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Thread: Illegally detained and searched

  1. #1
    Regular Member Rick H's Avatar
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    Illegally detained and searched

    Tonight I was walking home from the gas station and pulled over by a LEO. I was then asked if I had my Id on me and I told him yes then was ask if he could see it and I ask if I was being detained or accused of a crime and he said no. So I told him that I would not show him my id and that's when it started and he now said he was detaining me for suspicion and ordered my id so I gave him my concealed and drivers License and he ordered my hands up and at which point I told him I don NOT consent to any illegal searches or seizures of my property, at which point he removed my firearm at this point about 6 or 7 other LEO pulled up to the scene. The Officer proceeded to his patrol car and ran both id's. Upon returning he told me that I was good and he was going to hand me the firearm first then the bullet but not to put them back into the firearm or he will take that as an active threat and I would then have some serious consequences from that and something something I can't remember all but this is close. he also told me that i must be looking for trouble or something to that affect because it is after 1:00 am and I am walking around at this hour with a firearm loaded and no safety on, and he has a real problem with these "firearms" and i'm out looking for trouble. and all I was doing was walking down my street returning home with a cup cake for my wife for her lunch at work. I was not in the right mind of thinking because I was scared and confused and did not get the LEO's names but I'm sure it is on record. what should I do. They scared the hell out of me and now I will be unable to walk to the store. with out being afraid of being harassed by him because he did say he will now have a problem with me
    this was my real first experince with this many officers about 6 or 7 cars. PLEASE HELP THANK YOU.
    God Bless America.

  2. #2
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    One problem could be figuring out whether you were really illegally detained. Just because a cop withhold's or lies to you about his reasonable articulable suspicion (RAS) does not mean he had none. Courts seem to tolerate cops lying to suspects (google permissible deception), and I've never seen a court case or statute that requires cops to tell their RAS to the detainee.

    If Florida has a Sunshine Law, also known as a Freedom of Information Act, you could always request various records like whether there were any 911 calls reporting a person behaving suspiciously, or the gas station clerk reporting he thought you might have stolen something, the cop's field contact notes, etc.

    If there were no calls, then the cop is going to be in a position of having to explain why a fella walking home with a cupcake is suspicious, meaning what crime he suspected you of.

    An alternative would be to just write a formal complaint, skipping the FOIA. It might be there are no revealing recordings or records, especially if the cop was just driving along and decided to seize (detain) you. Under this approach of just writing a formal complaint, you just assume the cop had no RAS, and make him defend himself in any internal affairs investigation. If he had genuine RAS, he'll be found innocent of wrongdoing. Heck, even if he didn't have RAS, he'll probably be found innocent of wrongdoing, but at least the cops will know they have to be a little more careful because some citizens really do know their rights. In any event, it is not your responsibility to do all sorts of investigating to find out what was going on. If the cop wants to not reveal RAS, be vague about it, or lie, making it hard for a person to judge the legality of his seizure, then let the cop defend it after the fact. You can dig if you want to (FOIA). Sometimes it turns up very interesting information. But, its not an obligation on your part.

    Several points that jump out from your OP:
    • Likely illegal seizure (detaining you)
    • Likely illegal search and temporary weapon seizure (if he doesn't have RAS to detain you, he doesn't have authority to search and temporarily seize your gun)
    • Likely illegal identity demand
    • Likely illegal identity document demand
    • Cop yap and yammer against self-defense tools
    • Threat about taking reloading as a hostile act and "consequences". This is absurd. If he releases you, he has no further authority over you. If he is scared of a citizen reloading, he can hide behind his car until you leave. (this is an angle for a complaint, I definitely don't recommend actually reloading in front of a hostile cop.)

    You can always talk to a lawyer about a civil rights lawsuit.

    If you go for the formal complaint, realize that the police will probably deny any wrongdoing. That's fine. The point isn't to get them to admit anything. The point is to:

    1. Establish in writing a history. A paper trail. In civil rights lingo, you are documenting a pattern of abuse, if such continues.

    2. The cops will know they have to be careful about who they arbitrarily seize. "Oh, $hit! Somebody actually does know their 4th Amendment rights! Now, we gotta be careful, dammit." This alone might guarantee no more stops while walking to the gas station. Just understand that even if the cops claim nothing wrong was done, they will get the point. A good supervisor will know the score. If you make enough noise, a supervisor might well tell the cop, "Well, you'd better make sure 'nothing' never happens again."

