Discussion in 'General Weapons Discussion' started by KenpoTex, Jan 2, 2010.
There's no way to verify that a permit is valid?
I know that the files here in VA are incompletely linked to DMV files. If the name run isn't an exact match for the name as it is in the CCW files, you don't get a hit. So if Oliver L. North has his CCW under Oliver Laurence North even though his driver's license only has the L. -- unless you query the CCW files under the full name, it won't come back. And it won't come back automatically from the DMV query...
So, even with a permit, you can be threatened and robbed by a cop, all because they can't check the validity of the permit? That's screwed up. Time to drop the permit requirement then. That, or give the cops the means to validate legit CCL's.
Never mind. Comment deleted because no good can come of expressing just exactly how I feel about that excuse for a court and that apology for an officer. Even for Massachusettstan this is a new low.
Case needs to goto the USSC who will probably refuse to hear it.
On one hand I can agree with the cop. He saw a gun in a bad neighborhood and responded. I'm sure he felt he was doing right. On the other hand, the guy had a legit CCL and was legally carrying.
but from the comment the cop was reported to have made:
it seems that he obviously has some sort of issue with the idea of a citizen carrying a weapon even if it is legal.
While I know there are plenty of good ones, unfortunately there are too many cops who hold this opinion. I remember a discussion on a police forum once (may have been policeone.com?) that was about CCW. The amount of "civilians have no business carrying a gun" crap in the thread made me absolutely livid. Cops like this have forgotten why their job exists.
That is so bothersome.
Not just because of the officers handling of the situation, but because it's even an issue... technically its legal to carry without a special, additional permit, not to mention an inherent right.
Does that mean I can pull a car over, decide that their state issued driver's license doesn't suit me, and impound their car?
I've got no use for those kind of cops either. The reality is that those are the kind of cops who consider wearing a badge giving them a whole host of special entitlements that 'normal folks' don't and shouldn't have.
Those of us who became police officers to enforce the law AND uphold the Constitution know differently.
I understand that it was hot that day, but with his jacket open, and his weapon obviously visible, could this be part of the problem. Concealed is concealed, visible is inviting trouble. I am by no means making excuses for the officers actions after the fact, or any rulings made in court. It is a know fact that a large number of illegal guns on the street were once legal guns improperly handled by there legal owners. Just a thought.
That may be the case, but it's really tantamount to impounding a car you found unlocked under the notion that if it wasn't for careless car owners, there wouldn't be any thievery.........probable cause needs to exist of a crime before one is arrested or has their property seized.
The only way I can confirm a CCW is by calling the pistol permit bureau. Tough to do after business hours, on weekends, holidays etc. Of course here, the permit holder has to have a...well...permit on him. Which this guy apparently did too. If someone doesn't have the card I am taking the weapon till he produces it. I don't know what the local law in this story is, but if the guy had his card on him and there was nothing else "going on" he walks away with his gun. If I thought it was worth a call the bureau to report my contact with him and possibly have his CCW revoked, I would do that later.
The officers attitude about the whole thing however is a separate issue from the legality/illegality of what he did.
It's my opinion that the title of the story is sort of stupid and intended to generate controversy (imagine that). Of course an officer can point his weapon at someone he perceives as a threat. It's not like I know he's a CCW on sight. If the time, place and circumstance is such that I feel "something is up" and I see a gun on a guy I am "pointing my gun" at him till I figure out what is going on.
The taking of the weapon as some sort of "punishment" after seeing that the carrier is permitted should have been the focus of this case.
Ok, this is Massy we are talking about here.
Other then that, this gentleman did not do a very good job of Concealment did he. The object of concealment is to conceal. Now, not knowing all the specific details and not knowing all that was going on, but obviously understanding busy days and people walking about, for this LEO to spot this guys concealed weapon, it had to be pretty obvious, thus my remark, he failed to conceal properly.
Now, from what I understand, he did get his weapon back later. Even though I can see that it probably should not have been taken if he had a permit on him since most crooks won't be carrying a permit, but that's the LEOs call at that time.
The only problem I have here is the Statement made by the LEO of he will be the only one to carry on his beat or whatever remark he made to that effect.
His statement reminds me of one of those folks who would turn against his fellow American Citizens in like Red Dawn with that Mayor who turned against his city folks and helped the invaders, you know the little slimy cowardly wussies.
First -- I don't have a problem with the cop investigating when he saw someone carrying a gun. Nor do I have a problem with him doing the initial investigation at gunpoint. Until the cop knows what's going on with that gun, he needs to maintain the upper hand.
