LEO saw the gun
This is a discussion on LEO saw the gun within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Originally Posted by CelticWolf
For all the LEO knew.. he could have got shot.
More officers have been killed SO FAR ...
November 4th, 2007 01:45 AM
Originally Posted by CelticWolf
More officers have been killed SO FAR this year than were killed in ALL of last year.
Personally, I think this particular LEO overreacted, and there's NO excuse for the finger on the trigger.
BUT......Job #1 is ALWAYS to go home at the end of the shift, preferably with no more holes in your body than at the start of the shift.
You know your wife. You know yourself. That LEO doesn't. Your demeanor doesn't much matter. Plenty of copkillers have been completely cooperative and even friendly......right up until they pulled the trigger.
Personally, I would have drawn, held at low ready, and ordered both of you to put your hands on the dashboard and keep them there - and waited for backup to arrive before sorting the rest of it out. Once it was clear that you had violated no law and posed no threat, I would have explained and apologized for the ruckus. And if that wasn't good enough for you, I'd make sure you had my name, badge number, and the Chief's number and office hours so you could complain to him if you so desired.
(but I wouldn't worry about the outcome of that conversation, should it occur)
November 4th, 2007 02:49 AM
File a complaint. A simple apology and an explanation about being concerned for his safety at the moment could have gone a long way for him in the aftermath. He needs to be reminded that an armed law abiding citizen is not a threat, and is not to be treated as a criminal and lectured after his misunderstanding.
I will support gun control when you can guarantee all guns are removed from this planet. That includes military and law enforcement. When you can accomplish that, then I will be the last person to lay down my gun. Then I will carry the weapon that replaces the gun.
November 4th, 2007 03:34 AM
I'd like to make a few comments and observations here.
What you have to understand here is that the LEO is in the reactionary mode. He is already behind the curve if someone acts in a hostile manner, and the extra second or two that it takes to evaluate,comprehend and act is often all that it takes to get killed.
I don't quite understand some of the defenses being put out here. Sure there is a gun present, I can understand the LEO putting his hand on his weapon, heck even breaking leather and holding it at the ready. But pointing it at people with his finger on the trigger, who have done nothing threatening and as of that point had done nothing more wrong than a very minor traffic infraction?
Sure it was a minor traffic infraction, but thats when lots of things start to go south. You cant begin to imagine how many shootings have started because they were pulled over for something minor, like an expired tag, or a taillight out or a headlight.
Although it may seem extreme to us, the officer saw a gun. On the surface it may seem that he overreacted. If someone wanted to grab it and shoot, who would have the upper hand? The shooter would because the officers action would be in reaction to the shot. Now we all sit here and read this and we know that the original poster and his wife are good law abiding people. The Officer doesn't know that, he just sees a gun in plain sight so he takes it as a serious threat and treats it as such until he can prove otherwise.
Yes she should have had it secured better. Perhaps it was not illegal to keep it in plain sight, since I don't know the laws of that state I wont say either way. Dangerous? The officer saw it that way.He saw a gun that was easily accessible. Again, he was assuming that it dangerous until he knew better.
Maybe she should have had the gun secured better, but there was nothing illegal or particularly dangerous about having the gun how it was.
I will admit that he could use some coaching when it comes to weapons handling. As for cutting him some slack, I don't think so. As for acting in a criminal fashion, that didn't happen either. He basically enacted what is know as a "felony stop" where you don't take anything for granted and you command the situation. While its true that he probably could have handled the situation much better than he did, I doubt that a Dept.review of his actions would get him anything other than a few pointers on his communication techniques.
And certainly no less dangerous than Barney Fife doing everything but pull the trigger. I understand that there is some brotherhood among LEO's, and a lot of people feel that they should cut them a little slack. But come on, this guy acted in a criminal fashion, don't protect a scumbag just cause he managed to slip through the cracks and get a badge.
