Thread: To carry or not?
Use to carry, with no permit, but about 15 years ago, I decided I no longer needed to and sold and locked away remaining guns. A recent occurance that put me in a vunerable and helpless state, started me thinking about it again. I found this site by looking for all the information on line that I could find. I have been lurking and reading and have gotten alot of information. I am going to get a CCP and I am taking a two day class next weekend with a lot of range time, but I am still trying to decide if I want to carry again.
If I do carry it would be conceiled. I support the second ammendment, but don't want to draw attention to myself or make a political statement. Like all of you I don't want to have to shoot any one, but I do want to be able to protect my family if I am ever in a situation that calls for it again.
I know guns make LEO's nervous, and I don't want to create a problem for them or myself. So if there are any LEO's here (active or retired), or anyone else with the knowledge, I would like to get your opinions on folks who carry conceiled and how you prefer they should conduct themselves in a routine traffic stop, or any time you might have to approach them?
Also, what is the drill if someone somehow detects I am carrying a weapon and reports it to you? Do you approach and ask for permit, or is it I have to be disarmed and patted down, etc, etc?
Open carry is legal in Virginia. There are very few prohibited places. However, some jurisdictions tend to be heavy handed toward people who open carry.
"Also, what is the drill if someone somehow detects I am carrying a weapon and reports it to you?"
So what? The drill is to smile and walk away.
"Re: Traffic stop"
The police can see that you have a permit to carry a concealed handgun on their computer. You do not need to notify the officer. I think you don't even need to answer if they ask if you're armed.
It's really not that big of a deal in this state.
Does anyone here actually believe that the Founders were sitting around in John Adams' tavern UNARMED because they believed a bar should be a gun free zone?
According to va code 18.2-308 H. The permit to carry a concealed handgun shall specify only the following information: name, address, date of birth, gender, height, weight, color of hair, color of eyes, and signature of the permittee; the signature of the judge issuing the permit, of the clerk of court who has been authorized to sign such permits by the issuing judge, or of the clerk of court who has been authorized to issue such permits pursuant to subsection D; the date of issuance; and the expiration date. The permit to carry a concealed handgun shall be no larger than two inches wide by three and one-fourth inches long and shall be of a uniform style prescribed by the Department of State Police. The person issued the permit shall have such permit on his person at all times during which he is carrying a concealed handgun and shall display the permit and a photo-identification issued by a government agency of the Commonwealth or by the United States Department of Defense or United States State Department (passport) upon demand by a law-enforcement officer.
You have a few preconceived notions that I don't think are correct. You are only interested in concealed carry, which is fine; you can ask permission from the commonwealth to do so, and if you qualify, you will get your permit. Since you will go through all the legal hoops to do so, I can't imagine your carrying a pistol should make a cop "nervous". This is not a relevant concern for you whether you CC or OC. Perhaps a souped-up red sports car makes some cops "nervous", but if I owned one, I would not worry about that unless I intended to break some laws. Same with firearms, Ric. Also, I agree with 230 that you needn't concern yourself if a cop sees you're carrying a pistol. After all, I carry one just about every day, openly as can be, and whenever I see a county Deputy, I just smile and say hello. Nothing beyond that has ever happened. 230 also said some jurisdictions can be "heavy handed". Norfolk used to be that way, but we took care of that a few years ago. I OC all over Tidewater, including Smithfield and other places on your side of the river, but no one has been troublesome to me at all over the last 5 years or so. You said a recent situation made your feel vulnerable and helpless, but you are still not sure you want to carry. I just can't understand that! I went through something like that in my past, and afterward I didn't give a tinker's dam what anyone thought of my plan to defend my life and that of my loved ones!Your concerns all seem to center on the issues that concealed carry bring up for you. Maybe you should just open carry for a few months. By then, you will certainly feel about as comfortable as anyone could regarding carry of a firearm, and then you could switch to CC. Actually, most of us have CCWs and conceal at times, its just that OC has so many advantages, we generally just go with that! You need to deal with your ambivalence about carrying at all before you go any further Ric.
