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Thread: Experiences with Law Enforcement

  1. #1
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    Experiences with Law Enforcement

    I wanted to post my experiences here in AZ over the years with Law Enforcement.

    I have been OCing for about 7 years now and have had a variety of encounters with the police. Most of which were positive to neutral.
    My first encounter was back about 11 years ago when I still concealed carried. I was driving home from dinner out after a long day of painting in the house. I left the restaurant and pulled out onto Broadway in Tucson, which is lit up at night with street lights along the route to my home. I could see fine, was extremely tired from being on my feet painting all day, and never thought to turn on my headlights, resulting in being pulled over by a motorcycle cop.
    Both my wife and I carried concealed at that time. Did the usual with the cop, hands on the steering wheel and dash, informed him that we both had weapons in our fanny packs on the floor between our legs, and then handed him my driver's license, registration, and CCW permit. He was more concerned that I had been drinking and driving, which I was not. Gave me a quick check at the back of the vehicle and let me on my way. He was actually rather friendly and understanding.

    Fast forward to December of 2008. I was riding with my land lady at the time and she was pulled over by the Phoenix police. They were looking for her son and thought I was him. 2 Phoenix police officers pulled us over. I was in the passenger seat and did the usual. Hands on the dash, had my license and CCW permit out, and informed the officer that I had an H&K pistol on my right hip. Then 2 more officers pulled up. The first 2 officers went back and talked with the 2nd 2 officers that showed up. One of the new officers walked up and informed me that he was going to disarm me. Thank god I was carrying a semi-auto with a thumb safety. He had a little trouble pulling it out of my Fobus holster. Like that is really all that difficult. He then walks to the back of the car and leaning over about 2 feet from the ground on the side of the road, I see him in the rear view mirror trying to remove the magazine and unload the firearm. All I can think is this idiot is going to discharge my weapon, the bullet is going to ricochet off the rock hard ground and wound or kill him, and it will somehow be my fault.
    He finally got it unloaded, without shooting the ground or himself, and after all was said and done, he unloads the magazine and puts all the ammunition in a plastic bag and has my land lady pop the trunk and proceeds to put my empty gun, empty magazine, and the bag of ammo in the trunk. We pulled away from the traffic stop and she pulled into a gas station. I removed my gun from the trunk, immediately loaded it from a magazine from my left side, as I carried 2 extras in those days, holstered my weapon, and as we drove down the road, reloaded the empty that the officer left me with. Needless to say, this cop was a dumb A$$.

    I was leaving my apartment complex in Tempe and got distracted with my satellite radio and went right passed a stopped bus. Yep, there was a cop sitting there and immediately pulled me over. Did the usual, hands on the steering wheel, informed him that I had a weapon in my fanny pack, and handed him my driver's license, registration, and CCW permit. At that time I still carried concealed in a fanny pack. He just took my fanny and put it on top of his car until the stop was over. He then handed me back my fanny pack and I was on my way, feeling stupid of course for not paying attention.

    Fast forward to 3 years ago in December of 2010, was on the I-10 around Tucson and got pulled over for speeding. This was a Pima Community College cop and not a DPS officer. He was mad at me because I passed him on Valencia before we got on the I-10. Did the usual, hands on the steering wheel, informed him that I had a weapon on my right hip, and handed him my driver's license, registration, and CCW permit. Despite the fact that he was an A$$ to me, he never took my weapon or even said anything about it. He wrote me a ticket and wanted to lecture me, but never bothered me about my weapon.

    Just a couple of years ago I stopped in on a Thursday around lunch time to "Dick's Meats" up off of Orange Grove and Oracle in Tucson. Now it's important to note that by this time I had sold my H&K USP Compact I carried on my right hip and have gone to a double gun shoulder rig with 2 S&W M&Ps with 4 extra magazines. So to say I'm an obvious open carrier is an understatement. I'm in your face with it.
    Back to the story, I placed my order at the counter and then went and used the washroom at the back of the store. Upon exiting I walked to the front of the store and encountered a Tucson police officer having lunch. He was filling his soda. We made eye contact, I said "Good afternoon", he returned in kind. I stood in line at the counter, purchased my freshly made sandwich and left with no incident.

    Sever months ago I stopped after work at a local Gyro shop to pick up an order to go. While they are open late most of their business is at the lunch hour so after work it is pretty empty. Upon pulling in the parking lot, I pulled up next to 2 Tempe police motorcycles. As I walked into the shop, I made eye contact with the 2 officers who appeared to have just finished up their meals. One was standing next to the booth and the other was seated on the end of the other bench. As we made eye contact I nodded a friendly hello and walked up to the counter and placed my order. I'm sure they looked me up and down, and they never said anything else to me.

    My current place of employment is in a large building with just one other tenant next to us who employees several hundred people. They have a practice of letting higher paying employees go and hiring lower paying people. As expected some of those they let go are disgruntled. To that end this company hires off duty officers to walk there perimeter for security. Just last week they had a DPS officer at their location. And as I usually do after work, I walk out to my car and then proceed to put on my double gun rig. As I said in a previous post, I'm "In Your Face" obvious when I OC. From a distance the DPS officer saw me as I park closer to the building entrance.
    The next day I happen to be walking in at lunch and the officer struck up a conversation with me saying he noticed me the day before. I acknowledged that I saw him looking at me. He introduced himself and asked for my name. I gave him my first name. I did not see the need to be evasive as he could walk out to my vehicle and run my plates and get my identity if he wanted to. He asked how often I carry open and I said "Always". I did not converse with him much more than that. He seemed nice, however, I don't talk to cops as their job is to "Fine and Arrest" not to "Serve and Protect" as many a police motto says.
    In conclusion, over the years, my encounters with the police have been either positive or neutral.

