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Thread: Vancouver Park Sign Nazi - me

  1. #1
    Regular Member jhfc's Avatar
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    Vancouver Park Sign Nazi - me

    I'm starting to feel a park sign, Nazi-esque episode coming on.

    Over the long weekend, my GF and I went on a couple of walks in town. The first was on the Discovery Trail on the west side of I5 around SR 500. On entering the trail, we noticed signage stating firearms were prohibited. As we walked, we passed more signs. All but one had incorrect language. I thought, huh. This should have been changed by now.

    The next day, we walked on the Ellen Davis trail, entering off St. James. On entering the trail, we saw the same prohibition against firearms. Not firearms discharge as would be OK, but just possession.

    I read in this link,

    http://www.katu.com/communities/vanc...198132311.html

    that the city code was amended to reflect the Vancouver code being in conflict with RCW 290 (preemption). And yet, it seems many signs have not been updated. From the link above (now over a year old), the city was to have done this by now. How hard would it be to tape over the incorrect portion of the sign? Not hard. The city has had years to get the signs updated.

    On the two walks, a total of about 9 miles, I think I saw one sign with correct language and probably 5 with incorrect language.

    What is the process for getting the city to change the sign? Some concerned citizen may see a person OCing, call 911 and waste city/police resources, at best. Or worse, things could go very wrong if an uninformed LEO responds to the call.

    Sidebar - the Ellen Davis trail winds through a BPA facility. Any issues with OCing there? On the trail solely of course... I assume the park trail is all considered part of the public park.
    Last edited by jhfc; 09-03-2013 at 01:46 PM.

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    Just out of curiosity what is a "BPA facility"?
    Perhaps if you would use a real computer you wouldn't have to apologize for not being able to do so many things on the internet!

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    Regular Member jhfc's Avatar
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    Bonneville Power Administration - a Federal facility.

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    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhfc View Post
    Bonneville Power Administration - a Federal facility.
    A "federal facility" as in the 18 USC 930, is a building where federal employees regularly work. And there is an exemption there anyway, except for a federal court house.

    18 USC 930

    "(d) Subsection (a) shall not apply to

    (1) the lawful performance of official duties by an officer, agent, or employee of the United States, a State, or a political subdivision thereof, who is authorized by law to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of any violation of law;

    (2) the possession of a firearm or other dangerous weapon by a Federal official or a member of the Armed Forces if such possession is authorized by law; or

    (3) the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes."


    The only places you need to be concerned with are Army Corp of Engineers properties. There is a law working it's way through to include them too.
    Last edited by hermannr; 09-03-2013 at 10:51 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jhfc View Post
    Bonneville Power Administration - a Federal facility.
    Thank you.
    Perhaps if you would use a real computer you wouldn't have to apologize for not being able to do so many things on the internet!

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    Regular Member jhfc's Avatar
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    Thanks hermanrr.

    I didn't think it was an issue, but wanted to be sure.

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    State Researcher Bill Starks's Avatar
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    (3) the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes."
    As to the exception in 930(d)(3) for "the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes," please be aware that there is no federal case discussing the meaning of this specific exception to the law. While some claim it means that a person lawfully carrying a holstered handgun for self defense in a National Park should be able to carry it into the visitor's center, since self defense is "a lawful purpose," the people making such claims are not federal judges. The plain truth is that this provision has never been tested in federal court. The downside of being the first test case is that failure carries the potential penalty of federal prison. Remember that the federal judges who will determine such cases work in federal buildings, and their viewpoint may be colored by their particular circumstance.




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    Regular Member jhfc's Avatar
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    Thanks Bill, for pointing that out.

    My main concern is walking through the grounds or stepping on a parking lot. I had no interest in entering a BPA building.

    From my understanding, it is only entering a building in a Federal facility that would be contentious, correct?

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    State Researcher Bill Starks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhfc View Post
    Thanks Bill, for pointing that out.

    My main concern is walking through the grounds or stepping on a parking lot. I had no interest in entering a BPA building.

    From my understanding, it is only entering a building in a Federal facility that would be contentious, correct?
    correct

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhfc View Post
    ....

    What is the process for getting the city to change the sign? Some concerned citizen may see a person OCing, call 911 and waste city/police resources, at best. Or worse, things could go very wrong if an uninformed LEO responds to the call.

    ....
    The "standard" procedure is to either 1) send a letter to the head of the agency that posted the sign, with copies to the City Attorney and Mayor, informing them that the signs exist, that the wording is in conflict with existing law, and referencing the law the signs conflict with, along with a request for the signs to be fixed and for you to be informed when that takes place; or 2) attending a city council meeting, signing up for the citizen comment period, and handing a letter addressed to the head of the city council to the head person either before or after reading your letter (that basically says what I outlined in #1), plus enough copies for all the city council members plus the recording secretary.

    Do not worry about what some concerned citizen might do. If you are confronted by an uninformed police officer remember that the better place to argue the law is in a courtroom rather than on the street. Be polite while asserting your right, but keep in mind that there may be serious consequences for openly, actively, physically resisting the cop as he violates your rights. That's what audio and video recorders are for. Besides, why would you want to deprive a jury of the opportunity to witness a cop sticking his foot so far down his throat it starts coming out the other end?

