Polite encounter with LEO in Richmond, vA
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Thread: Polite encounter with LEO in Richmond, vA

  1. #1

    Thumbs up Polite encounter with LEO in Richmond, vA

    The following is part of today's e-mail to members of the Virginia Citizens' Defense League (VCDL):

    Virginia Commonwealth University officer to gun owner: You can't open carry in Richmond!
    **************************************************

    This is a example of why EVERYONE should memorize "15.2-915". When a government official claims that a
    locality has an ordinance prohibiting guns or gun carry, you need to do more than just claim state law invalidates local gun bans to actually provide the section of the Code of Virginia that preempts local gun bans:

    I think I emailed you about the rally today in Monroe Park. Well, an interesting thing happened. Picture it: a gorgeous spring day, a couple of hundred people, mostly young, music and speeches in Monroe Park in favor of changing drug laws. I'm running a tiny table with a plastic pot plant and three notebooks getting email contacts, and saying a few words at the mike between bands. I'm wearing my POS .38 on my hip.

    I go over to a friend's table, where he's doing voter registration, and chatting with a uniformed VCU Police officer. We chat for a moment or two. Seems like a decent guy. He notices my weapon, mentions that I can't carry it onto VCU property (about a hundred yards away). I reassure him that I know that, and that I'll be careful. I go back to my table.

    A few minutes later, he comes up to the table -- from behind, never a good sign. He chats for a moment, then asks if I have a permit for my pistol. I told him I did, but that I didn't need to have it on my person because I wasn't carrying concealed. Then HE tells me that several people have mentioned that there's a man with a gun in the park. (I didn't tell him that there were at least TWO, at that moment.) He then tells me that people are NOT ALLOWED TO OPEN CARRY in the City of Richmond.

    I explain that he's wrong. First, there is no such ordinance; second, if there had been such an ordinance, it would be illegal. I explained the pre-emption statute. [MUST remember to get that printed, and
    shrunk to wallet-sized!] He tells me that he's been on the radio and the phone, and that he's being told otherwise. (By this time, we're gathering a crowd around my table.) I excuse myself for a moment, and
    ask a colleague nearby if she'd mind taking care of my table and other gear if I'm arrested, promising to pay her from the proceeds of the false-arrest suit; she agrees.

    I turn back to the officer, and start to repeat about the pre-emption law. He says that I might be right, but he's heard from several -- unnamed -- sources that I'm wrong. He asks if I'll show him my permit, which I do. He then asks me if I'd mind putting the permit in my pocket, and covering the weapon, just to make his day a little easier. He repeated that I might be right about the law, but that so far all the information that he had was that I was breaking the law, and he repeated it, as a request, not as an order.

    I told him that, since it was a request (and a polite one at that), I'd go along with it. I draped the pouch with my permit in it over my shoulder, and un-tucked my teeshirt so that the gun was covered. He
    thanked me, and gave me his card with his email address, and asked me to email him a copy of the law. I said I would, we shook hands, he went away. I kept the permit with me, and now and again pulled the
    teeshirt down over the butt of the weapon. I created a teaching moment for the thirty or fifty people watching, with a riff about self-defense, gun laws, and the difference between police and pigs.

    Now then, comes the GOOD part. About 30-45 minutes later, the officer came up to me again. He said that he had done more checking, and he'd found out that I was right, and that what he had been told was wrong. He apologised. I say again, he was a uniformed police officer, and he apologised for being wrong. We chatted, we shook hands, and I uncovered my weapon and had no trouble for the rest of the day. When I email him, I'll refer him to VCDL.

    Just thought that you might find that little slice-of-life interesting.
    Conservative Wife & Mom -- I'm a Conservative Christian-American with dual citizenship...the Kingdom of God is my 1st home and the U.S.A. is my 2nd.

  2.   
  3. #2
    Good example that a lot of officers do not know the laws of their state in regard to carrying a firearm. Hopefully this officer will now take the opportunity to inform others of the law in his area.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

  4. #3
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by HK4U View Post
    Good example that a lot of officers do not know the laws of their state in regard to carrying a firearm. Hopefully this officer will now take the opportunity to inform others of the law in his area.
    I don't know about all states, but having been prior LE in Kalfornia, there is NO WAY to keep up with all the laws..updates and case law come out quick enough to make your head spin...granted, Kalifornia is over burdened with nanny-state laws and whacky case law!

    Glad to hear that this interaction went smoothly...I do think that the majority of LEOs are good people, trying to do a tough job, and the few bad ones leave hard to remove tarnishes.

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by jibbster View Post
    I don't know about all states, but having been prior LE in Kalfornia, there is NO WAY to keep up with all the laws..updates and case law come out quick enough to make your head spin...granted, Kalifornia is over burdened with nanny-state laws and whacky case law!

    Glad to hear that this interaction went smoothly...I do think that the majority of LEOs are good people, trying to do a tough job, and the few bad ones leave hard to remove tarnishes.
    That is why I advise those here in Texas that have a CHL to not only read and know as much of the penal code as they can but carry a copy in the car with them.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

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