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Thread: Private Security Guards Can Open Carry (Loaded) But The Public Can't?

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    I would like to know why private security guards, who aren't sworn peace officers, and have as much "authority" (there only job is to observe, report and deter crime) as the average citizen can legally open carry a loaded weapon while law-abiding members of the public can't. in some instances, a member of the public has far more firearms training than a private security guard, but that person can't open carry a loaded weapon.

    Why is that? When will this be challenged? Private security guards should not have more rights than the public.

    Has this issued been talked about much here?

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    There is a provision in the law that allows private security guards, etc, to get a permit to carry. I got mine in 2001 and back then it cost about $500 for the course and fees, and then you have to go back every 3 or 6 months to requalify at the range, which was another $50 (depending on what the range is charging for ammo) or so. Permit is good for 2 years, so you're annualized cost for the permit is about $300.

    So, someone less intelligent may argue, "see they're being thoroughly trained, tested, etc so they're safe!" Well, let me tell you that the course I took the instructors cut corners. what was supposed to be a 14-hour course was done in 6. The test was open book, and if you got a question wrong the teacher would give you the answer and let you fix it. I won't say I learned nothing valuable... but I certainly don't think I got my money's worth.

    Just another way for the state to tax people to death.

    Oh, and that permit is ONLY good while on duty, or when directly en route to/from the job site.
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    Thanks for the response and the info. However, that didn't really answer my question.

    Security guards, are not sworn police officers and do not have any authority over the public. SG's are just members of the public wearing a pseudo uniform that resembles a law enforcement uniform. Security guard companies do this because the public has been condition to see that uniform and think "authority figure...i must obey them" even though SGs are absolutely not in any position to enforce laws. So why can private SGs open carry a loaded weapon when I/we can't? There is no difference between a member of the public and a security guard....none whatsoever.

    I want some real info or sound arguments on why SGs can carry loaded weapons and we can't and why it has not been challenged? If members of this organization want to open carry loaded weapons it seems like this argument could help the movement.

    Even BSIS states that the sole responsibility of a security is to observe, report, and deter. Guards are not to engage.

    They aren't law enforcement and should not be openly carrying loaded weapons when the public can't.

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    Well, SGs are supposedly trained. When I was a guard, they allowed "on the job training"... which none of the companies did... they would claim they did, but I never got any such training. Nor did I give such training when I worked as a supervisor for a company...

    But I understand they now have some stricter requirements. Some actual class time before you can work. (Though I'm not sure how the state verifies this is actually done either...)

    So, I think the state would argue that SGs are a "special class" of citizen when it comes to the privilege of bearing arms.

    As for the uniforms... those are required by state law. I'm sure many companies would use them anyhow (for the reasons you stated), but I know a couple small business owners that would just as soon give you a polo shirt with a company logo on it and send you out there. Uniforms are just another unnecessary expense to some companies. ("In-house" guards don't have to compy with the same uniform requirements as contracted guards... bouncers, for example, usually just wear polos with the bar's logo on it.)

    As for "observe and report" being the limit of their duties... I'm not sure this is true. When I was a guard the BSIS test had questions to make sure the guard understood their powers to arrest (citizen's arrest), as well as the proper way to effect such an arrest. But I've been out of the industry a long time, so you may be right... but so what? The simple fact is that criminals don't like getting caught. A SG might be seen as a witness to their crime, or simply a roadblock.

    Observing/reporting leads to police getting involved, resulting in arrest. It may result in a person losing their job or their home. Working in an apartment complex in a bad neighborhood and getting gang members evicted got me shot at twice. Telling an angry mob they couldn't enter a party that was over legal capacity almost got me stabbed. Observing and reporting isn't a risk-free endeavor.

    My point here is that the problem is not that SGs (or even cops for that matter) are a "special class" of citizen. The root cause is that our right is infringed in the first place.

    We're in the process of challenging this already.
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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    There is a provision in the law that allows private security guards, etc, to get a permit to carry. I got mine in 2001 and back then it cost about $500 for the course and fees, and then you have to go back every 3 or 6 months to requalify at the range, which was another $50 (depending on what the range is charging for ammo) or so. Permit is good for 2 years, so you're annualized cost for the permit is about $300.

