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Thread: Removed from VA Wheelchair Games 7/16/09

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    Regular Member shad0wfax's Avatar
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    Myself and another Veteran were removed from the 2009 Veteran's Association Wheelchair Games at the Spokane Convention Center, Group Health NW Building, on Thursday July 16, 2009.

    The VA Medical Center Chief of Police (Spokane) was friendly and polite, but insisted that the privately owned location was leased by the VA and therefore federal property and weapons were prohibited. Oddly enough he claimed that the VA operates under concurrent jurisdiction with the City of Spokane. So much for the 2nd amendment, the 10th amendment and RCW 9.41.290.

    We had a pleasant conversation with the C.O.P. as we left the building, but that conversation was completely unrelated to Open-Carry.

    EDIT: mp3 attached to my followup post with multi-quotes.

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    Always remember, until about 5 or 6 years ago, VA Police didn't get to carry firearms. At some hospitals, they still can't.

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Open to the public, not on a military installation and at a city owned convention center. Do you lease an area of the convention center for a short duration, or rent it. Is the lease an avenue for allowing the leases to impose their own restrictions? Like the Stadium crap!
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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    shad0wfax wrote:
    The VA Medical Center Chief of Police (Spokane) was friendly and polite, but insisted that the privately owned location was leased by the VA and therefore federal property and weapons were prohibited.

    Weapons are not necessarily prohibited on federal property.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

    The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us....There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! ...The war is inevitable–and let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come …………. PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Regular Member shad0wfax's Avatar
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    New Daddy wrote:
    Always remember, until about 5 or 6 years ago, VA Police didn't get to carry firearms. At some hospitals, they still can't.
    This VA Chief of Police was unarmed.

    jbone wrote:
    Open to the public, not on a military installation and at a city owned convention center. Do you lease an area of the convention center for a short duration, or rent it. Is the lease an avenue for allowing the leases to impose their own restrictions? Like the Stadium crap!
    The VA leased this portion of the city owned convention center for five days. A lease gives the lessee/tenant the right to trespass people from the area. According to him, if the lessee/tenant is a federal agency the lease allows them to impose the same federal statutes and administrative laws their facility operates under to that portion of the property they are leasing as well.

    I'm not an attorney and I'm not overly strong on the minutia of federal property law or property law in general. Since I didn't feel like sitting in a courtroom or having the Spokane Police Department called I figured it was best to simply comply and leave as asked. The C.O.P. was friendly and polite and I saw no reason to make any kind of a negative impression on him in this situation. I'm very strong on state pre-emption law and state firearms law. As much as I love the 10th amendment and the 2nd amendment, this wasn't the time or place to push those issues. As far as I'm concerned all of 18 USC is unconstitutional, but no court is going to agree with me on that.

    Thundar wrote:
    Weapons are not necessarily prohibited on federal property.
    The C.O.P. alluded to firearms prohibitions at the VA medical facility he oversees and said that since firearms were prohibited on his facility and it is the VA that leased the area and hosted the event it follows that firearms are prohibited at the event as well.

    I didn't feel like arguing that point. Weapons are prohibited at his VA medical facility and he extended that same policy to the VA event.

    He was polite and courteous, so I was polite and courteous as well.

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    shad0wfax wrote:
    He was polite and courteous, so I was polite and courteous as well.[/quote]

    Sometimes that can be our best public relations tool.

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    I wouldn't dismiss his invite to come down and see the lease. It may have nothing stating no firearm, as is mostly states nothing about persons with freckles shall not be admitted.
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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    (1) The term ''Federal facility'' means a building or part thereof owned or leased by the Federal Government, where Federal employees are regularly present for the purpose of performing their official duties.


    A short term lease for wheel chair games IMO does not fit 930's "regularly present for the purpose of performing their official duties"
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    Wouldn't this fall under the same type situation when a government owned building is leased to a private company for a gun show?

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    Double tap,mouse is screwed up and read to replace it with a rat I suppose.

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    Regular Member shad0wfax's Avatar
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    jbone wrote:
    I wouldn't dismiss his invite to come down and see the lease. It may have nothing stating no firearm, as is mostly states nothing about persons with freckles shall not be admitted.
    I doubt I'd get to see the terms of the lease and I doubt he has them on hand. He may have access to them upon request though. What I'm sure he was going to show me was the VA Medical Center's policy against firearms on VA Medical Center property. He may also intend to show me Title 18 USC stuff, which I'm mostly familiar with, but not in intimate detail.


    NavyLT wrote:
    So, did they post the signs required by 18 USC 930?!? Hmmmm?
    Negative. No signs were posted anywhere.

    jbone wrote:
    (1) The term ''Federal facility'' means a building or part thereof owned or leased by the Federal Government, where Federal employees are regularly present for the purpose of performing their official duties.


    A short term lease for wheel chair games IMO does not fit 930's "regularly present for the purpose of performing their official duties"
    I agree with you. Note that he did not attempt to charge me with any sort of weapons violation. What he did was escort us off of the premises they were leasing. Without using the word trespass, what he did was escort me off of the leased portion of the property. He can do that and he did.

