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Thread: Fredericksburg City at it again with CHP requirements

  1. #1
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Fredericksburg City at it again with CHP requirements

    Please see an earlier thread:

    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...50#post1504550

    As you can see I though I had it handled, but found out otherwise when I droppped off my renewal application. The deputy clerks both insisted that I was not renewing a permit and I had to appply as a new applicant in Fredericksburg City, thus requiring fingerprints. I provided print outs of V A code 18.2-308 and read it aloud to her, especially section D that reads in part " However, no local ordinance shall require an applicant to submit to fingerprinting if the applicant has an existing concealed handgun permit issued pursuant to this section and is applying for a new five year permit pursuant to subsection I."

    She didnt care to hear it, and loudly reiterated that it "was a requirment of the city!" I stated that yes it was a local ordinance, but VA STATE CODE preempted it. She again stated loudly it was a requirement of the city, and because I was now a city resident, I had to follow it if I wanted a permit. That prompted me to ask if the permit I had currently was invalid because it had my King George address on it, to which she replied, "I am not a lawyer, so I am not answering that."


    Knowing I would get nowhere with her or the other deputy clerk, I advised her that I would like to submit the application anyway, and let the judge decide. I wrote "Refused, pursuant to VA CODE 18.2-308 Section D" on the fingerprint section. It will probably get rejected, and I will then have to determine what recourse to take and how much time and money to expend on it. I would hope a Judge would follow written law, but nothing would suprise me.


    Funny thing, A Lawyer was there requesting info on a case, and after I read the VA Code section to her looked at me, smiled, and said "You are trying to prove a point aren't you?"

    Any thoughts or suggestions on ways forward, or better ways to pursue would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    I don't know how you could have made it any more clear. Have you considered contactin the Commonwealth's Attorney in that area? He/she may be willing to provide assistance in clarifying the law for those who don't understand. I also don't see how the General Assembly could have been more explicit in writing the law. It clearly states fingerprints are not required or permitted to be taken from a current CHP holder. I hope your application does not get rejected. Kudos to you for not giving in and standing up for your rights. Keep us updated.
    Last edited by thebigsd; 09-15-2011 at 04:08 PM.
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  3. #3
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Have you been able to talk to the actual Clerk? Ultimately they are the one responsible for doing this right.

    TFred

  4. #4
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Have you been able to talk to the actual Clerk? Ultimately they are the one responsible for doing this right.

    TFred
    I asked to speak with the clerk and they said "No, I am a deputy clerk."

  5. #5
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCharles View Post
    I asked to speak with the clerk and they said "No, I am a deputy clerk."
    Did you get names?

    TFred

  6. #6
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Did you get names?

    TFred
    Got one from the more "seasoned" lady, the other walked off to help the other citizen in line and didnt provide.

  7. #7
    Founder's Club Member Skeptic's Avatar
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    You aren't applying for a Fredericksburg City license, you are renewing a Commonwealth of Virginia Virginia CHP. A Virginia document and a Virginia law. Does the renewal form say "City of Fredericksburg" on it - I doubt it (and as you know even if it did it would not be worth the paper it was printed on)

    Good on you for remaining calm. At least today I have no patience for these petty tyrants who think they can make up the law on their own say so. I know it is neither cost effective nor wise but I would be about recording everything and then suing the heck out of them (and yes I am sure there are probably no real grounds for it even if it were magically somehow cost effective, but I weary of these Barney Fife wanna bes)

    Stick with it. Them saying so doesn't necessarily make it so. I wonder if VCDL can help in any way.

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    Contact any/ALL of the city council members. One of them may help address this issue.

    I have been working on getting the codes changed for numerous localities regarding air gun bans, and park gun bans, and so far Council Members have been the most helpful in each area I've contacted!

    Good luck with it... keep us posted on the progress.

  9. #9
    Founder's Club Member Skeptic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCharles View Post
    I asked to speak with the clerk and they said "No, I am a deputy clerk."
    You might try a formal letter, sent registered mail to the Clerk, carefully explaining what is happening , of course copied to the VCDL and possibly the AG's office (and note on the letter to the clerk who it has been copied to)

    I am obviously not the expert here, if its a bad idea I am sure it will get shot down quickly enough

    Also the city council members could be included as well.
    Last edited by Skeptic; 09-15-2011 at 04:44 PM. Reason: Previous poster had great idea

  10. #10
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    I don't know how much the City Council can help. The fingerprint requirement was probably enacted well before any of the current council members were elected, and the current council does not appear to have any gun-centric folks on it. (None that I have been able to tell are either adamantly "pro" or "anti", they seem like the vast majority of folks, for whom gun issues are just not on their every-day radar.)

    My impression is that if you involve them with this, most, if not all of them will scratch their head and wonder what to do with this?

    To me, this is clearly a Clerk of the Court issue, nothing more. Ultimately one of the local Circuit Judges should be able to clarify the law for the Clerk. My limited understanding of the office is that the clerk's office works for the Judges... seems like one of them should be able to clear this up in about 3 minutes.

    But how do we get access to see that that happens?

