Military Police Universal Conceal Carry ID – HR 218 An Update ~ Obfuscation

By Major Van Harl USAF Ret

Military Police
Military Police
AmmoLand Gun News
AmmoLand Gun News

Wisconsin –-(  Colonel Smith, Sergeant Major Jones do you have your conceal carry permit that Federal law allows you to obtain as a retired military police man?

You don’t, I do not understand, Federal law known as the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) and commonly referred to as HR 218 was enacted in 2004.

This act allows police officers in any state or jurisdiction to carry concealed their personal firearm in any other state or jurisdiction.

I know, the military uses the word apprehend, and the civilian law enforcement community uses the word arrest. This little play on words is what the Department of Defense/DoD had used to deny military police of all branches of the service the ability to carry a personal concealed weapon.

But the Federal law was amended in 2013 to specifically cover any obfuscating that the DoD was doing to prevent you, the active duty or retired military police person from legally carrying a concealed weapon off duty.

There is something both military members and the civilian world needs to understand: the DoD and its branches do not really, deep down in their hearts trust the average Airman, Sailor, Soldier or Marine.

When it comes to the carrying of a firearm that does not belong to the DoD and cannot be controlled with their many regulations and threats of punishment, senior civilian and active duty leadership just seem to fail to remember there is a 2nd amendment.

As soon as the 2013 changes to HR 218 were enacted, that made it crystal clear to the DoD is was time to quit stalling and start issuing the by-Federal-law requirement for law enforcement credentials / IDs to active duty military police of all branches and former military police with ten years of service, they (the DoD) started obfuscating yet again.

The State of Wisconsin figured out the very same month it was enacted in 2013 that it was clear, a former Federal law enforcement member of the military police type, was by-law entitled to credentials that addressed this law enforcement status. Wisconsin then made available per Federal direction the type and design of a LEOSA / HR 218 qualification certification (conceal carry permit) and started issuing them to former Federal law enforcement.

I recently received my renewal Wisconsin Certification Card.

I am going into my second year of having this former Federal law enforcement HR 218 ID card, but my big Air Force cannot seem to make their conceal carry ID program work. I have seen a number of drafts and even an alleged signed Air Force Instruction/ AFI on how the Security Forces (read AF cops) who have been tasked to oversee the implementation of HR 218 within the Air Force, are trying “ever so hard” to comply with Federal Law.

The last I heard was the Air Force is now looking for a contractor to take on the project of creating an AF acceptable HR 218 ID card that will meet the Federal requirements and still allow the Air Force to control their distrusted “cops”. In the drafts that I have seen the Air Force has supplanted Federal law and added a bunch of controlling factors. Some of the limitations and controls that my Air Force has put (wrongfully I would suggest) on their policemen in their efforts to obtain an AF / HR 218 conceal carry ID would imply that we have a large group of AF “cops” who are not qualified to function as a police man or woman on active duty.

If a person has been vetted to join a branch of the military, selected to be a police / law enforcement member, trained at a military police academy, qualified on the range in numerous firearms (both handgun and long gun) and posted out to do armed police work on a military reservation, just what is the problem with the DoD following Federal law when it comes to HR 218?

I will tell you what the problem is, it is the trust issue on the part of senior leadership.

Of course their real concern is with loss of some very tight (dare I say strangle hold) controls on military members in their off duty pursuits. The DoD could have taken the standard ID cards that are issued to military members and with a very few modifications added the required verbiage about law enforcement and HR 218 and been issuing these credentials to its military police members over a year ago.

But no, obfuscation continues to get in the way. My research only pertains to the Air Force and I do not know what the other branches of service are doing. I have read where it was suggested they are waiting to follow the AF lead.

If this is the case, Soldiers, Sailors and Marines I suggest you will have an even longer wait than AF “cops”. The DoD does not trump Federal law. What is so hard about this?

Might I suggest it is just the fear of the legally armed solider/citizen by the ruling class? In all honesty why shouldn’t any serving military member, active or reserve be entitled to carry concealed at any time—they are already vetted as defenders of our Nation? And then there is the issue of constitutional carry.