    EDITED: italics

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    Gentlemen,

    I hate to say this, but this entire conversation is irrelevant. The Spokane Convention Center, as well as the Spokane Arena and Opera House, are not owned by the city of Spokane, but by a municipal corporation called the Spokane Public Facilities District by which I am employed. The name is missleading but it basicly boils down to the fact that they are not owned by the city or the state, so they can and have made it policy not to allow open carry of firearms on their property. Is it posted? No. Should it be? IMO, Yes, but state law has no requirements to do so at this point. The RCW is clear about CC in these facilities, so I would have no problem doing so, but expect to be asked to leave if seen OC at the Convention Center, Spokane Arena or INB Perfoing Arts Center.

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    o2ryan wrote:
    Gentlemen,

    I hate to say this, but this entire conversation is irrelevant. The Spokane Convention Center, as well as the Spokane Arena and Opera House, are not owned by the city of Spokane, but by a municipal corporation called the Spokane Public Facilities District by which I am employed. The name is missleading but it basicly boils down to the fact that they are not owned by the city or the state, so they can and have made it policy not to allow open carry of firearms on their property. Is it posted? No. Should it be? IMO, Yes, but state law has no requirements to do so at this point. The RCW is clear about CC in these facilities, so I would have no problem doing so, but expect to be asked to leave if seen OC at the Convention Center, Spokane Arena or INB Perfoing Arts Center.
    I don't blame you for hitting the road, I think the worst place to be is a defendant at federal level. I still think you were bamboozled by a man with exceptional tact and skill in deception. IMO he never threaten the trespass because no trespass took place, and didn't arrest because the federal rule did not apply at the convention center.

    In light of whato2ryanreports, the only thing that applied is private property, and in that case the VA Chief should have cited the proprietors rules not Federal property mumbo-jumbo.

    Hell, I could be way off aseven 9.41.280Possessing dangerous weapons on school facilities — Penalty — Exceptions *** CHANGE IN 2009 *** (SEE 5263-S.SL) *** States: SNIP; "or areas of facilities while being used exclusively by public or private schools"
    I’m proudly straight. I'm free to not support Legalization, GLBT, Illegal Aliens, or the Islamization of America.

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    o2ryan wrote:
    Gentlemen,

    I hate to say this, but this entire conversation is irrelevant. The Spokane Convention Center, as well as the Spokane Arena and Opera House, are not owned by the city of Spokane, but by a municipal corporation called the Spokane Public Facilities District by which I am employed. The name is missleading but it basicly boils down to the fact that they are not owned by the city or the state, so they can and have made it policy not to allow open carry of firearms on their property. Is it posted? No. Should it be? IMO, Yes, but state law has no requirements to do so at this point. The RCW is clear about CC in these facilities, so I would have no problem doing so, but expect to be asked to leave if seen OC at the Convention Center, Spokane Arena or INB Perfoing Arts Center.
    RCW 9.41.290State preemption.
    The state of Washington hereby fully occupies and preempts the entire field of firearms regulation within the boundaries of the state, including the registration, licensing, possession, purchase, sale, acquisition, transfer, discharge, and transportation of firearms, or any other element relating to firearms or parts thereof, including ammunition and reloader components. Cities, towns, and counties or other municipalities may enact only those laws and ordinances relating to firearms that are specifically authorized by state law, as in RCW 9.41.300, and are consistent with this chapter. Such local ordinances shall have the same penalty as provided for by state law. Local laws and ordinances that are inconsistent with, more restrictive than, or exceed the requirements of state law shall not be enacted and are preempted and repealed, regardless of the nature of the code, charter, or home rule status of such city, town, county, or municipality.






    An 'incorporated' city is just that... a corporation. It is, in fact, an incorporated municipality, AKA a 'municipal corporation'. It is a public entity and falls under RCW 9.41.290 preemption.



    The Spokane Public Facilities District, as a municipal corporation, is bound by RCW 9.41.290 just the same as if it were a city unto itself. Any regulations prohibiting firearms are preempted and repealed.






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    Transit Authorities are municipal corporations too, but preemption still applies.

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    I don't disagree with anything stated above. I am just trying to shed some light on how this organization currently operates and you you should expect to be treated should you choose to OC at said locations. Try as I may to educate my co-workers, I am not in a position to challenge their policy on such matters.

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    Transit Authorities are municipal corporations too, but preemption still applies.
    Seems to, but then you have the Port of Seattle, also a municipal corporation, still with an administrative gun ban which they refuse to change. They have a different interpretation of the law and are standing by it. Only a court can fix it.