    TFred

  11. #11
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Thanks all, Will be gathering info of all involved and writing a letter.

    I put it in the hands of the Judge, so, other than trying to contact the clerk, council members, and AG, may wait and see what the Judge does. In a perfect world, it gets approved, but I will still bend over backwards to make sure retraining of the deputy clerks occurs.

    If it does get denied, then I will get more vocal and get more involved. Right now, need the judge to weigh in one way or the other.

    Tired of public servants not following written law.

    CC

  12. #12
    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    Spotsylvania (outskirts of F-burg) doesn't require prints.

    In fact I had to go over to the courthouse and pick mine up because the slovenly beyot...er, lovely public servant was too busy playing Solitai...er, doing important gubmint work and chatting with her cubi...er with the POTUS on the red phone, (yeah that's it) to bother to mail it - it had been approved and had been sitting in her out basket for 10 days. (it was the last day of max period they have to respond)

    I got there and said 'I just called...' and she goes and gets it and kinda tosses it at me and goes back to chatting. Didn't ask for an ID. Could have been anyone. So much for need for identifying the permit holder.


    :rolls eyes:
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  13. #13
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    I don't know how much the City Council can help. The fingerprint requirement was probably enacted well before any of the current council members were elected, and the current council does not appear to have any gun-centric folks on it. (None that I have been able to tell are either adamantly "pro" or "anti", they seem like the vast majority of folks, for whom gun issues are just not on their every-day radar.)

    My impression is that if you involve them with this, most, if not all of them will scratch their head and wonder what to do with this?

    To me, this is clearly a Clerk of the Court issue, nothing more. Ultimately one of the local Circuit Judges should be able to clarify the law for the Clerk. My limited understanding of the office is that the clerk's office works for the Judges... seems like one of them should be able to clear this up in about 3 minutes.

    But how do we get access to see that that happens?

    TFred
    TFred; I asked the Dep Clerk if hers was an elected office or an appointment of the Circuit Court Clerk. Deputy Clerks are appointed by the Clerk, which is an elected office. And low and behold, her position is up for reelection this cycle.

  14. #14
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCharles View Post
    Thanks all, Will be gathering info of all involved and writing a letter.

    I put it in the hands of the Judge, so, other than trying to contact the clerk, council members, and AG, may wait and see what the Judge does. In a perfect world, it gets approved, but I will still bend over backwards to make sure retraining of the deputy clerks occurs.

    If it does get denied, then I will get more vocal and get more involved. Right now, need the judge to weigh in one way or the other.

    Tired of public servants not following written law.

    CC
    This is probably going to turn out OK. I forgot the part where you said you did submit the application. We've seen stories of some places refusing to take what they deem to be "incomplete" applications. But if she took it, and it enters the process, this will turn out fine, eventually.

    The judge will most likely issue the permit, giving the Clerk's office a "teachable moment". And if he refuses, then you have the appeal process, whatever the formal name for it is, and if it comes to that, I would highly recommend you bring VCDL and some of our resident experts in to help.

    I suspect this will go away on its own, though, especially since you provided the reference. If the Judge isn't completely familiar with the code, he will look it up and read it and issue the permit.

    We all hope.

    TFred

  15. #15
    Regular Member Baked on Grease's Avatar
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    I understand the we in Virgina live in a shall issue state... So if they do reject it they have to tell you why within...45 days I think? Then you will have official paperwork from them that could be used against them if you persue it further.

    It might have just been a bluff, the city hoping to intimidate people to do things that are not necessary, good for submitting despite her denial. Let's hope she actually filed it whem you left.

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  16. #16
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Reminder, this is why User always recommends taking two copies of all paperwork and having the clerk stamp one for you as proof they got it.

    And yes, the Clerk is up for election. I looked around this afternoon after this thread started, and I'm not even sure the incumbent is running again. I could find nothing in any on-line news stories about her. There are at least two challengers, however.

    http://www.fredericksburg.com/News/F...7152011/638810
    http://fredericksburg.com/News/FLS/2...7162011/639570

    ETA: One candidate's webpage: http://www.votejeffsmall.com/
    ETA2: I've got an inquiry in place to find out if Ms. Mitchell is seeking re-election.

    TFred
    Last edited by TFred; 09-15-2011 at 05:23 PM.

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    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baked on Grease View Post
    I understand the we in Virgina live in a shall issue state... So if they do reject it they have to tell you why within...45 days I think? Then you will have official paperwork from them that could be used against them if you persue it further.

    It might have just been a bluff, the city hoping to intimidate people to do things that are not necessary, good for submitting despite her denial. Let's hope she actually filed it whem you left.

    Sent using tapatalk
    The first trip down, she actually said to me " All I need you to do is walk two blocks down and get fingerprinted, what is the big deal?" I politley asked for the application back, left, and went back home, got the cites and returned later.

    I think they do expect most to take the easy and less resitant way, but by god, I refuse!

    If she didnt file it, that opens a whole new can of worms for them. ( I dont think they would blatently do that) Even if she did, that means 45 days afterward, they HAVE to issue a permit to me anyways, so in a way, she would be doing me a favor by not filing it.

