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Thread: Open Carry in City of Alexandria City Hall

  1. #1
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    Here is a lightly redacted email from Lt. Ray Hazel of the Alexandria Police Department (obtained through a FOIA request.)

    I appreciate any comments people might have. In hindsight, I know what I would do differently, but one thing I will not do differently is exercise my Constitutional rights in Alexandria.

    Thanks to DoubleR for giving me the idea to start a thread on this topic.

    And now without further ado,...



    Subj: FW: Armed Visitor at Mayor Euille’s office.

    Date: 12/1/2006 8:36:30 A.M. EST

    From David.Baker@alexandriava.gov

    To: Alexvamayor@aol.com



    FYI and Beth’s



    David P. Baker

    Chief of Police

    Alexandria Police Department

    703 838-3838 – Office

    703 8338-6345 – Fax

    David.Baker@alexandriava.gov



    -------forwarded by David Baker on 12/1/2006 08:35 A.M.--------------

    Ray Hazel To: David Baker

    Cc: Albert Tierney



    Subject Armed Visitor at Mayor Euille’s office.



    At your request, we assigned Detective Frank Schoenle to complete an inquiry into the appearance of an armed citizen in the Office of the Mayor on October 30, 2006.



    On October 30, 2006 XD Owner entered the Office of the Mayor wearing a handgun openly displayed in a hip holster. He stopped by the Mayor’s office to express his opinion about an initiative the Mayor had entered into with other municipal leaders on illegal gun use. Mr. XD Owner was not threatening, but the display of the firearm alarmed Beth Temple, an aide to the Mayor. Later in the day Mr. XD Owner sent an email to Ms. Temple asking if she had been carrying a concealed firearm while he was there. He then offered tactical advice on firearms concealment. His comments also included the statement that he thought she may have been concealing a weapon behind her back and that he thought that she was going to pull it out on him. The email further concerned Ms. Temple and she notified the Mayor.



    Investigation revealed that this is not the first time XD Owner has come to the attention of the Police Department under similar circumstances. In August of 2006 he was observed by a security officer at the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles office on Mill Road carrying a handgun in a similar fashion. The police were contacted and officers later prepared a report reflecting that Mr. XD Owner was generally uncooperative with their attempts to determine why he was openly displaying his firearm. His general attitude was that he was permitted by law to do so, and he was exercising that prerogative.



    Subsequent investigative information revealed that XD Owner lives at [address] here in the City. He has no criminal history and obtained a Concealed Handgun Permit from the Alexandria Circuit Court on [month day,] 2006. He reported to patrol officers during the DMV incident that he is employed by the Department of State at the U.S. embassy in Kuwait. Detective Schoenle made contact with Belinda Jackson at the State Department and she referred him to Special Agent Lamb at Diplomatic Security Service. After explaining Mr. XD Owner’s actions, he agreed to make contact with the Resident Security Officer in Kuwait, Mark Conord.



    On November 14, Detective Schoenle again spoke with Special Agent Lamb. He told Detective Schoenle that he had been in touch with Agent Conord, and he reported that Mr. XD Owner had twice been denied permission to carry a firearm while in Kuwait. Because of the two incidents here, and the requests from Mr. XD Owner in Kuwait, it was determined that Agent Conord in Kuwait would interview him. It should be noted that Detective Schoenle did not have the opportunity to speak with XD Owner after the encounter at the Mayor’s office. He was in Alexandria only briefly before he returned to Kuwait, and this office did not have the initial report before he went back to Kuwait.



    On November 27, Special Agent Brian Federico of the Diplomatic Security Service contacted Detective Schoenle. He told Detective Schoenle that Special Agent Mark Conord interviewed XD Owner in Kuwait. Mr. XD Owner explained both incidents here as an exercise of his second amendment rights. He was counseled to be more discreet in the future, and Special Agent Federico provided Detective Schoenle with a copy of the interview notes from Special Agent Conord.



    It should be noted that state code does not prohibit open carrying of handguns in City Hall, therefore, City Hall is not posted by signs to this effect. Mr. Brian Porter from the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney does not believe that an amendment to the state code would be attempted in the future.



    Any adverse contact between Mr. XD Owner and city staff should be reported to the police if and when he completes his assignment in Kuwait and returns to Alexandria.



    Lt. Ray Hazel

    Office of Intelligence and Internal Security

    Alexandria Police Department

    703-519-3446 (intercom #1430)

    e-mail: ray.hazel@alexandriava.gov

  2. #2
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    Geesch... Thanks for sharing this XD. So you get a dunning file, in more than one place, for complying with the local law, not to mention the State and US Constitution. I'm even morecranked-up than I was.

