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Old August 16, 2006, 11:18 PM   #1
azurefly
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What do you think of the TX requirement to inform a cop you are carrying?

Texas is the only state, that I am sure of, that requires Concealed Handgun License (CHL) holders to perfunctorily inform a cop who stops them that they are packing a gun, and produce the CHL immediately (as with a traffic stop).


Do you agree or disagree with this requirement, and why?
Do you think that it should be adopted by other states that currently don't have it?
(Let's leave out the subject of whether you should even have to have a CHL to carry a gun for personal defense in the first place. This is not a "Vermont/Alaska carry thread.")

I personally do not like it. I don't think it is necessarily the business of the cop that I am a legal owner and carrier of a gun. I believe that nothing is served by a good person who means the cop no harm being forced to tell the cop that he has a gun, because a bad person who does mean the cop harm will not be admitting to being armed, but instead will just be shooting.

So if you defend the requirement, please go a step further and explain to us the real-world practical benefits of it.


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Old August 16, 2006, 11:23 PM   #2
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It's a political stunt, and has me a bit mad . It means the cop has "more reason" to issue you a citation, or whatnot. Odds are, cops don't enjoy knowing that the person they're talking to is armed--even if it is entirely legal. They'll probably write you up for the dumbest of things, and/or have no mercy, depending on if you get a pro/anti cop. I may be overreacting just a wee bit, but I'd be very irritated. Most people don't like how I look to begin with, I don't need them to have another mental strike against me.
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Old August 16, 2006, 11:37 PM   #3
Doug.38PR
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I don't know, I have had three encounters in three different areas. Two in Texas and one in Arkansas and all of them have been good. The CHL was looked on positively and even made conversation with two of them "so what are you carrying?" But I have heard that here are a lot of bad cops out there who think they are the only ones that should have guns.

Texas is not the only state that requires you to produce. Colorodo I think does, Louisiana does, Mississippi I think does, Arkansas does, I think Alabama and Georgia do.

Honestly, I don't like this law either. I don't mean anything personal against police, but it's frankly none of their business if I am carrying unless they are arresting me. It's none of anybody's business. I personally don't think you should have to have a license to carry. Period

But in Texas you do.

If I was in a state that didn't require it, I personally might show them if I thought it a good idea under the circumstances, I might not if I didn't think it necessary.

I know there are a lot of people and LEOs in here who think you should produce it whether required to or not and they are entitled to their opinion. I just feel differently about it.
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Old August 17, 2006, 01:46 AM   #4
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i dont have the slightest objection to such legislation
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Old August 17, 2006, 02:16 AM   #5
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A good reason to inform the LEO you are carrying from our favorite LAWDOG:

Quote:
I pulled a rental car over one fine Sunday morning for making a nice little detour into the barditch.

I'm figuring that the driver either couldn't see the road due to driving directly into the sunrise, or he's sleepy. Whichever, I pull him over, wander up and have a chat with him.

Nice guy, a little snappish (which I chalk up to the morning hour), but nicely dressed in a suit and driving an Infiniti something-or-other.

It's a bright Panhandle morning, the birds are singing, my lady gave me a kiss before I headed out, so I'm getting set to write him a warning and send him on the way.

In order to write this warning, I need the rental agreement, which the gentleman has in the inside left-hand pocket of his suit coat.

This is, quite coincidentally, right next to the 1911 clone riding in the Galco/Jackass shoulder rig. Under the suit coat. The 0.45 cal M1911-type smoke wagon that the gentleman has...neglected...to mention to me.

It's amazing how much the act of reaching into a pocket situated right next to the butt of a .45 Ay See Pee looks kinda like reaching for the butt of said pistol.

Folks, don't do this.

If you do pull this stunt, consider getting a 9mm screwed into your ear whilst being snatched out through the window of your luxury sedan by the nostrils to be a learning experience in Things Not To Do Next Time.

