Thread: Colorado a "Shall inform" state
I am very new to the OC and CC community. I am curious if LEO stops you just for OC, do you have to show them your ID if you are not breaking any laws?
Since Colorado is a shall inform state, does that only pertain to citizens when they are breaking a law? The shall inform part really throws me off.
Mike C. Oncho
these must inform states are stupid .. cops should assume everyone is armed
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.
§ 16-3-103. Stopping of suspect
(1) A peace officer may stop any person who he reasonably suspects is committing, has committed, or is about to commit a crime and may require him to give his name and address, identification if available, and an explanation of his actions. A peace officer shall not require any person who is stopped pursuant to this section to produce or divulge such person's social security number. The stopping shall not constitute an arrest.
So you do NOT have to produce ID unless they have reasonable suspicion that you have or are about to commit a crime. If you are ever stopped by an LEO for OC and they say something like "Can I see some ID?/What's your name?" you can simply tell them no/you'd prefer not to provide any information. If they use a more forceful "Let's see some ID here" approach, ask them if they "have reasonable suspicion that you have or are about to commit a crime". Use those words or as close as possible. They will know that you know what you're talking about. The last time I used that line the LEO asked if I was a lawyer. If they say they do have RAS, you can certainly ask what crime they suspect you of committing and what "specific and articulable facts" they have regarding it, but they may not tell you that and you essentially have to comply at that point. It's best to have a recording device on hand for these situations. If they do not have RAS, you can simply walk away. If they have RAS, (I am not a lawyer so do your own research here) you do NOT have to provide an explanation of your actions if doing so could incriminate you. If they genuinely believe that you've been involved in something they should tell you what they know because they are in a position of trying to establish either probably cause or to rule you out as a suspect. If they had probably cause you'd already be arrested, especially for a firearms offense, so you'll have to use your own judgement as to what to tell them. You want to be helpful but you don't want to assist in a fishing expedition either. If you do start talking you can stop at any time. Finally the last sentence of 16-3-103 about the stop "not constituting an arrest" is only true to a point. They can't keep you there all day asking you questions and have it still be a "stop" vs an "arrest". Keep asking the magic questions "Am I being detained" and "Am I free to leave" to force the LEOs to let you go absent RAS/Probable Cause.
Or you could just come over to the "Free Side" of the mountain and not worry about it. I have had Grand Junction police and Meas County deputies thank me for open carrying.
If stopped, don't be a D. If you have nothing to hide, just comply. I don't see why everyone's so against helping keep an already tense situation from escalating.
Sent from my iPhone in between re-loads...
Last edited by Vader33; 05-22-2013 at 08:51 AM.
About your point on keeping a tense situation from escalating, I personally think it's very important for the OCer to be completely comfortable with OCing. If you are nervous and tense, those around you will be too. Know what you're doing and be at ease with it. Understand the law. Know what you will do and say if the guy on the street or the store manager or an LEO comes up to you. Obviously the only way to get comfortable doing something new is to do it, but prepare yourself ahead of time. The more comfortable you are the less tense an LEO encounter will be. You'll put them at ease by being relaxed and informed.
[QUOTE=Vader33;1941607] You make it sound so easy! Stories on this forum and other states' forums offer more to the contrary, though.
Response: I think that forum stories support the idea that some cops don't act properly around armed citizens, while citizens, at least most OCDOers, are polite but firm. This response appears to baffle some cops. I think, generally speaking, that cops are more likely than deputies to play the intimidation game because their bosses (Chiefs) are appointed by mayors, where deputies bosses (Sheriffs) are elected.
[QUOTE=Vader33;1941607] If stopped, don't be a D. If you have nothing to hide, just comply. I don't see why everyone's so against helping keep an already tense situation from escalating.
Response: It should be clear to experienced open carriers whether the LE in question is honestly seeking information or is playing the intimidation game. In 20 years of carrying concealed I was never approached by LE regarding carry. I know what you're thinking; that they can't see my pistola. Well, there has been an effort to convince people that cops will KNOW when you're armed because they have all these secret professional means of knowing.
Open carry is a different matter. I've never had a bad encounter with a sensible cop. It always comes out, in the less than favorable encounters, that the cop had a sub rosa agenda, such as intimidating me into not carrying. A2, S13 of the Colorado Constitution has no verbiage telling us not to exercise the right to carry because it might make a tense situation worse.
