My New Hampshire Open Carry experience.

This is a discussion on My New Hampshire Open Carry experience. within the Open Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I just realized there was an Open Carry forum here now, so maybe I can post more and talk about the fact that I open ...

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Thread: My New Hampshire Open Carry experience.

  1. #1
    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    My New Hampshire Open Carry experience.

    I just realized there was an Open Carry forum here now, so maybe I can post more and talk about the fact that I open carry in New Hampshire. I've Open Carried in Manchester, Salem, Nashua, and Concord. I never had any problems until I was detained for "open carrying two pistols" back in December in Concord.

    Someone called the police saying I was carrying two pistols. It was a pistol and a flashlight.

    Well that was just the start. I had someone call the police and Concord police looking for me 6 times. They only found me 4 times. The latest time was an officer from a previous incident.

    The last two times I refused to provide my name/address/business. I will never provide that information in the future.

    I also will do my best to video record all incidents. Which with luck will be much easier come Jan 1st 2010.

    I have a blog I started a few weeks back. Open Carry NH. I'll update it often, I've tended to open carry 1-2 times a week in Concord. About 40% of the time they dispatch officers to find me. I've been called "That activist" and "known person from <my town>" So they know me by now but continue to stop me.

    I'm working on letters to the AG/CLEO/City Council/and the NH-CLU. I've talked to a number of friends who also carry in Concord and it sounds like I'm the only one who does get stopped.

    I OC'd an AR-pistol a few weeks ago for a photo-op on the state-house after an open carry litter clean up. They knew we were around and left us alone. Not even a peep on the radio. If any open carry newbies are in/around Concord/Manchester NH feel free to ping me and I can help you break your virginity.
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    Member Array rcsnpr's Avatar
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    I guess the officers have to respond. I bet some kind of legal thing. If they just said "Oh it's that guy, he's ok and they didn't respond and it wasn't you and there was a situation.....
    Any way how do you OC?
    I wish you would take a shot (with the camera) of you , your whole body to show how it looks.
    Is it like in a cowboy movie strapped to your thigh with a shiny six shooter? Inside the waist, so a little shows? Outside the waist, just like a cop carries? When I see open carry at GunShops and Gun shows, I hardly notice. Some look great.
    What draws the peoples attention? Could you carry an AR? or a shotgun slung over your shoulder?
    How about like a Mexican bandit, from a Clint Eastwood movie? With a Big sombrero? Or like a Middle eastern. What sort of attention would that bring?
    Could any of this bring about the law being changed? For the worse?

    I would like OC here in Florida. I probably wouldn't do it but I would Never have to worry if my gun accidentally became exposed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rcsnpr View Post
    I guess the officers have to respond. I bet some kind of legal thing. If they just said "Oh it's that guy, he's ok and they didn't respond and it wasn't you and there was a situation.....
    Any way how do you OC?
    I wish you would take a shot (with the camera) of you , your whole body to show how it looks.
    Is it like in a cowboy movie strapped to your thigh with a shiny six shooter? Inside the waist, so a little shows? Outside the waist, just like a cop carries? When I see open carry at GunShops and Gun shows, I hardly notice. Some look great.
    What draws the peoples attention? Could you carry an AR? or a shotgun slung over your shoulder?
    How about like a Mexican bandit, from a Clint Eastwood movie? With a Big sombrero? Or like a Middle eastern. What sort of attention would that bring?
    Could any of this bring about the law being changed? For the worse?

    I would like OC here in Florida. I probably wouldn't do it but I would Never have to worry if my gun accidentally became exposed.
    Nothing to worry about; in Florida, exposure has to be intentional to be a problem. I had many interactions with LEOs with my Glock visible for a while, never a problem.
    The last time, I was under my truck to position the jack (flat tire); a couple of Martin County Deputies stopped to help; 5 minutes later I noticed my vest had slipped and My G-26 was in broad daylight; didn't even get a comment.
    The first rule of a gunfight: "Don't be there !"
    The second rule: "Bring enough gun"

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    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcsnpr View Post
    I guess the officers have to respond. I bet some kind of legal thing. If they just said "Oh it's that guy, he's ok and they didn't respond and it wasn't you and there was a situation.....
    Any way how do you OC?
    I wish you would take a shot (with the camera) of you , your whole body to show how it looks.
    Is it like in a cowboy movie strapped to your thigh with a shiny six shooter? Inside the waist, so a little shows? Outside the waist, just like a cop carries? When I see open carry at GunShops and Gun shows, I hardly notice. Some look great.
    What draws the peoples attention? Could you carry an AR? or a shotgun slung over your shoulder?
    How about like a Mexican bandit, from a Clint Eastwood movie? With a Big sombrero? Or like a Middle eastern. What sort of attention would that bring?
    Could any of this bring about the law being changed? For the worse?