Major Van Harl USAF Ret./[email protected]

About Major Van Harl USAF Ret:

Major Van E. Harl USAF Ret., a career Police Officer in the U.S. Air Force was born in Burlington, Iowa, USA, in 1955. He was the Deputy Chief of police at two Air Force Bases and the Commander of Law Enforcement Operations at another. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Infantry School.  A retired Colorado Ranger and currently is an Auxiliary Police Officer with the Cudahy PD in Milwaukee County, WI.  His efforts now are directed at church campus safely and security training.  He believes “evil hates organization.”  [email protected]

  • 35 thoughts on “Military Police Universal Conceal Carry ID – HR 218 An Update ~ Obfuscation

    1. I am a retired DOD Capt., series GS0083, retired for 9, I have been trying all those years to get a Ret DOD Police ID Card, where and how do I do this. all I was issued was form 5055-12 with an expiration date of 5 years. Can you assist me with this ?

      W M Shaw

      1. Captain, If you have at least ten years continuous and uninterrupted honorable GS-0083 service you are eligible for the card. Go to the LEOSA DCS web-site to apply on line…be prepared, the paperwork is extensive, which includes a FBI background investigation, finger prints…and lots of money…

      1. After years of letters & phone calls to my elected officials it finally happened…On 17 July 2018 DCS (sub contracted by the Department of Defense) issued my LEOSA I.D. Card. What angers me is the very fact that the Navy (which I unfortunately worked for) could have simply issued the card for free…versus the $257.88 I eventually spent for the card. Being a former U.S. Marine I’m embarrassed that I carry this card which has boldly written on the top “Department of the Navy”…I now wish I had worked as a DoD Police Officer on a Marine Base.
        The Navy I’m certain, is not happy at all that they had to officially recognize their DoD Civilian Police Officers as bonafide Law Enforcement Officers versus “the guards” or “rent a cops” as they often did….The initial problem stems from the fact that DoD Civilian Police working upon military installations do not, to this day, have arrest powers via Title 18…this means that their powers of arrest come from the UCMJ under the individual base commanding officers who can choose what they want…or not want enforced. I have seen this many times in my former career. The LEOSA public laws, especially PL-112-239 was the one which FORCED the military to recognize us…and you know they’re not happy about it. However, they still have control over the DoD Civilian Police Officers on their bases in regards to what laws they’ll permit to be enforced and weapons carry issues.
        Even as a bonafide LEO they still require the “guard style” issue of your duty weapon, and the prohibition of bringing your personal firearm on the installation…this embarrassment is part of their protest to being forced to recognize the “guards” as LEO’s….When you think about it…it is unbelievable as most DoD Civilian Police Officers are Veterans…qualified with all sorts of firearms during their military service, in addition to the one they must currently carry on duty. We’re expected to lay down our lives in necessary while protecting military & civilian personnel and property on a given military installation…yet the military retains their embarrassing “firearms phobia” regardless of the fact that the military is all about weaponry of all sorts!…But as has been well stated within the posts the firearms issue stems from the elite military brass who, regardless of the LEOSA laws, want to “contain” any authority given to DoD Civilian Police Officers as best they can. Lastly, the cost…fortunately for us retirees the card is “indefinite”…I’m curious to know if the actively serving DoD Civilian Police Officers must renew their LEOSA Card yearly based upon yearly weapons qualifications?…If they do, this is further “salt in the wound” as the cost is outrageous, as I’ve stated previously…should have been issued for free by the Department of Defense. As for me I’ve simply framed my LEOSA I.D. Card on my office wall with the statement: “This card is mute evidence that the U.S. Navy was FORCED via H.R. 218 and its’ subsequent Public Laws: 108-277, 111-272, and especially 112-239 to finally recognize Civilian Federal Civil Service Police Officers (GS-0083 Series) working upon their bases as bonafide Law Enforcement Officers”…end of battle. Mark A. Weinberger, DoD Police Major, (happily RETIRED)

      1. The AF and Army contractor is charging upwards of $300.00 dollars to process the LEOSA credential. Hogwash! Each DOD law enforcement agency should just issue the freaking things to their cops. As an alternative, consider obtaining either a Utah or Florida CCW permit for $70.00, good in 32 states for 7 years. If national reciprocity becomes law, they will be good in all sates. And no annual qualification required.

