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Thread: Duty to inform in the news

  1. #1
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    Duty to inform in the news

    I happened across this news story while doing a search on the recent Oklahoma open carry bill.
    http://www.wmtw.com/news/police-remi...m-law/38660894

    It’s been nearly six months since Maine’s Constitutional Carry law took effect, and police officers are reminding gun owners of an important part of the law, that if broken, could cost up to $100.
    Is this a problem? Are people failing to inform when required? How many people have been charged with violating this law since it has been passed?

    This is a stupid provision in the law, either you have the right to carry or you don't. If you must inform then it fails on the "constitutional carry" that it claims to be. We have the right to remain silent, or so I thought, but this law requires you surrender your right to silence or your right to keep and bear arms.

    To me "constitutional carry" means the law is silent on the keeping and bearing of arms since anything not prohibited is permitted. This law in Maine fits the definition of "permitless carry" since it has a provision to carry without a permit but places restrictions upon that carry. It seems to me that enforcement of this duty to inform is nearly impossible to enforce. If someone has been fined under this law then I'd like to know the circumstances on how that someone got caught.

    Here's something in that article that caught my attention:
    Police said anyone who is pulled over should stop, turn the car’s dome light on, put their hands on the steering wheel and calmly tell the officer they are carrying a concealed weapon and where they are keeping it.
    Perhaps I am mistaken but nothing in the law requires a person to state where the weapon is being kept, but then asking the police on how a law should be read is generally a bad idea.

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    Don't forget your duty to inform him of you 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th,etc...amendment rights too !

    Unfortunately these "duty to inform laws" run afoul of even the 5th amendment ... let alone your natural rights.

  3. #3
    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    it does not appear that Maine-e-acs are all worked up over this topic.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    it does not appear that Maine-e-acs are all worked up over this topic.
    I recall that quite a few were worked up about this when this law was a bill being debated in the legislature. This issue, along with the change of the age requirement to 21 years of age, was close to derailing the bill completely. It seems a lot of people fought hard to get this provision in law against considerable resistance. Perhaps my recollection is not quite correct.

    Perhaps no one is worked up about this because no one has been charged, which shows the high probability that this provision in the law is unenforceable. Seems to me that if a person is stopped by law enforcement that this action implies one is a suspect, suspects have the right to remain silent or so I thought. I seem to recall a rather nonsensical court ruling that held one does not have the right to silence until they inform the officer that they wish to remain silent. How anyone might come to that conclusion is boggling.

    Again, perhaps no one is worked up about this because no one has been charged. Then I must ask, why this news article then? What compelled the police to want to remind people of their duty to inform?

    Anyway, I happened across this news article while looking for something else and remembered there being a debate over this. I thought this news article might bring about a bit of discussion and perhaps compel a few people to fix this flaw in the law. If for some reason there is no one that sees this as a bug, or even sees it as a feature, then I suppose I'm not going to get much of a discussion out of it.

    I'm subscribed to this thread and I'm willing to debate as time allows. If no one cares to comment then I guess this thread will just fade into the archives.

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    The few comments posted at the article could lead one to believe that it is not a topic that Maine-e-acs are all worked up over. The sad part is that OC, and its applicability to the law, is not mentioned.

    If the law is "must inform if CC w/o a CCW license" then the law does not make "not informing" a violation if a CCW license is possessed or when OCing. Though, in Maine is OCing outside of a vehicle subsequently, and magically, transform into CCing once your butt hits the driver's seat?

    I guess it is "nice" that a top cop is concerned for your legal well being...I guess.

    You are correct, Maine-e-acs will need to post here to give us their take on this issue and hopefully they will inform us as to the extent of the outrage over this law in Maine.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    If the law is "must inform if CC w/o a CCW license" then the law does not make "not informing" a violation if a CCW license is possessed or when OCing.
    I'm not sure I follow, can you explain what you mean again? If I follow correctly one would think that carrying and failing to inform without a permit would be a violation of the CC law, a misdemeanor. Instead it is a civic violation, much like a traffic ticket, which is punished with a fine.

    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    Though, in Maine is OCing outside of a vehicle subsequently, and magically, transform into CCing once your butt hits the driver's seat?
    Much like how one is magically a criminal for putting a coat over their open carry weapon? Well, not a criminal any more just a... "civil violator"?

    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    I guess it is "nice" that a top cop is concerned for your legal well being...I guess.
    This gets back to my original question, what prompted the cop to make this statement? Is he tired of running out of ink for writing so many tickets?

