Did University of Idaho Promote ‘SWATting’ of Legal Gun Carriers?

By Dean Weingarten

Matt Dorschel University of Idaho Executive Director For Public Safety
Matt Dorschel University of Idaho Executive Director For Public Safety
Dean Weingarten
Dean Weingarten

Arizona – -(Ammoland.com)- Last Wednesday, 15 October 2014, the University of Idaho held a forum on “guns on campus”.   The main presenter was Matt Dorschel, university executive director for public safety and security.  While the forum attracted only a few students and faculty, the policy presented was radical.   From the Lewiston Tribune (pdf):

Dorschel said any firearm sighting is grounds to call 911 even if a person is not purposely showing their weapon. He said firearm holders have a responsibility to conceal their weapons and they are violating the university’s policy if they don’t.

Despite this strict interpretation of the concealed carry law, it is unclear what the repercussions might be if a carrier can prove they have a concealed carry permit and were not intentionally showing the firearm. Aside from being asked to conceal or remove the weapon, Nelson said it’s unlikely there would be any further punishment in these minor situations.

On 11 September, Dorschel said essentially the same thing.  From the uiargonaut.com:

Nelson said faculty should contact police even if they see a firearm for a brief moment.

“We will not question a decision to call 911,” he said.

This is very close to “swatting” people who are carrying firearms, if someone notices them for any reason.  The article says that this is a “strict” interpretation of the law.   It goes far beyond that.   Nothing in the law that I read indicates that individuals with the enhanced permit have to conceal their firearms.   The enhanced permit merely allows them to carry concealed weapons.   It does not *require* them to carry concealed weapons.   Idaho law does not prohibit the open carry of firearms, although the law allows open carry of firearms to be regulated on a college campus for people who do not have the enhanced concealed carry permit.  The wording of the law which restricts the authority of public colleges and universities is clear:

(2)  Notwithstanding any other provision of state law, this authority shall not extend to regulating or prohibiting the otherwise lawful possession, carrying or transporting of firearms or ammunition by persons licensed under section 18-3302H or 18-3302K, Idaho Code.

Neither 18-3302H or 18-3302K, referenced above, requires that holders of these permits always carry all of their weapons concealed.   That would be absurd.  It would mean that they could never carry a rifle or shotgun, even while hunting.  It would mean that they would be *more* restricted than people with ordinary permits or without permits at all, because they would not be allowed to carry weapons openly.   From  the Idaho Constitution:

Idaho Constitution Article I, Section 11
The people have the right to keep and bear arms, which right shall not be abridged; but this provision shall not prevent the passage of laws to govern the carrying of weapons concealed on the person nor prevent passage of legislation providing minimum sentences for crimes committed while in possession of a firearm, nor prevent the passage of legislation providing penalties for the possession of firearms by a convicted felon, nor prevent the passage of any legislation punishing the use of a firearm. No law shall impose licensure, registration or special taxation on the ownership or possession of firearms or ammunition. Nor shall any law permit the confiscation of firearms, except those actually used in the commission of a felony.

The state constitution seems quite clear; open carry of firearms shall not be abridged, but the carry of weapons concealed on the person may be regulated by law.

Nonetheless, the UI policy maintains that the law specifically allows the University to prohibit the open carry of firearms on campus.  From uidaho.edu:

Q 14. Does the new statute prohibit open carry of firearms on University property?
A – Yes. The law specifically allows the University to continue to prohibit open carry of firearms on University property. Open carry of firearms on University property is a violation of the Board of Regents and University policy.

However, the Q & A document never cites any applicable law that grants them the authority to ban the open carry of firearms by people with enhanced permits; they repeatedly only state that it is University policy.

People who go to the trouble of obtaining an enhanced permit are extremely law abiding.   They do not seek out trouble, but go to considerable lengths to avoid it.   Otherwise they would not go to all the effort to obtain an enhanced permit.   The permit is available to those from out of state, but the intricacies of the requirements effectively mean that you have to go to Idaho to obtain the permit if you are not a retired law enforcement officer.

Chances of someone challenging the absurd UI interpretation of the law are small.   It is unlikely that a retired, black, female, FBI agent will stroll through the UI campus with an obviously unloaded hunting shotgun over her shoulder.  Still, I think a YouTube video of such an event would be a hit.

Rights not exercised are rights lost.   Perhaps an alumni of UI would perform this act of strong, symbolic, political speech to show that the disarmenters* and hoplophobes among UI officials are all bluff.

*dis·arm·en·ter (ds-ärmn-tr)

1. A political operative who works to disarm political opposition through the use of irrational and/or emotional arguments.