        1. We retired former DoD Police Officers continue to get the Navy “two srep”….e-mail messages from Washington Navy Officials stating we’ll have the aforementioned I.D. soon…then follow-up messages citing more reasons why it has yet to be issued!….All of this B.S. could have been easily remedied with the issuance of the ( already in existence) CAC card and simply print “Retired LEO”…But NOOOOO…to drag out the (unwanted) issuance….First we were told: a SORN need be published, then a wait for “public comment” (whatever the hell the “public” has to do with issuing a federally mandated I.D. card I’ll never know…Then we were told: The Navy doesn’t have the funds to produce the I.D. until a new budget is passed…After that was resolved…we were told: The “public comment” period was over and we would see the I.D. Cards in March….Didn’t happen. Pressing the issue again I received a message stating: 1. The NAVADMIN is in the final approval process at OPNAV…2. We are waiting for OMB to finalize the SORN (AGAIN?)…3. The “application site” is ready for implementation but not currently active until completion of the SORN and the NAVADMIN…
          What a boondoggle…with no end in site. Many of my fellow retirees are simply tired of the fight and have given up on ever expecting the Navy to follow the laws involved….many have simply obtained their State concealed carry permits…others have died off. I will continue to be a thorn in the Navy”s side until they obey the federal statutes involved and their own instruction…I have an open case with N.C. Senator Tillis’s Office and have asked him (again) to take this issue directly to the Secretary of the Navy…Of course I don’t expect that to happen. Perhaps a rally in D.C. with all retired DoD Officers sitting on the steps of the Capital would work….maybe…probably all be arrested as terrorists first…

      1. Sorry Michael…Glad to see the U.S. Army is abiding by the LEOSA laws…The information I cited was sent to me after my many complaints (three years worth) to the Navy for “foot dragging”….two Washington D.C civilian officials working on the LEOSA I.D. cards for the Navy told me (this week) the Army was waiting for the Navy’s SORN to be completed….I wouldn’t be surprised…knowing the Navy’s disdain for their DoD GS-0083 Police Officers…that the information supplied to me is inaccurate. These same officials stated that the Navy’s issuance of the LEOSA I.D. Cards may happen (and I emphasize “MAY”) NLT this coming May….Navy & U.S. Marine DoD civilian 0083 Police will no doubt be the last to receive the aforementioned.

        1. I retired 2009 as a DOD GS083/9 police captain looking for a retired DOD Police ID and this I hope you Folks can help. You are correct DOD will as usual be the last to get anything, that is so well deserved. I made it 22 years as a DOD COP very proud of my service plus 17 years in the Military. I hope You can send me the info , so I can get on track for the DOD Police ID card.

          VR/, William Shaw

            1. William, Michael is correct, the U.S. Army along with the Air Force have been issuing the LEOSA Credentials for some time now…It’s only the Navy which has been dragging their feet. I’m a retired DoD 0083/10 former deputy chief of police (28+ years service) who unfortunately worked on naval bases where they despise any sort of civilian authority…so it’s no surprise that we still haven’t seen an I.D, card even after H.R. 218 evolved into three Public laws…which include Department of Defense 0083 Police Officers. My former Chief of Police, who’s very active within the FOP attended the National FOP Conference in Tennessee just last week..The US Navy issue was brought up at which time it was noted that the navy was the absolute worst when it comes to obeying any laws regarding civilians working on their installations.

      1. Correct Micheal, the U.S. Air Force is issuing the creds to their LE people, the U.S. Army (oddly enough) is awaiting the U.S. Navy’s SORN to be published and placed into the Federal Registry…then once OMB gives in a their number it will finally come to fruition…whenever all that occurs is any ones guess. Congratulations to the U.S. Air Force who are obviously on the ball.

    2. The U.S. Navy, after the “National Defense Authorization Act” was signed into Public Law 112-239 on 02 January 2013, finally came out with DoD Instruction 5525.12 on 13 February 2014…We retired DoD GS-0083 Police Officers, some retired with over 30 years service, thought we had finally won the “battle”…Well in the words of Gomer Pyle “surprise, surpise”…the anti-gun, anti Civilian DoD Cop, Navy regime has virtually ignored 5525.12….and has come up with an endless stream of B.S. excuses why they have yet to issue the aforementioned LEOSA I.D. card. My colleagues and I have repeated contacted Congressional representatives over the issue, who themselves have been stonewalled by the Navy on every turn. The facts are clear, the high ranking Naval Officers for generations have only considered their civilian DoD GS-0083 Cops as “guards”…nothing more. In their narrow minded way of thinking H.R. 218 does not apply to us because we do not have statutory arrest powers, only “apprehension” authority granted by the commanding officer of a given installation and the UCMJ. the Navy higher ups are doing everything within their power to stall & delay DoD Instruction 5525.12 and simply hopes in “sunsets” in ten years time. The only answer to their refusal to obey DoD Instruction is for the Secretary of Defense to force the issue and order the Navy brass obey the instruction as written. If not we will never see the credentials we have earned.

