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Thread: Most important legal cites during a LEO encounter

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    Regular Member Dave_pro2a's Avatar
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    Most important legal cites during a LEO encounter

    What are the most important legal citations (or principles) to memorize and adhere if stopped by LEO?

    For instance, I hear alot about asking about RAS. What's the specific case to cite?

    Any others that have to do with a stop, a search, reasonable suspicion or being detained?

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    I'll let others talk about Terry and RAS. I want to mention a case that not too many folks use. I am convinced that it was this case that prompted Montgomery, AL police to change their tack with OCers.

    That case is St. John v. McColley. It may have been out of New Mexico, so many think that is has no force of law outside of that State. However, considering that the 4th Circuit recently cited it in Black, it is safe to say that, while it is not controlling in most courts, it is definitely compelling.

    St. John holds that officers can be held personally liable for violating an OCers rights when they know or should have known that it is perfectly lawful. While the city and the PD retained their immunity in that case, immunity for the individual officers was pierced, and they had to pony up money for St. John. He still ended up down money, but he set a precedent we all can use. We should always be grateful to him for that.

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    Regular Member self preservation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I'll let others talk about Terry and RAS. I want to mention a case that not too many folks use. I am convinced that it was this case that prompted Montgomery, AL police to change their tack with OCers.

    That case is St. John v. McColley. It may have been out of New Mexico, so many think that is has no force of law outside of that State. However, considering that the 4th Circuit recently cited it in Black, it is safe to say that, while it is not controlling in most courts, it is definitely compelling.

    St. John holds that officers can be held personally liable for violating an OCers rights when they know or should have known that it is perfectly lawful. While the city and the PD retained their immunity in that case, immunity for the individual officers was pierced, and they had to pony up money for St. John. He still ended up down money, but he set a precedent we all can use. We should always be grateful to him for that.
    Is this the movie theater incident?
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    Yes.

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    I recommend that you do not interact with a LEO unless required to by law. Silence is golden. A recording of your silence is platinum. Let a attorney do your talking for you in a courtroom.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave_pro2a View Post
    What are the most important legal citations (or principles) to memorize and adhere if stopped by LEO?

    For instance, I hear alot about asking about RAS. What's the specific case to cite?

    Any others that have to do with a stop, a search, reasonable suspicion or being detained?

    You want to separate the after-action report analysis from the list of stuff to do during an encounter. Its two separate subjects.

    Cops generally aren't going to pay attention to much of anything you cite during an encounter. And, we've got plenty of reports of cops outright refusing printed materials being handed to them during an investigative encounter.

    Where the two separate lines cross--cites and things to do/say during an encounter--is that the rights a fella exercises during an encounter are supported by law. All the rest is pretty much after-action analysis of the legality of the cops' actions. Don't get me wrong, it helps tremendously with confidence if you know this stuff cold; but, you wouldn't be using it during a police encounter.

    For example, there is a US Supreme Court case that limits which areas of a car a cop can search for a gun for officer safety. But, you don't need to know the details because you're going to refuse consent to search the car period. You're not going to be telling the cop, "I consent to searching the passenger compartment but not the engine, trunk, or rocker panels."

    Thus, the main things to know during a police investigative encounter are your rights. And, you don't need the cites to exercise them:

    1. Right to refuse consent to searches and seizures. (verbally, not physically. And, politely is recommended.)
    2. Right to silence (modified by any state law compelling the investigated person to identify himself).

    Asking the cop about RAS can be used for argumentative purposes or to collect info for later use in a formal written complaint or lawsuit, but you're usually not going to use the information during the encounter. See why at the link below.

    The only other reason to know all your cites cold is to set up the cop. If you know this stuff really well, you can lead a questionable cop into deeper trouble. For example, lets say a cop demands ID. Now, in most jurisdictions, even those with stop-and-identify laws, there is no requirement to show an identity document during a police investigative encounter (distinguished from a traffic stop where you are required to show your license for the licensed activity), so Officer Demanding just proved he's willing to make demands for which he has no authority. Now you can give him some rope. "I suppose you want my social security number, too?" "Darn right I do, buster. Gimme it!" He just violate federal law requiring government agencies to disclose how the SSN will be used, whether you giving it is voluntary, and the statute authorizing the government agency to demand it.

    Otherwise, you can go a very long ways just exercising your rights and not being thrown off by the cops questions or his verbal sparring.

    The cop can do pretty much anything he wants during the encounter; there's not much you can do during the encounter about illegal actions by the cop--save it for after the encounter. And, take a cue from the wily cops--just pretend to be oh-so polite and a little naive. Let him do or say whatever illegal stuff he wants without protest--just keep up the refused consents: "Gee, officer, I don't think I would consent to that." And, "Gee, officer. I don't think we're supposed to answer questions without an attorney." Act like you don't know beans. Then, after the encounter launch an unexpected flying kick with a formal written complaint or lawsuit.

    Some suggested general things to say/ask:

    I don't consent to an encounter, officer. (This instantly removes the whole encounter from the realm of being consensual.)

    Am I free to go? (Repeat occasionally)

    I want to leave, officer. (A clearer version of ask if you're free to go)

    I won't answer any questions without an attorney.

    I don't consent to any searches or seizures, officer.

    Why am I being detained? (This is basically asking for his reasonable, articulable suspicion.)


    I've been compiling links to court cases and instructional videos. See the reference thread linked below.


    1. Reference thread: http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...urces-Here!!&&&

    2. Cops, OCers, and RAS: http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...e-Cop-has-RAS&
    Last edited by Citizen; 04-11-2013 at 11:28 AM.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    You're welcome.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member March Hare's Avatar
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    I just found this thread and read it and the referenced threads in their entirety, there's a lot of good information and discussion here.
    Thank you for taking the time to post all of this!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    ... Cops generally aren't going to pay attention to much of anything you cite during an encounter

    ... Thus, the main things to know during a police investigative encounter are your rights. And, you don't need the cites to exercise them:

    Some suggested general things to say/ask:

    . I don't consent to an encounter, officer. (This instantly removes the whole encounter from the realm of being consensual.)

    . Am I free to go? (Repeat occasionally)

    . I want to leave, officer. (A clearer version of ask if you're free to go)

    . I won't answer any questions without an attorney.

    . I don't consent to any searches or seizures, officer.

    . Why am I being detained? (This is basically asking for his reasonable, articulable suspicion.)
    Well done. It doesn't get any simpler than this.

    tyc

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    How to respond to a 911 call reporting an open carry

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brGoOJBZzxc

    This Youtube video provides an interesting look at how to handle a 911 call after the fact...

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    Regular Member PFC HALE's Avatar
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    Most important legal cites during a LEO encounter

    ......
    Last edited by PFC HALE; 07-24-2013 at 06:59 AM.
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