    If you need help or pointers on writing a formal complaint, just ask.

    Do not accept an invitation to come down to the police station to discuss it. Cops love verbal complaints because they can disappear down the memory hole. Written complaints often trigger formal investigation requirements. And, you gain nothing by discussing it. In fact, you can expect, whether you talk in person or on the phone, to be treated as a bad guy with plenty of questions about you. Just realize that your 1st Amendment right to petition government for redress of grievances does not require you to talk verbally. Your complaint will be complete. It would require no discussion. If the police have questions to clarify some aspect or circumstance, they can always write you.

    In any event, take some time to let the memories come back to you. Some folks have success writing out the events several times. More comes back to mind as you write it out each time.

  3. #3
    Regular Member Rick H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    One problem could be figuring out whether you were really illegally detained. Just because a cop withhold's or lies to you about his reasonable articulable suspicion (RAS) does not mean he had none. Courts seem to tolerate cops lying to suspects (google permissible deception), and I've never seen a court case or statute that requires cops to tell their RAS to the detainee.

    If Florida has a Sunshine Law, also known as a Freedom of Information Act, you could always request various records like whether there were any 911 calls reporting a person behaving suspiciously, or the gas station clerk reporting he thought you might have stolen something, the cop's field contact notes, etc.

    If there were no calls, then the cop is going to be in a position of having to explain why a fella walking home with a cupcake is suspicious, meaning what crime he suspected you of.

    An alternative would be to just write a formal complaint, skipping the FOIA. It might be there are no revealing recordings or records, especially if the cop was just driving along and decided to seize (detain) you. Under this approach of just writing a formal complaint, you just assume the cop had no RAS, and make him defend himself in any internal affairs investigation. If he had genuine RAS, he'll be found innocent of wrongdoing. Heck, even if he didn't have RAS, he'll probably be found innocent of wrongdoing, but at least the cops will know they have to be a little more careful because some citizens really do know their rights. In any event, it is not your responsibility to do all sorts of investigating to find out what was going on. If the cop wants to not reveal RAS, be vague about it, or lie, making it hard for a person to judge the legality of his seizure, then let the cop defend it after the fact. You can dig if you want to (FOIA). Sometimes it turns up very interesting information. But, its not an obligation on your part.

    Several points that jump out from your OP:
    • Likely illegal seizure (detaining you)
    • Likely illegal search and temporary weapon seizure (if he doesn't have RAS to detain you, he doesn't have authority to search and temporarily seize your gun)
    • Likely illegal identity demand
    • Likely illegal identity document demand
    • Cop yap and yammer against self-defense tools
    • Threat about taking reloading as a hostile act and "consequences". This is absurd. If he releases you, he has no further authority over you. If he is scared of a citizen reloading, he can hide behind his car until you leave. (this is an angle for a complaint, I definitely don't recommend actually reloading in front of a hostile cop.)

    You can always talk to a lawyer about a civil rights lawsuit.

    If you go for the formal complaint, realize that the police will probably deny any wrongdoing. That's fine. The point isn't to get them to admit anything. The point is to:

    1. Establish in writing a history. A paper trail. In civil rights lingo, you are documenting a pattern of abuse, if such continues.

    2. The cops will know they have to be careful about who they arbitrarily seize. "Oh, $hit! Somebody actually does know their 4th Amendment rights! Now, we gotta be careful, dammit." This alone might guarantee no more stops while walking to the gas station. Just understand that even if the cops claim nothing wrong was done, they will get the point. A good supervisor will know the score. If you make enough noise, a supervisor might well tell the cop, "Well, you'd better make sure 'nothing' never happens again."

    If you need help or pointers on writing a formal complaint, just ask.

    Do not accept an invitation to come down to the police station to discuss it. Cops love verbal complaints because they can disappear down the memory hole. Written complaints often trigger formal investigation requirements. And, you gain nothing by discussing it. In fact, you can expect, whether you talk in person or on the phone, to be treated as a bad guy with plenty of questions about you. Just realize that your 1st Amendment right to petition government for redress of grievances does not require you to talk verbally. Your complaint will be complete. It would require no discussion. If the police have questions to clarify some aspect or circumstance, they can always write you.