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Old August 17, 2006, 03:42 AM   #6
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Alaska requires it. I don't necessarily agree with it being written into law, but it is good edicate to inform when stopped.
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Old August 17, 2006, 03:51 AM   #7
DonR101395
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I don't like it, but if my carry weapon is anyplace near my wallet I always tell them just to alleviate any surprises for him or me.
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Old August 17, 2006, 04:07 AM   #8
Doubletaptap
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not a problem

It don't bother me a bit.
I have been stopped and asked if I had my weapon on me and where. I just pointed and told the officer. He said ok,and proceeded to tell me next time I need to come to a full stop at that stop sign. He didn't even make me get out of my vehicle. Didn't get excited at all.
This license is a choice. If you want to get one you make a choice to put up with ALL the rules.
You don't have to get a CHL. It's not mandatory. It's a personal choice. You accept it,you live with it or let it expire and forget it.


What bothers me is the cost of the license and renewals.
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Old August 17, 2006, 04:19 AM   #9
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Eightball...actually here in Tx. the cops see you have a CHL and treat you with respect because they know you have passed a rigorous background check and on the most are a up and up good guy. Thay relaxes them and some will actually ask about your gun and converse. I have had 2 waive giving me a speeding ticket because of it and just let me go with a warning.
Most cops know if you are carrying you're legal and just trying to protect yourself from the same people they are arresting and have a distaste for.
If you were a cop and pulled somebody over,wouldn't you want them to tell you they had a gun?? I sure would!
It's their right to know. For their safety and yours.

Suppose you don't tell and the cop asks you to step out of the car and your gun accidentally falls out on the ground.
Imagine the excitement of having a scared cop with his gun on you ready to drop you at the first false move,yelling at you to get down on the ground etc!!!
They're just people too. Doing a job. Give em' a break.
Now the cops that get all weird when they find you have a gun need to be reported to their supervisors.
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Old August 17, 2006, 06:01 AM   #10
FallsGuy
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Same way in Ohio

You have to inform and produce the CHL to the LEO immediately if you are stopped for any reason. Personally, I don't have any problem with it. Worked just fine when I was involved in a little fender-bender last week.
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Old August 17, 2006, 06:02 AM   #11
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No, I don't like the fact that it is a law that you MUST inform an officer that you are carrying, but only because it means that you have to inform an officer that you are doing something legal.
Why should I have to tell someone that I am simply going about my business in a legal way?

But it's just that "idea" that I don't like. On the other hand, I understand why a cop would want to know that you have a permit for the weapon you carry.

I would rather it not be a law, but just common sense on the part of CCW carriers. If a cop stops you and sees your weapon, he has no other choice but to ASSUME that you are carrying illegally until he can verify that you are permitted, and take preventative steps to insure his own safety.
For that reason alone, even if it weren't a law, I would routinely hand over my CCW permit at the same time I gave him my license.

I'm more concerned about the day, and it's coming, that a BG hands over a counterfeit CCW license. Sure, the cop may spot the phony almost right away, and if not, he'll find out when he runs the license.
But by that time, a BG would have bought the time and opportunity to do harm.
After that happens, then police are going to be more on edge even when you are legitimate.

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Old August 17, 2006, 08:20 AM   #12
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doesn't bother me a bit

By the time they come up to my window, I expect they've run my plates and will know that I have a CHL. It is in their computers, anyway.

Given all the excitement relating to Youngest Son's assault in January, and the neighborhood problems we had around that time, I got to talk to Harris County constables quite a lot there for awhile They always ask for identification, even when they make a call to a house. I gave them both (even though these were not traffic stops) and always got them back with an "I know that" and/or a "good for you".

From the standpoint of traffic stops, as I've taught both my sons...there is just about nothing more dangerous for the officer than walking up to that car that just ran a red light. God knows who is in there and what state of mind they are in. This law simply enables the situation to be more transparent to the officer. It is for the officer's safety, and since it does not require handing over my weapon or some such, I have no issue with it.

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Old August 17, 2006, 08:31 AM   #13
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It's better than getting shot in a situation similar to LAWDOG's....

Really, it's not a big deal and in the encounters I've had so far the officer conducting the stop has seemed to relax a bit. After all, if you hand him a CHL guess what he knows about your criminal background?...

