By Dean Weingarten
Arizona - -(Ammoland.com)-
In July of 2013, an open carrier in Wisconsin narrowly avoided being “SWATted” by police. He was well known in the area and had friends on the local police force. They contacted him after he was accused of flashing a gun at the clerk of a convenience store.
In the same incident, another innocent citizen was stopped by police at gunpoint and ordered out of their car because of bad information supplied by the clerk.
Here is updated information:
The open carrier was cleared of all wrongdoing after the police viewed the surveilance video. From opencarry.org:The security video tape was reviewed by the investigator and my leo buddy. I have been cleared of any wrongdoing and it was an unwarranted 911 call. The incident has been pushed further up the ladder. I am sure that the needless backups will have to be addressed. No complaint filed so far from the guy who got hauled out at gunpoint.
BTW that employee was caught by Pierce County deputies with another gal with a criminal history trying to sell drugs on the WI side across from Red Wing MN this Tuesday. So she is really in a pickle now.
A month later, it was posted that the clerk was fired:
Got a call from my leo buddy from Prescott this evening. Employee fired.
Recently, a nasty situation developed with a young man legally open carrying a rifle in San Antonio after dark. The rifle was slung across his back. Open carry of modern handguns is mostly illegal in Texas. There is video at the link:
San Antonio Police Department officers from the West Substation responded to what they claim was an individual waving his rifle around and pointing it at people. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The young man, Mr. Vichique, was tazed, arrested, and charged with a local ordinance that is almost certainly invalid under the Texas pre-emption law.
I have read posters on anti-second amendment blogs that have advocated calling police on open carriers. Sometimes those calls are “enhanced” to make them a bit more interesting. It is a dangerous and irresponsible practice that needs to be stopped with appropriate legal sanctions.
There have been numerous lawsuits and settlements with police departments on false arrests of open carriers.
Some of the fault rests with people who maliciously dial 911 in an attempt to use the police to further their agendas. Sometimes these people are encouraged by the police. Sometimes the police “enhance” the call to justify their actions, as happened with the Culvers Five in Wisconsin. If evidence shows that people called in false information to police, they should be prosecuted, or at least open to civil suit. It is a variation of what has become known as “SWATting”, falsely calling in police in an attempt to have someone else harmed.
In the recent case in San Antonio, the open carrier states that he has proof that he never pointed the rifle at anyone, because he has his phone video recording the entire time. If people called in and said that he was pointing his rifle at others, they should be identifiable and they should be held to account.
c2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch
About Dean Weingarten;
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.