I think you secretly want to OC or you woudn't have spent time lurking on an OC forum! I'm just saying.....
Welcome to the forum.
Thanks for all the great input, and clarifications.
Dutch Uncle - I don't have any reservations about being ready to defend myself and plan to proceed with the course next weekend and submit my application. My biggest fear is having a nervous police officer pointing his fire arm at me and telling me to remove my firearm and place it on the gound., etc, etc,. However, maybe I've seen to many cop shows on TV. You are also correct in that at times I may OC, but I believe most of my carry will be CC once I get the permit.
Again, I appreciate all the input.
VirginiaOpenCarry.Org (Coins, Shirts and Patches)
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For VA Open Carry Cards send a S.A.2S.E. to: Ed's OC cards, Box 16143, Wash DC 20041-6143 (they are free but some folks enclose a couple bucks too)
Last edited by Ric R; 07-02-2011 at 09:03 PM.
I'm in Washington. But, I've had two official interactions with police officers while open carrying. One MWAG call (which I handled totally wrong), and one traffic stop where the officer asked me to exit the vehicle. Neither time did the officers disarm me or point their guns at me. Although the cop during the MWAG call interaction did wave his finger at me, tempting me sorely to wave a finger back!
Last edited by NavyLCDR; 07-02-2011 at 09:20 PM.
I have had interactions with Newport News police (who said they supported citizens carrying) as well as York County Sherrif & Deputies that were professional and supportive, Hampton Police and VA Beach Police. The only ones that pulled my chain were the VA Beach police that jokingly asked if I/we had permits for our OC-ed guns. I laughed and said no cause there is none. They were walking past us to go to dinner at the same restaurant we were having a OC dinner at and were waiting outside for others to show up before heading inside. For the most part prior-OC-ers paved the way for us good citizens to exercise our rights and not be molested by LEO's.
As far as CC vs OC I do both. If you ever read self defense encounters in magazines (NRA Rifleman etc) they always say, "The licensed CC person pulled out their gun and defended themselves...". If the person CC-ing had been OC-ing IMHO many of those attacks would have never happened because the criminal would not have pursued an armed individual. So by all means carry is some form. If you really are serious about protecting your family consider OC as a proactive/preventitive means of detering opportunistic criminals. With that said some days I just don't feel like strapping on my primary OC gun and simply run an errand with my normal CC BUG. Depending on my daily schedule I will put on my OC-ed gun first thing in the morning and take it off when I go to bed just like my watch.
Last edited by 45acpForMe; 07-02-2011 at 09:36 PM.
"Cogito, ergo armatum sum: I think, therefore I am armed."
A law-abiding citizen should be able to carry his personal protection firearm anywhere that an armed criminal might go.
Member VCDL, NRA
You missed the most important thing Ed said....so I'll repeat it.
You in the habit of asking about baking cookies on an auto repair site?
You KNOW you are on an OPEN CARRY board right? (
However, my wife bakes cookies for our auto mechanic every year and takes them for christmas. He seems quite happy to discuss them and to have them. lol :-)
I take the subject line / title of the thread as the main question. The answer is, "yes."
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.
I agree now that the answer to the subject line question is, yes. The responses here helped a lot and I thank you again.
I'm sure I will know more and feel more comfortable after taking a few classes.
Navylcdr and 45acpForMe thank you for sharing your actual experiences.
Are written in New York or California where the rights to carry, much less keep, a firearm are severely curtailed by Virginia standards. Remember first that the "Second Ammendment" was drawn directly from the Virginia Constitution. Though abused and tread upon by govermantal userpers it has never been canceled here. The police rapidly become aware that THE PEOPLE have and exercise THE RIGHT to keep and bear arms here. If they should fail in their training, The various minions of the VCDL will pounce to seek economic redress for their lapse. Round here that is looked upon as a "windfall profit". Go forth and carry.
When I carry a gun, I don't do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I'm looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don't carry it because I'm afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn't limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force.
excerpt By Marko Kloos (http://munchkinwrangler.wordpress.com/?s=major+caudill)