    In any event, take some time to let the memories come back to you. Some folks have success writing out the events several times. More comes back to mind as you write it out each time.
    When 1st approached by the officer I was told that there was no crime or suspicion that I was being accussed of and the store folks are very good friends of mine and a couple of them have been to my home. So I know that was NOT the case. He told me that he just want to know who I was and wanted my id and when I refused that's when he got pissed.
    God Bless America.

  4. #4
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick H View Post
    When 1st approached by the officer I was told that there was no crime or suspicion that I was being accussed of and the store folks are very good friends of mine and a couple of them have been to my home. So I know that was NOT the case. He told me that he just want to know who I was and wanted my id and when I refused that's when he got pissed.
    I assume you were carrying concealed. If so, the stop was unlawful from the beginning. File a formal complaint with the Internal Affairs section of the cops. If he had the slightest RAS, it was his legal duty to tell you when you asked if you were free to go. He can not then arbitrarily detain you as you had no duty to show ID absent RAS and ensuing detainment.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

  5. #5
    Regular Member Rich7553's Avatar
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    Rick - DO NOT JUST LET THIS GO! It only reinforces the belief on the part of the LEO and his co-workers that such behavior is acceptable.
    Rich
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    Campaign Veteran StogieC's Avatar
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    You really should consult an attorney. I recommend Patrick Buckley.

    He is an attorney focusing in firearm's law, self-defense, use of force, and constitutional law. He is also an NRA instructor and one of the attorneys for Florida Carry, Inc.

    He can be contacted at Buckley@jpbesq.com or (239) 278-7700.

  7. #7
    Regular Member Rick H's Avatar
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    Thank's to those that helped put me in the right direction on this matter. I will let you know how this turns out.
    God Bless America.

  8. #8
    Regular Member mach1chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick H View Post
    Thank's to those that helped put me in the right direction on this matter. I will let you know how this turns out.
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    1. Are you trying to mitigate the seizure?

    2. A little bit suspicious of what? Terry is clear: no inchoate (incomplete, half-formed) suspicions. Merely walking down the street or sidewalk supplies no reasonable articulable suspicion of a crime. Not even in a high-crime area, if my recollection is correct about courts saying that merely being in a high crime neighborhood is not enough.

    What exact crime would the officer be reasonably suspicious about?
    Last edited by Citizen; 10-13-2011 at 08:25 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    If being out at 1 a.m. is suspicious, then aren't you a suspect for being there to see him?

    As a shift worker, I resent people making assumptions that someone is automatically up to no good if they're on the streets after midnight.

  11. #11
    Regular Member Rick H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    Not if you had been watching the person leaving a store. For me I have no extra money for gas nor should I have to explain anything to anyone about where I am going nor where I have been. This is a country of free travel is it not. and if I was in my car would he still feel the same way or does his way of thinking only go for people that can't afford a car or gas. being poor does NOT give him or anyone the right to trample someones rights or freedoms.
    I might think that something was wrong if the person was using a flash light and shinning around houses or looking in car or ????.
    Then it might be RAS or PC but NOT just walking down the street.
    So as to your question about " but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?" The time does NOT matter because The Rights of an American Citizen do NOT stop at midnight or ever for that fact.
    Now, You are starting to sound like the far left that say it would be a safer place "IF OUR RIGHT DON'T MATTER BECAUSE THAT IS NOT SAFE OR I DON'T LIKE IT THAT WAY BECAUSE IT ISN'T MY WAY OF THINKING. "
    God Bless America.

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    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    “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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    Implied Facepalm

    Roflmao!!!!!!!!!

  14. #14
    Regular Member mach1chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick H View Post
    Not if you had been watching the person leaving a store. For me I have no extra money for gas nor should I have to explain anything to anyone about where I am going nor where I have been. This is a country of free travel is it not. and if I was in my car would he still feel the same way or does his way of thinking only go for people that can't afford a car or gas. being poor does NOT give him or anyone the right to trample someones rights or freedoms.
    I might think that something was wrong if the person was using a flash light and shinning around houses or looking in car or ????.
    Then it might be RAS or PC but NOT just walking down the street.
    So as to your question about " but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?" The time does NOT matter because The Rights of an American Citizen do NOT stop at midnight or ever for that fact.
    Now, You are starting to sound like the far left that say it would be a safer place "IF OUR RIGHT DON'T MATTER BECAUSE THAT IS NOT SAFE OR I DON'T LIKE IT THAT WAY BECAUSE IT ISN'T MY WAY OF THINKING. "
    I could not agree with you more. I believe, uphold, and fully support Americans rights, but Rick I think you got the wrong idea with what I asked. Sometimes you have to open you're mind a little becuase maybe the officer was having a bad day, we are all human. I am no one to judge you or anyone based on rich or poor, makes no diference to me. Now, if I see someone walking down the street at 1am I would suspect that to be a little suspicious just because it's just a little out of the norm. However, that dose not give me the right to act in the way the officer did. I would have acted completely different and if I would have stopped, I would have asked you if everything was ok, where are you headed, and if there was anything I can assist you with, etc. I would have never violated you're rights Rick. That would have gone against my own constitution.
    Last edited by mach1chris; 10-14-2011 at 12:18 AM.
    False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Thomas Jefferson