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    “It requires the individual that is carrying concealed that does not have a permit to carry concealed that they have to notify the officer immediately upon contract that they are carrying concealed,” Westbrook Police Chief Janine Roberts said.
    If this statement is true, then the next question is: Must I inform if I have a CCW permit?
    Then the next question is: Must I inform if I am OCing?
    Then the next question is: If in a vehicle are you now CC (because no cop has x-ray vision) vs. OC before you got in a vehicle?

    Some states, I think, consider you to be CCing in a vehicle even if you were in your b-day suit, with you gat on string around your neck, because Johnny Law don't have x-ray vision. Some states require a permit to carry on your hip a loaded gat, CC or OC, while in a vehicle.

    Maine-e-acs will need to chime in and toss us a bone.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    If this statement is true, then the next question is: Must I inform if I have a CCW permit? ...
    Anyway, Chief Janine is anti-liberty by enforcing this law. If there is no duty to inform, if you have a CC permit, then how does Johnny Law deduce that you are CCing if ya don't inform.

    Or, are some Maine-e-acs informing because they like telling a cop they have a gun on their hip?
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

  9. #9
    Regular Member Grundi's Avatar
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    Not really that big of a deal...

    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    Anyway, Chief Janine is anti-liberty by enforcing this law. If there is no duty to inform, if you have a CC permit, then how does Johnny Law deduce that you are CCing if ya don't inform.

    Or, are some Maine-e-acs informing because they like telling a cop they have a gun on their hip?
    The law is specific that a permitless cc'er must inform a law enforcement officer "that" they're cc'ing but not "where" they're cc'ing. However, not every encounter requires the cc'er to enform the leo, only during certain encounters.

    As has previously been mentioned, it's not quite constitutional carry. Due to our legislature houses having split control (conservatives/liberals - with a sizable liberal number supporting 2A rights) a compromise had to be offered in order to get the law passed - duty to inform was part of that compromise. Everyone (liberals and conservatives both) "understood" that this would be revisited.

    And, no, there haven't been any published citations of anyone violating this provision. There have been a few "disallowed persons" caught carrying, but that's a whole 'nother story.

    PS (in a friendly, but disturbing tone) the correct spelling is Mainiac and all that implies...
    Last edited by Grundi; 04-08-2016 at 01:22 PM.

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    Grundi speaks the truth, those of us on the 2A side of the fence here in Maine aren't real wound up about the must inform clause. I have been stopped while driving to a job, myself and my coworker had our handguns in the upper compartments over the window visor. We said nothing to indicate they were present and it was strictly a license and registration kind of event. But both of us have the plastic state issued CCP. So we don't have to inform.

    I welcome the constitutional carry thing as a great way for people to get in on the ground floor so to speak. Now there is less reason to not buy a gun, because they can begin to bring it with them. Getting used to having it close by at all times. Not at home gathering dust in a drawer or nightstand. Those people can begin to make life safer for themselves and possibly those around them. I'm much more comfortable shopping where I see the clerk behind the counter and other shoppers with me all peaceably armed.

    Oh and yes, we are very much a "hold my beer and watch this" kind of state. It's MAINIAC.
    Last edited by AnselHazen; 04-08-2016 at 11:03 PM.

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    Regular Member Grundi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnselHazen View Post
    Grundi speaks the truth, those of us on the 2A side of the fence here in Maine aren't real wound up about the must inform clause. I have been stopped while driving to a job, myself and my coworker had our handguns in the upper compartments over the window visor. We said nothing to indicate they were present and it was strictly a license and registration kind of event. But both of us have the plastic state issued CCP. So we don't have to inform.

    I welcome the constitutional carry thing as a great way for people to get in on the ground floor so to speak. Now there is less reason to not buy a gun, because they can begin to bring it with them. Getting used to having it close by at all times. Not at home gathering dust in a drawer or nightstand. Those people can begin to make life safer for themselves and possibly those around them. I'm much more comfortable shopping where I see the clerk behind the counter and other shoppers with me all peaceably armed.

    Oh and yes, we are very much a "hold my beer and watch this" kind of state. It's MAINIAC.
    Thank you, AnselHazen, for your reply and help.

  12. #12
    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Many thanks Grundi and AnselHazen for your insights and information.

    I understand, thanks to AnzelHazel, that a permit holder, "Mainiac" only I presume at this point, is not required to inform.

    I remain unknowing for OCing in a vehicle and whether or not carry in a vehicle OC or CC is always considered CC due to a cop not having x-ray vision.

    Grundi, my humble thanks for the correction.