  3. #3
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    Why did they notify and inform your job overseas if you had broken no laws, city, state, or federal? Did you get any gruff while you where there for your actions in Alexandria?
    -Unrequited

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    XD Owner wrote:
    Mr. XD Owner was not threatening, but the display of the firearm alarmed Beth Temple, an aide to the Mayor. Later in the day Mr. XD Owner sent an email to Ms. Temple asking if she had been carrying a concealed firearm while he was there. He then offered tactical advice on firearms concealment. His comments also included the statement that he thought she may have been concealing a weapon behind her back and that he thought that she was going to pull it out on him. The email further concerned Ms. Temple and she notified the Mayor.

    Sure makes you sound unstable ... of course, that's with no knowledge of the entire incident as this seems to be very watered down reporting of the entire incident. Makes me wonder how it would have unfolded if you hadn't sent her an email...

  5. #5
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    I understand that police departments tend to name Departments like their functions but Office of Intelligence and Internal Security just sounds WRONG.

    Also, I'd like a copy of XD Owner record of encounters with Alexandria PD since they seem cool with sending it to non law enforcement personal at email addresses not controlled by the county.

    EDIT:
    I really hate this forum software......


  6. #6
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    Lawsuit time.

    Why are they conducting an "investigation" on someone whom is
    1) Breaking no law
    2) not suspect to breaking any law
    3) Not suspect to imminent commiting of a crime

    I'll tell you why...

    REVENGE. Those "public servants" involved feel slighted by being handed their ass on a plate for being WRONG.

    How DARE you be correct when the establishment is wrong!?!





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    XD Owner wrote:
    ... officers later prepared a report reflecting that Mr. XD Owner was generally uncooperative with their attempts to determine why he was openly displaying his firearm.

    Uhhh. Gee. DUH!
    He was under no obligation to answer THAT question any more than any other question the "officers" had no grounds to ask such as "why are you wearing pink sneakers?" LOL
    When you "illegally" detain you should expect no cooperation. DUH!


  8. #8
    Regular Member zoom6zoom's Avatar
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    He was counseled to be more discreet in the future
    Yeah, right.

    And what the hell does an incident in Kuwait have to do with an incident in Alexandria. Different country, different rules. Here we have an American Citizen in America (or is that ameriKa?).

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    I do not know the content nor attitude conveyed in your email to the mayor's staff person nor your attitude when confronted by LE in these reported incidents, so I am not finding fault. That said, I do know that we can make any given situation better or worse by how we conduct ourselves and we do need to hold ourselves to a higher standard, especially when we OC.

    From what I have read here, you (XD) certainly did not break any laws, threaten anybody nor create any disturbance. You may have cause for action, particularly if your employment situation is negetively impacted by the actions of the police department. Open carry (not open display) is legal in the Commonwealth of Virginia and does not have to be explained to any LE; however, I would take a few minutes to politely define the situation, and ask whether I was suspected of either commiting or about to commit a crime. If I received a negative reply, I would offer the officer my name and cell # should he wish to recontact me and advise him that I was leaving. No license, ID or permit would be offered - anything beyond that on the officer's part would seem to be a Terry Stop.

    I have today OCd in the Chesterfield County Court House - treasurer's office, tax assessor's office and public works building - and DMV on Rt 10 in Chesterfield. No problems at any time were experienced. I credit that to two things: 1) my demeanor and body language & 2) the job level education of the staff at these places. There are obviously individuals, groups and pockets of resistance to seeing open carry and we shall have to continue to do all that we can do responsibly to protecting our rights.
    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  10. #10
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    Grapeshot wrote:
    I have today OCd in the Chesterfield County Court House - treasurer's office, tax assessor's office and public works building - and DMV on Rt 10 in Chesterfield. No problems at any time were experienced. I credit that to two things: 1) my demeanor and body language & 2) the job level education of the staff at these places. There are obviously individuals, groups and pockets of resistance to seeing open carry and we shall have to continue to do all that we can do responsibly to protecting our rights.
    Isn't carry/possession of a firearm prohibited in a courthouse? Is the treasurer's office not part of the main courthouse facility?

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    vrwmiller wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    I have today OCd in the Chesterfield County Court House - treasurer's office, tax assessor's office and public works building - and DMV on Rt 10 in Chesterfield. No problems at any time were experienced. I credit that to two things: 1) my demeanor and body language & 2) the job level education of the staff at these places. There are obviously individuals, groups and pockets of resistance to seeing open carry and we shall have to continue to do all that we can do responsibly to protecting our rights.
    Isn't carry/possession of a firearm prohibited in a courthouse? Is the treasurer's office not part of the main courthouse facility?
    i had the same question

  12. #12
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    The part of the court house that I was in is not where the "courts" are - it is like carrying in City Hall (Richmond) and is perfectly legal. I suppose that it might be described as the administration area.
    P.S. You can carry in the State Capital building too but only if you have a CWP.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  13. #13
    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    Having met XD Owner and noting his general demeanor, knowing of his position and WHY he asked to carry a firearm overseas, I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt as to his demeanor.