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    Regular Member shad0wfax's Avatar
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    NavyLT wrote:
    Actually he didn't trespass you off the property, he escorted you off the property. Trespassing involves committing a crime, which you clearly did not.
    [/quote]

    Thanks for the catch. I edited my post to correct it. I used the word escort in the first section and then trespass (incorrectly) in the second.

    o2ryan wrote:
    Gentlemen,

    I hate to say this, but this entire conversation is irrelevant. The Spokane Convention Center, as well as the Spokane Arena and Opera House, are not owned by the city of Spokane, but by a municipal corporation called the Spokane Public Facilities District by which I am employed. The name is missleading but it basicly boils down to the fact that they are not owned by the city or the state, so they can and have made it policy not to allow open carry of firearms on their property. Is it posted? No. Should it be? IMO, Yes, but state law has no requirements to do so at this point. The RCW is clear about CC in these facilities, so I would have no problem doing so, but expect to be asked to leave if seen OC at the Convention Center, Spokane Arena or INB Perfoing Arts Center.
    You would be correct if the V.A. C.O.P. was asking me to leave in order to make the lessor (your employer) happy by conforming (and thus causing me to conform) to the lessor's policy prohibiting firearms in their facility. However, the V.A. C.O.P. had me leave based on 18 USC 930 and perhaps internal memos/SOPs for V.A. facilities regarding the aforementioned code. Since 18 USC 930 h specifically states that if a sign is not clearly posted at each entrance, no one can be convicted of the 18 USC 930 a violation unless they had actual notice of subsection a. Since we had no notice and no sign was posted (and since we left when it was implied that we should leave) we wouldn't have been able to be convicted even if 18 USC 930 a did apply. I suspect now that 18 USC 930 a does not apply, since subsections g 1) & 3) do not apply to a 5-day lease of a private facility as it is not regularly staffed by federal employees.

    The discussion is relevant in terms of federal law. Had a security manager or the property manager from the lessor (your employer) asked me to leave (for any reason) I'd have had to do so. Since it was the federal employee who asked me to leave on the basis that it was a V.A. facility by lease and therefore federal property (implied 18 USC 930 a) that's not the case.

    jbone wrote:
    Hell, I could be way off asÂ*even 9.41.280Â*Possessing dangerous weapons on school facilities — Penalty — ExceptionsÂ* *** CHANGE IN 2009 *** (SEE 5263-S.SL) *** States: SNIP; "or areas of facilities while being used exclusively by public or private schools"
    No, this facility was not being used exclusively by any school, public or private.

    EDIT: I'll have an update sometime today I hope. I'm curious to see what the C.O.P. has to say about the definitions in 18 USC 930 g 1).

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    Thanks for the info shadowfax. This is a good law lesson for all of us. I hope I was not misunderstood in my origional post as to suggest that this topic is irrelivant. I was only trying to clear up the missinderstand as to ownership of mentioned facilities.

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    Regular Member shad0wfax's Avatar
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    o2ryan wrote:
    Thanks for the info shadowfax. This is a good law lesson for all of us. I hope I was not misunderstood in my origional post as to suggest that this topic is irrelivant. I was only trying to clear up the missinderstand as to ownership of mentioned facilities.
    Yeah, I appreciated the information you shared with me verbally at the OC lunch and also the clarification here on the thread. I was just clarifying what capacity the VA C.O.P. was acting in.

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    o2ryan wrote:
    Gentlemen,

    I hate to say this, but this entire conversation is irrelevant. The Spokane Convention Center, as well as the Spokane Arena and Opera House, are not owned by the city of Spokane, but by a municipal corporation called the Spokane Public Facilities District by which I am employed. The name is missleading but it basicly boils down to the fact that they are not owned by the city or the state, so they can and have made it policy not to allow open carry of firearms on their property. Is it posted? No. Should it be? IMO, Yes, but state law has no requirements to do so at this point. The RCW is clear about CC in these facilities, so I would have no problem doing so, but expect to be asked to leave if seen OC at the Convention Center, Spokane Arena or INB Perfoing Arts Center.
    Wrong. If I have a CPL then they cannot exclude me because I am openly carrying a firearm. An open carry ban my a municipal corporation is unenforceable as it is outside the scope granted to them by RCW 9.41. It does not get much clearer than 9.41.300 puts it.

    (2) Cities, towns, counties, and other municipalities may enact laws and ordinances:

    (b) Restricting the possession of firearms in any stadium or convention center, operated by a city, town, county, or other municipality, except that such restrictions shall not apply to:

    (i) Any pistol in the possession of a person licensed under RCW 9.41.070 or exempt from the licensing requirement by RCW 9.41.060.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    joerocket, you are absolutly correct if you possess a valid CPL and I have tried to tell them that. As I stated earlier, this is how they are currently opporating and they need to be corrected, bus as I depend on them for a living I am not in a current position to argue that point. I am going out on a limb even discussing this topic on this forum, but I am doing my best to inform you of how this organization currently opperates and how you can expect to be treated should you visit these facilities in an OC mode. I would realy like to see their polocy come in line with state law, but I can not change that from where I am standing.

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    o2ryan wrote:
    joerocket, you are absolutly correct if you possess a valid CPL and I have tried to tell them that. As I stated earlier, this is how they are currently opporating and they need to be corrected, bus as I depend on them for a living I am not in a current position to argue that point. I am going out on a limb even discussing this topic on this forum, but I am doing my best to inform you of how this organization currently opperates and how you can expect to be treated should you visit these facilities in an OC mode. I would realy like to see their polocy come in line with state law, but I can not change that from where I am standing.
    Gotcha.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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