    3. I have a similar background to the Major, I was a Military Police Officer in the US Army and Estonian Defense Forces Army Military Police as well as a Civilian Police Officer.
      The Major is 100% Correct and Right on. He tells it like it is, the Senior Military and Civilian Leadership of the DoD do not trust the Rank and File Military Personnel with Privately Owned Firearms let alone Government Owned Weapons.

      All of this is Contradictory to the Very Constitution that the Military Establishment is Sworn to Defend and Uphold. It is also in violation of the Spream Count historic rulling of Heller 2008.

      I said it years ago, if the US Military would ever allow MP, Military Lawenforcement Personnel to be Armed off duty etc with Personal Weapons, such authorization would have to come out side from the Military Establishment.

      That is what just happened in 2013. Since then the Military Establishment has been dragging its feet. Hoping the LEOSA Law will just go away. They could have issued LEOSA Credentials by simply modifing the standard ID CAC card and this way no accrued cost would come to the Service persons and Retirees as well as qualified Separated persons, something most Civilian Police Departments do.

      I hope in the future they indeed start to do this as well as overall change their out right vehemently hostility to the Second Amendment Rights if Militaryand Civilian personnel and clean up the Gang Problem in Military as well.

    4. I totally agree with what the major wrote. I also confirm his comments 100% Truthful. His comments about the High Military and Civilian Leadership, not Trusting, the Avarage,Airman, Sailor,Soldier, Marine Are 100% Factual.

      I served 22 years in the United States Army Military Police. I remember when I got started I mentioned this absurdity of not Trusting Troops with Weapons, when I was deployed to combat type zone environment at a TAC where we had to protect the senior staff,We were sent to post unArmed. The Chaplan came by and I briefed him on the situation, with in a half hour the a senior MP Officer came by and issued me a 45 and 2 clips of ammo. I was later told back Stateside to be careful and not question the Army’s Weapon policwe x That such could hurt my career.

      Years later I got a unique opportunity to help develop, train and lead a new country’s Military Police force. My later Father was a refugee from the nation of Estonia, when Estonia got free of 50+ years of illegal brutal Soviet Occupation, they did not have an Army. I went there to help develop organize the new Estonian Defense Forces Military Police so they could get into NATO and be protected from future Russian aggression(what we have now) when I was the Provost Marshal of Tallinn the Capitol city.

      The regulation in the Estonian Defense Forces,(EDF)was any Soldier of law or high rank that was not a conscript, could request from their Commander a permit to purchase a privately owned Handgun for personal and collective self defense. The Handgun would then be registered with the Military unit and the individual Weapon serial number was also on the ID Card with the wording that the bearer of the card has the right to own and carry such registered Handguns. This was for Military Personnel of all ranks and Military Occupations, not just for MP’s.

      Another option was to request from the unit Commander to take home and carry ones Government Owned Pistol. I did this once for about a month. Never had a problem.

      A Military force is supposed to reflect the nation’s values it serves. The US Military does not do that with reguards to the 2 nd and 4th Amendment Rights of its rank and File Military Personnel. Ironic how when I served in a former Communist country’s Military ,they were not the least hostilecto me either carrying openly in Uniform my personally owned Weapons or Government Owned weapons. The US Military needs to do the same and start to abide,recognize the very Constitution it swears to Protect and Espouse.

      As well, the US Military Establishment needs also to look at how it treats it own and clean up the gang problem with in it’s ranks.