    So, someone less intelligent may argue, "see they're being thoroughly trained, tested, etc so they're safe!" Well, let me tell you that the course I took the instructors cut corners. what was supposed to be a 14-hour course was done in 6. The test was open book, and if you got a question wrong the teacher would give you the answer and let you fix it. I won't say I learned nothing valuable... but I certainly don't think I got my money's worth.

    Just another way for the state to tax people to death.

    Oh, and that permit is ONLY good while on duty, or when directly en route to/from the job site.
    Do you think Law Enforcement are any better trained? Many places only have annual firearms training, not every 3 or 6 months.
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    Thundar wrote:
    Do you think Law Enforcement are any better trained? Many places only have annual firearms training, not every 3 or 6 months.
    It depends on the type of LE. Some SRT and SWAT units do some type of training almost everyday. Some PDs have situational training once a month. A lot of them, unfortunately don't. With budget cuts, it will be even less.

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    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    Well, SGs are supposedly trained...So, I think the state would argue that SGs are a "special class" of citizen when it comes to the privilege of bearing arms.
    But members of the public are also VERY WELL TRAINED. If this is true though, the law/reasoning to allow SGs to open carry loaded weapons is senseless.

    We're in the process of challenging this already.
    That's great news. Can you provide any info?

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    I don't think you get the full idea of Security Guards. Security Guards are entrusted to guard the specific property like it was their own. Similar to your home. You are allowed to carry loaded on your property because you are guarding your home and property. Same idea with Security Guards.

    Security Guards are bound by the same rules of engagement as your or I however they are acting on behalf of the property owner/manager.

    I have my guard card, firearms card and what not, which wasn't all that difficult to get. It offered some sort of training. Training that most open carry advocates don't have.

    The only reason why they have the authority they have is because, like i said, they are acting on the behalf of the establishment which gives them the authority like it was their own home.

    They don't have the authority like cops have. They can defend only. Not attack. There powers of arrest is like yours and mine.

    A lot of security guards break the law and get away with it because citizens don't know the law themselves.

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    I'm new to the security world and my firearms card is pending. While I'm waiting for that i am working unarmed security. One of my duties is to go to the 3rd floor underground parking structure and trespass individuals. In the 5 times I have found someone (I'm new) 4 people have threatened me with violence. On that floor I have no cell phone reception and radios wouldn't work if we had them. All i have to defend myself is my 3D mag-light and my pocket knife that I carry against company policy. Being a security guard is a lot more than observe and report and is a dangerous line of work. I'll be investing in a stab vest asap.
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    BTW... you can sometimes get your CCW if you have your guard card and firearms card. If a CCW is something you want, I would start looking into it. I'm sure some of the guys on the CAL CCW forums has more information on it.

    Get your pepperspray and Baton cards. I carried my baton in my back pocket on an unarmed site.. against company policy. The site had sightings of a mountain lion so I wasn't about to walk around the area, at night, with out anything. I ended up quitting cause the company got mad at me for carrying my baton.

    Unarmed security guards would prolly get messed with more then unarmed security guards because the bad guys know that its 3 against 1 so to speak. A good tactic is to blame the company you work for and that you are just trying to make a paycheck.. sometimes bad guys can relate to that.

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    Well I hope to move on to bigger and better things in security but I have to start at the bottom to get experience. I paid out of pocket for my guard card and firearms permit so I'm hoping to get on with a company that will pick up the tab for the rest of my classes. Baton?? I carry one in the open it just happens to light up dark spaces as well and I don't need a permit for it.
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    crash5150 wrote:
    I don't think you get the full idea of Security Guards. Security Guards are entrusted to guard the specific property like it was their own. Similar to your home. You are allowed to carry loaded on your property because you are guarding your home and property. Same idea with Security Guards.
    -----------------

    Yes I do, and that is true. I was actually waiting for someone to post that side of the argument. However, BID Patrol, which is part of Andrews International "patrols" the public streets of Hollywood while openly carrying loaded weapons. They are not guarding a specific private property, but driving on public streets and walking on public sidewalks actively engaging and detaining individuals in public space—not private. The also leave the boulevard and go into the neighborhoods adjacent to where the businesses are which should not be allowed at all. BID Patrol are not sworn peace officers either, and have no police powers beyond what the average citizen has. I was even told by LAPD to ignore BID officers because of my repeated run-ins with Andrews International while "shooting" (photography) in the streets. That they have no authority to engage me or detain me for taking pictures in public, which does lead to confrontations at times. Yes, they can approach me and try to engage me in a consensual conversation but I don't have to listen to a thing they say or stay to listen to them. I can leave whenever I want. One LAPD officer actually referred to all of them as Paul Barts.

