Hey, that story sounds soooooo familiar!
Thread: ID Boys Openly Carry
Rifles and rights
Posted: Saturday, May 19, 2007 - 08:05:38 pm PDT
By BRIAN WALKER
JEROME A. POLLOS/Press
Zach Doty, 18, and his brother Steven, 15, carry their firearms because they say it is their right and "a right not exercised is a right that can easily be taken away." Police have stopped the brothers twice after reports were called in to 911.
Zach and Steven Doty catch attention of Post Falls citizens, police after being seen
carrying their firearms in public
POST FALLS -- Zach Doty is raising eyebrows by taking the Second Amendment for a walk.
Doty, who turned 18 last month, has been stopped by police twice in the past month after citizens spotted him with a loaded 9mm Glock pistol in a hip holster in plain view.
No citations were issued because Idaho code allows residents 18 and older to openly carry a firearm in public. To carry a concealed weapon, you must be 21 and have a permit.
The second time officers checked out Zach -- on Sunday at Poleline and Greensferry -- his 15-year-old brother, Steven, was carrying a .22-caliber rifle in a sling on his back. Again, there was no wrongdoing because teens 13 to 17, with parental permission, are allowed by Idaho law to carry a rifle.
The home-schooled brothers said they intend to continue to openly carry guns in public on a regular basis for self defense -- both as a crime deterrent and to educate others that it's the public's right.
"I certainly don't anticipate that I'll need to use it, but I'd rather have it and not need it than to not have it and need it," Zach said. "There's no reason for me to hide a weapon."
The brothers have been to the library, grocery stores, parks and other places with the guns. They're not allowed to openly carry on school property, in courthouses or jails.
The brothers sometimes walk the perimeter of Prairie View Elementary and Post Falls High on their way from home to Post Falls Presbyterian Church, where they attend on Poleline. (Not to be confused with Community Presbyterian.) Zach was stopped by police on April 17 while walking to Bible study.
On Friday, police responded to the Q'emiln Park trails after someone reported seeing the Dotys with guns. When they verified that it was the family, they left.
Open carry 101
Zach, who recites sections of the Constitution and court cases about guns with ease, said about 12 people have approached him to inquire about the guns since he began openly carrying a month ago. Others, including some at the Post Falls Library on Thursday, appear curious but don't say anything.
"There have been good opportunities to speak to people," he said. "I make sure they know that open carrying is legal, why I carry and I encourage them to consider doing so themselves."
James Rebal, Coeur d'Alene, notified police after he saw Doty with his pistol on Sunday on Idaho Street.
"I turned back so that my wife could verify what I saw," Rebal said. "He was very nicely dressed and I saw nothing to be concerned about other than the weapon. It's not something you see in Idaho. Virginia Tech was fresh in my mind, and I thought it was better to err on the side of concern."
Rebal said he believes times have changed, even though open carrying has not.
"When I lived in Arizona, some people would have guns, but there was no cause for concern," he said. "It was not often, but it was also not unusual.
"Maybe the world situation now -- terrorists, Virginia Tech, Columbine -- has caused that level of concern. Maybe we're all a little jittery on a national basis and I don't think that that's all bad. It's better to report something suspicious than not."
John Dunlap, commander of American Legion Post 143, said he asked Zach to leave the Legion recently at lunch because he had the pistol.
"He left and came back the next day (without the gun) for soup," Dunlap said, describing the brothers as "well-mannered."
Ed Santos, owner of Center Target Sports in Post Falls and a gun safety instructor, said the Dotys came to his business, but he doesn't sell handgun ammunition to those under 21, and a parental presence is required for teens to shoot at his facility. Santos said, however, just because the teens are carrying guns doesn't mean they are not responsible with them.
"My advice for them is the same as it is with adults -- yes it's your right and yes it's legal, but why draw unnecessary attention to yourself that is not necessary or just because you can?" Santos said. "My hope for anyone who possesses a gun is that they know the basic ground rules of gun safety."
Openly carrying guns is allowable in many states, but Santos said he wonders if having guns in plain view on city streets while just being out and about was the intent of the law writers.
"I believe the intent was to allow it more for hunting and recreation," Santos said.
Zach said he completed a gun safety course in Washington several years ago before he obtained his hunting license.
Open carry reasons
Zach said he's not a radical or paranoid and believes it is not necessary for everyone to openly carry.
"If I was an extremist, our founding fathers would all be extremists," he said, adding that he hopes to start an open carry group. "Without them, we wouldn't have our independence. We'd be a disarmed British system of feudal subjectivity."
