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Thread: A letter to Sheriff SteveBoyer, Kitsap County

  1. #1
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    This is in response to the attention we received at the Kitsap picnic.

    The Kitsap Sheriff department went out of their way to avoid any conflict with our picnic. The three deputies that spent time with us were professional, non confrontational, and seemed to be interested in what we were doing.

    Internal e-mail from the Patrol Chief advised the troops that we would be there, and to acertain that we were actually having a picnic, NOT to engage in any 2nd Amendment discussions, and answer questions that may come up from us or others in the park.

    According to the e-mail, they had tried to contact a "spokesman" for our group but were unable to do so.

    I wonder if the fact that I went to college with the former sheriff (Pat Jones) and Cpl. Millard had anyting to do with it?

    I have sent this letter to Sheriff Boyer:

    Sheriff Steve Boyer

    Kitsap County, Washington

    On 13 July, 2008, 35 of my friends and myself held a picnic at Long Lake Park. Each of us carried a firearm, peacefully and openly as an effort in support of our God given and Constitutionally protected right to bear arms as enumerated in article 1 section 24 of the Washington State Constitution. The picnic was a success, as there were no incidents that caused or warranted alarm for other persons using the park on that day. This was the response we desired and expected.



    At various times during the day, Lt. John Sprague, Cpl. Bob Millard and Deputy Dave Anderson also were in attendance. Their presence was expected and at the same time welcome but somewhat unnecessary. They are to be commended for their professionalism and demeanor. I would expect and encourage that a copy of this letter be placed in their respective personnel files.

    As members of OpenCarry.Org, our purpose is to educate the public in general and the occasional ill informed Law Enforcement Officer, in particular, that bad guys are not the only ones who carry guns. After all, gun free zones are victim rich zones. This is not to imply that we want to be anything other than just normal persons who carry guns for their own and family protection, at the same time hoping that occasion never arises.

    I am enclosing a training bulletin from the Federal Way Police Department, and some background information for your perusal, in the hope that your department will also develop and issue a similar document.



    James R. Milner

    2730 Sherman Ave.

    Port Orchard, Wa. 98366



    I will post a response if and when received.

  2. #2
    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Nice letter, Jim. Thanks for taking the initiative on this.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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    Great letter Jim!

    I had discussed the upcoming picnic with my Kitsap Countydeputy sheriff friend and gave him one of the pamphlets after a conversation we had regarding my son's actionsin an unusual event in his neighborhood.

    One of his neighbors was going out to his car in the cul-de-sacwhen a small coyote came up to him from behind,growling and nipping at his leg! He recognized it was not a dog, but a wild animal, and hehad to retreat around his car, kicking at the animal to fend it off until he was able to get inside and practically slamed the door on the coyote's head as it was trying to bite him!

    As he drove the car over to my son's house, the animal turned and headed for another house in the neighborhood where there were kids playing outside. He described what had happened to my son, and as he called 911, my son grabbed his shotgun and raced out the door, followed by the neighbor to find the possibly rabid animal and protect the kids from being bitten as it had displayed such unusual agression. They yelled at the kids to get back inside and warned others of the danger.

    Thank God the coyote ran into the woods without harming the kids, but as my son walked back to his house a number of the neighbors had come outside to see what the excitement was about, and one of them was upset my son had the shotgun!

    He explained there was no time to wait for police or animal control as it was a real threat that required immediate response. The neighbor then called police to report man with a gun!

    An officer arrived in about 10 minutes- NOT to respond to the first 911 call regarding the wild animal attack, but to the MWG call. He was cool with it, and advised they had a number of similar coyote calls in the vicinity, and a number of missing cats as well.

    He told my son that it was a good thing he did not see him with the shotgun as he would have had to arrest him for causing alarm to the neighbor, but, in this case he determined no harm, no foul.

    That set-offtheirdiscussion regarding open carry and display of weapon laws versus a genuine need to have a gun out in public to confront a real threat, and the perception of people who do not know the specifics of the situation.

    Our deputyfriend was very impressed with the pamphlet and the website, and shared it with his supervisor tohelp educate his fellow deputies. That is probably whatresulted intheir attendence at the picnic.

    I am greatful it turned out as such a success all the way around. Open lines of communication and contact within our community is so important, and this was a great start for open carryKitsap County!

