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Thread: Routine Traffic Stop...almost

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    Routine Traffic Stop...almost

    At approximately 12:50 pm today in Bowling Green, an officer observed a gentleman in a car exactly like mine, who also looked a lot like me, going straight through a "turn right only" intersection (yes, that's sarcasm in my voice). A few hundred yards down the road, after a quick glance in my rearview, I saw the flashing blue lights. I had to go a another hundred yards or so due to cars already directly to the right, so I turned on my right blinker to let him know I had seen him and that I intended to pull over. I rolled down the driver's side window and kept my hands gripped at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel as he approached. He got out and walked up to my window and stated, "I'm officer ______ with the Bowling Green City Police Department. Do you know why I pulled you over?" Of course I knew exactly why but wasn't feeling up to admitting guilt. "Not a clue." "The reason I pulled you over today is because you went straight back there and it's right turn only. Do you have your license, registration, and insurance on you?" With my hands still gripped on the steering wheel I stated, "I do, but before I go reaching around in here, I'd like to inform you that I have a concealed weapons permit and there is a loaded 9mm in my center console." My driver's license and CDWL are in my wallet and my registration and insurance are in the glovebox." He asked me where my wallet was and I informed him that it was in my left rear pants pocket. He then instructed me to go ahead and retrieve my license and permit, and then my registration and insurance. I got each from its location always keeping one hand on the wheel. After I presented him with everything he asked for, he then said, "Okay, since you have your concealed permit I'm sure there's nothing to worry about, but I'm just gonna go ahead and run the numbers on your firearm and make sure it isn't stolen." That caught me a little off-guard I must admit, but I quickly replied, "No, I don't want the numbers ran through any government database." He looked a little stunned. "Why not," he asked. "I'm not trying to be difficult, but I don't want the numbers ran on my gun. It's my right to refuse that, and you have no reasonable suspicion to believe I am in possession of a stolen firearm." Almost surprised he said, "Okay...Well, just sit tight." He then returned to his cruiser where he remained for about 10 minutes. My guess, which is only speculation, but from his reaction I believe he probably checked with his supervisor to confirm that I was in the right about this. When I informed him of my stance on running my numbers, he seemed a little unsure if I could do that, but convinced I spoke confidently enough to not challenge the issue just yet. I was very polite in declining his request, but this was one "fishing" trip I wasn't gonna go along with. He came back to my car a few minutes later, returned my belongings, and told me to drive safely and have a nice day. He was never rude to begin with, but was especially polite when he returned. I thanked him for doing his job and we were both on our way.

    My reasons for not wanting the gun ran were many. 1) He had no reason to suspect my firearm was stolen and therefore any search, seizure, or combination thereof would have been unlawful and unconstitutional 2) I will NEVER EVER EVER reach for a loaded firearm during a traffic stop, even upon an officer's request, EVER 3) I do not know if the officer was familiar with my particular model firearm, or his habits of firearms in general, and that presents safety issues for both he and I

    I know that many of you on here would disagree with my decision to inform the officer of the firearm in the first place, as it is not required by Ky law. I know that when my license is run it will come up that I have a CDWL, and that leaves the officer not knowing if I am carrying or where the location of the firearm is, which I feel can create more problems than the notification and standing firm on my rights can. The reason I carry in my center console is because 1) I can quickly access my gun should I need it, and 2) This is a closed compartment where I keep NO OTHER PERTINENT PAPERWORK NEEDED DURING A TRAFFIC STOP, thus alleviating my need to open it for any reason. And yes, I am aware of the law change regarding closed compartments in vehicles, of which I also informed the officer. He also seemed surprised at that, but didn't argue with me.

    My reason for this post is to encourage everyone to decide exactly what course of action in many different scenarios you will take during a traffic stop, long before it occurs. Your choices may not be the same as mine, but I hope they are well-thought-out and the right ones for you based upon your mode of carry.

    Carry safely, Carry proudly, and Carry always

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    Regular Member neuroblades's Avatar
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    Congrats!

