Recent LEO encounter

This is a discussion on Recent LEO encounter within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The other day my wife called to tell me that someone rear ended her while driving (nobody was hurt). I hurried to help her and ...

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Thread: Recent LEO encounter

  1. #1
    Member Array SteveB2175's Avatar
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    Recent LEO encounter

    The other day my wife called to tell me that someone rear ended her while driving (nobody was hurt). I hurried to help her and arrived before the Police did.

    When the LEO arrived my wife told him right away that she had a CCW and had a firearm in the car ( notification is required by law in Ohio). The officer immediately stopped what he was doing, waved off the other party and stared at us both carefully. He asked where the firearm was and my wife replied that it was in the car in a zipped black bag. The LEO stared at us some more and skeptically replied "OK".

    Now, to give you some back ground I would consider my wife and I to be very respectable people, well dressed and groomed, etc. Also, I do not begrudge officers being very, very cautious when encountering someone with a firearm. There are a lot of nut jobs out there and the LEO's primary concern should be that he can go home to his family at the end of the day. Frankly, I wouldn't have minded if he took possession of the bag until he was done.

    Therefore, I see absolutely nothing wrong with his actions up to this point.

    He asked my wife for her license, proof of insurance and registration to which she told him was in the car. He told her to get it, and then turned his back on her to talk to the other pary as my wife walked to her car. huh ?? He's just been told that there is a firearm in the car, acts very concerned about it and then turns his back as my wife walks to the car ?

    I dont get it. He could have simply asked the other party to come around to his other side and he would have been able to keep an eye on my wife.

    Just seems very inconsistent to me.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array joker1's Avatar
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    Yeah, that seems kind of silly of him. Maybe he decided your wife seemed trustworthy enough but could have been a fatal mistake. He could have done better and he certainly could have done worse.
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    If you take out your perception of his skepticism, it sounds like you have a routine LEO encounter. He was indeed probably sizing you up, and later decided that you were not a threat. Maybe he was struggling with indigestion? Cops are just folks like you and me.
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    New Member Array LaManchaDQ's Avatar
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    Generally, people of all kinds, no matter their job, are surprised and confused when someone is honest with them. Nevertheless, what the LEO did here was less than wise. I can't help but think that your wife simply got him (?) off his game with her honesty.

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    I'm not sure where any inconsistencies become evident. Many LEOs in Ohio have yet to have their first official encounter with a CHL holder, so he may very well have been momentarily surprised at having his first one. Even though we have had CHL here since 2004, there are still only about one in thirty-eight Ohio residents who have a permit. Combine that with the knowledge that we have to be law-abiding citizens to carry in the first place, and that we are probably more mindful of all laws when we are carrying, and the likelihood of official LEO encounters diminish significantly.
    I was involved in a motor vehicle accident near Findlay, Ohio last September. The first responder, a Findlay city police officer, was surprised when I did my must inform, as was the state trooper who showed up a moment later. Neither had encountered a legally-armed motorist before.
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    VIP Member Array Badey's Avatar
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    I wasn't there, so I don't know, but it sounds like he was initially concerned and decided that you both were OK.
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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaManchaDQ View Post
    Generally, people of all kinds, no matter their job, are surprised and confused when someone is honest with them. Nevertheless, what the LEO did here was less than wise. I can't help but think that your wife simply got him (?) off his game with her honesty.
    I own a car rental company and I can count on one hand and have fingers left over how many people have been honest with us. Several times people who have told us the truth on how the accident happened and it was their fault we have not charged them for the damage. The look on their face is priceless when you tell them No charge. Mom alsways told you to tell the truth right? Yes. Have a good day.
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    Senior Member Array kb2wji's Avatar
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    One of the more basic rules in the field is to separate everyone. It goes for a crash, a domestic disorder, pretty much anything. I'm not going to ask "ok, what happened?" with the other guy listening. I ask one at a time. Otherwise, people will argue, or at minimum, talk at the same time, trying to talk over each other. I can only listen to one person at a time, and usually, separating people is the only way to do that. Also, looking at you skeptically is probably pretty normal. I'm skeptical of just about everyone for the first points of contact. First impressions are valuable. From what i'm reading, you notified of the gun, he said OK, and that was that. As far as him turning his back to walk to the other car, I dont see a problem. It's never a guarantee, but you can usually size someone up pretty quickly to determine if they will be a threat. You obviously did not pose a threat in his eyes. If you did, he would have held onto the gun bag, or at least walked away with his eyes on you. (I do that when I stop a car. I just about walk backwards back to my car with my eyes on the stopped car most of the way....traffic and other environment permitting of course).

    In your case, things seemed to have gone smoothly. As always, its appreciated when someone notifies, even when they dont have to (yeah, I know, you dont HAVE to in some spots...and some people will refuse to just because they can...however...if you notify, even when you dont have to, it is appreciated, so thanks! Run-on sentence over / Glad nobody was hurt!
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    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    I dont get it. He could have simply asked the other party to come around to his other side and he would have been able to keep an eye on my wife.