Relax folks, this is a harmless piece of legislation that is aimed at protecting both the Police AND the CHL holder. There are better things to be upset about.

True, SOME cops have a problem with it, but the majority of them don't.... after all, it's TEXAS!
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Old August 17, 2006, 09:25 AM   #14
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It's a good idea

I know most people do not want to tell the police anything let alone that they are carrying a firearm. I'll tell you what it would look like in my shoes. I have been a P.O. for over 16yrs now and have done a lot of stuff, escpecially High Risk Warrants for 9yrs. Anyway I pull you over, you go to get your credentials from where ever you might have them, I see a flash of a pistol, the next thing you will feel is the cold muzzle of my duty gun pressed to the side of your head or with in an inch. God forbid if it appears to me that you touch the gun, going for the gun or anything else that I might consider a threat, you will be dead before you even knew what happened. If on the other hand I pulled you over and you told me right away that you had a firearm I am alert to that but won't be surprised to see one. Anyway though are my thoughs, if you have nothing to hide it shouldn't be a problem. Better safe than sorry.
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Old August 17, 2006, 10:00 AM   #15
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i think the folks who have an aversion to declaring a firearm when approached
by an LEO .... is symtomatic of those with somewhat of a ego problem, or
somewhat anti-cop, or "cold dead hands' gun ownership dogma...to put it
bluntly. This issue of announcing a firearm simply pulls the trigger....and sets
off a philosophical no win response of 'rights'. Seems that, most of the time,
safety is not high on the list.

(i may withdraw this overly blunt opinion later...but right now, somewhat high
on a cold tablet, that is how I'm feeling)
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Old August 17, 2006, 10:09 AM   #16
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I offer this perspective, as a black man in this country, I would rather the officer and I be on the same page right from the door, than to give him/her any type of excuse/reason/justification to do me any harm. If I am carrying lawfully and a law abiding citizen, as I do and as I am, then I see no reason to not inform the officer of a firearm. I have nothing to hide, so, why act like it?
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Old August 17, 2006, 01:34 PM   #17
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I view it as very pragmatic to inform the officer (even without a legal requirement). There is certainly room for misperceptions and misinterpretation by the officer. I have no need to get shot because I accidentally expose a gun or the officer finds it without being first informed.

Very simple.
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Old August 17, 2006, 01:41 PM   #18
Kelly J
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azurefly , Here in the State of Missouri it would be almost imposible to not hand an officer your drivers License and your Concealed Carry Permit as unless you hav optted for a seperate CCW ID your CCW is on your Drivers License. You are required by law to have one or the other.
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Old August 17, 2006, 02:03 PM   #19
Kelly J
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azurefly, I touched on this subject once before, and was more or less told that I was totally wrong for my point of view, but I will attempt to explain this again. I see nothing wrong with informing a LEO that you are packing, but in this manner.

If stopped by a LEO for a Traffic Offence, or a Safety infraction, have both your Drivers License, and CCW Permit out and handy, Keep both hands on the stearing wheel, and when the officer aproaches the Vehicle he will normally ask for your drivers license, at that time Politely, inform the LEO that you are Packing, and have a Permit and then request permission, to remove your hands from the Stearing wheel, to hand him the License and permit, This will automaticlly put the officer on notice, that you are armed and he will advise you of the next course of action, You should take, and then follow his directions very carefully. I know that a lot of you would say BS, I AIN'T TELLING THEM NOTHING, and I understand that in some Trainning courses that people are told not to say anything about packing, HAVE YOU EVER BEEN INVOLVED IN A PAT DOWN ARREST MODE OF A NERVIOUS LEO WHEN HE FINDS A CONCEALED GUN ain't purty.

I personally think that by informing the LEO that you are packin, and are licensed to do so, does not threaten, nor does it put you in any danger from the LEO, it may put them into a causious mode for a bit, but that would be normal,and besides as someone stated, if a criminal was intent on doing te LEO harm, he surely won't wait to inform the LEO of his armed status, I would be confrontable telling the LEO.