    Allow me to be the first to say congrats to you on this LEO encounter.
    Got SIG? MOLON LABE

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    Thanks Neuroblades. I know not everyone will agree with my decision to inform the leo I was carrying, but if I was an officer, I think it would put me at ease if anything.

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    Regular Member neuroblades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2A Pride View Post
    Thanks Neuroblades. I know not everyone will agree with my decision to inform the leo I was carrying, but if I was an officer, I think it would put me at ease if anything.
    Well, since I got my CCDW, I've never been pulled for anything, not looking for it either. *LOL* But as a matter of professional courtesy, I would. I'd be recording the stop as well, one can NEVER be any too careful these days as I have learned as of late.
    Got SIG? MOLON LABE

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    Yes Gutshot, the officer was very polite and I believe his intentions to be pure. I believe the majority of LEO's are people who genuinely want to serve and protect. Unfortunately, sometimes they are trained to "go fishing" instead of upholding the Constitution. In regards to carrying in the console, I realize I have other options, it just seems to be a good location in my vehicle for quick access. I usually carry IWB or inside the pocket, and will place my gun in the console while driving. I open carry a couple of days a week (3 o'clock in a belt holster), and I place my firearm just behind my seatbelt strap where it's easily drawn. I'm glad they passed the new closed compartment law for people who haven't gotten a CWDL, as the glovebox during an altercation could be quite a reach. I like the fact that the console compartment is closed, and as long as no important paperwork such as registration or insurance is kept there, there is never a need to open it during a traffic stop.

    Carry Safely, Carry Proudly, and Carry Always

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2A Pride View Post
    Yes Gutshot, the officer was very polite and I believe his intentions to be pure.
    Thanks for taking a stand.

    I guess you could call his intentions "pure", in that he didn't think there was anything wrong about wanting to run your serial number. And that, in itself, is wrong -- the absolutely casual attitude towards searches.

    You got a good one here who didn't bow up, but many officers would consider your "bad attitude" a red flag that would cause them to push even harder. (No matter how polite you are, those types of officers consider it a "bad attitude" if you display anything other than immediate compliance.)

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    Regular Member jkestner3's Avatar
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    Good stuff. LEO's need to be more like this one. I had a similar incident in Clarksville, Tn. Long story short I told the officer my Kimber was on my hip and that I had my CCDW, He just said okay, thanked me for telling him, and went about the traffic stop like normal.

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    Glad it turned out well for you, but you screwed up from the start. No offense, but why in the world do you drive around with a gun in your back pocket? When I get into any vehicle the gun goes in the console or somewhere very easy to reach. If I have a chest rig on it still goes in the console.
    As soon as you noticed you were being pulled over you should have had the license and registration in hand. With the gun in the console there is no need to notify about the gun, carry license, or anything else. Im not positive about your state laws, but all im going to say when asked is " There aint nothing illegal in my truck". Guns aint illegal so I have no reason to discuss them.
    By doing so, you would not have went through the running the numbers crap. Nobody would have known.
    I keep my Insurance and registration on the drivers visor. If I see blue lights I pull my wallet out of the console. My handgun stays in the console and I dont mention it. By having all your ID, registration, and insurance in hand, you can get out of the vehicle with it and not allow the cop any reason to get inside of your vehicle.
    I dont understand why people drive with their guns in their pocket. " If you need it you wont be able to get it out very fast".

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    Regular Member CharleyCherokee's Avatar
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    Don't know where you got the back pocket part from, but he said it was in his center console. His license was in his pocket which is a normal place for one to keep it.
    A bullet may have your name on it, but shrapnel is addressed to whom it may concern.
    Why open carrying is a good idea: http://forum.pafoa.org/open-carry-14...encounter.html

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    Mr. Redneck,

    You clearly did not read thoroughly before you posted. However, thank you for your opinion anyhow.
    Last edited by 2A Pride; 08-30-2011 at 09:24 AM.

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    When you said it was your right to refuse him running the numbers what do you mean? Im still learning about my rights, especially when it comes to LEO encounters.

    If I can clearly understand this I will also take the same stance if im ever in the same situation. I do not want my numbers ran through anything that has to do with the government.