Thats the thing about being an LEO, often times you are danged if you do and danged if you don't. We sit and and armchair commando and think that he was out of line. So he gets a complain filed against him and he gets called up on the carpet and told to throttle it back a little.And he does.
Sometime later, same situation. A man and a woman with a gun laying in the console or on the floor or stuck in the door handle. He sees it and figures that it'll be OKAY because its not pointed at him, so he doesn't give it the attention that he should. Only this time, its two crackheads and his girlfriend and he both have warrants on them, meaning that when the officers finds out, they will go to jail. They are already desperate because they got pulled over and they want to be anywhere but right there. All they are waiting for is the right moment to draw and fire. And they do. The shoot the cop.
Now,the arm chair commandos are reading about it in the paper and shaking their heads. It comes up on some of the discussion boards about how and why the rookie cop got capped. It gets cussed and discussed and now one can figure out why in the heck the cop didn't react like they thought he should have.
Like I said, danged if you do and danged if you don't...and every Cop that has ever worked a shift knows this. What they dont do is take the few minutes to type and explain like I just did to you, because most of them figure its a waste of time and effort. Sometimes it is, sometimes in isn't. I tend to think that if just one person reads this and understands maybe later on down the line somewhere, somehow, it'll help both parties involved be a little safer.
Sergeant Macs post is right on the money. Sometimes we don't like to read stuff like that, but that is the way that it is.
hecks...the next step towards registration and confiscation.
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November 4th, 2007 03:50 AM
File a complaint & follow it up sorry to hear that this happened to your family I'm glad no one was injured.
November 4th, 2007 04:51 AM
Hotguns what would you have done if you were the people in the car and the LEO pointed his weapon at you? I'm not sure what I would do but I know it would of freaked me out. I do not want to get a good cop in trouble. His job is hard enough without me making it harder. But how can a lay person tell the difference between an LEO who just made a bad mistake from an LEO who has no business being a LEO. Just like any work not everyone belongs there and being this is work that requires you to carry a weapon it should put you on a higher level on if you are cut out for this kind of work. I hope no one thinks I'm cop bashing. I'm just not sure what I would do after this situation. I do not want to get a good LEO into trouble for not being smart just for one moment. But I do want to weed out the bad ones who just can not do this kind of work. I'm just wonder what the experience ones and LEO's on here would do if it was turned around.
November 4th, 2007 06:38 AM
Sorry, but you need to look at this from another perspective.
The gun is visible. It is "in play", if you will.
The officer might not have handled this perfectly from your position, but you have to consider that he does not know you, and while the gun is out in play is not the time to be confirming CWLs. He's going to get control of the people and the firearm before he takes the time to check any databases.
Any other approach would be idiotic.
While you might not like the way he did what he did, securing the gun (and the occupants) first was the only intelligent thing to do from his perspective.
Battle Plan (n) - a list of things that aren't going to happen if you are attacked.
Blame it on Sixto - now that is a viable plan.
November 4th, 2007 08:16 AM
Probably a good idea for all of us to check our vehicle lights frequently, as well as drive sanely, to avoid such situations.
Originally Posted by LongRider
The LEO's reaction was unfortunate, but your vehicle's condition precipitated the situation.
November 4th, 2007 09:04 AM
File a complaint and save a life.
November 4th, 2007 09:30 AM
That was the best post of the thread IMO. Hotguns hit it on the head. One poster is basically calling this cop a criminal who "slipped through the cracks" and got his shield. The ones that slipped through the cracks are the ones that end up shaking down dealers and doing home invasions. Not the ones who might have overreacted a little bit in a tense situation (Perception of LEO involved).
Originally Posted by HotGuns
It was definately an unpleasent experience for the original poster. I'm sorry that they had to go through that. But I think that this LEO is catching a little too much heat.
Police Defensive Tactics, Firearms, Carbine Rifle and Taser Instructor
NRA Life Member
It is better to have your gun and not need it, than to need it and not have it!
You cannot choose the conditions for a gunfight, so train in all conditions!
