Well, I think you said in the original post that you don't have a CHP yet, right? If that is the case, then DO NOT carry concealed. It will get you arrested. Not good...
Biggest question right off the bat, During an encouter with a LEO, such as a Traffic stop, when I hand over my ID, DL, and vehicle information, should I also hand over my CCP, IF i am carrying at the time of the encounter, or wait till they ask if I am Armed.
Open Carry is, however, perfectly legal in NC, if you are legally able to purchase and possess a handgun. But carrying (open or concealed) in NC is sort of like tap-dancing in a room full of raw eggs--you REALLY have to watch your step and know where you are at all times. We have a "restaurant ban" a "school property ban", some cities have a "city property ban" (which included public parks), and then there's the whole "tranporting in a vehicle" thing, which can get into some pretty gray areas when it comes to any particular LEO interpreting the situation...
But, for when you finally DO get your NC CHP (Concealed Hangun Permit), here is the way the drill should go, should you ever be approached in an official manner by an LEO, in your car, or on foot:
Any time you are "officially approached" by an LEO and ARE carrying, you must inform them that you have a CHP, and you are carrying. You then wait for them to ask to see your permit and DL. Do not reach for your wallet as they are approaching you or as you are informing them. Simply state that you have a permit and are currently carrying, and then WAIT for further instruction.
If you are from out of state, you might want to say something like "Officer, before we go any further I'm required to tell you I have a Concealed Handgun Permit for "state X" and I am currently carrying".
Don't EVER carry concealed without BOTH your permit AND your DL or other government-issued photo ID (a military ID will work just fine)
Usually, they will ask you where your gun is. DON"T reach for it, or even put your hand on that part of your body. Just SAY where it is, and what sort of gun it is. If they ask for your papers, tell them where they are, and then produce them slowly and evenly. Most LEO's won't ever ask to see your firearm, but they will probably ask that you keep your hands where they can see them.
Be calm, polite, and matter-of-fact. Don't volunteer ANYTHING. Don't make any sudden moves. Don't reveal your handgun unless asked. It's pretty simple...
Here is the "official" NC statute regarding this:
N.C. Gen. Stat. Â§ 14-415.12A
Any individual who has applied for and has been issued a concealed handgun permit must follow certain regulations concerning its use. Not only must the individual carry the permit along with proper identification whenever the handgun is being carried concealed, but he/she must also inform any law enforcement officer who approaches him/her that he/she is in possession of a permit and a concealed handgun.DocWest8404 wrote:
I'm not sure where you got the "keys on the roof" thing, but I think that's a BAD idea for a number of reasons. First, it puts you making a move with your hands outside the car as the officer is approaching, and that is NEVER a good way to reassure a LEO that you pose no threat. Bad way to start an interaction...
My usual SOP for a traffic stop is vehicle in park, shut off, window open, keys on the roof, and wrist on the steering wheel, L over R, and don't move until the officer ask.
I'd suggest stopping your car, turning off the engine (but leaving the keys in the ignition), rolling the window down just enough to speak politely and pass paperwork back and forth, and keeping your hands on the wheel.
When he asks to see your papers, THAT is the time you have to inform him you have a CHP and that you are currently carrying. From then on it's the same as above. Wait for his instruction before reaching for your wallet or registration. Never reveal your firearm unless asked. Never make sudden moves. Always tell him what you are doing BEFORE you do it, and move smoothly and purposefully.
The key to smooth interactions with LEO's is following the rules. If you get out of the order of procedure, it can be trouble.
1) Wait for them to speak.
2) When they do, before you do ANYTHING else, inform him of your permit and that you are carrying.
3) Wait for instructions.
4) Follow instructions.
Don't go all "2A" on an LEO if he gives you beef about carrying. If you have a CHP, and you follow the rules, there is nothing legally that he can do that will stand up in court.
I have 2 wallets. One is a standard bi-fold that I keep my money in, and wear in my pants hip pocket. The other is a small "business card wallet" that I keep in my shirt pocket, and that is the one that has my DL, my CHP, and my student ID. I do this so that it's in a non-threatening location when I go to produce it.
Oh, yeah, you might want to get a small MP3 recorder to keep in your shirt pocket. A recorded record of ANY encounter with an LEO can be a BIG help if he oversteps his bounds or gets abusive or performs an unauthorised search...
Just don't go into any banks in Jacksonville with a gun. Apparently they dont like that too much and recently another military fellow was arrested for "Going About to the Terror of the Public (or as we in NC refer to it online, GATTTOTP). And remember, you CAN'T carry concealed in a bank--only OC, but I'd leave it in the car. GATTTOTP is a sort of "add on" charge some LEO's liek to toss around when you didn't really do anything illegal, but they just don't liek the idea of an armed populace and want to mess with you for it. This is really an entirely different discussion that can go on for PAGES, but just remember that if you every DO get a GATTTOTP charge, it will most likely get tossed out in court and expunged from your record. I don't know of a SINLGE incident where it stuck, when the "accused" was otherwise completely innocent and sober...
Speaking of sober, if you are going to carry in NC, DO NOT DRINK. Not even ONE beer. Under NC law, if there is "any measurable trace" of alcohol in your system when you are carrying (OC or CC) it is a violation, and will at the very least, wind you up with a fat fine, and at worst, in jail.
Coca-cola, Mountain Dew and "Sweet Tea" are your friends when carrying...
(or as the waitresses down here say, Co-Cola, Deeew, and Sweeeteeeaa)
And also remember that you cannot carry (open OR concealed) into any restaurant or establishment that serves alcohol for consumption on premise--that rules out just about ALL the "trendy" restaurants, most Mexican and Chinese restaurants, and just about anything else short of a Dairy Queen, Golden Corral, Cracker Barrel, Shoney's, or Subway. Be careful when it comes to going out for dinner...
NC is a strange state when it comes to CC and OC. We have official rules, but the courts leave a LOT of leeway for LEO's to "interpret" things.
You can download the official PDF of NC firearms laws from the NC Attorney General's website:
Just be polite, learn the law, and don't EVER try and "educate" a cop on the law unless you are, in fact, an attorney and can hand him your business card when he asks "what are you, a Lawyer or something?"... :?
Welcome to North Carolina.
Or as they say at the station house, "You're in MY county now, son..."