    I would like OC here in Florida. I probably wouldn't do it but I would Never have to worry if my gun accidentally became exposed.
    I carry a Sig239. It's not that big. I do tend to wear lighter clothes.

    How is it a legal thing? They could just drive by. And even if they got a call saying someone was walking with a gun, they aren't responsible if they don't even drive by and just ignore the fact someone reported that someone wasn't committing a crime but the person ended up shooting someone.

    Oh I *will* be open carrying an AR-pistol when it arrives (been on back order). I OCd one a month or so ago in front of the NH state house.
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    VIP Member Array CLASS3NH's Avatar
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    Why not just apply for your pistol and revolver license. I've been carrying conceiled for about 35 years now. The problem it presents is, that you're beginning to get a reputation for your Law Abiding right to open carry. The second issue is that you're open carrying where the Gov and the Reps go to work each day. I would say, that is why you're always on the radar screen. Just an observation from my point of view.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CLASS3NH View Post
    Why not just apply for your pistol and revolver license. I've been carrying conceiled for about 35 years now. The problem it presents is, that you're beginning to get a reputation for your Law Abiding right to open carry. The second issue is that you're open carrying where the Gov and the Reps go to work each day. I would say, that is why you're always on the radar screen. Just an observation from my point of view.
    I've open carried into the state house while the reps and governor are there. That isn't the issue.

    The reason I don't concealed carry is if it does print or become visible and the police are called and come then they will want to see my P&RL. I don't want to identify myself when I'm stopped for doing nothing other than maintaining my RKBA.
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    Quote Originally Posted by doobie View Post
    I've open carried into the state house while the reps and governor are there. That isn't the issue.
    The reason I don't concealed carry is if it does print or become visible and the police are called and come then they will want to see my P&RL. I don't want to identify myself when I'm stopped for doing nothing other than maintaining my RKBA.
    Since you KNOW what will most likely happen when you OC , it sounds more like Cop Baiting to me.

    If you are really serious about RKBA - Hire a Lawyer and file a harrassment suit.

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    If you are really serious about RKBA - Hire a Lawyer and file a harrassment suit.

    AMEN

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    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKsrule View Post
    Since you KNOW what will most likely happen when you OC , it sounds more like Cop Baiting to me.

    If you are really serious about RKBA - Hire a Lawyer and file a harrassment suit.

    Quote Originally Posted by vettester2 View Post
    If you are really serious about RKBA - Hire a Lawyer and file a harrassment suit.

    AMEN
    Every lawyer I've talked to said I don't have a case where I'd be likely win (aka, I'd spend a lot of time and best case get lawyer fees paid for with tax payer money). I'm working on a letter to the CLEO, AG, and NH-CLU to develop a policy where they don't have to stop someone and just drive by and see the person isn't doing anything wrong; especially when the same guy had stopped me 3 weeks earlier.

    I'm looking for a dispatch policy where they ask the caller if the person is threatening someone with it or waving it around, and explain to the person that someone just carrying a pistol in a holster is not illegal or sufficient for them to perform a terry stop.

    I even joked around with the previous officer who stopped me that I should wear a T-Shirt that says, "I'm lawfully carrying my sidearm, please don't call the police on me." but that would probably get more people to call the police.
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    VIP Member Array CLASS3NH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doobie View Post
    Every lawyer I've talked to said I don't have a case where I'd be likely win (aka, I'd spend a lot of time and best case get lawyer fees paid for with tax payer money). I'm working on a letter to the CLEO, AG, and NH-CLU to develop a policy where they don't have to stop someone and just drive by and see the person isn't doing anything wrong; especially when the same guy had stopped me 3 weeks earlier.

    I'm looking for a dispatch policy where they ask the caller if the person is threatening someone with it or waving it around, and explain to the person that someone just carrying a pistol in a holster is not illegal or sufficient for them to perform a terry stop.

    I even joked around with the previous officer who stopped me that I should wear a T-Shirt that says, "I'm lawfully carrying my sidearm, please don't call the police on me." but that would probably get more people to call the police.
    I hate to think I'm starting and argument here, but you know something, I DO UNDERSTAND your right to open carry, BUT with what I've been reading here, and with what I'm interpeting, it sounds like you're trying to make a huge issue with the LEO's duty to investigate all suspicious activity, which includes a call about somebody (meaning you), open carrying a handgun Heck, they (the LEO's) don't know who it is, (you) they just get the call, and are required to investigate. From my perspective, I truley believe you're going to make a name for yourself, by your actions. Maybe that's what you want, but going about it another way is the best way, and not pulling the LEO's away from doing something else (like saving another's life in a serious accident) I's say to just buy a good rig that won't print, and be done with it.
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  12. #11
    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CLASS3NH View Post
    I hate to think I'm starting and argument here, but you know something, I DO UNDERSTAND your right to open carry, BUT with what I've been reading here, and with what I'm interpeting, it sounds like you're trying to make a huge issue with the LEO's duty to investigate all suspicious activity, which includes a call about somebody (meaning you), open carrying a handgun Heck, they (the LEO's) don't know who it is, (you) they just get the call, and are required to investigate. From my perspective, I truley believe you're going to make a name for yourself, by your actions. Maybe that's what you want, but going about it another way is the best way, and not pulling the LEO's away from doing something else (like saving another's life in a serious accident) I's say to just buy a good rig that won't print, and be done with it.
    Friendly discussion, not argument