  2. #2
    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    You caused your own difficulties in the Phoenix stop. AZ is NOT a must inform state and you were the PASSENGER!

    http://www.handgunlaw.us/states/arizona.pdf

    Glad you didn't get shot but if you did, you could put some of the blame on you being ignorant of AZ law (unless it was different back then).

    Stay safe and thanks for the cool stories!
    Last edited by Maverick9; 02-10-2014 at 05:43 PM.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    You caused your own difficulties in the Phoenix stop. AZ is NOT a must inform state and you were the PASSENGER!

    http://www.handgunlaw.us/states/arizona.pdf

    Glad you didn't get shot but if you did, you could put some of the blame on you being ignorant of AZ law (unless it was different back then).

    Stay safe and thanks for the cool stories!
    Yes, I was less informed then of the laws. And I would probably do the same thing today. I was asked by the officer at my window if I had a weapon and I didn't feel like causing a problem. That was a pretty unusual situation anyway so not expecting to experience that again. Thanks for the reply

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick9 View Post
    You caused your own difficulties in the Phoenix stop. AZ is NOT a must inform state and you were the PASSENGER!

    http://www.handgunlaw.us/states/arizona.pdf

    Glad you didn't get shot but if you did, you could put some of the blame on you being ignorant of AZ law (unless it was different back then).

    Stay safe and thanks for the cool stories!
    And actually, I just read the link you posted and I did not cause my own difficulty. The officer at my window asked if I had a weapon. Based on the information provided, I was required to answer. And I did. It says nothing of whether I am the driver or passenger. I was involved in the traffic stop and asked. I believe I acted in accordance with the law. Read page 8.

  5. #5
    Regular Member Maverick9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bucko View Post
    Yes, I was less informed then of the laws. And I would probably do the same thing today. I was asked by the officer at my window if I had a weapon and I didn't feel like causing a problem. That was a pretty unusual situation anyway so not expecting to experience that again. Thanks for the reply
    OH, well I don't think you said that. If he asked you, you should inform you had a permit. If you volunteered, then you probably should not.
    Here's what you said:
    Hands on the dash, had my license and CCW permit out, and informed the officer that I had an H&K pistol on my right hip
    The right course back then would have been to file an FOIA and then seek redress for being disarmed without RAS that YOU were in commission of a crime. But you were a possibly mistaken identification.

    Why were the cops after the Landlady's son? Felony? If so, you probably did the right thing by "talking". I would still have talked to the chief about your fear of being shot with your own firearm.

    Thanks for the kind reply.
    Last edited by Maverick9; 02-10-2014 at 06:00 PM.

  6. #6
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    Highway Patrol

    I was on the I-10 Northbound about a year ago when I was pulled over by a DPS officer. It was about 11 pm and I had certainly been speeding (I was not paying attention or driving safe like I should have been). I pulled off to the side, turned off my truck, put the keys on the dash, and kept my hands on the wheel. He approached and told me he caught me speeding, to which I sighed because I knew it was true. When there was a pause in conversation I informed him of my browning hi power on my hip. He didn't act surprised nor did he freak out, but did ask me to step out of the car so he could remove it. Asked if it was chambered, which it was. Hammer back, safety on. He removed it, we continued with the stop, and he returned it at the end. Didn't fuss with it at all.

    Let me off with a warning, and for the speed I was going it could have been much much harsher. I haven't speeded since.

    All in all a very professional attitude and experience. We did have a small convo about the gun, manufacture date, how it shoots, passed down from family, etc. He seemed like a mild gun enthusiast himself.

  7. #7
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    And yet he elected/insisted that you disarm and he handled your fully loaded, chambered, and cocked firearm. The handling of firearms is when MOST if not ALL negligent discharges happen!
    RIGHTS don't exist without RESPONSIBILITY!
    If one is not willing to stand for his rights, he doesn't have any Rights.
    I will strive to stand for the rights of ANY person, even those folks with whom I disagree!
    As said by SVG--- "I am not anti-COP, I am PRO-Citizen" and I'll add, PRO-Constitution.
    If the above makes me a RADICAL or EXTREME--- So be it!

    Life Member NRA
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    2nd amendment says.... "...The right of the people to keep and bear arms SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED!"

  8. #8
    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeSparky View Post
    And yet he elected/insisted that you disarm and he handled your fully loaded, chambered, and cocked firearm. The handling of firearms is when MOST if not ALL negligent discharges happen!
    THIS^^^! More a firearm is handled, the greater chances of accidentally discharging it. In my experiences the average well informed gun owners/carriers have far fewer accidental discharges than police do. This may stem from some officers becoming complacent, because they handle fireams so much...??? Whatever the case, the less time a pistol is unholstered, the safer everyone is, IMHO.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP6UvNgbqIA
    Last edited by FreeInAZ; 06-17-2014 at 11:26 PM.
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  9. #9
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    overall positive

    I have found LEOs in AZ to be professional about their interactions with armed civilians. One time they insisted on me providing identification, which probably wasn't quite right and apparently was in response to some freaking out citizens, but the LEOs were somewhat apologetic about it afterwards.

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