March 31st, 2007 09:44 PM
Not sure how to go into this...
I'm not sure how to feel about what happened to me yesterday. My truck is not legally inspected. I know this. As I get money, I do work on it. Recently I replaced some parts in the drive train and tried to give it a road test. Went fine for about ten miles. Then I had an issue. I fixed it and took it to work yesterday. Distance to work is twelve miles, enough to tell me if there were any bugs in the system. Basically, I know I'm in the wrong even if I have good intentions.
Police officer catches it. I know he catches it, I see the look in his eye. I pick the place where I'm going to pull over. He puts on the lights, I'm in major rush hour traffic, but there is a dead-end connecting road to my right. I take it and stop for him. I always pull well out of traffic for the sake of the officer. This makes him irrate. He indicates he wanted me to stop immediately were I was. I don't argue this beyond saying, "Yes sir. Understood." Correct me if I'm wrong, but in Pennsylvania there is no requirement to inform a law officer that you are armed. I have a procedure where I hand the officer my carry license with my ID. I have chosen this method because I think them discovering it may be an issue, and I want everything to go smooth. I want the officer to know what's going on, know that I'm on the level with him, and I want him to be able to his job in safety.
So I hand over my ID, and he asks the obvious question, "Do you have a gun on you now?" I reply in the affirmative. "Where is it?" I indicate it is on my right hip. Keep in mind I've had my hands on the wheel the whole time. His next move is to yell "gun!" and draw on me. I note his finger on the trigger. I follow his instructions to exit and allow him to do his pat-down and disarm.
During the course of the stop, his partner read the serial number on my weapon incorrectly three different times. This obviously brought up questions as to the ownership of the firearm. Then his partner told me my photo on my carry license looked like a woman. He also shared this with passerbys. Some time later he successfully read the numbers clearly stamped in three places on the firearm, and the search returned in the affirmitive. He also took some time to study the ammo. It's a CZ-52. It fires 7.62x25. He told his partner it fired "ar-15 rounds." They had never heard of the Czech Republic. Oh, and the right to keep and bear arms is apparently a privalege revocable by the police.
So here's my problem. What part of the use of force continuum indicated that I need to have a loaded firearm aimed COM at me? Seems an unnecessary escalation of force with a fully cooperative individual. What part of the Observing and Orienting cause him to decide he'd like to kill me? What caused him to act in such an irrational manner? Does it sound like I'm taking this the wrong way, or does it seem right that I'm willing to pay my fine, then discover a way to go after this guy because I think he's entirely dangerous? Or have I learned the rules for use of force in a totally inccorect manner? Have I been taught firearms safety totally backwards? Are the four rules no longer relevant? Should I be drawing my firearm more often?
March 31st, 2007 09:52 PM
On another note...
Since I've been carrying I've been in a similar situation four times. One time someone was shooting in my building. In the course of the investigation, I was disarmed and all my info was run. This went cooly, professionally and the only weapon that was unholstered was mine when the officer removed it. I have alot of respect for these professionals.
I was pulled over another time, and pretty much the same as above. The same follows with my involvment in a street brawl that I got sucked into. I've always regard the officers and myself as being on the same side. You want to know that my record is good, my firearm isn't stolen, and you want me disarmed for that period for your safety. No problem. I'd do the same. I've done the same.
I'm now wondering if those good experiences aren't overshadowed entirely by this, and if I ought to instead officers as my enemy and do all I can to thwart them and obfuscate their efforts, lest I be caught in their sights again. I believe that if I had never informed the officer, things would have been much different. He'd have never known. Maybe being too honest and upfront was an error on my part.
March 31st, 2007 09:53 PM
From what you wrote, these officers were worthy of a complaint to their department head. Did they happen to videotape this exercise?
March 31st, 2007 09:58 PM
Time to file an official complaint and start wearing body armor! They need to be trained how to handle things professionally and only you can help get that done or the dips will keep doing it until he actually shots someone!
"If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.
March 31st, 2007 10:57 PM
based on that description, the first thing I'd do is aquire a good lawyer, and proceed to get both those officers fired. If their first reaction to a non-threatening cooperative citizen carrying a gun is to draw on him, they have no business being granted any kind of authority.
Document what happened, get the lawyer to subpoena the police cam, and run from there.
Of course, this only applies if you're sure you did nothing that could be contrued as threatening.
March 31st, 2007 11:01 PM
I would certainly be upset. I have yet to be pulled over for anything in Pennsylvania, but you are correct in that you do not have to inform LEOs of carrying, but it is polite to do so (well, most of the time). I would be VERY upset knowing that a loaded gun was pointed at me and a finger was on the trigger of it.
I would be okay with a hand ON his gun as he asked me to step out of my vehicle and asked if his partner could secure my weapon. That would be fine, but unholstering and pointing a weapon at me when I hadn't showed any violence would warrant a complaint.
March 31st, 2007 11:09 PM
These guys are total tards! Can't read, tell you that you look like a woman, ask passing people if you look like a woman, showing unrelated people that you have a conceal carry permit, don't know the difference between a 7.62 and a .223 cartridge, and don't know about the Czech republic? I get the distinct impression these are two guys that joined the force for the lone fact that they wanted the ability to carry a firearm and to overcompensate for their own lack of self-esteem.
During the course of the stop, his partner read the serial number on my weapon incorrectly three different times. This obviously brought up questions as to the ownership of the firearm. Then his partner told me my photo on my carry license looked like a woman. He also shared this with passerbys. Some time later he successfully read the numbers clearly stamped in three places on the firearm, and the search returned in the affirmitive. He also took some time to study the ammo. It's a CZ-52. It fires 7.62x25. He told his partner it fired "ar-15 rounds." They had never heard of the Czech Republic.