    The officer in the last incident drove by me said, "Yeap, it's the same person we've talked to before." THEN went ahead and AGAIN detained me 2 minutes later. Open carrying a handgun isn't suspicious activity; and should not require police investigation. I only started the blog after I found it was going to be an event anytime I went to Concord (and they called me 'that activist' over the radio). So far luckily no other town (Manchester, Salem, Nashua) has caused my any problems.

    I'm a small guy; mostly bones around my hips. Unless I'm carrying a small gun I'm going to print in the summer or be VERY uncomfortable having a pistol shoved into my hips. An IWB holster hurts like heck after 15 minutes wearing it. An OWB holster prints through anything I wear and even under my kilts.
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    Member Array David in MI's Avatar
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    From what I have read, SCOTUS has ruled that simply carrying a firearm is NOT sufficient to conduct a Terry stop (detain you). If you are therefore detained for simply carrying a firearm then your rights have been violated and you do have a case, IMHO. Here's a link.

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    Member Array David in MI's Avatar
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    doobie-I was going to point you to the opencarry.org website with a link to the nh section but noticed that you are already aware of the site. You may want to wander over into the MI section as there is some really helpful material stickied at the top of the forum. Specifically, the, "wash, rinse and repeat, " and, "MI open carry info here," sections. Here are the cases that I was referring to in my previous post. These were taken from the mi open carry section-you'll see it in there but let me know if you need help finding anything.

    3 See Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 88 S. Ct. 1868, 20 L.Ed.2d 889 (196 4 Com. v. Alvarado, 423 Mass. 277, 667 N.E.2d 856 (199 .
    5 Alabama v. White, 496 U.S. 325, 110 S. Ct. 2412, 110 L.Ed.2. 301 (1990).
    6 Florida v. J.L., 529 U.S. 266, 120 S. Ct. 1375, 146 L.Ed.2d 254 (2000).

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    Member Array David in MI's Avatar
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    To make life easier:

    A good article on LEO encounters.

    WHEN APPROACHED BY POLICE WHILE OPEN CARRYING.

    By John M. Collins, Esq., General Counsel, Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association, Shrewsbury, Massachusetts

    Because it is legal in most states to carry a handgun if properly licensed, a report that an individual possesses a handgun, without any additional information suggesting criminal activity, might not create reasonable suspicion that a crime is being or will be committed.1 Where simply carrying a handgun is not in itself illegal and does not constitute probable cause to arrest,2 it follows that carrying a handgun, in and of itself, does not furnish reasonable suspicion justifying a Terry stop. The same applies to persons in motor vehicles. An investigatory stop is only justified when the police have "a reasonable suspicion, based on specific, articulable facts and reasonable inferences there from," that the subject "had committed, was committing, or was about to commit a crime."3

    State laws vary regarding both open and concealed carrying of firearms, but courts are usually sensitive to officer and public safety concerns over the presence in public of firearms. Mere possession may not be sufficient to authorize police action, but in circumstances where the gun presents an imminent threat because of shots just fired, or likely to be fired, and thereby presents a "suggestion of threats of violence, acts of violence, impending criminal activity, or concern for public safety," a court is likely to find there was reasonable suspicion for a threshold inquiry.4

    Anonymous Tip

    In a 1990 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed that, through corroboration of its detail, an anonymous tip can be enough to give rise to the reasonable suspicion required for a stop.5 More recently though, the U.S. Supreme Court in 2000 ruled that an anonymous tip that a person is carrying a gun is not sufficient to justify a police officer's stop and frisk of that person, even where descriptive detail regarding the subject has been corroborated. The Court declined to adopt the "firearms exception" to Terry's requirement of reasonable suspicion.6 Similarly, in another 2000 Supreme Court case, an anonymous tip with a physical description and location that a person had a gun was not enough for reasonable suspicion, absent anything else to arouse the officer's suspicion.7 In that case the Court ruled that it was irrelevant that the defendant fled when the officer got out of his car and ordered the defendant to approach him.8 The tipster need not deliver an ironclad case to the police to justify an investigatory stop; it suffices if a prudent law enforcement officer would reasonably conclude that the likelihood existed that criminal activities were afoot and that a particular suspect was probably engaged in them.9

    Clearly, not every report of a citizen is worthy of belief or sufficient to justify a response by an officer. A caller could, for example, intend merely to harass someone by making an anonymous call to police and claiming someone had a gun hidden in his or her vehicle or on his or her person.