    Just seems very inconsistent to me.
    Seems to me he was a reasonably cautious policeman who made his observations and correctly assessed the situation as zero risk with regard to your wife and her legally carried firearm. I find no fault with this man.
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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    Sometimes an officer will just give the look for a second or two just to see what else you are going to volunteer. People have trouble resisting the urge to fill an awkward silence. Especially nervous folks like someone who has something to hide.

    She passed the test so he decided she was no longer in need of close observation.
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    Member Array lordofwyr's Avatar
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    Seems to me that he did what all cops do, which is try to make a quick decision on the people he was dealing with, realized that you had followed the law in announcing a CCW permit and told him where the gun was, probably figured from your demeanor and of your wife that there was most likely no threat, this was not a disturbance call, and turned his attention to getting the accident investigation going.

    The other party could also have very well seemed more of a threat to him than you and your wife.

    I know people think that once a firearm is announced, police will always get froggy, but remember, criminals usually do not tell you they are armed, and guns in and of themselves are harmless. It is the person using the gun that is the issue.

    There were also lots of variables here, like: Were you still in a lane of traffic? (Most cops would rather wrestle a porcupine naked than turn their back on vehicular traffic)

    Was the other person acting suspiciously and needed more careful attention?

    Is the cop a staunch second amendment proponent and realizes that you and your wife are just exercising your rights, so no big deal. (We do exist, after all)

    Had it been a disturbance call, I am sure the announcement of a weapon would have had a different handling of the situation.

    Anyway, apparently the incident passed without issue and everyone went on their way. Sounds like how our country SHOULD be run. Police too often get a bad rap for being heavy handed when what they are actually doing is controlling the scene as best and safely as they can.
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    Senior Member Array Inspector71's Avatar
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    Perception can sometimes be misleading. Seems like a good encounter to me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcp1810 View Post
    Sometimes an officer will just give the look for a second or two just to see what else you are going to volunteer. People have trouble resisting the urge to fill an awkward silence. Especially nervous folks like someone who has something to hide.

    She passed the test so he decided she was no longer in need of close observation.
    Very true. In high-stake sales, we call this "the pregnant pause". It's a forced moment of awkward silence that compels the other party to speak.
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    Member Array SteveB2175's Avatar
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    Well, it looks like I was wrong ...

    In any event I had no problems with the treatment I received, so all is well from my perspective.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Badey View Post
    I wasn't there, so I don't know, but it sounds like he was initially concerned and decided that you both were OK.
    Quote Originally Posted by kb2wji View Post
    [L]ooking at you skeptically is probably pretty normal. I'm skeptical of just about everyone for the first points of contact. First impressions are valuable..... It's never a guarantee, but you can usually size someone up pretty quickly to determine if they will be a threat. You obviously did not pose a threat in his eyes. If you did, he would have held onto the gun bag, or at least walked away with his eyes on you. (I do that when I stop a car. I just about walk backwards back to my car with my eyes on the stopped car most of the way....traffic and other environment permitting of course).
    Quote Originally Posted by wmhawth View Post
    Seems to me he was a reasonably cautious policeman who made his observations and correctly assessed the situation as zero risk with regard to your wife and her legally carried firearm. I find no fault with this man.
    Quote Originally Posted by lordofwyr View Post
    Seems to me that he did what all cops do, which is try to make a quick decision on the people he was dealing with, realized that you had followed the law in announcing a CCW permit and told him where the gun was, probably figured from your demeanor and of your wife that there was most likely no threat, this was not a disturbance call, and turned his attention to getting the accident investigation going.

    The other party could also have very well seemed more of a threat to him than you and your wife.

    I know people think that once a firearm is announced, police will always get froggy, but remember, criminals usually do not tell you they are armed, and guns in and of themselves are harmless. It is the person using the gun that is the issue.

    There were also lots of variables here, like: Were you still in a lane of traffic? (Most cops would rather wrestle a porcupine naked than turn their back on vehicular traffic)

    Was the other person acting suspiciously and needed more careful attention?

    Is the cop a staunch second amendment proponent and realizes that you and your wife are just exercising your rights, so no big deal. (We do exist, after all)

    Had it been a disturbance call, I am sure the announcement of a weapon would have had a different handling of the situation.

    Anyway, apparently the incident passed without issue and everyone went on their way. Sounds like how our country SHOULD be run. Police too often get a bad rap for being heavy handed when what they are actually doing is controlling the scene as best and safely as they can.
    I want to add that the cop might have been running through his mind recent BOLO's.
    Americans understood the right of self-preservation as permitting a citizen to repel force by force
    when the intervention of society... may be too late to prevent an injury.
    -Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)

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