Be careful. I've been told by CO LEO that the "catch all" RAS in CO is menacing. CRS 18-3-206.
I know there's about to be an argument about whether that constitutes actual RAS. Don't limit yourself to the statute. Read the HUGE list of opinions that follow. The one that will be used is this one:
"Menacing is a general intent crime requiring only that the defendant be aware that the defendant's conduct is practically certain to cause the result. People v. Zieg, 841 P.2d 342 (Colo. App. 1992); People v. Segura, 923 P.2d 266 (Colo. App. 1995); People v. District Ct., 17th Jud. Dist., 926 P.2d 567 (Colo. 1996); People v. Saltray, 969 P.2d 729 (Colo. App. 1998); People v. Shawn, 107 P.3d 1033 (Colo. App. 2004)."
I added the underline. Point being. If there is a MWAG call, the LEO's will stop you and will claim RAS under this general catch all statute. Whether you believe that is right or wrong is actually completely irrelevant. This is what they will do and they will not be adjudicated against for using this.
This is different from a simple cop sees you walking and stops you mind you. In that case, RAS would be difficult to justify. But if there is a call made to the police about a MWAG, they will use this to justify RAS. FYI.
If an LEO threatens to use Disorderly Conduct or Felony Menacing against you in order to get you to ID, run your firearm's serial or make you cease your activity, let them know that you are engaging in Constitutionally Protected activities and that their attempt to deprive you of your civil rights under color of law makes them PERSONALLY liable for damages under a Federal Civil Rights lawsuit pursuant to 42 USC 1983: "Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress." They are NOT immune as LEOs from a federal 1983 lawsuit.
The question here is not whether you're engaging in permissible activity. If you are engaging in prima facia illegal activity, while in possession of a firearm, you'll probably already be on the ground at gun point or at the very least the LEO won't stand there and argue with you about RAS. They will ORDER you to comply and if you don't they'll use force. This discussion isn't about that kind of encounter. In that type of encounter they already have RAS, even if their suspicions prove false, and they are prepared to defend their actions in court.
The question here is whether the LEO is willing use the THREAT of RAS of a crime to detain, ID and search you when they don't really have it. Why does the LEO even care at this point? They are either trying to intimidate you into not OCing or they are fishing (hoping you have a warrant, stolen firearm, some other illegal possession uncovered during the encounter, etc). But in reality they don't have RAS at this point. The MWAG call is NOT RAS. The Man with a Concealed Firearm call COULD be RAS, because CC is ILLEGAL by default (read SCOTUS Florida vs J.L. regarding when a MWA concealed gun call is RAS). OC is LEGAL by default. The MWAG call (holstered OC) is no different from "There's a guy wearing an expressive T-Shirt and it makes me uncomfortable". Get over it caller. If they had RAS, they'd already be using it. They don't, but they may still be willing to threaten you. What they really want, other than to intimidate you, is to gain your CONSENT to search/seizure via the threat. This is where it's important that you are recording the entire affair and, unless you are already planning on a lawsuit, you let them KNOW that it's recorded. More than likely YOUR threat of a 1983 suit, while the entire encounter is being recorded, will be enough to dissuade them from continuing the encounter. Obviously if push comes to shove, comply. If you end up having to give them your ID under threat of arrest, you'l have grounds for a 1983 suit for an unconstitutional search and seizure. If they ID you, they'll probably disarm you which adds a 2A violation and another unconstitutional seizure to the suit. If they run the serial # that's another unconstitutional search. During each of these exercises do your best to let them know in no certain terms that you do NOT consent to this search, you do not consent to this seizure and you do not consent to being disarmed, and that each of these violations is unconstitutional.
Last edited by centsi; 05-23-2013 at 09:19 PM. Reason: grammar
Unless I'm purchasing alcohol, plane tickets or cashing a check, my driving license stays in my car. I'll never leave home without it and it's always just a short walk away if I need it. Do NOT make unwarranted, intrusive checks easy or they'll just continue and increase; such is the nature of such things, sadly.
