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Thread: Basic OC Questions

  1. #1
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    Hello,

    My question is this : If I decide to OC here in Huntersvillle/Charlotte NC, and am stopped by a LEO of any type, what do I have to recite to him when he questions me. Is he allowed to make me lie on the ground until he checks me out? Is he or she at liberty to temporarily confiscate my weapon until he has determined it is not an illeagal weapon? ETC... You can guess where I am going with this. I am not by any means a confrontational person and do understand LEO has every right to be cautious as we do. I do respect the guy or gal who is out there to protect and to serve. I dont appreciate the over zealous LEO who pretends to be almighty God, and I have run into him here. Just would like to know what would be OC protocol fora civilian sheepdog. Thanks a million and be safe brothers.

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    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    Hi Slip,

    If you will scroll down the main forum page you will see where state-specific questions can be posted and you will probably receive more tailored information there.

    Otherwise, welcome to the forum and have fun browsing around :celebrate
    cheers - okboomer
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    Exercising my 2A Rights does NOT make me a CRIMINAL! Infringing on the exercise of those rights makes YOU one!

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    Hi Boomer, Thanks for the info. I did look around for that info not wanting to post neglectfully but obviously didnt look good enough. Thanks for the welcome !

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    it depends on why he is stopping or arresting you.

    If you carrying a firearm is the only reason for contact, you really have no obligation to even talk with the officer. There is tons of information throughout this entire site, but your going to need to look for it a little bit. I remember some great info in the Michigan forum. But as Boomer stated, alot of this can be state specific. What is legal in one state my be different in others.

    Lets use CA as an example, somehow the cali people accepted that cops can sieze their weapon and verify it is not loaded. And this immediatley turns into a serial number check and long delays.

    A good place to start is by reading up on Terry V. Ohio



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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Welcome aboard, we're glad you have decide to join the site.

    May I recommend an excellent book you might find very informative "You & The Police" by Boston T. Party is chock full of valuable information in police confrontation matters. Also I would highly recommend perusing the North Carolina threads for a wealth of data in these areas.

    It is my understanding that NC is more strict in such things as is Virginia, so definitely take some time and review relevant NC postings.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

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    "My question is this : If I decide to OC here in Huntersvillle/Charlotte NC, and am stopped by a LEO of any type, what do I have to recite to him when he questions me."

    State v Kerner is a good case to read up on and how they interpret Sec 30 of the NC Const. Also, OC is not illegal making it legal by default. Also check municode for local ordinances. Though NC does have preemption on private property. And read up on Going Armed To The Terror Of The Public, GATTTOTP. OC does not meet the criteria for GATTTOTP, but that will be one of the things you may be accused of.

    "Is he allowed to make me lie on the ground until he checks me out? Is he or she at liberty to temporarily confiscate my weapon until he has determined it is not an illeagal weapon? "

    Allowed, not without PC or RAS ie Terry stop. Will they try and possible succeed in doing it? Maybe. Try to have an idea of how far you are willing to push non compliance before you choose to comply on scene and take any issue up with their superiors. Personally, depending on the situation, I would do my best to not consent to being disarmed if I am minding my own business. If I felt I had to comply or risk a more serious problem, I would. Then I would pursue it with their superiors at a later date. Make sense? I have dealt with 3 officers while OC'ing around Hickory. One disarmed me during a traffic accident investigation. The other 2 were non official encounters and I had no issue at all.

    So look at these, use google fu.
    State v Kerner
    Terry v Ohio
    JL v Florida

    And remember, IANAL. Check out the NC section too, lots of good info.

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    Thanks Southern Boy , Nutczak and Chief Jason,

    Thanks guys for the tips and advice. I will look for the book and will continue to read. I have been reading but thought I would ask anyway. Nothing like getting feedback to a specific question. I really do not want to OC for the sake of pushing the limit to see how far I can go. Just want to be as informed and educated while being humble and preserving life. Going to read right now. Thanks guys and Peace !



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    Always carry with mindset that you are a normal person and always be polite with LEO's. I would suggest as below reading some more for your area.
    Always, present yourself as calm, and expect to be treated to some degree as a criminal by a few LEO's as most are working everyday around low life people who endanger their lives. Most LEO's will know the laws and respect your rights, but a few sometimes need a release or rush dump for their addiction to danger!
    This forum has so much to offer and will guide you well my friend.
    Best of life and remember....Rights not used will be lost.

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    hello my brother,

    Thanks for the tip. I do agree with you about just being instead of being amped up for the sake of testing LEO and getting the rush of " being right ".

    I have been reading and reading. Everytime I see a LEO I am tempted to just rap with them and see what their take on the matter would be. If I were him, I for sure would check things out. With all the madness going on, who wouldnt. I see vids on youtube and other site where people OC'ing with a video camera just looking for confrontation. Although new to the idea of OC, My many years of life experience sees that as a nono. Either way, I will be a positive force in the movement leaving huge footprints as I go in this life. Thanks for the tip and the well wishes. Peace be with you and yours friend !! Have some great holidays !



