won't care, and will ask you to leave. Either way, it ends with the same result.
     
  4. Reyn

    Reyn Member

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    Because in my experience people call and say theres a man with a gun but dont go into details. Same with someone calling in a suspicious car in the neighborhood. Its not illegal to drive through an area but you can bet if the police didnt respond and something came about or houses were broken into then the MAJORITY of society would holler sue,fire them and everything else.

    If someone called in a man with a gun and the police didnt respond and he did start shooting at people can you imagine the outcry.

    Police dont know what they have til they investigate.
     
  5. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    I don't think they are obligated to show up in Arizona when called for "man with gun," RP88. Open Carry is no longer common in the city in Arizona, and yet no police have come to interview me over it. I find that remarkable. With the number of people moving here from California and unfamiliar with the legality of open carry, there should have been at least a few 911 calls generated. There was at least one I overheard ("yeah, he's got a gun!"), so I know they happen. And yet the police don't show.

    So here, at least, the dispatchers do, I imagine, ask, "Is he doing anything?"

    "Well, he's pumping gas."

    "Anything else?"

    "Well.... no."

    "Threathing you?"

    "No, but he has a gun!"

    "That's lawful in Arizona. Call us back if he does something illegal, ok?"

    If it can be like that here, it can be like that in other states. It's a long road to where Arizona is from where other states are, but it can happen.
     
  6. MarcusWendt

    MarcusWendt Member

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    In a perfect world it would be that way and while I sympathize and sort of agree we can thank lawyers and loons for the fact that PD usually responds.

    The first time PD fails to respond and it turn out to be another mall or school shooter, you can bet your behind someone will sue. It will be a PR nightmare and someone's head will roll. Sadly, that's just the way it is.
     
  7. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    Overwhelm them. They'll get tired of it and stop responding.

    There are more of us then there are them. The math works in our favor.
     
  8. ffxmike

    ffxmike Member

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    That doesn't work when dealing with public agencies. They'll simply need a larger budget to hire new officers to deal with all the calls they've been getting.
     
  9. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    Goodness gracious. I guess there's no hope, then.

    What time does American Idol come on?
     
  10. ffxmike

    ffxmike Member

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    I'm not saying there is no hope, I'm simply saying attempting to overwhelm them does not achieve the goal, since it simply allows them to say they have had X amount of calls, and that is an increase from the same time the previous week / month / year, and thereby request increased funding to deal with increased volume.


    But thank you for being melodramatic.
     
  11. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    How you figure?

    Warren v. District of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1 (D.C. 1981).

     
  12. hitbackfirst

    hitbackfirst Member

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    I think a better plan is to overwhelm the public that place the stupid calls in the first place. If Mr. anti-gun idiot looks around and sees three or four or five people open carrying, he is going to be less likely to report it, especially if he sees it all over the place.

    "911 What is your emergency?"

    "Men with guns! Lots of them!"

    "Are they together?"

    "No, but they have guns!"

    "What are they doing?"

    "While, one is pumping gas, one is buying a bag of chips, and one is walking his dog... Uh, never mind..."
     
  13. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    Well, that was melodramatic, wasn't it :)

    Ok, look. They can request budget all they want. But budgets and hiring take time. How much time does it take us to strap on a holster and go to the store or go for an exercise walk?

    Budgets don't come from nowhere. They come from bond elections. Your neighbors vote for those, and the pennies are getting tighter these days. They might say no.

    Police departments have trouble staffing up to meet minor hiring increases. Personnel aren't always easy to find.

    For these reasons, I think it would be easy to overwhelm a department to the point that the only sensible thing to do would be for it to put in place sensible guidelines for dispatchers to triage "man with gun" calls, same as they do here in Arizona. I'll bet a dozen activists, adhering to the strict letter of the law, in one precinct would be all it takes to overwhelm their capacity to respond to "man with gun calls."

    Never mind getting the public used to it in short order.
     
  14. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    That's what's happening in Virginia right now. Virginia has open carry -- but the CCW law forbids concealed carry in an establishment that serves liquor.

    There are no bars in Virginia -- only restaurants can serve alcohol, and most of them do. So this means you can't CCW in a restaurant. For years, many of us (when I lived there) would simply take off our cover garment and carry openly when we went to a restaurant.

    Now there's a move for everyone with a CCW to do it, and make it blindingly obvious to the nervous nannies that seeing someone carrying a gun is nothing to get upset about.
     
  15. wickedsprint

    wickedsprint Member

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    I wonder if they're obliged to show up if you simply call in a weird person walking down the street unarmed.
     
  16. MarcusWendt

    MarcusWendt Member

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    It happens all the time. "obliged" by law, no, by policy, likely. Sadly it's most frequently to handle some poor white person who got scared when a black or Latino person walked into their Aryan bastion of safety.
     
  17. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    I know of a couple who stopped at a Subway shop in New Jersey, and left with their subs. As they were pulling out of the parking lot, they were suddenly boxed in by police cars, and the cops yanked them out and threw them to the pavement and held them there.

    The man, who had a broken back, was walking with a cane, and some ******* called it in as "a man with a gun."

    There was quite a lawsuit over that.
     