Steven said he carries the rifle for self-defense, because it's legal and "to just do it."
"I haven't done it too much, but I'll continue to do it," he said.
The brothers' father, Jude, said he's proud of his sons for exercising their rights.
"None of my seven youth have even shot out a window with a BB gun, but you're more responsible when you walk with your liberties," he said.
Zach said a female cousin and her friend were recently held hostage and molested, so his feelings about carrying a gun as a deterrent has hit close to home. Serious crime happens even in areas that appear to be safe, he said.
"You never expect crime anywhere," he said. "It's not that I'm afraid or paranoid; I just want to be prepared."
He argues that some tragedies such as Virginia Tech could be minimized if open carry was more prevalent, adding that those at scenes can respond quicker than police.
Zach said another reason for open carrying is a "test."
"I'm trying to test to see if the Constitution means anything," he said. "Part of the issue is to test to see exactly how much freedom we have in this nation."
He said the second time police stopped him, it appeared to be harassment because one of the officers indicated he recognized Zach from the previous encounter.
"It's the job of the law to protect people trying to exercise their rights," Zach said.
He believes his Fourth Amendment rights were violated because his gun was seized and disassembled for "no probable cause at all." It was then returned to him.
Zach said he intends to file complaints for false arrest because, even though he was not handcuffed, he was detained for at least 20 minutes.
"Just because (open carrying) is uncommon, it doesn't give them grounds (for a search and seizure)," he said. "(Police) contended that mere suspicion was sufficient, and I rebutted their contention by explaining that reasonable suspicion is grounds for arrest only in felonies."
Police response weapon
Post Falls Police Chief Cliff Hayes said his agency is still adapting to the teens carrying guns.
"Zach is exercising a right given under law to a greater degree than other people have in my 20-plus year history here," he said.
He said officers will continue to respond to calls to verify it is the Dotys and he encourages the public not to assume that it is them.
"We have always stopped people walking with guns in Post Falls," he said. "We check them out and see why. If he was older we would not be stopping him (repeatedly), but he looks young and all of the patrol does not know him yet."
Officers have been given Zach's picture so they can become familiar with him. Hayes said Zach did not notify police he was going to openly carry, so reports of the teens walking with guns caught the agency by surprise.
Zach did not have identification on him to verify he was 18 during Sunday's stop, but his mother responded with a medical card for verification.
"In the future, when the public calls, patrol will drive by and if it is Zach, they will just clear the call without contact," Hayes said. "We'll leave him alone unless a law is being broken."
Hayes said he has met with Zach and Jude to explain some of the public's concern and that many people don't know about the open carry law.
"This is going to alarm some residents, but it is still current law," he said. "Most of the public does not understand that this is legal."
Hayes said he believes businesses and facilities can post gun-free zone signs if they are concerned about the law.
"It is my opinion that that would supersede the guns because it would be in violation of a rule that the business has established," Hayes said.
Zach said gun-free zones don't help anyone except criminals.
Jude, who said he moved his family to Post Falls from Washington about two years ago to flee legal battles, said he does not openly carry.
"I certainly support (Zach and Steven), but I have enough battles of my own," he said. "There should be a very healthy distrust for anyone in authority."
Jude is fighting fines and penalties levied by the Washington Department of Labor and Industries for alleged violations of child labor laws with the family's home-moving business.
"We're on our third layer of court appeals," Jude said. "I'm in court in Yakima virtually every week. We went from a 5,000-square foot house to an RV."
Zach said he knows that carrying a gun is uncommon, but he's trying to change that.
"I'm just trying to exercise a right that I have no reason to hide," Zach said.
Hey, that story sounds soooooo familiar!
It's rather ironic to have them referred to as "ID Boys."
Looks to me like an Idaho version of Mike Stollenwerk in the making! And he has a brother to help, too.
That sounds a LOT like my family.. . except my parents haven't beencharge with working the seven of us yet.
Im amazed it hasn't really been mentioned that we have a great example of rifle OC and OC by a minor. Bravo to the Doty brothers.
Hey - here's an update on these wild and crazy great young Americans! http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,274138,00.html
Why'd we make a new thread for this?
This thread is to show proof that Zach is telling the truth.
Some other members in his original thread were somewhat calling him out on this.
Bravo Zach, bravo.
If I saw someone walking down the street peacefully carrying a gun I'd congraulate them for having the balls to excercise their rights!!
Uhm... It wasn't "allowed", it was never outlawed."I believe the intent was to allow it more for hunting and recreation," Santos said.
Another ignorant "gun person" trying to put OC in a bad light