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Thread: Lehigh Valley Mall - According to a LEO I'm an "extremist"

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    For those in the Allentown area here's a notice for you. The Lehigh Valley Mall has a no firearms policy. While there are no signs at the entrances of the 3 major department stores at the 3 corners of the mall, signs are posted (out of plain sight of course) stating rules of the mall.

    Ran into 2 LEO's who gave me somewhat of a hard time about the OC laws and gun laws in pa in general. Both knew a little about the gun laws but one officer was firm in his position that open carry was illegal in PA and that you needed a Concealed carry permit to carry in pa. My answer, a simple CCW's dont exist in PA, its a LTCF and it is not required to carry a firearm, only to carry a firearm concealed etc etc. Naturally though he persisted that it was illegal and while taking my information I stated that I would comply although I'm not required by law to give it. After asking why he needed my information his response was "I like to know who the extremists are". I kept my composure as the other officer stated to the one that open carry was allowed in PA but his words fell on deaf ears. This is a shortened version of the story but basically the gist is LVM = no guns and not all but some Whitehall Police are not fully educated on PA's gun statutes.

    ::shrugs:: I guess I wont be shopping at LVM anymore until the policy of "criminals welcome" is changed.

    EDIT Addional information: Some here have assumed I was carrying at the time. I was not. My intent was simply to find out the code of conduct for LVM as well as any restrictions on firearms prior to OCing in the Mall. To Shooter_tx they were the officers who are on post in the mall to assist mall security so yes LEO's. Skuggi- explain what you mean by "card catalog". I doubt there was a report filed as I was not open carrying just simply inquiring as to the mall's policy. The officer more than likely took offense to my firm stance that he was incorrect about OC laws and I feel attempted to intimidate me. Its kind of like telling a manager they dont know how to manage or a trucker that they cant drive. Telling a LEO that they dont know the law is a huge insult. Warranted insult yes but to them its almost like spitting in their face. Still I feel that he will check into the laws in an attempt to prove himself right to the other officer and be sadly mistaken. If someone else wants to gungho their way into a fight with a LEO over gun laws be my guest. I have other liabilities as FP that mean I must make every effort to maintain a decent relationship with government workers/police etc.

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    extremists, for carrying a gun ? wow,,now ive heard them all

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    You need to file a freedom of information act to get the incident


    I am also hoping you got the bad cop's name or/and badge #. Along with the good cop. When they get your name, you get theres! If you oc you should have either tape records or/and pen/paper (or blackberry these days) to get this info.

    If I was you I would file a compliment for good cop who knew law & complaint for bad cop who called you extremist.

    As there boss (taxpayer, speeding ticket payer, etc), it's your job to educate them the govt employee when the govt fails to do so

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    Do you at least have the officers name? If not, try and get that report. You can also go down to the station, that information he took from you probably wound up in the stations Card Catalog.

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    In Pennsylvania it's not an FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) request, but rather a RTKL (Right-to-Know Law) request.

    The link here (http://www.celdf.org/ProgramAreas/Gr...1/Default.aspx)

    shows the entire law plus a sample letter to be used.

    Various state agencies already have their own forms, but for a local police department a simple letter will suffice.

    Please note, they have no authortity to refuse to respond. Keep a copy of any letter you send, including when it was sent. Be specific as possible (time, date, location, circumstances, etc.).

    Check out the OpenCarry.org website's Virginia section to see how it's being done there over recent open carry incidents. Be proactive. Be firm. Don't waffle. If you don't stand up for your rights, nobody else will.

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    Wow. Sorry to hear this. First off, though, are you sure they were LEOs and not security guards?I just ask because you were on the premises of a mall, not that it's out of the realm of possibility to run into a "regular" LEO in a mall or anything.

    Secrettrance wrote:
    I kept my composure as the other officer stated to the one that open carry was allowed in PA but his words fell on deaf ears.
    Well, it's not so much that open carry is "allowed" in PA, as that it's simply "not illegal," but the outcome may have been a little different if you'd pointed that out.

    Also,kind of bad formto "correct" the guy who was on your side, so to speak.

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    See also http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum54/5097.htmlon how it's being handled in Arlington, Virginia.

    Those Virginians are putting us Pennsylvanians to shame when it comes to being proactive and standing up for one's rights.

    Oh, son't forget to send your police chief the Open Carry is Legal flyer that's posted elsewhere.

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    Let me get this straight... You were not open carrying but asking about OC. And the LEO took your information? AND YOU GAVE IT TO HIM?!?

    Excuse me for a second as I'm a bit flabbergasted....

    Why on earth would you comply with that?

    Or am I misunderstanding something?


    Regardless. Since you asked and he gave you an incorrect answer, combined with his taking your info and the comment about "extremists" he NEEDS to be reported!
    Please, please report him.

    Include the training memo and the flyer with your letter to the PD chief. A short letter explaining the encounter is all that is needed.

    Training mem and flyer can be downloaded here:
    http://paopencarry.org/downloads.html



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    Skuggi- explain what you mean by "card catalog".