    Also I thought it was required in any state to inform an officer at a traffic stop about a concealed weapon. I have my permit from VA and it is part of the rules to inform the officer so I assumed it was like that everywhere...

    I personally think its a bad idea to NOT inform him and he finds out some other way.

  12. #12
    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meshuggah View Post
    When you said it was your right to refuse him running the numbers what do you mean? Im still learning about my rights, especially when it comes to LEO encounters.

    If I can clearly understand this I will also take the same stance if im ever in the same situation. I do not want my numbers ran through anything that has to do with the government.


    Also I thought it was required in any state to inform an officer at a traffic stop about a concealed weapon. I have my permit from VA and it is part of the rules to inform the officer so I assumed it was like that everywhere...

    I personally think its a bad idea to NOT inform him and he finds out some other way.

    Hey Meshuggah,

    The 4th Amendment protects us from unreasonable searches and seizures. The officer had no reason to believe that his handgun needed to be seized so the number could be searched. Thus the OP was exercising this 4th Amendment right.

    EDIT: I believe there are only 5 states with a "Duty to Inform" the officer you're packing heat...but don't quote me on that.

    Some believe it is a good idea not to inform the cop because, though it went okay in this situation, you can end up turning a 10 minute stop into a 30 minute *leather breaks* KEEP YOUR HANDS WHERE I CAN SEE THEM, GET YOUR REGISTRATION, NO DON'T REACH FOR THE GLOVE BOX, OKAY REACH FOR IT!, NO NOT THE GLOVE BOX, CODE 123456 I NEED BACK UP THIS GUY HAS A GUN

    Or you know what...just youtube the keywords "Ohio CCW cop freak out"
    Last edited by Schlitz; 08-30-2011 at 05:26 PM.
    “The claim and exercise of a constitutional right cannot be converted into a crime.”
    [Miller vs. U.S., 230 F. Supp. 486, 489 (1956)]
    “There can be no sanction or penalty imposed upon one because of his exercise of constitutional rights.”
    [Sherar vs. Cullen, 481 F2d. 946 (1973)]

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    Wow. This is the first time I have seen this video. Someday when I have more time I'd like to watch it again and count exactly how many laws that officer broke throughout the stop. Allowing that man to possess a badge is far more dangerous to our society than any lawful gun owner I've personally ever met.

    Thanks for the info on this Schlitz

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    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2A Pride View Post
    Wow. This is the first time I have seen this video. Someday when I have more time I'd like to watch it again and count exactly how many laws that officer broke throughout the stop. Allowing that man to possess a badge is far more dangerous to our society than any lawful gun owner I've personally ever met.

    Thanks for the info on this Schlitz
    I'm in favor of all traffic cops being replaced by either robots who know the codified law and can't be harmed or threatened by gunfire, can't lie about the law or their intent and have no hyper-testosterone issues. Or, failing that, because a robot is only as good as their programming, a 'traffic warden' with limited arrest powers. It's just not NECESSARY to police the highways to catch EVERY SINGLE FREAKING law and rule infraction. Make this robot be extremely fair but harsh on cell phone users, no seatbelt users, drunks and inattentive drivers as well as COWBOYS who endanger us all. FORGET trying to make drug busts and gun busts and all that CRAP and concentrate on making driving safe, thus reducing traffic fatalities.

    Can anyone see anything wrong with this?
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

    Hi, I'm hypercritical. But I mean no harm, I just like to try to look deeply at life

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    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    I'm in favor of all traffic cops being replaced by either robots who know the codified law and can't be harmed or threatened by gunfire, can't lie about the law or their intent and have no hyper-testosterone issues. Or, failing that, because a robot is only as good as their programming, a 'traffic warden' with limited arrest powers. It's just not NECESSARY to police the highways to catch EVERY SINGLE FREAKING law and rule infraction. Make this robot be extremely fair but harsh on cell phone users, no seatbelt users, drunks and inattentive drivers as well as COWBOYS who endanger us all. FORGET trying to make drug busts and gun busts and all that CRAP and concentrate on making driving safe, thus reducing traffic fatalities.

    Can anyone see anything wrong with this?
    Hmmm... not to derail the thread, but someone recently changed my thoughts on seat belt laws.