That is the portion that will be used. Not the felony adder.(1) A person commits the crime of menacing if, by any threat or physical action, he or she knowingly places or attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
Also, keep in mind I did clarify that I was told that the LEO would not (at lease most) use that as RAS to randomly stop someone. What I said was that if there was a call made by a person that they were worried about a MWAG, the LEO's would stop you and use this "catch-all" to justify the search. And the fact is, they'd probably get away with it because the RAS applies to a general intent crime of simple menacing. This is what I was told by a LEO. I'm not arguing that it's right at all. Just repeating what I was told.
I am not arguing with you either. We're both arguing with the idea that this would be used for RAS. But it WOULD be Felony Menacing because there is a deadly weapon involved. If I threatened to tear your arms off, I'd be committing the misdemeanor, but if my threats were with a firearm it's a felony:
(1) A person commits the crime of menacing if, by any threat or physical action, he or she knowingly places or attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury. Menacing is a class 3 misdemeanor, but, it is a class 5 felony if committed:
(a) By the use of a deadly weapon or any article used or fashioned in a manner to cause a person to reasonably believe that the article is a deadly weapon; or
(b) By the person representing verbally or otherwise that he or she is armed with a deadly weapon.
Last edited by centsi; 05-23-2013 at 11:30 PM.
You walk into Fred-Mart. Some lunatic lady thinks your gun is scary. Even though it's properly holstered and the gun is not being waived and literally you are NOT menacing anyone. Lady calls 911 and says there's a guy with a gun at Fred-Mart and she's scared of you. They ask if the guy is waiving the gun around and threatening people. She says no, but she's still scared. The police will come and they will search you and will ask for ID and the whole she-bang because they had RAS that someone is menacing. According to the LEO I spoke with, they HAVE to send a unit. Even if they know it's stupid, they have to. (BTW, this is what I was told by an OC friendly LEO.) And when they get there they will do the whole search bit and the RAS will be based on menacing. The LEO was the one who used the term "catch-all".
Like I said, I'm just passing along what I was told. He may have it wrong, but I'd be willing to bet if you sued over that encounter, you'd lose.
I'd be curious to see what your LEO would say in your same scenario where the OCer had a camera and recorded the entire encounter and the LEO knew that it was being recorded.
Fail to pay your taxes? Get hit with a penalty and perhaps even jail time.
Murder someone? Prepare for non-luxury accommodations at the state's expense.
Fail to investigate a break-in, reported rape and murder after repeated calls from a homeowner?..... not so much, see Warren v. D.C.
The police no more have to respond to a report of a man legally carrying a firearm than they do to a man legally letting his cat get stuck up a tree.
The only thing the officer "has to do" is respond to dispatch; ignoring that is likely in violation of department policy as I doubt the department takes kindly to being ignored when they tell an officer to do something.
Last edited by Fallschirmjäger; 05-25-2013 at 06:29 AM.
There is pretty much no situation that you come out better off being a smartass and mocking a LEO, it just puts you in an adversarial role and demonstrates that you perhaps lack better judgement putting your ego before common sense. As someone who is carrying you should have a firm control of your ego and need to one-up others as that is a primary facet in maintaining control in a confrontation is not letting your emotions and ego get in the way of rational action.
MWAG may warrant them contacting you, but its not a RAS of a crime as your are within your rights to do so. Just because the caller peed their pants doesn't mean you were menacing them, it means they have an irrational fear and need to see a shrink. I believe someone on this forum posted about some halfwit lady going screeching insane in a store and finally being told to leave by the manager because she wanted to make a scene about the poster's OC.
There are numerous recording devices available on the market now, any LEO should expect they are being recorded directly or indirectly by bystanders in most situations. This has had a positive effect in helping clean out some bad ones from the ranks since their abuses were finally irrefutably put in front of the courts and superiors.
Peronsally it depends on the situation as to whether I'd willingly show my ID etc. If it was just a harassment stop, I'd decline. In a situation last year I consented to them chekcing my ID as there was an active situation in progress in the area and they were trying to make sure there were not other actors involved. I checked out (as I knew I would) and I was on my way home shortly after. In that situation I can understand the concern and while the RAS was somewhat general, I wasn't going to gain anything by arguing with them about it when there dozens of officers about with weapons in hand.
Myself I live in a town where the local police are better informed on OC/CC and they are glad to see law abiding citizens who are able to defend themselves and others.