    Many police departments have what's called a "Field Interview" form they use. Filled out when they have contact with someone and they feel the contact should be documented but it didn't generate a formal report. Most purge these forms after about 90 days. The purpose is to have something to reference IF something bad happens in that same area. Gives them a starting point for suspects or information gathering.

    Is it right?? Don't know...
    CZ 75B 9mm, Ruger P94 .40 S&W, Bersa Thunder .380, AR-15 Homebuild

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    j2l3 wrote:
    Skuggi- explain what you mean by "card catalog".

    Many police departments have what's called a "Field Interview" form they use. Filled out when they have contact with someone and they feel the contact should be documented but it didn't generate a formal report. Most purge these forms after about 90 days. The purpose is to have something to reference IF something bad happens in that same area. Gives them a starting point for suspects or information gathering.

    Is it right?? Don't know...
    Thanks I appreciate the response on that. Part of the reason also that he requested my info was that I had been wearing my FPO badge on my belt but our dept does not issue formal credentials. People getting stressed out about simply asking for ID I dont understand. I understand you dont have to by law but come on. You're not doing anything illegal and you have no outstanding warrants ect, so what is the huge issue with providing identification? Anyway I guess he thought I might be impersonating a FPO which hey If he wants to take time out of his day to check thats his deal.


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    "You're not doing anything illegal and you have no outstanding warrants etc, so what is the huge issue with providing identification?"

    The problem is that YOU know you are doing nothing illegal but, as you have observed, LEO (merely due to his ignorance of the law)does not. Our rights allow us a presumption of innocence and I prefer not to volunteer any bait for a fishing expedition. It is merely prudent for one who knows the law to utilize all the protections it provides. If a LEO is going to harass you for lawful activity, let him/her be the first one to step over the line by detaining you or otherwise violating your rights. I feel the government has me on too many lists already and being on some official's personal list of "extremists" is something that I do not need.

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    ne1 wrote:
    "You're not doing anything illegal and you have no outstanding warrants etc, so what is the huge issue with providing identification?"

    The problem is that YOU know you are doing nothing illegal but, as you have observed, LEO (merely due to his ignorance of the law)does not. Our rights allow us a presumption of innocence and I prefer not to volunteer any bait for a fishing expedition. It is merely prudent for one who knows the law to utilize all the protections it provides. If a LEO is going to harass you for lawful activity, let him/her be the first one to step over the line by detaining you or otherwise violating your rights. I feel the government has me on too many lists already and being on some official's personal list of "extremists" is something that I do not need.
    While I normally agree and subscribe to this line of thought, it's fairly obvious that Secrettrance, as a LEO himself, does not. That's fine with me, and entirely his choice.

    However, were I him, I would have at least quipped something like "Well, we both know I don't have to ID myself to you, but I don't see anything wrong with extending you a little professional courtesy."

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    Sounds to me like there is something missing to this story.

    The more Secrettrance writes the more confusing it is.



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    Secrettrance wrote:
    j2l3 wrote:
    Thanks I appreciate the response on that. Part of the reason also that he requested my info was that I had been wearing my FPO badge on my belt but our dept does not issue formal credentials. People getting stressed out about simply asking for ID I dont understand.
    It's not so much getting "stressed out" about it as it is simply realizing it's a request (and sometimes an ORDER) that legally need not be complied with.
    I understand you dont have to by law but come on. You're not doing anything illegal and you have no outstanding warrants ect, so what is the huge issue with providing identification? Anyway I guess he thought I might be impersonating a FPO which hey If he wants to take time out of his day to check thats his deal.
    Fair enough, but at least respect the corollary (e.g. "What's the huge issue with NOT providing identification?"). You know, if I'm *not* doing anything illegal and have no outstanding warrants, etc.

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    While it's one thing to be opposed to things like gun registration, where the government is just getting ready to abuse the rights of individuals, it seems absurd to me to give ID for doing nothing wrong and, even more, just asking a question, knowing that a "law" enforcement officer is putting you on his personal list of "extremists". Isn't there any fear of retaliation? If that happened to me, I'd be concerned about said "L"EO watching for my car and pulling me over and searching my vehicle. Or surveying my property. Or finding ways to do no-knock search warrants.

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    Secrettrance wrote:
    SNIP People getting stressed out about simply asking for ID I dont understand. I understand you dont have to by law but come on. You're not doing anything illegal and you have no outstanding warrants ect, so what is the huge issue with providing identification?
    Why does it require a huge issue before rights matter?

    Why are LEO'sdoing anything other than being supportive of citizens whoexercise their rights?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Citizen wrote:
    Why are LEO'sdoing anything other than being supportive of citizens whoexercise their rights?
    I think this is a rhetorical question, but...

    It makes them feel weak, the bad ones. The mentality is that they are God, and that they have the power to control the lives of all citizens in their jurisdiction. By yielding power to the Law, they are pretty much denying their purpose in being in law enforcement altogether. They do what they want knowing that they have an organization behind them that will protect them as much as possible from prosecution. There are few who actually know their place in upholding the law rather than breaking it.

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