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    Regular Member mach1chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schlitz View Post
    Thats fine man. Im not here to make enemies or to insult anyone. Im here to learn from everyone of you guys.

    Keep cracking the jokes after all, it is you're right.
    False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Thomas Jefferson

  16. #16
    Regular Member Rich7553's Avatar
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    Rick, if you haven't already, please read your PMs.
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  17. #17
    Regular Member Rick H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich7553 View Post
    Rick, if you haven't already, please read your PMs.
    Done, Thanks again.
    God Bless America.

  18. #18
    Regular Member hammer6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    ummmm...since when is it a crime to walk down the street at 1am?
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  19. #19
    Regular Member mach1chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hammer6 View Post
    ummmm...since when is it a crime to walk down the street at 1am?
    ummmm.... did I ever say it was?
    False is the idea of utility that sacrifices a thousand real advantages for one imaginary or trifling inconvenience; that would take fire from men because it burns, and water because one may drown in it; that has no remedy for evils except destruction. The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Thomas Jefferson

  20. #20
    Campaign Veteran Verd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    ummmm.... did I ever say it was?
    You said that it was questionable behavor. I.E. you said that walking down the street at 1am is more than enough for an officer to detain someone.
    One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them. Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1796.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verd View Post
    You said that it was questionable behavor. I.E. you said that walking down the street at 1am is more than enough for an officer to detain someone.
    No he didn't. Please re-read carefully what he wrote.


    Guys,

    Mach1Chris gave what I consider a legally acceptable clarification. He wouldn't have seized the OPer. And, if he had elected to contact the OPer, he would have kept it consensual.

    I disagree that any suspicion attaches to walking at 1:30am, but as long as he keeps such a contact consensual, its legal as far as I know.

  22. #22
    Campaign Veteran Verd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    No he didn't. Please re-read carefully what he wrote.


    Guys,

    Mach1Chris gave what I consider a legally acceptable clarification. He wouldn't have seized the OPer. And, if he had elected to contact the OPer, he would have kept it consensual.

    I disagree that any suspicion attaches to walking at 1:30am, but as long as he keeps such a contact consensual, its legal as far as I know.
    Sorry, I was going off of

    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    Guess I was going off him stating he would be "a little suspicious" of it.
    One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them. Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1796.
    If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun. - Dalai Lama (Seattle Times, 05-15-2001).
    Find businesses that are pro gun and those that aren't. Support Friend or Foe by using it!

  23. #23
    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    Thats fine man. Im not here to make enemies or to insult anyone. Im here to learn from everyone of you guys.

    Keep cracking the jokes after all, it is you're right.
    bro, I'm just keeping the "tone" light here. not insulting you. don't confuse comic relief for a personal attack.
    “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)]

  24. #24
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Venator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mach1chris View Post
    I believe that the way the fellow officer acted was wrong, but if you were in his shoes and saw a man walking down the street at 1am would you or would you not be a little suspicious about it?...
    Without RAS casual contact is allowed. If not detained, then you are free to go. He was unlawfully detained and searched. He was violated by one of your brother officers and you seem fine with it. Sad.
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  25. #25
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    No he didn't. Please re-read carefully what he wrote.


    Guys,

    Mach1Chris gave what I consider a legally acceptable clarification. He wouldn't have seized the OPer. And, if he had elected to contact the OPer, he would have kept it consensual.

    I disagree that any suspicion attaches to walking at 1:30am, but as long as he keeps such a contact consensual, its legal as far as I know.
    Therein is the crux: consensual encounter only. mach1chris clarified in an acceptable manner to me--and Citizen. Of course, we are the main police apologists on the forum so take it with a grain of salt...
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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