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Thread: Citizens searched at Gloucester supervisors meeting

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    Activist Member Wolf_shadow's Avatar
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    Are the Supervisors so afraid of their constituents they want to exclude all guns and weapons from the meeting?

    http://www.wtkr.com/news/wtkr-gl-sea...,2327040.story

    GLOUCESTER — Citizens attending tonight's Board of Supervisors meeting at the Colonial Courthouse will be subject to a security search similar to entering the Gloucester County Courthouse.

    Sheriff Steve Gentry instituted the search for tonight's meeting to "ensure the safety of all those in attendance," according to a county press release.

    Visitors must pass through a metal detection device and have their belongings searched to enter the courthouse where court hearings are held and where the Commonwealth's Attorney, Circuit Court Clerk and other offices are located. But searching citizens prior to public meetings at the Colonial Courthouse hasn't been a practice in Gloucester.

    All purses, briefcases and other items will be searched. A list of prohibited items ranges from weapons of any kind, including firearms, knives, mace, pepper spray and Tasers, and all food and drinks. All cell phones must be turned off or in the silent mode.

    The security measures were implemented following heightened citizens' interest in the meeting after the supervisors Teresa Altemus, Michelle Ressler, Bobby Crewe and Gregory Woodard voted Nov. 4 to spend $343,000 in taxpayer money to pay their legal bills. The four supervisors ran up the legal bills in successfully defending themselves against misdemeanor charges and an effort by citizens to remove them from office through petitions.

    Gloucester would be the only locality to implement this kind of security measure at a public meeting. The Gloucester Sheriff's Office posts two armed deputies at the meeting, but searches of citizens haven't been conducted in the past.

    Attempts to reach Gentry for comment were unsuccessful.
    Yes I carry a Bible and a Gun, your point.
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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    It might not be legal. I think it is only considered a court if court is in session. We carried in Falls Church at the citycouncil meeting. We passed right through the metal detectors and into the room that they used for court hearings.



    It might be legal for them to search, but it probably is not legal for them to exclude gun-owners excercising their rights.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    Skidmark replied on another thread about multi-use facilities that hold court among other things. I think PVC will be onto this if it is what I think it is.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
    Ceasefire NJ Director Brian Miller, NJ.com, August 20, 2009

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    Wow... they are really working hard at getting themselves sued out ofoffice aren't they?

    Here I thought Norfolk City Council was a bunch of crooks. These guys could teach Norfolk a few things.

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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    Bill in Va, I'm nota legal expert, but I can give you an example as to why it may be lawful to carry at the Gloucester City Council meeting. We went to Falls Church to protest the mayor's membership in Bloomerberg's anti-gun group.

    The building they used is a courthouse during the day. We all carried in that same building when court was out of session and the city council used it.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
    Ceasefire NJ Director Brian Miller, NJ.com, August 20, 2009

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    I want to say there's something about multi-use facilities such that the designated area where court is held is the 'courthouse' while the rest of the facility is NOT.

    I know that one point I used to be able to go the Norfolk Clerk of Courts office without ever stepping through metal detectors and what not. The detectors used to be placed right outside the court rooms. They also had their signs posted such that firearms, weapons, etc were prohibited in the court. Noticeably, they were NOT prohibited elsewhere in the building.

    Now, to step into that building you must pass through the detectors and they've extended the prohibition against weapons of all kinds to the entire facility despite only part of it being the court house.

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    Regular Member VAopencarry's Avatar
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    Is anybody familiar with this Courthouse? Is it a Historical place and not currently used as a real courthouse? I can't verify this.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator ed's Avatar
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    Bill in VA wrote:
    If the meeting is being held ina courthouse
    Ask to takk to the judge.. If there is no judge, there is no courhouse. :-)
    Carry On.

    Ed

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    ed wrote:
    Bill in VA wrote:
    If the meeting is being held ina courthouse
    Ask to takk to the judge.. If there is no judge, there is no courhouse. :-)
    And if court is in session, it doesn't matter if the four walls are a courthouse, schoolhouse, or outhouse.

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    Regular Member Virginiaplanter's Avatar
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    It's no longer a real courthouse:

    Colonial Courthouse


    Here is a story about the meeting. If they denied entry upon an anonymous tip that armed people might be wanting to shoot the Board of Supervisors, then it was probably illegal.

    Gazette Article

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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    I believe the whole thing was bull and I suspect that the rumor was made up.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
    Ceasefire NJ Director Brian Miller, NJ.com, August 20, 2009

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Virginiaplanter wrote:
    It's no longer a real courthouse:

    Colonial Courthouse


    Here is a story about the meeting. If they denied entry upon an anonymous tip that armed people might be wanting to shoot the Board of Supervisors, then it was probably illegal.

    Gazette Article
    From the Gazette article:

    He (Sheriff Steve Gentry) said tips to the Crime Line are anonymous and cannot be traced. Gentry said such security measures will remain in place at future meetings until the individual who made the threat is apprehended or until the sheriff deems there is no longer a safety issue.
    Sounds like someone needs to contact the sheriff and let him know about § 15.2-915.

    TFred


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    Regular Member MSC 45ACP's Avatar
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    How sooncan the people of Gloucestervote this Board of Criminals out of officeand prosecute them for wrongdoing? Is there any way they can have a "recall vote" to get rid of these felons before the next scheduled election before they do any more damage?

    These folks make Nixon, Clintoon (and her husband), the current Felon in Chief and most of the current Congresslook likeCub Scouts and Girl Guides!