    But base on what you're saying, can I openly carry a loaded weapon while in my front yard? I'm guarding my private property.

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    I am a sworn reserve police officer for a central CA agency. I am also a CA BSIS licensed SG, & CCW permit holder (for private jobs). I read some interesting questions regarding the training of SG's. True, most armed SG's get little training. SG's have NO law enforcement authority, they only protect the client's property they work for. As for SG's carrying loaded firearms, they do require a firearms permit. I feel OC is a right for every law abiding citizen. Many LEO's that work for my agency, feel the same way...BUT....we may still need to run the person for warrants & priors. Hopefully, they are clean and can continue on their way. Most bad guys won't display their guns. Try to keep in mind, officer safety if and when you get checked by an officer.

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    ReserveCop wrote:
    I am a sworn reserve police officer for a central CA agency. I am also a CA BSIS licensed SG, & CCW permit holder (for private jobs). I read some interesting questions regarding the training of SG's. True, most armed SG's get little training. SG's have NO law enforcement authority, they only protect the client's property they work for. As for SG's carrying loaded firearms, they do require a firearms permit. I feel OC is a right for every law abiding citizen. Many LEO's that work for my agency, feel the same way...BUT....we may still need to run the person for warrants & priors. Hopefully, they are clean and can continue on their way. Most bad guys won't display their guns. Try to keep in mind, officer safety if and when you get checked by an officer.
    Insert explanation of rights violations here...........

    Remember that in any scenario PC 12031(e) gives you the authority to detain the person so you can inspect the firearm per
    PC 12031(e). Unless you develop additional probable cause, the length of the detention will be limited to the time required to
    inspect the firearm.


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    JJ.........Your correct! But......I'm sure we will still run you!

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    ReserveCop wrote:
    JJ.........Your correct! But......I'm sure we will still run you!
    Even after being sued for 1983? Because that is exactly what you are doing. Thanks for helping our cases by admitting it publicly.

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    ReserveCop wrote:
    JJ.........Your correct! But......I'm sure we will still run you!
    CANCEL "BEHAVE MODE"

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    Remember, you took an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States? But you will violate our 4th amendment right with an unreasonalbe search. Nice to see you are a man of your word.
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    ReserveCop wrote:
    JJ.........Your correct! But......I'm sure we will still run you!
    Which makes you no different than the common habitual criminal on the street.

    You are a disgrace.

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    love it when a cop "needs to run a law abiding citizen for wants n warrents"!
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    1245A Defender wrote:
    love it when a cop "needs to run a law abiding citizen for wants n warrents"!
    The only need is psycho-pathological, to establish total dominance over law-abiding citizens, by violating the oath, the Constitution, basic human rights... with near-absolute impunity.

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    This thread just took a whole new turn......

    He doesn't even deserve to be a security guard.

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    JJ wrote:
    This thread just took a whole new turn......Â*

    He doesn't even deserve to be a security guard.
    yes it has. guess i won't be getting any answers to my questions

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    cali90027 wrote:
    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    Well, SGs are supposedly trained...So, I think the state would argue that SGs are a "special class" of citizen when it comes to the privilege of bearing arms.
    But members of the public are also VERY WELL TRAINED. If this is true though, the law/reasoning to allow SGs to open carry loaded weapons is senseless.

    We're in the process of challenging this already.
    That's great news. Can you provide any info?

    Still waiting............

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    Don't forget, Officer saftey invalidates the 4th amendment. Where have I heard this before? It must have been from another LEO. Time to put on my chest waders again.
    A citizen may not be required to offer a ―good and substantial reason-- why he should be permitted to exercise his rights. The right‘s existence is all the reason he needs.

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