    5. I’m from Texas….a bottom of the barrel state, I live in Houston and I asked several Police Officers about H.R. 218, they were totally cluless, most of the Police here want even talk to you. I’m a retired Federal Officer….I want to know whats going on with these Police that shoot people and they all have the same excuse”I was in fear for my life(hell wear a dress), what really blow my mind is these Guys are rudd as hell and if you can explain to me how you can patrol with the windows of your cruiser UP, so if I’m screaming for help, you can’t even hear me, but hell if you are Black the odds are the help you get is SHOT probably 10 or 15 times, I could go on and on, but you get my point. Read the Law just type in H.R. 218 or the LEOSA ACT in the address block or google it….knowledge is Power.

    6. What about us Infantry veterans ?.. I’ve qualified. 45.. M-16 M-60..M-2 .50 cal.. and Expert Grenader well 81mm mortar..which is a little far fetch I know but it’s true..I’m as qualified as any Police officer..and have knowledge of tactics and techniques as well..not implying anything. .but there are civilian police that had never been armed before becoming LEO’s..

    7. Some extinct Dept of Defense police agencies allowed the local county sheriff to deputize the officers but the chief of security would come up with the Bull Pie excuse of the violating the Posse Comtious Act. Yes, it’s true that most military command staff falls way below the sewer pit in managing civilian police/security officers.

      Especially true if they never served as a large metro police agency like NYPD, LAPD, PHILADELPHIA, Newark or Balitmore/SEPTA POLICE.

    8. I think that as a former DoD police officer many DoD componext agencies hate people who are classified as 085,083, 007, . It’s a sbsolute power grab mentality. Now there are other series who should be allowed firearms authority ss far as their duties of active service goes to transitioned into civilian life like tbe Military Postal Inspectors, Military Intelligence , smallarms repairmen, secrurity couriers..

    9. I’m running into brick wall with Army. Even been told the bill don’t exist. If originator of this article can let us know more, would be highly appreciated. I’ve got Florida CWP, but wouldn’t mind having the other – I earned it.

    10. In Calif, I retired at 30 years in, as a unit CO. I was responsible for everything, including personnel and the arms locker. One day I was responsible for everything, the next, I could not be trusted with anything but guns on CAs good boy list. I was not LE, but personally, it felt like a slap in the face.

    11. Gunnychuck, I agree with you completely. As a retired LEO I am a rarity in that particular part of the world. Even when I was active, it was my opinion that, when off duty, a LEO was not any different or had any more rights or privileges than any John Doe on the street. The great misfortune in this country is that there are too many individuals who are elitist.

    12. My question is why are Police considered to be a better class of person than the rest of us? Why should we have laws that only allow Police special privileges that the rest of us are denied? Constitutional carry should be the law of the land, not just a benefit for a precious few. Unfortuneatly I live in California where a LE officer can buy a Desert Eagle .50 (not that I want one) but the rest of us poor schlubs cannot. THAT is not a duty gun.


    13. I agree with all that you say, Major, but I do have a few questions:

      Can you quote me the exact section(s) of law that authorize retired military personnel who were qualified as Air Force Security Police/Security Forces to qualify under this law?

      During my 2-decade-long Air Force career, I was CONTINUOUSLY QUALIFIED as an S.P. as an additional duty, and the multiple/secondary AFSC is annotated on my DD214. What is your opinion about that? And yes, I was weapons qualified on several different arms, to include the M-16, M-1 Garand, S&W M15, Beretta M9, 1911A1 .45ACP, and 12 gauge pump gun.

      I also held weapons quals for years as a member of the base Honor Guard, and had armory access 24/7/365.

    14. I was an MP for ten years. I then went to work as an LEO for the Department of Justice. Later I switched to an LE agency within the Department of Treasury. I ended up retiring from CBP. All were LE positions. Some of us have no problem with the credentials. The problem is qualification. The CBP lets agents keep your original issue credentials when retiring. They just stamp retired on them. These credentials state right on them, among other things that the holder has the power to make arrests, enforce laws and be armed. However we can not find anyone to qualify us once a year, at least in my area. CBP has issued a policy letter that states they will not qualify retired agents/officers or assist in qualification in anyway. We have range officers and firearm instructors that would be more than happy to donate off time to qualify the retired employees but the agency will not allow their range, name or letter head to be used. In my area most of the state and local agencies only want to qualify their own employees. So I just got a state CC permit and call it good enough. Although it would be nice to carry while traveling in other states. There needs to be a system for CC throughout the entire country for every law bidding citizen not just active and retired LEO’s, but I won’t hold my breath.

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