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Thread: Richmond... no OC in the city?

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    I posted this in the "questions" board but I think it will see more action here among locals. I go to VCU and live kinda downtown (2nd street). While I know I cant carry on campus, I was talking to a VCUPD officer and he said that open carry is illegal in the city of Richmond. I responded that I though separate cities/counties didnt make their own laws and there is just "Virginia Gun Law". He objected again saying Richmond has their own laws and its was OK to CC with a valid permit but not OC. Which one of us are confused... me or the cop?

    Thanks to all

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    driveramsII wrote:
    I posted this in the "questions" board but I think it will see more action here among locals. I go to VCU and live kinda downtown (2nd street). While I know I cant carry on campus, I was talking to a VCUPD officer and he said that open carry is illegal in the city of Richmond. I responded that I though separate cities/counties didnt make their own laws and there is just "Virginia Gun Law". He objected again saying Richmond has their own laws and its was OK to CC with a valid permit but not OC. Which one of us are confused... me or the cop?

    Thanks to all
    He LIED. We've all OC'd there many many times...around cops, in restaurants, down sidewalks, at protests and during Lobby Day in the Capitol and in the General Assembly. Just don't OC around federal buildings/property or around VCU.

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    OK, thats what I thought.

    Thanks

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    Ask him what part of preemption he's unclear about.

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    peter nap wrote:
    Ask him what part of preemption he's unclear about.
    .... also ask him if he fell asleep during his gun laws briefing.

    ...I'd really like to know.

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    richarcm wrote:
    driveramsII wrote:
    I posted this in the "questions" board but I think it will see more action here among locals. I go to VCU and live kinda downtown (2nd street). While I know I cant carry on campus, I was talking to a VCUPD officer and he said that open carry is illegal in the city of Richmond. I responded that I though separate cities/counties didnt make their own laws and there is just "Virginia Gun Law". He objected again saying Richmond has their own laws and its was OK to CC with a valid permit but not OC. Which one of us are confused... me or the cop?

    Thanks to all
    He LIED. .............

    While the officer is clearly wrong, I think that its unfair to state that "He LIED". You can't be certain of what he knows or doesn't know and to state that he is outright lying is unfair.

    The statute in question is difficult for some people to understand, police officers included. We've seen fromvarious examples that officers in the past have misinterpreted that statute. Most notable in my mind is the 2 young men returning from the NRA range who were arrested and had their guns confiscated.

    I have no problem with holding someone accountable and yes the officer should understand the statute, but to claim that he knowingly lied is unfair, IMHO.
    James Reynolds

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    ProShooter wrote:
    richarcm wrote:
    driveramsII wrote:
    I posted this in the "questions" board but I think it will see more action here among locals. I go to VCU and live kinda downtown (2nd street). While I know I cant carry on campus, I was talking to a VCUPD officer and he said that open carry is illegal in the city of Richmond. I responded that I though separate cities/counties didnt make their own laws and there is just "Virginia Gun Law". He objected again saying Richmond has their own laws and its was OK to CC with a valid permit but not OC. Which one of us are confused... me or the cop?

    Thanks to all
    He LIED. .............

    While the officer is clearly wrong, I think that its unfair to state that "He LIED". You can't be certain of what he knows or doesn't know and to state that he is outright lying is unfair.

    The statute in question is difficult for some people to understand, police officers included. We've seen fromvarious examples that officers in the past have misinterpreted that statute. Most notable in my mind is the 2 young men returning from the NRA range who were arrested and had their guns confiscated.

    I have no problem with holding someone accountable and yes the officer should understand the statute, but to claim that he knowingly lied is unfair, IMHO.
    Okay he either lied or is incompetent and unqualified to be a police officer. Better? I guess I'm assuming that he actually knows the fairly basic laws that he has sworn to enforce. Perhaps that was my first mistake. I don't think that Preemption is an extremely tough concept to grasp. And if he truly didn't know what the law was he shouldn't have stated that it was something that was incorrect.

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    Regular Member MSC 45ACP's Avatar
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    I'll go with either "HE LIED" or "HE'S GROSSLY INCOMPETENT" and is using his personal opinions to enforce the laws. That's a BIG Bozo No-No!!!
    "If I know that I am headed for a fight, I want something larger with more power, preferably crew-served.
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    If 'not knowing the law' isn't a defense I can use then I'll be damned if I will allow a cop to use it. He is incompetent and his position as an officer of the law must be questioned.
    We are responsible for knowing the law for all of our activities including how they apply to our work. Why then would an officer, who's job is to enforce the law, be cut any slack for not knowing the law?