    The ultimate issue on the report's usefulness is whether the contents (and other attendant circumstances) create a reasonable suspicion that a dangerous situation exists, creating authority to detain or frisk or both. It certainly helps if the report contains particular facts that do one or more of the following:

    • Create a suggestion of threats of violence in this situation
    • Are themselves acts of violence
    • Indicate impending criminal activity
    • Raise a reasonable concern for public safety

    Of course, in the many jurisdictions where carrying a concealed weapon is illegal, this analytical step may be obviated and inquiry will proceed to the next issue, the likely veracity of the information source. In the case of an anonymous tip, the question will be whether corroboration of detail goes beyond the mere description of a person already in public.

    Examples of Appropriate Police Actions

    Examples may be helpful here. Police officers would be acting reasonably in stopping and frisking an individual after receiving information on the street from a known bystander that the person was displaying a handgun on a street corner in a high crime area at 5:30 in the morning, or if it reasonably appears that a suspect is not only armed but also dangerous, as would be the case if the individual appeared to be reaching for his or her weapon. The possession of a firearm by a minor in many states may be viewed as presumptively illegal, and thus sufficient to justify an investigatory stop of the minor by the police, again provided the information source is sufficiently credible. A constitutionally reliable report of the sighting of someone carrying a sawed-off shotgun-especially in states where this is illegal-would likely justify an immediate investigatory stop. Loading a weapon in public, especially where there is no clearly lawful reason for doing so (to begin hunting or target shooting, for instance), and especially in a high crime area at night or during early morning hours, could provide the extra information some courts require in order to allow police officers to conduct an investigatory stop and frisk of a person reportedly in possession of a firearm.

    Enforcement Guidelines

    Where a police officer receives a report that a person is in possession of a firearm, but the weapon is not visible to the officer, the following options are available:

    • Engage in a voluntary contact and simply ask the person if he or she has a firearm.
    • If he or she confirms he or she is in possession of a gun, the officer may ask the person to voluntarily hand it over just while the interview takes place, or insist that they hand it over if there is a reasonable belief that the safety of the officer or public is in jeopardy, or that the person has used it in a crime or is about to do so.
    • If the person denies having a firearm or refuses to answer, and the officer does not otherwise have (legally sufficient) reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, the officer must allow the person to continue on his or her way.
    • If the person denies having a firearm or refuses to answer, but the officer has a reasonable suspicion that the person is armed and presents a danger to the officer or public, the officer may conduct a stop and frisk the person. If the officer finds a weapon, the officer may hold it while conducting the field inquiry. As long as the person is properly licensed, and no arrest takes place, the officer must return the gun at the conclusion of the interview.
    • If the officer has a warrant or has probable cause to arrest the person for a crime, the officer may conduct a thorough search (not merely a frisk) and take possession of any weapon.
    • Where the person appears to be a minor and therefore too young to have firearm (in most states), the police may have reason to believe that a crime is being committed (unlawful carrying of a firearm) and may therefore conduct a stop rather than a mere encounter.

    1 See, for example, Com. v. Couture, 407 Mass. 178, 552 N.E.2d 538 (1990), cert. denied, 498 U.S. 951, 111 S. Ct. 372, 112 L.Ed.2d 334 (1990).
    2 Id.
    3 See Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 88 S. Ct. 1868, 20 L.Ed.2d 889 (196 4 Com. v. Alvarado, 423 Mass. 277, 667 N.E.2d 856 (199 .
    5 Alabama v. White, 496 U.S. 325, 110 S. Ct. 2412, 110 L.Ed.2. 301 (1990).
    6 Florida v. J.L., 529 U.S. 266, 120 S. Ct. 1375, 146 L.Ed.2d 254 (2000).
    7 Pennsylvania v. D.M., U.S. 120 S. Ct. 203, 146 L.Ed.2d 953 (2000).
    8 Id.
    9 Alabama v. White, 496 U.S. 325, 1105 S. Ct. 2412, 110 L.Ed.2d 301 (1990); U.S. v. Diallo, 29 F.3d 23 (1st Cir. 1994); U.S. v. Taylor, 162 F.3d 12 (1st Cir. 199 .

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    Member Array doobie's Avatar
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    David In MI, Thanks for the SCOTUS decisions and the article you posted. All will help when I write a letter to the CLEO, City Council, and NH-CLU.
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