HR 218 and Military Law Enforcement

HR 218 and Military Law Enforcement

This is a discussion on HR 218 and Military Law Enforcement within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; For a while I was sure that military law enforcement officers were covered under HR 218, now I'm not so sure. I've emailed the Justice ...

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Thread: HR 218 and Military Law Enforcement

  1. #1
    Member Array zwvirtual's Avatar
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    HR 218 and Military Law Enforcement

    For a while I was sure that military law enforcement officers were covered under HR 218, now I'm not so sure. I've emailed the Justice Dept for a reading on 218, and so far haven't heard from them. Does anyone know for sure (not just opinion) whether military law enforcement can carry under HR 218?
    Ray

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    Distinguished Member Array Black Knight's Avatar
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    ZW

    I am in the same boat. I am a civilian Department of the Army Police Officer. Some on the force say we are covered and some say no. In my reading of the law I would say it does not apply. Our legal people claim we have no statutory authority. However I have little to no faith in our legal department. They are so afraid of lawsuits they forget that we can be sued for lack of action as well as over action.

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    Member Array Dave James's Avatar
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    A few of the guys who work for the Navy here said that untill they had the chance to swore in as Constabals{sp} and kept it they where not covered

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    Hr 218

    Guys,

    Go to www.leaa.org and ask the question. They are the main group who pushed it through Congress.

    I have my HR 218 certification as a retired deputy sheriff. The rules are you have to be active LEO or honorably retired with at least 15 years of service or retired from LEO work due to a service connected disability.

    I have seen memos from police/sheriff departments to active personnel on how to deal with HR 218 holders they may come across. I have seen no mention of military police or retired military police in the definitions of who is allowed HR 218 certification. I know Feds (FBI, DEA, Secret Service, etc. are included so maybe the military is too.) I guess your brass should have looked into this, but as I remember the military the safe play for them is to say no.

    The Sheriff of my old department was really cool about this and we retirees shoot once a year to qualify for it and get a certification card to add to our retiree CCW for California, which has to be renewed every five years.

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    ...the good thing about being a Fed (GS-1811 and other Fed sworn job series) is being authorized to carry nearly anywhere (notible exceptions include military bases while off-duty, jails and courthouses) as long as your agency policy ok's off-duty carry...as far as I know, we have been able to exercise that priviledge pre-HR 218....I've carried my duty weapon during off-duty times while in such anti-gun bastions like NYC, NJ and Washington, D.C. with no issues or concerns.

    Military LE personnel while off-duty? Yikes....I don't know.
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    Just goes to show that HR 218 was not a panacea. Nationwide civilian concealed carry reciprocity would cover all of HR 218 as well as any other CCW holder.
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    Member Array kikr's Avatar
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    From my experience as a Navy Master-at-Arms, and as a civilian Deputy..No 218 does not cover MP's. If you are not in direct commision of orders you are not authorize to carry a weapon. Military Police are not recognized as sworn officers in any jurisdiction I'm aware of. The only exception is Army CID or Navy's Command Investigators as long as your orders are to remain armed. But that does not include periods of leave. I know it sucks. You will find though that alot of LEO's will extend you professional courtesy but do not expect it. Apply for your CCW and act accordingly for safety sake. Good luck.
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    I've been retarted for about 20 years, but, MPs do not carry their authority off of the post or base, unless unded special circumstances. We do not enjoy the coverage under 218. Exceptions are, of course, CID Agents, OSI, etc. It would be vary difficult to seperate the wheat from the chaf if this deal were extended to MPs. How in the world would you validate such authority? I'm just fine having a CCW to carry. I'm retired after 23 years, and that fact HR 218 does not extend to me in not a problem at all.

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    I don't know about the military member criminal investigators of Army CID, USAF OSI, USCG CGIS or USN NCIS, but the civilian criminal investigators (GS-1811's) are federal law enforcement officers like special agents of the FBI, DEA, ATF, ICE, OIGs and other letter agencies, so HR 218 would apply to them as well.
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    I was a MP in the 70's and the only time we could carry was when we were on duty ore under special orders

  11. #11
    Member Array Greg Dunn's Avatar
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    I am currently an MP and we had a briefing from JAG concerning this and the answer is NO. You do not have any legal authority off duty or off post.

    Therefore you cannot carry under HR218, you can't even have a personal weapon on post unless it is locked up in the armory or in your family housing (no guns in the barracks) or in transit to these locations.

    The civilian Special Agents of OSI, CID, NCIS are Federal LEO and can carry with certain restrictions.
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    Senior Member Array mark555's Avatar
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    I was an AF cop for 16 years of my 26 years of service. Everything I ever heard or read on the subject was a very big NO. Unless as was stated you were required to carry in the performance of you duties. I think that if you were caught you would get a TDY/PCS to my state and see at least part of Ft. Leavenworth.
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    Member Array soundwave's Avatar
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    I have to agree with kikr... Some LEOs would probably extend professional courtesy but some won't, so don't expect it. As far as I can tell from it, it seems that you would have to be from a recognized law enforcement agency of some kind. I would say a good bet would be that if you are armed while on duty and are allowed/expected to be armed off-duty and you also have NCIC certification with criminal history access you would probably be good to go.

    Best bet would be to apply for a CCW permit in your state and any other state you decide to go to. That's what our guys did before the bill went through, even though they were allowed to carry in state anywhere. (It was a lot easier to show a CCW rather than carry a badge, gun, dept ID, handcuffs, etc. and get your department involved.)

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array torrejon224's Avatar
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    I am retired USAF and was An AFOSI SA. HR 218 does not apply to OSI, CID, NIS whether civilian or military and does not apply to MP, SP, MA, etc. Our authority to carry was derived from the Dept of the Air Force or whatever branch assigned to. Authority to carry off-base or post depended on the Base Commander and local authorities. At least this was the case when I retired in 1988.

  15. #15
    Member Array zwvirtual's Avatar
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    I contacted the Law Enforcement Alliance of America and this is what I got from them:

    Ray,

    You've hit on one of the biggest unknowns in HR 218. There are a lot of problems with implementation that will likely require some court rulings or agency findings in order to sort out. As far as the military goes, it is unclear. So far, most of the legal counsel who have reviewed the statues feel that likely MP's may not be recognized, but perhaps criminal investigators, CID, NCIS might. The dilemma involves the posse comitatus separations of power between the military and domestic law enforcement.

    My understanding is that military police and CID staff are empowered by US code and UCMJ to enforce UCMJ provisions and regulations. There is a grey area though in which those same military personnel can make arrests for violations of state ordinances on post for offenses such as drunk driving, etc.

    The attorneys I have worked with have all said that they could not comfortably tell a client who is a military law enforcement officer that the provisions will cover them and they would be immune to prosecution based on the protections of HR 218. But even regular officers are facing areas where the arresting officials and prosecutors do not fully comprehend the protections granted to qualified individuals carrying under the statute.

    LEAA supports the idea of allowing military law enforcement to be included, as we are fighting for the broadest possible interpretation.

    I am sorry I am unable to provide any clear and solid answer to your
    question.

    -Kevin

    Kevin H. Watson
    Communications Director
    Law Enforcement Alliance of America
    www.leaa.org
    Ray

    كافر, and proud of it

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    Member of the NRA, and proud of it

    Be courteous, be polite, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

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