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    Toad wrote:
    If 'not knowing the law' isn't a defense I can use then I'll be damned if I will allow a cop to use it. He is incompetent and his position as an officer of the law must be questioned.
    We are responsible for knowing the law for all of our activities including how they apply to our work. Why then would an officer, who's job is to enforce the law, be cut any slack for not knowing the law?
    DIDDO!

    It's no secret that VCU cops have a reputation as being boobs. They have no business taking any kind of legal liberties with my civil rights. Ignorance is no excuse. He shouldn't open his mouth unless he knows what he's talking about.
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    Thanks guys, I thought he seemed confused. With that established, how many people actually carry down here in the Downtown area? I read through the Richmond area stories and most of yall seem to be West-enders.

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    driveramsII wrote:
    Thanks guys, I thought he seemed confused. With that established, how many people actually carry down here in the Downtown area? I read through the Richmond area stories and most of yall seem to be West-enders.
    I go to VCU and I've open carried most everywhere downtown, with the exception of school property. I usually conceal however because it is a pain to switch holsters for class while school is in session.

    Keep in mind, carrying on VCU as a student is not illegal, it is tantamount with talking on your cell phone in class or some other violation of policy... although most likely with stiffer academic penalties.

    Which VCU cop was it? Was it a rather large african-american fellow?

    The VCU question comes up a few times a month on here, so I did a write-up of VCU gun policy, and its problems, here

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    No, he was a white guy. Probably late 20's-early 30's. 6'1 220lbs. I think he said his name was Mack. He seemed like a cool guy, I talked to him for 30min or so but I knew he was off base with his carry policy. I work at the commons and he was there for security for an event we had going on.

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    peter nap wrote:
    Ask him what part of preemption he's unclear about.
    Ask him for his full name and badge number.

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    driveramsII wrote:
    No, he was a white guy. Probably late 20's-early 30's. 6'1 220lbs. I think he said his name was Mack. He seemed like a cool guy, I talked to him for 30min or so but I knew he was off base with his carry policy. I work at the commons and he was there for security for an event we had going on.
    You should contact the VCU police chief and seek clarification.

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    Repeater wrote:
    driveramsII wrote:
    No, he was a white guy. Probably late 20's-early 30's. 6'1 220lbs. I think he said his name was Mack. He seemed like a cool guy, I talked to him for 30min or so but I knew he was off base with his carry policy. I work at the commons and he was there for security for an event we had going on.
    You should contact the VCU police chief and seek clarification.

    I open carry Downtown almost every weekday. I also have carried on the VCU campus, at bars Downtown, at the state capital, Library of Virginia, etc. For the record, I am a young white guy and have open carried Downtown wearing a torn t-shirts and jeans as well as a tie and dress shirt.

    The officer very well may not have been "lying", but I am a bit frustrated hearing from LEO's and former officers on this board about police "mistakes". If an officer doesn't know the answer, they should state that and then find out the answer. Ifa police officermakes something up whenthey don't know the answer, that is close to a lie. Ifthey thinkthey know the answer but aren't certain because the code can by confusing, then the officer should say that.

    Please use the link provided to seek guidance from the VCU Chief of Police. They don't have that many officers, your description should be sufficient to assist in the officers education. Of course, VCU has a new (acting) Chief of Police because the last onegot himself in quite a bit of trouble.

    I know this officer - I know his wife. He's a good guy, you could start with him. Still, I'd call the Chief and put my concerns in writing as well.

    Lieutenant Sean Ingram, class=black11Detective, (804) 828-6409

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    richarcm wrote:
    driveramsII wrote:
    I posted this in the "questions" board but I think it will see more action here among locals. I go to VCU and live kinda downtown (2nd street). While I know I cant carry on campus, I was talking to a VCUPD officer and he said that open carry is illegal in the city of Richmond. I responded that I though separate cities/counties didnt make their own laws and there is just "Virginia Gun Law". He objected again saying Richmond has their own laws and its was OK to CC with a valid permit but not OC. Which one of us are confused... me or the cop?

