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Old February 3, 2012, 11:36 PM   #26
MLeake
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In post #1, the OP said no permit is required for open carry in WV. Not that i didn't believe him, but I cross-checked handgunlaw.us, and he is correct, with a caveat:

Quote:
http://handgunlaw.us/states/westvirginia.pdf From the WV Attorney Generals “A Guide to Concealed Weapons Laws of West Virginia” (Page 4) http://www.wvago.gov/pdf/brochures/2009_gunbrochure.pdf
While West Virginia is an “Open Carry” state, only residents of West Virginia may do so
So it might have been reasonable for the deputy to ask to see some form of state issued ID. However, a permit was not required. A DL or other state ID should have been just fine.

The deputy was way out of line, and probably does not know his own state's laws on carry.
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Old February 3, 2012, 11:40 PM   #27
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highvel, if the OP were hispanic, or Asian, or Maori, how would I know he was not an illegal alien?

Sorry, LEOs don't just get to stop people and ask for their papers, unless there is reason to think persons are engaged in illegal activity.

The standard would be "Articulable Suspicion."

Having a gun, in a jurisdiction where having that gun is perfectly legal, does not make the standard.
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Old February 4, 2012, 08:52 AM   #28
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If I was in the store and someone was walking around with a gun on his hip I would be concerned.
^I would be concerned if he kept touching it or was behaving in a threatening manner. But just wearing a gun on his hip? I've seen it, I've done it, its my LEGAL right to.

Quote:
If the LE saw an armed man how does he know he isn't a restricted person??
^Belief in this will result in a police state. Do we pull over random truck drivers to make sure they have a valid CDL? Do we stop random mothers to make sure they havent stolen the kids they've got? Do we stop every person wearing a turban because they might be a terrorist? In MY country, we are (supposed to be) innocent until proven guilty. You have to have a reason to believe I am restricted to bother me.

I do not believe I even have to identify myself in that situation. Am I breaking any laws? No? Then leave me alone! If you are going to detain me you'd better have a better reason than, "I just wanna check."
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Old February 4, 2012, 09:12 AM   #29
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Do criminals open carry while Wal-Marting?
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Old February 4, 2012, 09:14 AM   #30
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The Officer was out of line.

The question is do you want to become a target for enforcement actions.

Local LEOs especially Sheriff Departments can make your life a nightmare if they want to.

I know this from personnal experience.

In a relatively rural county you have little recourse.

And this is the fundamental flaw in our current LE system in America. LE's run in a network above the law. That power can make us maginally safer or lead to the corruption we hear about regularly.

This said, I do highly respect the individual LEO's who do this relatively thankless jobs daily within the law. They should be commended for living under the law. I just wish the brotherhood part was not so strong that many look the other way in an unjustified arrest, harassing or shooting.
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Old February 4, 2012, 11:26 AM   #31
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And this is the fundamental flaw in our current LE system in America. LE's run in a network above the law. That power can make us maginally safer or lead to the corruption we hear about regularly.
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Old February 4, 2012, 11:36 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by comn-cents
When were his rights violated? I have the right to drive down the street, and if a cop pulls me over they are not violating my rights.
His rights were violated because the deputy had no justification to stop him. Police officers can't just stop people at random. If they want to pull over a vehicle, there has to be a reason. It may be speeding, it may be a burned out light, it may be that they ran the plate and the number belongs on a yellow Ford rather than a blue Toyota -- but they have to have a reason.

Same for people. In order for a police officer to conduct an investigative stop, he must have (according to U.S. Supreme Court dicta) "a reasonable suspicion, based on clearly articulable facts, that a crime has been committed, is being committed, or is about to be committed."

So, in a state where unlicensed open carry is legal, how can the simple fact of open carrying a handgun provide any "reasonable suspicion based on clearly articulable facts" that there's a crime afoot? What's the crime? What are the clearly articulable facts?

Answer: There weren't any -- ergo, the deputy violated his civil rights by "investigating" him for a non-crime.

Quote:
Originally Posted by teeroux
Well you have a permit for concealed carry but open carry. You can't blame a cop for giving you some attention when you could have otherwise avoided it.

The police enforce the law and are concerned with public safety. I would be more worried if an officer didn't stop and interview the only person in a public setting with a pistol. JMHO
See above comments directed toward comn-cents. The Op was not breaking any law, therefore the deputy had NO LEGAL RIGHT to stop and detain him. Whether or not open carry makes you uncomfortable, in WV it is legal. That's the law.

I am uncomfortable when a shaggy biker in raggedy leather on a Harley-Davidson with no mufflers is behind me or beside me in traffic. Does that mean I should be able to call a cop and have the biker detained? (Actually, that's not even a fair example, because the lack of a muffler would be justification.) The key point in your post is that the police "enforce" the law. They can't make it up. Open carry is legal in WV. The police cannot detain people arbitrarily for engaging in LEGAL behavior.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy88Fingers
It seems that asking to see your CCW was fair.
Why, if a permit isn't needed to open carry? That's like asking someone standing next to a parked car in a parking lot to see their driver's license.

Last edited by Aguila Blanca; February 4, 2012 at 11:45 AM.
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Old February 4, 2012, 11:51 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by MLeake
So it might have been reasonable for the deputy to ask to see some form of state issued ID. However, a permit was not required. A DL or other state ID should have been just fine.
You have a valid point -- to a point -- but I disagree with your conclusion.