  18. #18
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCharles View Post
    The first trip down, she actually said to me " All I need you to do is walk two blocks down and get fingerprinted, what is the big deal?" I politley asked for the application back, left, and went back home, got the cites and returned later.

    I think they do expect most to take the easy and less resitant way, but by god, I refuse!

    If she didnt file it, that opens a whole new can of worms for them. ( I dont think they would blatently do that) Even if she did, that means 45 days afterward, they HAVE to issue a permit to me anyways, so in a way, she would be doing me a favor by not filing it.
    Did she say where she was talking about? I understood that you had to go to the police station during certain times when someone would be there to do it. And they moved the police station to several miles away from downtown.

    TFred

  19. #19
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    I just heard back from my source that the rumors are that Ms. Mitchell plans to retire. But this has not been officially stated or confirmed.

    TFred

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    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Did she say where she was talking about? I understood that you had to go to the police station during certain times when someone would be there to do it. And they moved the police station to several miles away from downtown.

    TFred
    Yeah, it is at the Juvenile Court building a couple blocks down Princess Anne st where fingerprinting is done.

    I think you are right, the Judge's cooler head should prevail. Ultimately, they(clerks and deps) can bloviate all they want on their interpretation of the law, but the Judge is the decision owner in this particular process. She thought the threat of me losing my 50.00 would change my mind, even saying as much, but, I knew a Judge would A.) either side with me and issue the permit, or B.) deny it, thus giving me recourse through the appeals process.

    One way will be easier, the other much tougher, but in the end, I will have a permit. And they WILL NOT have my fingerprints........

    Thanks all, wil keep you posted.

  21. #21
    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCharles View Post
    I asked the Dep Clerk if hers was an elected office or an appointment of the Circuit Court Clerk. Deputy Clerks are appointed by the Clerk, which is an elected office. And low and behold, her position is up for reelection this cycle.
    This.
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  22. #22
    Accomplished Advocate user's Avatar
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    1) Your location says, "King George". So why are you at the F'burg Cthse? You know you don't have to renew where you first got the permit, right?

    2) File the application and get a file-stamped copy. Tell them you insist on filing, and that you have the right to file. If the application is not complete, that's for someone else to decide, later, they don't have the right under Virginia law to refuse the filing.

    3) Be sure to note the date and time of the attempt to file. You have a limited window of time in which to apply for the renewal without having to reapply from scratch.

    4) Want I should file a petition for writ of mandamus to require to clerk to accept the filing?
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  23. #23
    Regular Member CaptainCharles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by user View Post
    1) Your location says, "King George". So why are you at the F'burg Cthse? You know you don't have to renew where you first got the permit, right?

    2) File the application and get a file-stamped copy. Tell them you insist on filing, and that you have the right to file. If the application is not complete, that's for someone else to decide, later, they don't have the right under Virginia law to refuse the filing.

    3) Be sure to note the date and time of the attempt to file. You have a limited window of time in which to apply for the renewal without having to reapply from scratch.

    4) Want I should file a petition for writ of mandamus to require to clerk to accept the filing?
    Moved to F'burg city in march. Havent updated ocdo profile yet, but will. Thanks for bringing it to my attention sir.

    The Deputy Clerk accepted the application, so, dont think # 4 is needed. But, thank you for the offer.

  24. #24
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    From everything I've read so far you have been dealing with a Deputy Clerk - AKA a flunky. You need to speak to the actual Clerk. Regardless of her plans to retire at the end of this term she can still be held civially (and possibly criminally) liable for not performing her job properly, or for allowng her hired help to perform their jobs improperly.

    I would suggest a scheduled appointment with her to explore the matter and see if she will agree that there needs to be some clarification of the law and procedures for her Deputy Clerk.

    As for your renewal application - wait to see what happens, Either you get renewed without submitting new fingerprints or you request an ore tenus hearing before the Circuit Court Judge. Show up, show him the law and ask him to sign your CHP and hand it over, or officially deny the application. If he does not sign it because he says you need to submit fingerprints, you file a complaint with the Secretary of the Supreme Court. If he denies the application you go hire an attorney for the appeal.

    stay safe.
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  25. #25
    Regular Member fjpro2a's Avatar
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    Excellent

    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    Spotsylvania (outskirts of F-burg) doesn't require prints.

    In fact I had to go over to the courthouse and pick mine up because the slovenly beyot...er, lovely public servant was too busy playing Solitai...er, doing important gubmint work and chatting with her cubi...er with the POTUS on the red phone, (yeah that's it) to bother to mail it - it had been approved and had been sitting in her out basket for 10 days. (it was the last day of max period they have to respond)

    I got there and said 'I just called...' and she goes and gets it and kinda tosses it at me and goes back to chatting. Didn't ask for an ID. Could have been anyone. So much for need for identifying the permit holder.


    :rolls eyes:
    You are too much, my friend. I hope you don't mind me calling you my friend. We are!!! I enjoy your humor while making a great point.

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