    Thanks to all
    He LIED. We've all OC'd there many many times...around cops, in restaurants, down sidewalks, at protests and during Lobby Day in the Capitol and in the General Assembly. Just don't OC around federal buildings/property or around VCU.
    If you aren't a VCU student, however, I've had no problem open carring allI want "around" VCU. The details are murky, but as long as you stay out of the interior of VCU buildings, I've never been convinced there is a legalreason a non-student can't open carry around VCU property (outdoors), sidewalks, streets running through campus, etc.

    The VAC has some anti-gun language regarding VCU, but I've never heard of anyone charged with anything - and I know people who open carry "on campus". For those of you with more information than me: what exactly COULD you be charged with under an administrative rule as a non-student for open carrying in public (outside) at VCU? Has anyone ever been charged? Maybe VCDL should work on having the General Assembly clarify this - I don't like one public university having the ability to use a murky, never enforced, vague administrative rule that pre-dates the improvements in Virginia's gun laws by 20 years to deter people from doing something that may very well be legal. I've read the discussions about the VCU VAC rule on this board before, and have never come away from the discussions feeling like I have any clarity at all regarding this rule, its enforceability, where it can be enforced exactly, etc. We also have a couple people on this board who have posted about open carrying on campus and encountering VCU police officers without any problems at all - so let's get to the bottom of this. It's not right for this to hang over our heads....

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    richarcm wrote:
    Just don't OC around federal buildings/property or around VCU.
    As long as I'm on the sidewalk I'm not breaking any law. regulation, ordinance, or rule (does that cover all possibilities?) concerning OC. I've OC'd on the sidewalk in front of the old and new federal courthouse while talking with several of the Marshalls, as well as several other buildings with fed.gov offices inside, and shared a street dining experience on the sidewalk outside the VCU Police HQ with one of their bicycle cops as well as walking around several other parts of both the Monroe Park and MCV campi. Ditto for OC'ing on the sidewalk outside the John Marshall and Stockton Street city courts buildings.

    I aint afraid of no public spaces.

    stay safe.

    skidmark
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    SicSemperTyrannis wrote:
    Repeater wrote:
    driveramsII wrote:
    No, he was a white guy. Probably late 20's-early 30's. 6'1 220lbs. I think he said his name was Mack. He seemed like a cool guy, I talked to him for 30min or so but I knew he was off base with his carry policy. I work at the commons and he was there for security for an event we had going on.
    You should contact the VCU police chief and seek clarification.

    I open carry Downtown almost every weekday. I also have carried on the VCU campus, at bars Downtown, at the state capital, Library of Virginia, etc. For the record, I am a young white guy and have open carried Downtown wearing a torn t-shirts and jeans as well as a tie and dress shirt.

    The officer very well may not have been "lying", but I am a bit frustrated hearing from LEO's and former officers on this board about police "mistakes". If an officer doesn't know the answer, they should state that and then find out the answer. Ifa police officermakes something up whenthey don't know the answer, that is close to a lie. Ifthey thinkthey know the answer but aren't certain because the code can by confusing, then the officer should say that.

    Please use the link provided to seek guidance from the VCU Chief of Police. They don't have that many officers, your description should be sufficient to assist in the officers education. Of course, VCU has a new (acting) Chief of Police because the last oneis under indictment and accused of being a child molester prowling the internet for underage victims.

    I know this officer - his wife is one of my employees. He's a good guy, you could start with him. Still, I'd call the Chief and put my concerns in writing as well.

    Lieutenant Sean Ingram, class=black11Detective, (804) 828-6409
    I know Lt. Ingram from his many security details in the commons. He seems like a great personable guy. If there is one perk to working at the commons is that I get a kinda "in" with the PD. I will see about contacting our chief.

  20. #20
    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    SicSemperTyrannis wrote:
    If an officer doesn't know the answer, they should state that and then find out the answer.
    Ifthey thinkthey know the answer but aren't certain because the code can by confusing, then the officer should say that.
    I agree with these statements....however, you have to really have walked in his shoes to understand the point I'm trying to get across.

    Sometimes LEO's cannot recite verbatim every statute - it happens.

    Maybe he was familar with the statute and simply misinterpreted it - we've seen that before. Hell, I've seen a Magistrate and Judge misinterpret a statute. No ill will intended, they just misread it. That's why we have an appeal process.

    Maybe you posed a question and he was embarassed because he didnt know the answer...pride is a terrible enemy sometimes.