  10. #10
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Also look up the text for "State v. Robert S. Huntley in NC case law. This is the case that pretty much codified your right to carry without police harassment. The important passage from "Huntley" is worded thusly:

    "For any lawful purpose--either of business or amusement--the citizen is at perfect liberty to carry his gun."


    As for the "Going Armed to the Terror of the People" charge that some police like to throw around to discourage OC, you should just memorize the wording of the statute, or print it out and put it in your wallet. It is a "three pronged" law, and you need to meet all three of its' stipulations for the charge to stick. We have been searching the NC case law, and nobody has found a single instance of someone who was stopped simply for OC, where a GATTTOTP charge stuck in court. They are almost always thrown out. The few times they do stick is usually when there was some other extenuating circumstance--the person was doing something else illegal, was in possession of some sort of contraband, or they were intoxicated.

    But if you are simply walking down the street, there is nothing illegal, suspicious, or otherwise noteworthy to warrant a "Terry" stop under NC law in almost ANY city, except Cary (which has a very odd no-carry ordinance) and Durham (which has a minimum barrel length law)

    Now all that said, the entire concept of "suspicious-looking activity" is pretty wide-open to interpretation under NC law, and some police officers take VERY wide liberties with that. Your manner of dress, your hair length, your race (yes, it's sad but true), your location (is it in a "good" neighborhood? A Bad one? Are you near a bar? Do you look lost or out of place? on and on...) can and will be used by a cop who is looking to stop someone for carrying. It's not legal, but it still happens--because of overzealous rookies who don't know the law, or out-of-line LEOs who don't like OC by "civilians", or the rare instance of the proverbial "thug with a badge"...

    I have yet to be stopped or even approached while OCing in NC. I live in Washington, and have OC'd in Washington, Fayetteville, Greenville, Raleigh, and Winterville. I've also OC'd in Northern VA--Fairfax, Woodbridge, several rest stops along I-95, and never had an issue. Of course, I am 44 years old, have a short haircut, and usually dress "business casual" or at least have a button-down shirt with jeans. I've had several people tellme they thought I looked like an off-duty cop and that's why folks don't question my OCing.

    A lot of it seems to be how you carry yourself. If you look calm, confident, and "normal", then you usually won't be met with a bad attitude from an LEO. But if you look unsure of yourself, or sketchy, or twitchy, or you are obviously carrying a video camera and stalking LEOs, your chances are pretty high that you're going to be met with a negative attitude from the get-go. I just go about my daily routine--grocery store, hardware store, sporting good stores, gas stations, general shopping--like I'm just a normal guy doing normal things. The fact that I've got a full-sized .45acp on my hip isn't something I need to show off or be self conscious about. I carry pretty much all the time--mostly OC but sometimes CC--and it's second nature to me now. In fact, the only time I'm self-conscious about it is when I DON'T carry--like when I'm going to college classes, or traveling in MD or DC...

    But if you are scruffy looking, or wearing some sort of "offensive" t-shirt or cap, or you have long hair, or you are young, or you are a minority, the rules of the game seem to get REALLY variable here in NC. And the less you know of the law, and the less confident in that knowledge you are, the more likely it is for an LEO to "get over on you". Educate yourself, and be prepared. But always speak politely, evenly, and matter-of-factly. Don't volunteer info. You are NOT required to show your Drivers License (unless you are actually operating a motor vehicle). You DO NOT need a permit to OC. You do not have to give your name, address, or age. But to be honest, a sweet disposition and a cooperative attitude can go a LONG way to defuse an LEO with an attitude. Save your "OC Education" lectures for the inquisitive citizens who ask you why you carry. You will NEVER succeed in educating a cop, unless your business card has an LLD or JD on it. And if you ARE a lawyer, I would recommend handing the cop your business card if he asks for ID. As a general rule, they tend to not hassle lawyers...:what:

    Can a cop ask you to lie on the ground and take your gun? Well, he's got a badge and a gun, a tazer, and some pretty potent pepper spray. Are you willing to resist? Do you feel so strongly about your rights that you are willing to push your luck (even if the cop is OBVIOUSLY out-of-bounds) or would you rather comply and then let the courts sort it out?

    It's one thing to assert that you know your rights and the law in a calm, rational manner, and the officer is willing to listen to reason. It's quite another thing altogether when you have the misfortune to cross paths with some badge-wearing thug who is just LOOKING to hand out a "wood shampoo" because he doesn't think citizens should infringe on his "state-sanctioned monopoly on violence"...

    If you don't know your rights under NC statutes and case law, and you have an appearance that you think might cause a cop to hassle you, then maybe you should study up before OCing, and invest in a pocket-sized voice recorder, or only OC when you are with other people (witnesses).

    The laws about where you can and cannot carry in NC are sort of weird--study them and KNOW the law. No bars or restaurants that serve alcohol. No movie theaters, concerts, or amusement parks. There are some other weird laws regarding carry prohibitions--check the laws. Watch for posted "no firearms" signs. Know your rights. Study the law. You can download the most recent official version of NC's firearms laws from this link:

    http://www.jus.state.nc.us/NCJA/ncfirearmslaws.pdf

    Ask LOTS of questions on this forum--there are some VERY knowledgeable and experienced folk here.