    Now, if we could just get the commissioners to order those darn park signs to be corrected...... next small step.

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    Great letter Jim!

    Ironmonger, that is an interesting story. If there is a dangerous animal running around attacking people, all laws regarding display or discharge of guns go out the window in the name of self defense... I can't believe the deputy said he would have arrested your son if he had seen him with the shotgun... That would have made for an interesting lawsuit.

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    Prior to the picnic, there was a plan in the offing by some of the "younger" deputies to hassel/arrest all participants at the Kitsap picnic. Randy Loun drafted a couple of letters and the attitude changed suddenly.

    As far as the signs in the parks and on the county Admin building, progress is being made. More will be said at a later time.


    from the county e-mail

    If possible, and if the persons are willing, please solicit the groups contact information so we can discuss further actions of this nature with them (or a spokesman). We have already attempted to obtain an email dialog with one person, and no response has occurred. We do not want to engage in confrontational actions with them, but to understand their concerns, while upholding the rights of all people and groups.

    In the event the group does gather at a park and 911 calls are received, also take the time to explain to the callers who might be present that the actions being taken by 'open carry' individuals is legal.

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    Trigger Dr wrote:
    Prior to the picnic, there was a plan in the offing by some of the "younger" deputies to hassel/arrest all participants at the Kitsap picnic. Randy Loun drafted a couple of letters and the attitude changed suddenly.

    As far as the signs in the parks and on the county Admin building, progress is being made. More will be said at a later time.

    Interesting... I don't think Kitsap County needed an instant class action lawsuit on their hands!:P

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    More e-mail




    From:
    Gary Simpson

    To: Cam Mandeville; Clinton Bergeron

    CC:
    all Patrol Its' (Cam-John-John); All Patrol Sergeants; Michael Shannon

    Date:
    7/9/2008 3:24 PM

    Subject:
    Firearms "open carry" Sunday July 13th???

    While I only have limited information, I believe you need to be as fully aware of a potential situation which may occur this weekend.

    A group advocating the ability to carry firearms openly in public is starting to become active in the Kitsap County area. They advocate that it is a citizen's right to carry a firearm openly on their person in public. Confrontations with this group in other parts of the country have occurred, and courts decisions have come about because of them. The most recent court opinion supports this right. We have received clarification from our Prosecutor's Office as to our response to complaints regarding this issue in county facilities, specifically county parks.

    Seme police departments have suggested that these groups want a physical confrontation with Saw enforcement, while some of the interviews and web site information indicate the groups don't want trouble. Since we have not had an opportunity to visit with them about it, we really don't know what their attitudes towards local law enforcement are.

    I suggest that you take time to review the web site http://www.opencarry.org and read some of the discussions, and view the interviews. The section titled 'Our Forum' has a section at the bottom for Washington, which you may find interesting. The discussions will give you an idea of the group's interests and ideas about open carry laws and restrictions throughout the country.

    The local group is planning on a picnic to be held this weekend, possibly at the Long Lake County Park on Sunday. The group is expected to be carrying firearms in an 'open carry' fashion, which I expected will cause some concerns from the general public. We expect that if this occurs, we will be receiving 911 calls from citizens, expecting law enforcement to respond.

    Carrying or displaying a weapon in an open carry fashion is legal, even in light of the fact there is a county ordinance prohibiting this. The county ordinance is not enforceable. We will not confront or take any law enforcement action regarding people (adults) who display weapons in an 'open carry' manner. However, it should be noted that while it is legal to carry firearms in the public this way, it is not legal to be intoxicated or drinking while doing so, practicing quick draw actions, pointing them at people or in a dangerous manner, shooting or any actions which are dangerous to the public. Concealing a firearm without a CPL is also illegal. Open carry is OK, concealing it requires a CPL.

    Info from Claire Bradley for the Prosecutors's Office:
    I read Jackie's memo from last September wherein she outlined her conclusion that prohibiting firearms in the county parks violates RCW 9.41.290 and .300. Fve looked at the Code and done some very cursory research myself.

    I obviously agree withJackie-- cant arrest for possessing a firearm in the county park. However, certain other Kitsap Code provision as well as state and federal laws still apply.