    I'm all for holding people accountable for their actions, whether police officers, or the girl at the Taco Bell window. Until you know his true intentions (which we probably never will), to categorize him as a liar is unfair as is trying to say that he gaveout bad info on purpose to restrict someone's rights. He was wrong in his response, whatever the reason. The OP has the information above to contact his supervisors and address the issue, which is great. Perhaps the next time, someone else will get the correct answer.

    One of the things that I try to teach people in class is that LEO's are taught NOTHING about open carry...because its not a law. I was in uniform for 3 years before I saw one person OC'ing, and my first impression was that he must be a off duty cop. He was pumping gas at a gas station. It was only under my own initiative that I learned anything about open carry.

    If I had to guess, knowing a few former VCU officers, I'd say that he gave you what he thought was the correct answer because the last time he read that statute, that was probably how he interpreted it....just a guess on my part.
    James Reynolds

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    ProShooter wrote:

    Maybe you posed a question and he was embarassed because he didnt know the answer...pride is a terrible enemy sometimes.
    This seems to be the most common cause of these sorts of encounters... OC related or not. It seems that sometimes Officers feel they must have an answer, and they must maintain that their answer is right even when presented evidence to the contrary. I have some familiarity with LEO training (although not as much as those who have actually been through), and it seems this may come from the need to establish authority in a situation. Similar to the old fighter pilot/combat leadership maxim - "Do something, even if its wrong."

    While this is essential for dealing with an actual emergency, sometimes it seems to bleed over into regular citizen interactions.

    Proshooter, in your experience is there any section of LEO curriculum that tells future officers it is ok to say "I don't know," or "let me find out for you." It seems that officers putting out bad information, even with good intentions, could set up the department for avoidable complaints and even litigation.

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    essayons wrote:
    Proshooter, in your experience is there any section of LEO curriculum that tells future officers it is ok to say "I don't know," or "let me find out for you." It seems that officers putting out bad information, even with good intentions, could set up the department for avoidable complaints and even litigation.
    Sadly, not really. Its more up to the individual to say that they do or don't know. No one really receives any training like that.

    It does put the dept. in a potentially bad light. In the grand scheme of things, most dept's don't seem to be too concerned at this level.
    James Reynolds

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    Concealed Firearms Instructor for Virginia, Florida & Utah permits.
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    skidmark wrote:
    richarcm wrote:
    Just don't OC around federal buildings/property or around VCU.
    As long as I'm on the sidewalk I'm not breaking any law. regulation, ordinance, or rule (does that cover all possibilities?) concerning OC. I've OC'd on the sidewalk in front of the old and new federal courthouse while talking with several of the Marshalls, as well as several other buildings with fed.gov offices inside, and shared a street dining experience on the sidewalk outside the VCU Police HQ with one of their bicycle cops as well as walking around several other parts of both the Monroe Park and MCV campi. Ditto for OC'ing on the sidewalk outside the John Marshall and Stockton Street city courts buildings.

    I aint afraid of no public spaces.

    stay safe.

    skidmark
    Well yes as long as you are on a sidewalk you are fine. I tend to just walk around it to avoid any mistakes on my part or misunderstandings on the cops part or some pseduo knowledgeable anti. But that's just me. If I can avoid trouble regardless of its merit...I will certainly opt to.

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    ProShooter wrote:
    essayons wrote:
    Proshooter, in your experience is there any section of LEO curriculum that tells future officers it is ok to say "I don't know," or "let me find out for you." It seems that officers putting out bad information, even with good intentions, could set up the department for avoidable complaints and even litigation.
    Sadly, not really. Its more up to the individual to say that they do or don't know. No one really receives any training like that.

    It does put the dept. in a potentially bad light. In the grand scheme of things, most dept's don't seem to be too concerned at this level.
    Thats a shame. It also might be why officers err on the side of caution and tell someone that an action is illegal when they are unsure. Harder to get fired/sued if a citizen doesn't do a legal action than if he/she does something illegal based on the erroneous advice of the officer.

    Although a creative lawyer may be able to go for Title 18, U.S.C., Section 242 "Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law", a preemptive strike along the lines of the GMU lawsuit. Or since this is a criminal violation and the FBI's jurisdiction could it be pursued that way? Kinda harsh, but it would provide a powerful incentive for LEOs to stop knowingly giving bad advice.

    Any of you legal eagles have thoughts on this?

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    richarcm wrote:
    ...pseduo knowledgeable anti.
    Theres a contradiction if I ever saw one

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