    They really gotta go!


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    Regular Member 2a4all's Avatar
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    MSC 45ACP wrote:
    How sooncan the people of Gloucestervote this Board of Criminals out of officeand prosecute them for wrongdoing? Is there any way they can have a "recall vote" to get rid of these felons before the next scheduled election before they do any more damage?

    These folks make Nixon, Clintoon (and her husband), the current Felon in Chief and most of the current Congresslook likeCub Scouts and Girl Guides!

    They really gotta go!

    The only people who would disagree are the Gang of Four

    If you're unfamilar with this issue, search www.dailypress.com for altemus
    A law-abiding citizen should be able to carry his personal protection firearm anywhere that an armed criminal might go.

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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    the sheriff cannot use an anonymous tip to keep OCers out of the meeting. WHY? because of TERRY vs OHIO. It's called REASONABLE SUSPICION. and its not legally possible to have it against the general public. The Sheriff is confused in his duties. OCing is not just a LAWFUL act, its a protected one. that means simple possession of a firearm does not(and CAN NOT) in and of itself SEPERATE us from the GENERAL PUBLIC. It doesn't matter if an anonymous person called in and said someone or themselves was gonna show up and shoot someone.

    Legally, this is the EXACT SAME as an anonymous tip/threat that a man wearing glasses is going to shoot someone at the meeting. So you disallow Glasses at the meeting.

    With glasses, you are violating someones incorporated 4th amendment rights.
    With pistol carriers, you are violating thier unincorporated 2nd amendment rights, thier incorporated 4th amendment rights, thier incorporated 1st amendment rights (twice, once for peacebly assembling and once for freedom of speech if OCing) and state law because OCing does not meet the requirements for the "execution of thier duties" section of the PREEMPTION LAW. Why? it is NOT within the execution of thier duties to act upon an individual without reasonable suspicion.

    As for the courthouse restriction of the preemption law. Their is no exception written into the law because 'courthouse' is DEFINED BY LAW. There is some case law and AG opinions that make it seem that legally, anything defined by law must be being used for that purpose IN THAT INSTANT. This is so that persons cannot ABUSE the intent or spirit of a law.

    for instance, opinion that VCU law banning students from having firearms is only enforcable WHILE THE STUDENT IS INVOLVED IN CLASS OR ACTIVITIES REQUIRED FOR SCHOOL.
    Also note the case where a parent pulled a gun(empty) and started waving it around at a PTA meeting AT A SCHOOL (after hours) and only got charged with brandishing. She DID NOT get charged with with mandatory 10year sentance for carrying a gun to a school event.

    Please see the VCDL website about the RICHMOND CITY HALL gun ban. They also had metal detectors and not only did they have to remove the no guns sign they removed the detectors as well. Why? because not only didn't they have the authority to ban guns, they didn't have the authority to search you in any way either.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
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    In my opinion, no. It's not a "courthouse" if it's "council meeting chambers". And, by the way, an opinion of the Attorney General is merely a lawyer's opinion.
    Daniel L. Hawes - 540 347 2430 - HTTP://www.VirginiaLegalDefense.com

    By the way, nothing I say on this website as "user" should be taken as either advertising for attorney services or legal advice, merely personal opinion. Everyone having a question regarding the application of law to the facts of their situation should seek the advice of an attorney competent in the subject matter of the issues presented and licensed to practice in the relevant state.

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    Lone Star Veteran DrMark's Avatar
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    I've been hearing that a judge holds court sessions there once in a while to keep its "courthouse" status. If so, that might keep the Sherriff out of hot water legally.

    I'll try to find something written/online to reference what I've been hearing.



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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    Bill in VA wrote:
    simmonsjoe wrote:
    ... 'courthouse' is DEFINED BY LAW. ...
    What law? Cite please.
    Valid court case law: Only that part of the courthouse building necessary for the use and occupancy of the circuit court constituted the courthouse

    Link: http://www.virginia1774.org/CourthouseArea.html
    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 inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    Bill in VA wrote:
    Thundar wrote:
    Bill in VA wrote:
    simmonsjoe wrote:
    ... 'courthouse' is DEFINED BY LAW. ...
    What law? Cite please.
    Valid court case law: Only that part of the courthouse building necessary for the use and occupancy of the circuit court constituted the courthouse

    Link: http://www.virginia1774.org/CourthouseArea.html
    "Case law" is not "law" per se; it is precedent and thus interpretation of law ("regulatory law" if you prefer), not statutory law. simmons said "courthouse" is defined by law. I asked him, what law? Where in the statutes is "courthouse" defined? You and I both know it is not defined in the statutes. Using the case law you've provided "corthouse" is still only defined in an ancillary way
    What the precedent says is that the building is NOT the courthouse. But ifI understand your thesis, common law is not law per se, right?
    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 inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    Lone Star Veteran DrMark's Avatar
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    DrMark wrote:
    I've been hearing that a judge holds court sessions there once in a while to keep its "courthouse" status. If so, that might keep the Sherriff out of hot water legally.

    I'll try to find something written/online to reference what I've been hearing.
    Ah, here we go:
    At least once a year a judge holds a court session in the Colonial Courthouse to ensure it will be counted among the longest continuously used courthouses. That also means visitors can be barred from taking weapons in the courthouse, even if they have a concealed weapons permit.

    http://www.dailypress.com/news/dp-lo...,6952754.story



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