Maybe we have a LEO here that could share their feeling on the matter, both pro and con.

Another point of interest here in regard to the hands on the steering wheel in plain view, is that here in Missouri, if you are 21 years of age or older you can leagelly carry a loaded weapon in your car as a concealed weapon, or at the ready, without a CCW permit, and I garentee you that that fact alone, will make a LEO a bit uneasy, and will aproach any vehicle with a hightened state of awareness, and caution, so it is not a stupid Idea, to keep both hands inplain view, until the situation is under control, and every one is at ease.

I would venture to say that LAW DOG Would agree with me on this one.
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Old August 17, 2006, 02:10 PM   #20
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Thank you doubletap...it is nice to hear someone stick up for law enforcement.

I would have MUCH RATHER had someone just tell me up front. Once I know they are legally CCW I can reasonably discern that they are probably less of a safety risk and probably a law-abiding citizen than others.

However, if you leave it up to the stopped officer and he happens to see a gun in your waistband that you have not told him about...don't blame the officer for drawing on you and removing the weapon from your person, even if only for the time being.

It is about going home to my wife and kids.
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Old August 17, 2006, 02:36 PM   #21
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I'd do it law or no law just to avoid any potential "misunderstandings".
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Old August 17, 2006, 03:07 PM   #22
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Put yourself in the LEO's shoes. You're pulling someone over. This ****** people off. Consequently, it's not a stretch to presume you're about to deal with a ****** off, armed individual(s).

It's understandable then that this might make you a bit apprehensive as you approach the vehicle.

Show them your not one of these lunatic people by being courteous and up front. Put everyone's mind at ease, hope for a warning instead of a ticket/fine, and go about your day.

IMO: a non-issue. Its common courtesy - required or not. It's not an infringement; it's not even an inconvenience.
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Old August 17, 2006, 03:46 PM   #23
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I don't like it, but that's the rules. So, as a law abiding citizen I comply. I will still fight to have these rules changed, but until then we do what we gotta do.
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Old August 17, 2006, 04:14 PM   #24
Charles S
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Quote:
If stopped by a LEO for a Traffic Offence, or a Safety infraction, have both your Drivers License, and CCW Permit out and handy, Keep both hands on the stearing wheel, and when the officer aproaches the Vehicle he will normally ask for your drivers license, at that time Politely, inform the LEO that you are Packing, and have a Permit and then request permission, to remove your hands from the Stearing wheel, to hand him the License and permit, This will automaticlly put the officer on notice, that you are armed and he will advise you of the next course of action, You should take, and then follow his directions very carefully. I know that a lot of you would say BS, I AIN'T TELLING THEM NOTHING, and I understand that in some Trainning courses that people are told not to say anything about packing, HAVE YOU EVER BEEN INVOLVED IN A PAT DOWN ARREST MODE OF A NERVIOUS LEO WHEN HE FINDS A CONCEALED GUN ain't purty.

I personally think that by informing the LEO that you are packin, and are licensed to do so, does not threaten, nor does it put you in any danger from the LEO, it may put them into a causious mode for a bit, but that would be normal,and besides as someone stated, if a criminal was intent on doing te LEO harm, he surely won't wait to inform the LEO of his armed status, I would be confrontable telling the LEO.
Well stated.

Law Enforcement are doing a job that is generally underpaid, under appreciated and dangerous. It is a job that I chose not to do. I respect those who choose to place themselves in harms way for the good of the community.

If an officer comes to my car after pulling me over my overhead light will be on (if it is dark), my car will be in park with, my hands will be on the steering wheel in the 10 and 2 position and I will have my Drivers license, Concealed Carry Permit, and Insurance papers in in my left hand. When the officer approaches I will announce that I have a permit and the weapon is on my right hip. I don't want any misunderstandings. I respect the job and the dangers it entails, and I do not feel threatened by law enforcement. I have always had very courteous professional interaction with LEO officers (although I don't intentionally speed so I am almost never pulled over).

Charles
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Old August 17, 2006, 05:09 PM   #25
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Michigan requires that you inform the LEO that youare carrying
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