"While the wicked stand confounded, call me with thy saints surrounded."
1895 Chilean Mauser
1981 Yugoslavian M59/66 SKS
1943 Mosin-Nagant M-38
NRA Life Member(when it gets paid for)
Moving Eventually ... Montana or Wyoming anyone?
March 31st, 2007 11:15 PM
WOW. Thats rediculous. I do believe I'd be talking to a lawyer. Seems they'd be more educated on how to deal with concealed carry.
March 31st, 2007 11:30 PM
It seems to me, the cop just committed an assault. Of course, I don't know jack. Call a lawyer.
April 1st, 2007 12:17 AM
Lawyer up, get a written apology if possible.
"In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson
Nemo Me Impune Lacesset
April 1st, 2007 12:42 AM
Yep, I agree. Lawyer up and go after them.
No LEO deserves to wear a badge if they treat a citizen who is being cooperative in this manner.
April 1st, 2007 01:18 AM
This story is wrong on many levels.
I have to ask though, were these guys with a reputable dept., or some backwoods Appalachia town?
I find it hard to believe that an officer from anywhere would act that unprofessional, but I don’t get out much either. When I do venture away, I distance myself from people like the ones in the story.
Part of me wants to break down the entire story, and explain why things happened the way they did, but it would seem like I was justifying moronic behavior.
April 1st, 2007 01:20 AM
Are you sure they were real cops they sound like impostors.
Where in PA were you?
Were they city cops, county sheriffs, or state troopers?
If they were city I would talk to the mayor, if they were county I would talk to who ever is the elected official over the sheriff department.
I would not get a lawyer because you just want them trained.
If it is not in the US Constitution then the Federal Government should not be doing it.
"Carrying a gun is a social responsibility."
April 1st, 2007 02:25 AM
Yikes! File a complaint. It may or may not go anywhere but if there is enough of them over time it might. I was down through Pittsburgh and south of it today. Beautiful country and it's amazing how you go from a big city to big country in no time. I saw a crossdraw holster on an officer today. I don't think I've seen that in years.
April 1st, 2007 02:34 AM
Personally, I think some of the LEO's there are paranoid. I lived in Warminster, 30 or so miles north of Philly, from '83-'90 (I was stationed there while in the navy) and was stopped by police once while living there. It was also for an expired inspection sticker, but the way the cop reacted you'd think I'd just robbed a bank..
It was February, I had been on temporary duty out of the state for almost a month and returned early on a Sunday morning, around 8 AM. As it happened, my trip lasted about 5 days longer than planned and my cars inspection expired the day I returned. I was less than a block from the entrance to the navy base, wasn't speeding or doing anything unusual, when a state trooper (or whatever they call the state police in PA) passed me in the opposite lane. Before I could drive that one block however, he'd made a "U" turn, pulled in behind me with his lights flashing and motioned for me to pull over. I drove another hundred or so feet and parked beside the road leading to the base main gate.
After waiting several minutes, the officer - who'd parked behind me about 50 feet - approached my car in a half crouch, with his hand on his gun. He came up behind my car on the drivers side, then edged his way up until he was about even with my rear seat. As he approached my car, I could see in the side mirror he still had his hand on his gun, so I made sure MY hands were visible on the top of the steering wheel with my drivers license and registration on the dash.
He stopped behind me about an arms reach from the drivers door. He asked for my license, registration and insurance and had me give them to him by reaching back through the drivers window. He took them to his car where he remained for almost 15 minutes. When he finally returned, he asked my name, current address and how long I'd lived there. He then returned my paperwork by standing to the rear of my car (again) and having me reach back thru the open window for it. He then said I was being ticketed for an expired inspection sticker. I replied I'd just returned from an extended trip and planned to get my car inspected the next day, when the inspection stations opened. It was pretty obvious I was in the military since I was in uniform, had a base sticker on my car and my luggage was in plain view on the back seat of my vehicle. Still, he never said another word to me after that. He issued me a ticket, returned to his car and sat there until I started my car and entered the base. BTW, his hand was on his gun the whole time he was with me, except when he handed me the traffic ticket. The guards asked what was happening when I got to the gate house and I said I'd just received a "welcome home" ticket, for having an 8-hour-old expired inspection sticker on a Sunday morning, after having been away for a month.
FWIW, it was overcast and drizzling, and we were both (I assume he was at any rate, though he may have been going faster) doing the posted speed limit at the time we passed of 55 MPH. He also seemed to be about the same age as me (mid to late 30's at the time), so it's not like one of us was a kid or there was a 20-30 year difference in our ages. I half suspect he stopped me simply because I was in the military, since there was almost no way he could have "casually" noticed my expired sticker with a closing speed of over 100 MPH on a rainy day. Then again, maybe he was just having a bad day and I was the person he decided to take it out on.
That one incident did more to sour my opinion of police than anything that has happened to me either before or since. While he didn't pull his gun, there was no way anyone who saw it would think this was a routine traffic stop for something as simple as an inspection sticker. I got the distinct impression that if given any excuse on my part, he would have drawn down on me in an instant! Luckily, I know many other LEO's (including a number of family members) and they aren't like the one I encountered that morning, but I remember it like it was yesterday. Since then, every time I've been stopped by the police, for whatever reason (usually random insurance/valid license checks), I still wonder if my next encounter will be like that one. Now that I have a CC license and there is always a weapon in my vehicle, it's even more of a concern since here in Texas we are required to inform an officer if we are carrying when stopped.
Last edited by rachilders; April 1st, 2007 at 04:00 AM.
"... Americans... we want a safe home, to keep the money we make and shoot bad guys." -- Denny Crane
Search tags for this page
Click on a term to search for related topics.
» DefensiveCarry Sponsors