  18. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Member

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    And we always will be sent. Consider the culture we live in... Departments are very very worried about liability. Every time a mass shooting occurs, the finger starts being pointed at the LE agencies saying: "they knew X, Y, and Z, why -- oh why -- didn't they stop this??".

    Imagine if we got a call of a person with a gun, refused to show up, and someone was killed!

    We will be there, any time someone calls for us. It is what we do.

    Yes. We are, at least in my department. You would be amazed at the stupid stuff I get called to on a daily basis. As a general rule, if they call, we go.

    That is absolutely and positively not true.

    We will still be dispatched, but the overall response time of the police department to any given call will decrease. For the obvious reasons stated above, armed party calls are given higher priority than burglary calls and the like (just like shots fired, DOMV, etc -- anything where a potential threat of life/safety is occuring).

    So, dispatch will hold the calls until an officer is available, and then we will be sent... In the mean time, I hope you don't need the police for a burglary report!
     
  19. WayneConrad

    WayneConrad Member

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    coloradokevin, How can your management justify having you sent out to investigate non-crimes?

    If I called to complain because my neighbor's grass was growing, would the dispatcher send you, each and every time, or would the dispatcher explain that that is not a crime?

    A few questions can distinguish whether "man with a gun" is a crime in progress, or a citizen going along with his business.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2008
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    If a police department allows its efficiency to deteriorate because it is responding to non-crimes, that department needs a new chief.
     
  21. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    :what:

    No, No, No, I don't want to believe you. Mommy, get the bad man to stop!:p

    If they are going to play CYA, it is in our best interest to make it an educational experience for the police. Eddie Haskell up, let them see that you are committing no crime. Letters to the editor, talk with your police chief, Sheriff, etc. Dress up, shave, look like a upstanding citizen.

    As a wise and learned member of THR, El Tejon, says: change the culture, change the world.
     
  22. JesseL

    JesseL Member

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    I'm gonna have to ask the local police about this next time I see one.

    My experience mirrors Wayne's. I've never had the police approach me about open carry. I've occasionally walked past police officers around the downtown courthouse square while open carrying, and all that happened was a pleasant exchange of nods and greetings.
     
  23. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    A good friend of mine, Ernie Pagette (whom some will recognize as a former member of the NRA Board of Directors) came up with a brilliant program in a slightly different situation.

    The issue was deer hunting in Fairfax County, VA, right across the river from DC. As you can imagine, there were lots of bleeding hearts who opposed it, but there are plenty of wooded areas in that county, and they were over-run with deer.

    So Ernie made a telephone list of all the powers-that-be, from the police chief's home phone, to the County Supervisors.

    And the ladies would call at all hours of the day and night, "There's a deer in my yard!! I had to take my children inside for protection!"

    "A deer jumped right in front of my car, as I was bringing my children home from soccer practice."

    "There are deer all over my neighborhood! My children will get Lyme disease! Do something!"

    It worked.
     
  24. txgho1911

    txgho1911 Member

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    Open carry is legal in Indiana with a license. If I ask a SP or IMPD LEO I have a good chance of being lied to. I have never been hassled or jacked up over it.
    If approached it is an opportunity for the officer to meet a good guy. If he doesn't have the right attitude a recorder would be handy.
    Every edu opportunity resulting from a call should include the caller.
     
  25. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Member

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    Wayne,

    I honestly can't say for sure on whether or not every one of those "grass growing" calls makes it to us... I've never worked dispatch, so I can't promise that they don't set a few people straight.

    However, I can tell you this:

    1) In the past week of work I was sent to approximately 15 calls of a panhandler standing on a street corner with a sign, non-aggressively panhandling. This is NOT a crime, and is common in the urban area where i work. But, a nearby resident always calls in, every single time he sees this activity, and we are dispatched every single time.

    2) I was sent to a call two weeks ago that was similar to the hypothetical you laid out. When I got there I learned that the dispute involved only that a neighbor didn't like the types of flowers/herbs that her neighbor was growing in her garden, because she said they didn't look nice in the neighborhood. We had a return call to this same address a couple of hours later. I don't know if the dispatcher was given the whole story up front... But I can say that when they dispatched the call she did state that it was a neighbor dispute over landscaping.

    3) At least once weekly (probably more like an average of three times weekly) I am sent to a "landlord/tenant dispute" or a "roommate dispute". Disputes over rent and leases are not our business, and fall under civil (not criminal) law. We still get sent.


    Additionally, the area where I work is one of the highest crime areas in our region. If someone has a gun carried openly, it is generally for an unlawful purpose... At the very least, I think it is not inappropriate for an officer to drive by and check on the situation. Again, where would the liability fall if a shooting DID occur, and we had refused to respond?

    I think things could be viewed in a much different manner for a rural department where lawfully owned guns are more common. In some areas of my state it isn't really that uncommon to see folks open carrying, but I obviously can't comment on how the agencies that patrol these areas respond to the situation.

    If you read the other thread on this subject (the Walmart one that I believe sparked this thread), I mentioned that Colorado has some complicated home rule laws. In essence, a court decision has determined that various jurisdictions are able to restrict open carry as well (this is a complicated issue, and is being debated WELL above my pay grade!).
     
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