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Post your TX Open Carry experiences here!

Fallschirjmäger

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
3,826
Location
Cumming, Georgia, USA
.... This being TX, you need a LTC to OC and cops don't KNOW you have one unless they see it...if they aren't pulling you over in your car and then when running your plates where your LTC DOES come up. But just there in the store seeing someone OCing, they don't know if he/she has a LTC or without asking to see it. They didn't ask.
Quoting from No. 14-4050 Northrup v. City of Toledo Police Dep’t, et al. *
...Where it is lawful to possess a firearm, unlawful possession “is not the default status.” Black , 707 F.3d at 540; Ubiles , 224 F.3d at 217. There is no “automatic firearm exception” to the Terry rule. Florida v. J.L., 529 U.S. 266, 272 (2000)...
If I recall, Texas does not make possession of a firearm prima facie evidence of a crime with a license being an exception to the crime. Without at least some reasonable, articulable suspicion of a crime you shouldn't be stopped merely to check if you have a license.

* May not be the approved name for the case so the link goes to the decision.
 

cloudcroft

Campaign Veteran
Joined
Jan 13, 2007
Messages
1,871
Location
El Paso, TX
...but here in TX you MUST have a LTC permit to OC...so how do LEOS know that someone OCing is doing so legally (or not) without asking to see the plastic? IIRC, it's the very same situation for our neighbor to the North -- OK: One needs a CC permit to OC.

In many cities/towns in OR (again, if IIRC), one can freely OC an UNLOADED handgun, but needs a CC permit in order to carry a LOADED handgun. How does a cop know the gun is or is not loaded -- to see if there is a "crime" being committed or not -- without checking it out?

I believe an attempt WAS made to amend the TX law so cops could NOT ask to see a LTC just because they saw someone OCing...but that change didn't fly, so TMK, here in TX cops CAN ask to see it.

So if a cop here asks to see my permit -- and as I said OC is RARE here, more so than in other places -- then I'll produce it...won't debate him/them about "the law" as I don't know how else they can tell.
 
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Fallschirjmäger

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
3,826
Location
Cumming, Georgia, USA
Am I correct that in Texas one must have a license to drive on public highways? How do LEO's know that someone they see driving is doing so legally (or not) without asking to see the plastic?

The answer is in how the law is written, it can say "It is illegal to _________" and then carve out exceptions to the law (and knowledge that one is _______'ing is a reasonable, articulable suspicion of a criminal act.)

OR

it can say "one may not _______ without a license" which means that an officer must/should have some reasonable, articulable suspicion that someone Doesn't have a license.


There is one southern state that I cannot think of at the moment with the first style of firearms law; it makes carrying a firearm illegal and then lists the possession of a license as a defense against the charge. (TN or KY comes to mind, but I'm too lazy to try and remember which at the moment, it will probably pop into my head right before going to sleep).

Now... which way is the law in Texas written, does it make carrying illegal and then making exceptions or does it require a license to do something?

EDIT: Regarding the way a law can be worded, I mentioned Tennessee.. here is the TN Code on the subject -
TN Code § 39-17-1307 (2016)
(a) (1) A person commits an offense who carries, with the intent to go armed, a firearm or a club.
...
As you can see, an officer merely seeing someone carrying has RAS of a crime.
TN Code § 39-17-1308 (2016)
(a) It is a defense to the application of § 39-17-1307 if the possession or carrying was:
[list of defenses, among which is the possession of a license...]
Rounding this back to Texas, it all depends on which way the TX Code was written. I believe it's GC §411.172. ELIGIBILITY. (a) A person is eligible for a license to carry a handgun if the person:
... [long list of qualifiers]....

Going by that, an officer would/should have to have some suspicion, founded on sight, hearing, touch, taste, or sense of smell that a person did not meet the qualifications to carry before initiating a seizure/detention/Terry Stop of a person in Texas.
 
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MAC702

Campaign Veteran
Joined
Jul 31, 2011
Messages
6,337
Location
Nevada
I concur with Fallschirmjäger, but I am not an expert on Texas law. I remember the debate a couple years ago. The proposed change to the law was to make it VERY CLEAR to ignorant cops that they needed suspicion of a crime before detaining armed citizens, but the current wording of the law still did not give them authority to do so.
 

oljames3

Regular Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2015
Messages
10
Location
Central Texas
Quoting from No. 14-4050 Northrup v. City of Toledo Police Dep’t, et al. *


If I recall, Texas does not make possession of a firearm prima facie evidence of a crime with a license being an exception to the crime. Without at least some reasonable, articulable suspicion of a crime you shouldn't be stopped merely to check if you have a license.

* May not be the approved name for the case so the link goes to the decision.
The Texas Penal Code 46.02 says that carrying a hand gun (weapon) is an offense unless the person is on their own property or inside/en route to their vehicle. If we carry a license and a hand gun, the Code gives us an argument to be raised at trial. Not quite the same as an affirmative defense. Carrying a hand gun, in Texas, is an offense. Law enforcement understands that Penal Code 46.15(b)(6) says that this offense "does not apply to" a handgun license holder. Being stopped for carrying, especially in the 18 months since we could carry openly, has not been an issue.

==============
Sec. 46.02. UNLAWFUL CARRYING WEAPONS. (a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun, illegal knife, or club if the person is not:(1) on the person's own premises or premises under the person's control; or(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person's control.
==============

The Penal Code goes on to say that this section, 46.02, does not apply to a person who is carrying a license and carrying a hand gun that is concealed or in a "shoulder or belt holster."

==============
Sec. 46.15. NONAPPLICABILITY.
(b) Section 46.02 does not apply to a person who:
(6) is carrying:
(A) a license issued under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, to carry a handgun; and

(B) a handgun:

(i) in a concealed manner; or
(ii) in a shoulder or belt holster;
==============

Be safe and carry.

O. Lee James, III
CPT US Army (Ret) Honorable Order of St Barbara
NRA, TSRA, NAR L1
 

HPmatt

Regular Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
Messages
1,460
Location
Dallas
Haven't seen a lot of cops while OC in Dallas, but have never had them ask. Kroger, John Eagle Honda, Walmart, Drip coffee - no one notices. Don't dress like a thug-democrat, so don't give them RAS to ask.
 

Grapeshot

Legendary Warrior
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
35,337
Location
Valhalla
Haven't seen a lot of cops while OC in Dallas, but have never had them ask. Kroger, John Eagle Honda, Walmart, Drip coffee - no one notices. Don't dress like a thug-democrat, so don't give them RAS to ask.
How one dresses should not RAS of a crime. Damn Terry decision.

I do not necessarily agree with this article, but offer it up for discussion.
 

cloudcroft

Campaign Veteran
Joined
Jan 13, 2007
Messages
1,871
Location
El Paso, TX
I sometimes look like a little like a "will work for food" transient (maybe more & more as I get older) when OCing...but haven't noticed any difference (in Colorado earlier or now here in TX) re: how I'm "received" (perceived or even noticed) by the general on-the-street (or in stores) viewing public. Or the rare times I see cops (usually sitting at the next table to them in a restaurant).

I think it's more related to one's behavior/demeanor/body-language than appearance. ;-)

ETA: But most people -- as per usual, IF they even notice OCers -- think they're some sort of LEO. At a Starbucks once in ABQ, I had someone ask me if I was "Homeland Security" -- I've no clue why I was looking "Homeland" that day. ;-)
 
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