Even if open carry is lawful only for WV residents, what gives the deputy any "clearly articulable facts" on which to base a "reasonable suspicion" that the OP might NOT have been a WV resident?
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Old February 4, 2012, 12:19 PM   #34
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Quote:
If I was in the store and someone was walking around with a gun on his hip I would be concerned.
If open carry is legal why would you be concerned? If you are afraid of people with guns why are you on a gun board?

OP has a legitimate complaint, he was being harassed by a deputy who did not like people carrying openly and he was trying to make it uncomfortable for him to discourage him from doing it again. It's moral morons like him that make laws necessary to reinforce our rights to bear arms. It's people like you that reinforce the attitudes of people like that deputy that he is doing the right thing even though he is wrong.
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Last edited by Old Grump; February 4, 2012 at 12:24 PM.
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Old February 4, 2012, 02:42 PM   #35
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I carried a long gun into walmart. Wanted to see if a scope would fit it. No second looks.

Why should a properly holstered hand gun be any different?
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:04 PM   #36
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in my opinion it was incredibly stupid for the officer to detain you for open carrying while he had a small child with him. all it takes is stopping the wrong person at the wrong time and tragedy. its very poor tactics.
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:05 PM   #37
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This open carry and concealed carry is new to me. Why advertise you have a gun, does that not give an attacker an advantage. He knows you have a gun he is not going to give you a chance to use it. If you have it concealed then you can have the advantage.
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:13 PM   #38
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I asked again if I was being detained and he said "No" I asked if I was free to go and he again told me "No"
IMHO, that's where you made your mistake. When he said "No" the first time, the conversation was over and you should have left without a word (or maybe just said "Good day" and left)
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:18 PM   #39
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If open carry is legal why would you be concerned? If you are afraid of people with guns why are you on a gun board?
I agree with the old grump on that point.

However, whatever the legalities of this case, I think it does point out some of the issues associated with open-carry in a society where the majority of people don't carry, and many people associate carrying guns with potential criminal/sociopathic behavior.

Concealed carry simply avoids all the panic and misunderstanding some people experience when "a man with a gun" is around, and gives a tactical advantage to the carrier where a weapon might be needed.

Just because someone can open-carry, doesn't always mean it's a good idea to do so. Just my opinion.
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:33 PM   #40
Aguila Blanca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparks1957
Just because someone can open-carry, doesn't always mean it's a good idea to do so. Just my opinion.
That's a debate that won't be settled in what's left of my lifetime, but it's a different question. The question for THIS thread is whether or not the deputy had a right to do what he did, and I think the answer pretty clearly is, "No, he did not."
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Old February 4, 2012, 03:47 PM   #41
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Yes, from the information given in the OP, it certainly sounds like the sheriff violated this man's rights. It's a shame he didn't get the officer's name; good luck getting any information on his identity at this point.

Still points out the problems associated with open carry, however. The issues are connected.
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Old February 4, 2012, 07:15 PM   #42
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I think he could find out who this over-reactive idiot was with a little detective work and a few phone calls. For my money, I'd go forward and try my darndest to find out who he was ... and then make his life difficult.

That's just me ... I have attitude.
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Old February 4, 2012, 08:25 PM   #43
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Hearing about the situation just helps the rest of us be prepared to address it ourselves, should any of us be so unfortunate as to have to deal with someone ill-informed and possibly on a power-trip such as the OP came across.
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Old February 5, 2012, 02:19 AM   #44
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Aguila Blanca, notice in the post you quoted I said it "might have been reasonable" for the deputy to ask for any state issued ID, not that it would have been reasonable.

And, in the following post, I had pointed out the requirement for articulable suspicion.

I don't mind being quoted, but please take note of what I'm saying, in total.
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Old February 5, 2012, 08:47 AM   #45
Sparks1957
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That's just me ... I have attitude
.

An admirable quality. I know I would be tracking down the identity of this deputy, and exploring my legal options against him. What he did appears to be so wrong on so many levels, but then we don't know the whole story.
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Old February 5, 2012, 02:46 PM   #46
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I only wish we had this kind of problem here. If this happened here you would be in jail. They would go to your house and take all your guns. That's if they didn't shoot you 1st. We live in a high crime area and are told we cant protect ourself with a gun. Sweet home Chicago...
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Old February 5, 2012, 03:22 PM   #47
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They can't make it up. Open carry is legal in WV. The police cannot detain people arbitrarily for engaging in LEGAL behavior.
An officer can detain a person if they have resonable suspicion that a crime has been or is about to be commited.

Also if the officer can articulate that the area is high in crime or that in his experience for the area most persons armed are criminaly armed that gives him resonable supicion.
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Old February 5, 2012, 03:35 PM   #48
AH.74
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An officer can detain a person if they have resonable suspicion that a crime has been or is about to be commited.
And in this case, buying ammo at walmart does nothing to give the power-tripping off-duty deputy any reason to have suspicion. Reasonable or not.
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Old February 5, 2012, 04:04 PM   #49
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Who said it was the buying of the ammo? I wasn't there it could have been something he heard said along with him being armed. As far as I'm concerned the guy was stopped, turned out to be doing nothing wrong, and he left. Everyone around here makes it like he was part of the inquisition.

More like the power tripping of OC is turned into insecurity when someone gets attention for it.
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Old February 5, 2012, 04:12 PM   #50
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More like the power tripping of OC is turned into insecurity when someone gets attention for it.
I was kinda thinking the same thing.
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