  13. #13
    Regular Member Grundi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    I remain unknowing for OCing in a vehicle and whether or not carry in a vehicle OC or CC is always considered CC due to a cop not having x-ray vision.
    Good question and an important one.

    In Maine, firearms inside vehicles are handled differently.
    - long guns/rifles - with or without a cc permit - cannot be loaded, with 2 exceptions - amputees hunting from their vehicles or you are in the process of entering/exiting the vehicle and are using a seat as a loading/unloading area.
    - handguns - with a cc permit - loaded and on your person, on the seat, in the glovebox, wherever - no duty to inform; without a cc permit, same, except with a duty to info the leo during traffic stops or being arrested.

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    Arrow

    I was on my way to work in the early AM a few months back and the roads were glazed with freezing rain, when I slide off the road and ended up perched
    on a guardrail. When a LEO arrived on scene I let him know i had a firearm in my car. He said said " yea, well who in Maine doesn't" and was not concerned. I don't have a problem with the duty to inform, as I needed to remove the firearm from my car before it was towed to the towing companies lot, and of course a responsible person would not want to leave a loaded handgun somewhere where others would have access to it.

    While waiting for the tow truck the LEO asked "what type of firearm, do you mean, like a long gun?" I said "no, a handgun, and I just wanted you to know as I will need to remove it from my car before its towed."

    I have no problem with it for three reasons:

    1. I'm a law abiding citizen and have nothing to hide
    2. When I pull it out of the car and put it on my person, I don't want him looking over and thinking all the sudden I'm a threat and he draws his firearm on me.
    3. I'm sure the last thing the LEO community wants is to be surprised/put in a situation where they are not sure if you are a threat an accidentally harm you when you have done nothing wrong.


    Before the permitless carry was passed it was a pain to open carry: get in the car, unload, put the mag in the glove box, put the gun on the seat. Then when you stop somewhere, grab the mag and gun, get out of the car, slap the mag in and rack it, holster it and get situated. Walk in the conv store, go back to car and repeat. I don't like standing there with firearm in hand loading it while others are pulling up next to you in the parking lot.

    It was a gray area of loading and unloading in the car, and i don't like standing there next to my car doing it. I'll admit that if i pulled into a parking lot and a cop was standing there or getting out of his cruiser with an unholstered firearm, my first thought would be "somethings going down here"

    So now I don't have to deal with all that. I holster it when i leave the house and if its concealed or not I can hop in the car and go about my biz with no issues and its less cumbersome to carry. I prefer the cross draw position as its more comfortable when seated, with my left hand in coat pocket it easily conceals my standard size M&P and adds a little extra protection if needed to control access from someone trying to grab from behind while having my strong side free it needed to keep someone at bay while protecting from someone trying to grab. Anyone that's trying to guess if you're armed its harder to tell because it's not really a lefty or righty standard holster position.

    So yes I guess when you OC, the minute you get in your car it's CC.
    The CCP in Maine gets you a few extra privileges:
    1. With a CCP you have the right to leave your firearm concealed in your locked car at work. Without it you cannot if your employer prohibits firearms on their property
    2. State parks are off limits for CC unless you have a CCP
    3. Duty to inform not required for CCP holders
    4. Reciprocity in other states with CCP
    Last edited by USNVet; 06-15-2016 at 09:49 PM.

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    I'm not from Maine, but Ohio, and our laws differ somewhat but for those who think there is nothing wrong with a requirement to notify haven't come across an LEO that's anti-carry.

    Then there's the times when one might "forget" to inform for one reason or another. I'm not talking about having some ill intent or whatever, just plain forgetting to inform and all of a sudden , your a criminal because of it. Then there's the cop that's not up on the carry laws that threaten to arrest you for not informing , when you are NOT required to do so.

    If a LE officer what's to know if your carrying it should be "their" responsibility to ask, instead of it being "our" "duty" to inform.

    Having the duty to inform on "our" backs is uncalled for, not to mention putting "us" in a possibly dangerous situation also.

    I've been threatened w/ arrest in Ohio for for not notifying while OCing, when in Ohio it's not required when OCing ,(outside of a motor vehicle).

    Notification is not just some simple inconveinence, it can lead to a lot of headaches for US !

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    Since you don't know 100% if CAN carry at any location , the duty to notify violates your 5th amendment right against self-incrimination.

    of course legislators and courts don't care anymore about the constitution ... only YOU can defend your rights

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3FULLMAGS+1 View Post

    If a LE officer what's to know if your carrying it should be "their" responsibility to ask, instead of it being "our" "duty" to inform.
    !
    and the same 5th amendment response applies to that situation as well.
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