2. A person who believes that disarming citizens will reduce crime or unjustified violence, in spite of contrary evidence or facts.

3. A person who wishes to disarm others because they do not trust themselves to bear arms responsibly.



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.

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“The carrying of arms in a quiet, peaceable, and orderly manner, concealed on or about the person, is not a breach of the peace. Nor does such an act of itself, lead to a breach of the peace.” (Wharton’s Criminal and Civil Procedure, 12th Ed., Vol.2: Judy v. Lashley, 5 W. Va. 628, 41 S.E. 197).

Permits are UN Constitutional in the several states. ALL “laws” including STATE STATUTES repugnant to the constitution are Null and Void.
You have Rights – Stop asking for permission


Sounds like the Idaho Constitution is a big joke. They have so many exceptions that it is a document of governnment privileges and not rights. New Mexico and Arizona has Idaho beat. What a pathetic state!


D’bags like Dorschel are the ones who lead efforts to render citizens disarmed & vulnerable to the predations of government bureaucrats who think like him who end up killing millions when their policies fail.
Let us never allow these creeps to get away wit that again.


The entire discussion is a red herring anyway. Most students are under 21 until their last year of college. Add to that the months it takes to get a concealed permit, and they have likely graduated, before they could have ever carried. Perhaps the group most likely to have a permit to carry are working adults who attend night classes. They are also the most likely to be victims of a crime being that they are on campus late at night traveling to and from their cars in dark parking lots. The University is crapping verbal diarrhea on this issue,… Read more »


Permits are an infringment since they require payment and approval for a Constitutional Right. Idaho needs to clean house its unconstitutional laws.

Kirk Patrick

Gun grabbers can only fit about 3-4 words into their consciousness at a time. Things like “concealed carry permit” (or “well regulated”) are enough for them to delve off into such nonsense as “mandatory concealed carry permit” and “mandatory regulation”.


No, not an alumni . . . it needs to be an enrolled student, preferably full time, with standing to be on campus in order to be expelled illegally.


Students could carry a violin case for their concealed carry firearm.


Those who perpetrate ‘SWATting’ incidents should face criminal penalties – otherwise this behavior will become a means of harassing legal firearms owners – since these incidents are becoming more commonplace.


Sounds like time for some law abiding Idahoans to start carrying cases that appear to have firearms in them as they stroll about campus. A hard side long rifle case with a fly rod inside but NRA decals on the outside could cause quite a stir. The students and faculty need to get used to seeing firearms or things that conjure up images of firearms. Idaho is a state where firearms abound. Get used to it.

Dale Allumbaugh

Just another liberal trying to live up to the dictionary term”dis·arm·en·ter (ds-ärmn-tr)”…Simple minded liberal that does not want the opposition to own a weapon but of course liberals lie about gun ownership and do in fact have guns and knives themselves..Simple, simple liberals…AND, the colleges and universities need to be thoroughly investigated with class room monitors listening to what is being taught to our children…

Enough of the propaganda, Goebbels style…If a professors does preach liberalism she/he/it needs to be kicked in the ass and fired.


Apparently this is a new tool for the ‘anti-gun Leftists’. There are incidents of ‘Swatting’ all over the country, not just on college campuses and in so called ‘gun free zones’.

Mike Stollenwerk

If a law enforcement officer even briefly detains a person suspected of having a concealed handgun – even just to demand to see a concealed handgun permit – without any reasonable suspicion of crime afoot, the officer and the university may be sued for damages, injunctive relief, and attorney fees under the federal civil rights act at 42 USC 1983 because such detainment violates the Fourth Amendment. Moreover, even if the person concealing the handgun was doing to unlawfully, the officer’s misconduct – the fourth amendment violation – renders all evidence of the violation inadmissible – in other words, this… Read more »

Old Wolf

Criminal charges may well apply under title 18, section 242, as well as 241 for the caller. The civil rights act of 1871 did not allow any deprivation of the right, and was directly targeted at those attempting to revoke the second amendment rights of any person under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom. 42 1983, being a civil matter, holds less burden of proof. Unfortunately, with our current federal government, arranging enforcement of the law has been… difficult at best, let us say? This law reimposed the civil rights act of 1866, which directly discussed the… Read more »


Matt Dorschel’s contact page at Univ of Idaho is http://www.uidaho.edu/public-safety-and-security/staff. Let him know how you feel.


Locally a news outlet covered swatting as targetting video gamers http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/video/#!/investigations/video/911-Swatting-Prank-Targets-NJ-Man/280275842 At least they’re covering it.