    Being polite in your refusal to comply with asinine "requests" (like answering why you're carrying a perfectly legal firearm in a perfectly legal manner) can be seen by some as "generally uncooperative". Would that there were more such people.
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    Tess wrote:
    Having met XD Owner and noting his general demeanor, knowing of his position and WHY he asked to carry a firearm overseas, I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt as to his demeanor.

    Being polite in your refusal to comply with asinine "requests" (like answering why you're carrying a perfectly legal firearm in a perfectly legal manner) can be seen by some as "generally uncooperative". Would that there were more such people.
    Believe me when I say, I was not being critical of XD or his demeanor. I was not there and do not believe that I have meet him. Simply, I was offering my thoughts for what they are worth generally on such situations. I too OC a vast majority of the time, primarily as a political statement. I would neither be outraged nor a meek little kitten if faced with an antagonistic LE - but I might be prudent and follow through after the fact.
    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  15. #15
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    Office of Intelligence and Internal Security?

    So Alexandria has it's own mini-KGB, huh. Figures.



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    Tomahawk wrote:
    Office of Intelligence and Internal Security?

    So Alexandria has it's own mini-KGB, huh. Figures.

    That would be the OIIS !

    If an officer is also a gentleman by act of congress than are we to conclude that this Lt. and his office are "intelligent" by some simillar decree?
    :celebrate Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Here is the email (lightly redacted) that caused "concern." In hindsight, I would have left out parts of the email. Guess what, Ms. Temple and I do not share the same sense of humor.

    10/30/06



    Dear Beth -



    It was nice meeting you today. Below is the text of my email to Mayor Euille for your information. I would still appreciate a written response.



    Oh, and were you carrying a concealed handgun today? If so, good for you! But reaching behind your back is not the most tactically sound location to conceal. As you saw, I prefer the crossdraw position. I also think it was impolite for you to start hiding your hands behind your back after you noticed my handgun in its holster since I was not doing anything threatening. For half a second I thought you were going to pull out a gun from behind the small of your back as you took two steps backwards away from me. Oh well, nothing untoward happened. You might want to consider open carrying too.



    Here is the email I sent. A reply sent to [email address] would be greatly appreciated.



    10/9/06



    Dear Mr. Mayor:



    I was very interested to hear that you have joined the Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition.



    I was wondering, has your office performed a cost/benefit analysis of membership?



    What do you believe are the benefits of joining?



    How much will this cost the City?



    Do you plan on meeting Mayor Bloomberg in New York, for example?



    Is the City required to pay dues, or has a contribution been made?



    What is the level of “gun violence” in the City?



    What additional measures will the City do to reduce “gun violence” that are not already in place?



    Please allow me to voice some skepticism about your membership in this coalition. I urge you not to spend any of my money on this coalition. If membership is for merely symbolic reasons, I am not automatically opposed since I am also against all forms of violence, including gun violence.



    But if it involves significant amount of time and taxpayer funded resources, please reconsider your decision. I believe the City can spend its money more wisely.



    I look forward to hearing from you soon and responses to my questions posed above.



    Sincerely,



    XD Owner

    As far as I can tell, my investigatory interview is sitting in a file somewhere in the Bureau of Diplomatic Securitywith no further action taken. It irritates me greatly that I was subjected to such an interview. The cost of that interview to the taxpayer was not negligible (minimum four man-hours since there were three other persons sitting in the interview - my union rep, and an Assistant Regional Security Officer as well as the RSO and myself.) The interview took so long the RSO had to take a bathroom break!

    As Pa. Patriot and unrequited say, I broke no laws. If there is an attorney out there willing to do some (let's see, is it pro bono or on contingency?) legal work for me, I am more than happy to launch a lawsuit, either over the first or second incidents, or combine them.

    The RSO is anti-gun when it comes to non-LEOs. Otherwise a very nice guy. Wish me luck when the next Ambassador arrives sometime. I'll keep asking for permission to possess a firearm in my home.

    I'm going to keep pushing this. This is anti-constitutional, but I have been hearing arguments along the "US Government as employer" line alllows my employer to deny methe opportunity to exercise my 2A rights under certain circumstances, such as when I am overseas.

    Anyway, I appreciate everyone's support. If folks back there in Virginia can let the City of Alexandria know that the city's actions are outrageous and that the municipallaws need to updated due to statewide preemption, I would appreciate you even more.

    Keep on OC'ing! :celebrate

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