    1. Discharge of any weapon in the park is crime that we will prosecute.

    2. Obviously, these people must comply with all concealed weapons permits and cany the weapons In a manner consistent with state fawft).

    In light of this expected picnic, for those deputies assigned to work the south end, I ask that patrol checks are done throughout the day to see if this group is in fact having a picnic. If they are, advise CenCom and the supervisors of it. Please see that the line deputies take the time to stop and visit with the group to see what they are doing, what they are trying to accomplish and become familiar with what is occurring at the time. This is not to suggest anyone becomes confrontational or engage in any kind of Second Amendment Rights argument.

    If possible, and if the persons are willing, please solicit the groups contact information so we can discuss further actions of this nature with them (or a spokesman). We have already attempted to obtain an email dialog with one person, and no response has occurred. We do not want to engage in confrontational actions with them, but to understand their concerns, while upholding the rights of all people and groups.

    In the event the group does gather at a park and 911 calls are received, also take the time to explain to the callers who might be present that the actions being taken by 'open carry' individuals is legal.

    -----------------------------------------------------------

    From:
    Cam Mandevilte

    To: Bob Millard; Clinton Bergeron; Jim Porter; Jim White; Jon Brossel; ...

    CC:
    Gary Simpson; John Gese; John Sprague

    Date:
    7/9/2008 4:46 PM

    Subject:
    Fwd: Firearms "open carry" Sunday July 13th???

    Attachments:
    Firearms "open carry" Sunday July 13th???

    Shift Supervisors—


    I have placed a hard copy of the Prosecutor's Office opinion on restricting the open carrying of firearms in County Parks in each of your mailboxes. In a nutshell, State Law prohibits this restriction. Firearms are allowed in County Parks by State Law.

    Please read the document that I have left in your boxes and share the information with your people.

    Thanks for your immediate attention to this matter.

    CamM. #9

    -----------------------------------------------------------------







  8. #8
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    That's very interesting, Jim. Thanks for posting.

    And thanks to the KCSO for being there at the picnic. You guys were professional and nice, as Jim mentioned. I know you're out there reading.

  9. #9
    State Researcher Bill Starks's Avatar
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    Interesting read. Maybe we can modify that for use at future events where we can expect a LEO presence and send it out before hand?

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Jim obtained those internal email communications from an FOIA request. Well done, Jim! I carry a copy while I'm out-and-about in Kitsap County, just in case I run into a deputy who hasn't received them.

    On August 8, I submitted the attached FOIA request to the County Prosecutor. As soon as I get a reply, I will share it here. I want to get copies of the Prosecutor's Office memos on the subject of OC, and firearms in County Parks, thatare mentioned in the email. With that information in my hand, I will again approach the County Commissioners about changing the Parks Code.

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    M1Gunr,

    I think that is a terrific idea!

    Notifying local law enforcement in advance worked out so well this time I think it would do a lot toreduce the unknown, and lower theanxiety level in all concerned.

    They wouldhave knowledge of the event in advance and can prepare all parties that may be called upon to react to individual 911 calls. Nobody likes surprises, especially law enforcement in their area of responsibility.

    The starting point is usually the 911 operators, and having them calmly explain to a panicked caller that it is really OK for law-abiding citizens to carry a gun in a holster out in public goes a long way towards our ultimate goal - education of our neighbors and fellow good citizensabout all our rights!

    The looks on the faces of a lot of my friends and co-workerswhen I explain the lawto them is usually disbelief. But to hear it from a 911 operator is very credible, as folks count on them to know what they are talking about. That in-control voice of the dispatchers has an authority that is hard to ignore.

    Geez! It is gratifying to deal with such a great group ofreal professionals!

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    DUH!

    I just realized we have a picnic scheduled for Sunday August 31 at Twonah State Park in MASON COUNTY.

    Can someone take point and contact the park ranger and Mason County Sheriff's Dept. to give them a heads-up?

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    Trigger Dr wrote:
    it is not legal to be intoxicated or drinking while doing so, practicing quick draw actions, pointing them at people or in a dangerous manner, shooting or any actions which are dangerous to the public. Concealing a firearm without a CPL is also illegal. Open carry is OK, concealing it requires a CPL.