November 4th, 2007 09:42 AM
Sorry, I'm still not convinced, I've known a couple LEO's in my day, and they were trained to always assume there is a gun in the vehicle. That didn't mean they got to stuff their piece in the face of every motorist they pulled over. Is a gun that is concealed in a holster any less accesable than a gun on the seat? I don't think so. As if it's criminal, I always like to ask myself one question, would it be criminal if I did it to another citizen? If the answer is yes, then 9 times out of 10 it should hold true for an LEO. LEO have very specific and defined powers that do not include recklessly endagering peoples lives just cause they get a little phobic. Heck, even driving with lights and sirens and exceeding the speed limit must be done with "due regard" to public safety to be legal. So maybe nothing will happen other than a verbal "throttle back", but that doesn't mean more shouldn't be done.
November 4th, 2007 11:03 AM
Glad everyone is ok now..but that leprachaun line was not good for my removed appendix...darn you.
In all seriousness though, I don't see what justified his immediate jump to near lunacy. Lawyer up and file a complaint. Keep us up to date with what happens. Do you guys have a VCDL type org out there? If so I'd let them know too. Maybe they can put you in the direction of a good lawyer they'd recommend.
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November 4th, 2007 11:35 AM
You are mostly correct
Sorry, I'm still not convinced, I've known a couple LEO's in my day, and they were trained to always assume there is a gun in the vehicle. That didn't mean they got to stuff their piece in the face of every motorist they pulled over. Is a gun that is concealed in a holster any less accessible than a gun on the seat? I don't think so. As if it's criminal, I always like to ask myself one question, would it be criminal if I did it to another citizen? If the answer is yes, then 9 times out of 10 it should hold true for an LEO. LEO have very specific and defined powers that do not include recklessly endangering peoples lives just cause they get a little phobic. Heck, even driving with lights and sirens and exceeding the speed limit must be done with "due regard" to public safety to be legal. So maybe nothing will happen other than a verbal "throttle back", but that doesn't mean more shouldn't be done.
What many people don't realize is the being an LEO is a skill, a craft, and like any other craft it takes time and experience to be good at it.
Just like a an apprentice welder doesn't start out making x-ray welds on nuclear components, every LEO needs time to figure out how to respond and how not to respond. Every single situation is different. What works in one situation may not work in another.
The problem is, if an officer overreacts or go "over the top", someone is going to complain...and rightly so. Its these experiences that teach him/her to temper their response and learn what is appropriate for the situation at hand.
There is a definite learning curve here where one learns what works and what don't. Until then, he is going to do what he was taught to do in the academy, because that is all he knows. The more experience he gets, the more professional he will become. If he lives though it that is. Some don't.
Thats the difference.Until he learns otherwise, he will follow his training to the letter. To the casual observer it may look that he went way overboard with his response. You can rest assured that if he had ignored the gun while he was doing a training session at the academy, he would have heard about it.
Everyone is different. What works for me, may not work for someone else.Personality and life experiences go a long way here. How you grew up and what you have done else where plays a big part.
If Officer "Leprechaun" has the ability to learn from his mistakes and use what he has learned in his daily routine, he'll be OK as a cop. If not, it usually doesn't take a long time to get weeded out.
Last edited by HotGuns; November 4th, 2007 at 02:01 PM.
hecks...the next step towards registration and confiscation.
AR. CHL Instr. 07/02 FFL
Like custom guns and stuff? Check this out...
November 4th, 2007 01:03 PM
Talk to his SGT. ASAP that was totaly out of line!!!!
November 4th, 2007 01:41 PM
One of the purposes of disciplinary action, hell, the PRIMARY purpose, is TRAINING.
....either training the employee HOW to perform the task properly, or training the employee TO perform the task properly (regardless of how he might feel about that).
November 4th, 2007 01:49 PM
Aren't you supposed to train to a minimum level BEFORE hitting the streets to prevent major screw ups like this.