    In the name of FREEDOM:

    If you are alone in your car the seat belt should be your choice. You are not harming or putting anyone at risk, except for yourself.

    If you are traveling with another the person in the car you are posing a threat to them, if you get into an accident you could kill them.


    So, as patriots we believe that you should be FREE to do what you want so long as you are not impeding on anyone elses life, liberty, or persuit of happiness.

    What do you think? Looking at it this way maybe your mind will be changed as was mine. We should be free to make bad decisions, this is suppose to be America.


    (With that said, I ALWAYS wear my seat belt, I don't care if it's the law or not.)
    Last edited by Schlitz; 08-31-2011 at 01:15 PM.
    “The claim and exercise of a constitutional right cannot be converted into a crime.”
    [Miller vs. U.S., 230 F. Supp. 486, 489 (1956)]
    “There can be no sanction or penalty imposed upon one because of his exercise of constitutional rights.”
    [Sherar vs. Cullen, 481 F2d. 946 (1973)]

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    Wow! That was fantastic!

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    I understand the 4th amend. but how can you know if the officer doesnt have a good enough reason?

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    Regular Member MKEgal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meshuggah
    I understand the 4th amend. but how can you know if the officer doesnt have a good enough reason?
    a) you didn't do anything wrong
    b) s/he can't articulate her/his reasonable suspicion & explain of what crime you are suspected
    (Hint: if you ask "why am I being detained" or "why did you stop me" and they can't give a reason, or make up something that isn't lawful, they don't have RAS. Get a supervisor on scene ASAP.)

    In the OP example, he was subjected to a traffic stop. The gun was not involved at all in the reason for the nonconsensual contact.
    Since the car was involved, I'm sure the plate was run (& possibly the VIN) to see if it was reported stolen.
    If he hadn't chosen to inform the officer, said officer would never have known of the existance of the gun. It just happened to be there, like whatever else OP had in the car that day that was also completely irrelevant. (Wrenches, emergency flares, groceries, newspaper...) The officer had no RAS that the gun was illegal in any way, so had no power to sieze & search it without consent.
    See the difference?

    Now even if I know I've done nothing wrong, if I'm surrounded by officers with firearms pointed at me & they insist that I & my car match the description given of a suspect / getaway car from an armed robbery of a bank a few blocks away I'll admit they have RAS.

    (Though I want to eventually hear/read witness statements, 'cause I can't imagine that any criminal would be dumb enough to use a car that stands out as much as mine does as a getaway car. It's smiley-face yellow. It's small, so I wanted something very visible. Not many yellow cars out there.)

    Quote Originally Posted by 2A Pride
    I believe the majority of LEO's are people who genuinely want to serve and protect.
    I used to think so, too, until a bit over a week ago, when I had an extended conversation with a guy who has years on the street as a cop, plus has been chief of police, plus currently works for homeland (in)security.

    At some point in our several-hours-long conversation I said something very similar to your quote, & he said that in his experience about half of officers are people who were bullied in school & want to get some power back.

    Quote Originally Posted by Schlitz
    If you are alone in your car the seat belt should be your choice. You are not harming or putting anyone at risk, except for yourself.
    The only argument I can come up with attempting to refute this point of view is that if you're held in place (behind the wheel, able to access the controls) you're in a better position to exert some control over the car, say after an initial impact, & perhaps control its path so as not to harm others.
    If you're thrown out of the car, or rattling around inside, you have no hope of controlling it.

    Similar argument for requiring motorcyclists to wear eye protection which blocks wind & debris/insects. If your eyes are impaired you're a danger to others.

    A weaker but similar argument for requiring hearing protection (& working mufflers) for riding a motorcycle - if your hearing is damaged (temporarily or permanently) by wind noise (or lack of working mufflers) or traffic sounds are blocked (by the noise made by a lack of working mufflers) you can't hear traffic sounds & warning noises, so are more likely to get into a crash.

    I always wear a seatbelt, and in 20+ years of riding motorcycles I think I've gone less than 5 miles without a helmet. I choose to protect myself.
    Last edited by MKEgal; 09-02-2011 at 10:17 PM.
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