That said -- some of his actions beyond that point are less than ideal. I'll take the article at its word that there's no way to verify the CCW. Given that, the officer should be familiar with what the CCW permit looks like. If the card was valid on its face, and he's confirmed that the card belongs to the guy in question, and made sure that guy with the gun isn't a convicted felon or other prohibited person, and running a wanted check -- he probably should have been done. Instead, he seized the property. The article is scant on why or what happened then... but the lawyer was released.
I don't like the attitude, either. And it's the cop's job to know what's legal and what's not -- without making up crazy laws on his own.
Several years ago, I stopped a car for speeding. Driver tells me that he's got a gun in the car, and that he's got a CCW permit. But... he left his wallet at his buddy's house. I did take custody of the gun, while running his information. (This is when I discovered that if you don't query EXACTLY what's in the file, the CCW system in VA doesn't confirm the permit.) I let him call his buddy to bring his wallet, while I maintained custody of the gun. Eventually, the buddy arrived, I confirmed the information, and returned his property to him. I didn't pull him out of the car at gunpoint because of the way he advised me, and because he was completely compliant.
I think the officer's actions are justifiable, if not ideal, here. And I think they do fall under the scope of his official duties, and he should have immunity. But I think he also needs some discipline/retraining based on his attitude, taking the article as accurate. And that Massachusetts needs to come up with some method for verifying the permit other than a phone call to the permit office! (What if I had to verify it from Virginia?)
We've run into a similar issue with groups like OpenCarry here in Virginia. They stage events where they go into a restaurant or mall or some other public area, openly carrying various guns. Their (unstated) goal is to provoke enough of a reaction that the cops are called, and then they hope that the cops will do something stupid. And it works more often than it should, because the truth is that there are a lot of cops who don't bother to know some of the laws properly, and who have an attitude of "nobody should have guns but us." In Virginia, openly carrying a gun is generally legal. You'll probably attract some police attention, and if I'm the cop, I'm going to make sure that you aren't wanted, and that you don't fall into a prohibited category... but you aren't breaking the law. (I could stretch for disorderly if I really, really had to -- but it'd be stretching things, and probably require more conduct than simply carrying the gun. And, in some cases, you'd be trespassing...)
I hate that type of ****.
I have to disagree with his actions being justifiable after identity was confirmed. The attorney had a valid ID and carry license. No crime was committed. The officer obviously has a problem with people other than LEO's carrying, so he took the guys firearm with no justifiable reason other than to hassle the owner. If he were concerned that the guy had a fake license to carry, shouldn't he have taken him to the police station for verification? I mean, he took the gun saying he wasn't convinced the guy was legally allowed to carry it. Him not trying to arrest the lawyer makes me think that he KNEW the guy was carrying legally and was simply harassing him and that if he arrested him he'd probably get into trouble.
Now, before when he saw the gun and reacted, I don't really have a problem with that, he had no idea what the guy was doing with a gun (I'm wondering, Georgia heat, jacket, attorney, was he in a business suit?). After it was established that he had a permit, no warrants for his arrest outstanding (I'm going to assume that his data was run), then there was no reason to steal his firearm.
What if this Barney Fife sees a person with insulin needles, a medical alert bracelet and insulin? Say he decides that the guy isn't really a diabetic based on the same thing he decided to take the guys gun (NOTHING), and takes his needles from him so he can't shoot up and leaves the guy alone in a bad neighborhood, would that be ok? What if the attorney had been attacked after he was visibly disarmed by the police officer? The officer created a situation that could have been life threatening based on his own prejudices. He should be fired.
Fired over this single incident?
Some sort of departmental discipline? Maybe.
The "creating a life threatening situation" by disarming the man is a large stretch. I disagree with what he did, don't misunderstand me, but I don't think the "the cop was responsible for my getting robbed/attacked" is going to fly.
And the "jerk-off" thing is a bit much IMO.
So you are ok with a police officer making up laws in order to harass someone? He clearly knew he had no leg to stand on legally, so he made up some BS about having to verify the license when the state laws say that having the card is verification (looked up the laws for Mass). This behavior is the exact opposite of what police officers are supposed to be. The officer behaved unprofessionally, he let his personal prejudices influence his job. He did get departmental discipline (having to retake firearms laws classes).
Oddly enough, I think that if he had actually detained the attorney he'd have been in the right, IF he was actually concerned about the license being fake (he basically said he thought the guy was committing a felony and let him go?)
The attorney in question was a criminal defense attorney practicing for over 30 years in that state, I wonder if that influenced the officer in any way?
BTW, looking up the laws for mass, I can't find anything saying that he has to carry concealed, in fact, it apparently is legal for someone to open carry with the license the attorney had, so the officer was way out of line in his actions from the start.
I edited the comment before you posted so as to not offend anyone, but it is appropriate, the term in common usage meaning someone who is clueless/an idiot.123
Separate names with a comma.