    While I agree it's a bad idea to be intoxicated while carrying, I don't think it's illegal. AndI certainly don't think the drinking part is true... Anyone have the relevant statute?
    "If we were to ever consider citizenship as the least bit matter of merit instead of birthright, imagine who should be selected as deserved representation of our democracy: someone who would risk their daily livelihood to cast an individually statistically insignificant vote, or those who wrap themselves in the flag against slightest slights." - agenthex

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    Iron Monger wrote:
    DUH!

    I just realized we have a picnic scheduled for Sunday August 31 at Twonah State Park in MASON COUNTY.

    Can someone take point and contact the park ranger and Mason County Sheriff's Dept. to give them a heads-up?
    Already handled.

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    Tawnos wrote:
    Trigger Dr wrote:
    it is not legal to be intoxicated or drinking while doing so, practicing quick draw actions, pointing them at people or in a dangerous manner, shooting or any actions which are dangerous to the public. Concealing a firearm without a CPL is also illegal. Open carry is OK, concealing it requires a CPL.




    While I agree it's a bad idea to be intoxicated while carrying, I don't think it's illegal. AndI certainly don't think the drinking part is true... Anyone have the relevant statute?
    Maybe they think no guns in bars makes being drunk illegal elsewhere. The other falls under RCW 9.41.270




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    I find it odd that they couldn't find a main point of contact. I personally have talked to Steve Boyer in private and even gave him a gun rights pamphlet. So I am pretty sure he himself is familiar with who we are.

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    G27 wrote:
    I find it odd that they couldn't find a main point of contact. I personally have talked to Steve Boyer in private and even gave him a gun rights pamphlet. So I am pretty sure he himself is familiar with who we are.
    I received an email on July 9th from Gary Simpson and I forwarded a copy of it to Lonnie Wilson (both are posted below). I did not post the email from Gary Simpson for fear of new OCDO members not coming to the event.

    Dear Sir, I have been made aware of a picnic scheduled for July 13th at the Long Lake Park, and your July 9th posting has confirmed that. I would like to talk to you about your event in an effort to better understand what activities may occur, and how the Sheriff's Office may be involved. The Sheriff's Office concern is that since "open carry" is an uncommon practice in our community it may raise some concerns among others visiting the park. Our responsibility is to assure that all goes well for all park attendees, and may require that we reassure others sharing the park. If I can talk to you or someone else concerning this get-together we may be able to help. The end result should be everyone having a pleasant day at the park. If you or someone else is available to call me, I can be reached at the phone number listed below. Thank you for your assistance with this matter!! Gary Simpson Patrol Chief 360-337-4862 gsimpson@co.kitsap.wa.us http://www.kitsapsheriff.com
    I left it to Lonnie to reply, here is what I was copied:

    Chief Simpson, Bill sent me your email in regards to this situation. I sent Undersheriff Bonneville an extensive email on this particular subject. I would suggest that you talk with him in order to understand the groups position on the matter and have him forward it to you. Regards, Lonnie Wilson

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    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    I suspect they would like to be "taken to our leader". Police and gov entities are top-down bureaucracies and look for similiar structure in other groups.


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    Sounds like everyone comported themselves well, both OCDO members and LEOs in attendance. Once again, a story of non-event with LEO. I'm liking that we see more and more of these.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    deepdiver wrote:
    Sounds like everyone comported themselves well, both OCDO members and LEOs in attendance. Once again, a story of non-event with LEO. I'm liking that we see more and more of these.
    Well the LEOs did have to be paid off. We fed them.

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    Bear 45/70 wrote:
    deepdiver wrote:
    Sounds like everyone comported themselves well, both OCDO members and LEOs in attendance. Once again, a story of non-event with LEO. I'm liking that we see more and more of these.
    Well the LEOs did have to be paid off. We fed them.
    Good GOD!!! Eating?!... At a Picnic!?!.... Quick! Call the... wait, is that the Sheriff with them?
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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    I would like you all to know that I know, through a source, that not one 911 call was received that day from the picnic. Just an FYI to all

  23. #23
    State Researcher Bill Starks's Avatar
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    I have wondered though if the presence of the Deputy made folks think it was a Law Enforcement gathering.

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    M1Gunr wrote:
    I have wondered though if the presence of the Deputy made folks think it was a Law Enforcement gathering.
    I had the same thought.

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    Really glad to hear it went well. I really want to come to one of these... one of these days when I'm not working

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