On October 10 2008, my wife and I were leaving Manchester, NH to return home. We were pulled over by the Manchester police.
We were asked for license, registration, etc, and after the officer was not satisfied with our answers, without even calling it in, he asked me to step out of our truck, whereupon he immediately pushed me up against the truck and searched me.
He confiscated my sidearms and ammunition and arrested both of us. My wife has a concealed carry license, but they confiscated her sidearm and ammunition as well. They also confiscated our camera.
The claim for the initial stop was "a loud muffler." When the truck was started up and driven onto a trailer at the impound lot, we asked the lot manager if he could tell what the problem was. He didn't think there was any problem with the truck, and when we told him that the police claimed that the muffler was too loud, he asked if we were kidding and pointed out that many of the commercial trucks with perfectly good mufflers were much louder than our pickup.
We put the truck on a trailer because they confiscated our license plates.
We are going to court to challenge the police, and are asking for any support or assistance that the gun community can offer.
To me, the Second Amendment protects a pre-existing God-given Right to protect myself and my family. It is not a privilege subject to "reasonable restrictions" that vary from State to State at the whim of legislators or varying legislatures.
The second Amendment was supposed to be a "reasonable restriction" _on the government_, not on the citizens that governments inevitably tyrannize.
How is the claim that a gun owner needs a license any different from the attitudes of, "if you want to own a gun, then you should become a cop, or join the military?" I shouldn't need a badge to carry a gun, and no one should need a license either - you don't need a license to vote, do you?
What is next? Permits to carry concealed books? Licenses to publish? Book registration?
I own a restaurant, and the government requires me to have a "license to operate a place of assembly." I thought the Right of the People to peaceably assemble was protected by the First Amendment. Maybe that's just another one of those "reasonable restrictions" the State imposes through its "general Police Power."
If you believe in Rights, Freedom, America, and all those things the Founders created this country for to begin with - those Rights all those colonists died to secure, and our current troops are supposedly dying to protect, then we ask you to do what you can to help us take the next step forward in protecting our Rights, your Rights, and your children's Rights.
Otherwise, they will be gone.
If you can post this account to a different forum, blog, or webspace, write an article about the Right to bear arms whether concealed or not, or maybe even just give 5 bucks to help us fight this in court (williamwalker.chipin.com) then we would greatly appreciate it.
Links to [sensationalized] news stories and video are available on the ChipIn page.
Bill and Ivy Walker