    Oh, and by the way, IANAL. (I Am Not A Lawyer...)

    Welcome to the fascinating lifestyle of carrying. Good luck OCing!
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

  11. #11
    Regular Member okboomer's Avatar
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    In addition to what Dreamer says, if the "stop" is going downhill, you can also ask for the Shift Supervisor to be called. That way he can instruct the officer on the law in front of you.
    cheers - okboomer
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Lead, follow, or get out of the way

    Exercising my 2A Rights does NOT make me a CRIMINAL! Infringing on the exercise of those rights makes YOU one!

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    Dreamer,
    Great post and it is the many people like yourself on this forum that helps newcomers get comfortable and knowledgeable. I have been OC'ing close to a year now at all times (except for work) and you guys (and gals) made it possible for me to drum up the courage. Many thanks to you all (even the one who postulates so much ).

    Slip,
    Be sure to frequent these forums as these folks are wonderful. I OC mostly in Johnston and Wake counties and have yet to run into any problems. For sure, be careful if you ever visit Durham or Cary. No matter where you carry, you almost have to know the laws and court rulings better than the cops though. You will then know what is and is not legal and that will lead to more confidence when carrying. Another reason is that there are quite a few cops out there that do not know the laws and rulings as well as they should.

    Searching this forum will lead to a wealth of knowledge and any questions or concerns you cannot find answers to, someone here will be more than happy to help you with. Also, be sure to stay on top of the North Carolina state specific forum as well.

    Good Luck!


  13. #13
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Thanks "hittman2". I'm flattered to find that people appreciate my posts. I try to research them pretty thoroughly, and provide the best info I can, but agan, I must remind Skip, that IANAL...

    Skip, I would recommend that you get your hands on a printed copy of the NC Firearms laws. I provided the official link to the State Attorney General's website for the current PDF. Download it, print it, read it, KNOW IT...

    Carrying is a HUGE responsibility, and you MUST be fully knowledgeable about the laws wherever you carry. Knowing the law helps you in many ways. First, it gives you the confidence that your actions are legal and lawful. Second, it helps you defend against those who would strip you of your rights through intimidation, or "under color of the law". Third, it keeps you from "crossing the line" unintentionally, and getting in trouble because of ignorance.

    When I went on vacation last summer, I was going to be camping in PA for 2 weeks. I would be travelling through 5 states (NC, VA, MD, PA, WV) and was going to be carrying for this trip. The research I had to do to ensure that I was legal for this venture took the better part of 2 months--downloading state firearms laws and studying them, calling State Police offices, States Attorney Generals, and talking to LEOs I know in some of these states. It actually took me longer to prepare (legally) for this trip than it did to actually take the trip. But at the end of it, I was comfortable and confident in my knowledge that I was doing everything "by the book". And it went without a hitch! Lucky for me, most of the states I was visiting have 100% reciprocity with NC on my CHP, and most of these states have similar vehicular transport laws as NC (with the glaring exception of the People's Republic of MD). Aside from having to stop every time I came close to the MD border, unholster, unload, and lock up my firearm in an "inaccessable locked container", it was a VERY pleasant trip, and I successfully OC'd and CC'd in VA, PA, and WV with no hassle whatsoever.

    But I believe a lot of my success was due to the fact that I was confident in my knowledge of the law, and had done a TON of research.

    That, an the fact that I apparently look like an off-duty LEO to many people. Short hair, slim athletic build, mid 40's, and dressed nicely can go a long way toward looking like you are "supposed to be carrying". People are a lot less likely to call you in as a "MWAG" if they think you're just an off-duty LEO, I guess...

    But anyway, read, read read. Check this forum, and particularly the NC-specific part of OCDO. There are lots of very knowledgeable people here--many who have been doing it much longer than I have--and they will anwer your questions, or point you toward someone who can.

    Again, I will reiterate, if you can't understand the laws (and some of the statutes here in NC are sort of hard to understand) then call the Attorny General's office. They are very friendly and helpful, and will usually give you an answer right away.

    Don't ask LEO's about firearms laws. The answers you get are widely variable, usually dependent on their OPINIONS and not on fact, statute, or case law, and to be honest, anything a cop tells you about the law doesn't hold any more legal weight than anything you see on a forum--Cops are NOT lawyers...

    Good luck, and welcome to the fold. Ask lots of questions--we'll try and give you proper guidance. Don't be afraid to OC--it's really not much of a big deal in NC. Most places are pretty cool about it. Just be sure you know the law, and can discuss it with confidence, because you most likely will get a LOT of questions when you carry--and MOSt of the interactions you'll have will be from other citizens, and will be favorable and inquisitive. Meet these folks with a smile, a pleasant attitude, and be VERY polite--whether they are pro- or anti. Remember, you are assuming a TREMENDOUS responsibility when you carry--not just for keeping your firearm safe, but because you are making yourself a representative for the "cause" of OC. The impression you make will reflect on ALL folks who carry. Remember that...

    Be prepared...
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

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