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Starks View Post
    As to the exception in 930(d)(3) for "the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes," please be aware that there is no federal case discussing the meaning of this specific exception to the law. While some claim it means that a person lawfully carrying a holstered handgun for self defense in a National Park should be able to carry it into the visitor's center, since self defense is "a lawful purpose," the people making such claims are not federal judges. The plain truth is that this provision has never been tested in federal court. The downside of being the first test case is that failure carries the potential penalty of federal prison. Remember that the federal judges who will determine such cases work in federal buildings, and their viewpoint may be colored by their particular circumstance.


    There has been one case thus far: US v. Cruz-Bancroft
    The initial decision was correct, basically saying open carry = legal in NM, thus open carry = lawful purpose. However, the US appealed and the District Court said there wasn't enough information to apply the "lawful purpose" clause to OC. Overturned and remanded to trial. But in their language, OC is not sufficient reason enough to carry inside a federal facility. The court avoided defining what a lawful purpose is- the definitely defined what it isn't- self defense.

    The crux of the decision is this:
    First, it does not give full effect to the entire statute, which requires a lawful purpose in bringing the firearm into the Federal facility. If mere lawful possession of the weapon outside the facility were enough, then there would be no need for the phrase "hunting or other lawful purposes." Thus, the Court concludes that in accordance with the statute, the factfinder should determine Defendant's purpose in bringing the firearm into the Federal facility.
    http://nm.findacase.com/research/wfr...007.DNM.htm/qx
    Last edited by mikeyb; 09-04-2013 at 06:25 PM.

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    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeyb View Post


    There has been one case thus far: US v. Cruz-Bancroft
    The initial decision was correct, basically saying open carry = legal in NM, thus open carry = lawful purpose. However, the US appealed and the District Court said there wasn't enough information to apply the "lawful purpose" clause to OC. Overturned and remanded to trial. But in their language, OC is not sufficient reason enough to carry inside a federal facility. The court avoided defining what a lawful purpose is- the definitely defined what it isn't- self defense.

    The crux of the decision is this:

    http://nm.findacase.com/research/wfr...007.DNM.htm/qx
    So, do you have what happened to this case after it was remanded for trial? It would be interesting to me as NM has personal self defense as a legal reason in their constitution. I do not understand why that is not mentioned.
    Last edited by hermannr; 09-04-2013 at 10:12 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hermannr View Post
    So, do you have what happened to this case after it was remanded for trial? It would be interesting to me as NM has personal self defense as a legal reason in their constitution. I do not understand why that is not mentioned.
    I do not know. I'm not that good in Google-fu with court cases. But searching the name Howard De La Cruz-Bancroft only gives outdated stuff. 2008 political candidate, allegations of voter tampering or something... He doesn't show up on anything past the 2010 appeal.

    He's on the FB if you really want to know what happened.

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    Regular Member rapgood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Starks View Post
    As to the exception in 930(d)(3) for "the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes," please be aware that there is no federal case discussing the meaning of this specific exception to the law. While some claim it means that a person lawfully carrying a holstered handgun for self defense in a National Park should be able to carry it into the visitor's center, since self defense is "a lawful purpose," the people making such claims are not federal judges. The plain truth is that this provision has never been tested in federal court. The downside of being the first test case is that failure carries the potential penalty of federal prison. Remember that the federal judges who will determine such cases work in federal buildings, and their viewpoint may be colored by their particular circumstance.
    My experience has been that when a person merely carrys a pistol onto federal property in the Western District of Washington, the charges tend to get dismissed. The Assistant U.S. Attorney who handles these matters is one of the most reasonable AUSAs I have met.
    Rev. Robert Apgood, Esq.

    A right cannot be lost by exercising it. McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 3025, 130 S. Ct. 3020, 3021, 177 L. Ed. 2d 894 (2010) (citing Near v. Minn., 283 U.S. 697 (1931)).

    Although IAAL, anything I say here is not legal advice. No conversations we may have privately or otherwise in this forum constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship, and are not intended to do so.

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    Regular Member jhfc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    The "standard" procedure is to either 1) send a letter to the head of the agency that posted the sign, with copies to the City Attorney and Mayor, informing them that the signs exist, that the wording is in conflict with existing law, and referencing the law the signs conflict with, along with a request for the signs to be fixed and for you to be informed when that takes place; or 2) attending a city council meeting, signing up for the citizen comment period, and handing a letter addressed to the head of the city council to the head person either before or after reading your letter (that basically says what I outlined in #1), plus enough copies for all the city council members plus the recording secretary.

    Do not worry about what some concerned citizen might do. If you are confronted by an uninformed police officer remember that the better place to argue the law is in a courtroom rather than on the street. Be polite while asserting your right, but keep in mind that there may be serious consequences for openly, actively, physically resisting the cop as he violates your rights. That's what audio and video recorders are for. Besides, why would you want to deprive a jury of the opportunity to witness a cop sticking his foot so far down his throat it starts coming out the other end?

    stay safe.
    Thanks, I'll start with route #1. What is disappointing, is someone before me already went to the City Council and they agreed to make the changes -- 18 months ago. Getting those signs changed seems to move at a glacial pace.

    If someone was so inclined, is there a process with more "teeth"?

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