Bruce Boyer's open carry report for Thousand Oaks street fair; CA 10-16-2011
Open carry report from the Thousand Oaks Street Fair Oct 16th 2011
Attended the street-fair on Sunday after church, with my wife. We met up with our friends Frank and Christina. The street fair was held on Moorpark Rd. in the City of Thousand Oaks. The police had closed off the street and it was an advertised, open to the public, City event. There were no prohibited… signs at the entrance and people had their dogs and skateboards (items that might be typically excluded).
We ate our lunch there and strolled around for two hours. They had a twelve piece swing band playing and as my wife and I are dancers we danced to quite a number of songs (the dance floor was the street so we stayed over on the sidewalk, photo attached). If you are open-carry and are up dancing with your wife, not like anyone could suggest one was trying to conceal anything! There were plenty of Sheriff’s deputies present at their booths as well as walk’in around. Security guys walk’in around too. No bother from any of them.
By 3:30 we were getting close to being done when three (3) private security officers came up from behind me and the senior one announced that he could see that I was carrying a Ruger in my holster, proceeding to tell me the model number, caliber and that he could see that there was no magazine in it, that it was not loaded. He stated that he was a range instructor and more blather. That he understood that I thought I was exercising my 2nd Amendment rights but I was not allowed to have an unloaded handgun in public…….. I chose not to respond other than to smile. He then went on that my carrying had raised concerns and eyebrows and that I had better not put my hand in the gun and that I needed to either go put the gun in my car (I do not know upon what basis he thought I had a car there, as I did not) or give it to him, or I had to leave. I responded only that I thought he had nice eyebrows and that no thanks, I will just continue shopping. With that the security officer informed me that I had to leave. I asked him to clarify upon what basis was he ordering me to leave, and could he write it down? He complied in that he wrote on his card that he had ordered me to leave. He refused to list his reason but I did have him affirm his ‘reason’ in front of the other two officers and my friends were present to hear it as well.
My wife who can suffer from anxiety sickness, needed to leave and go sit down. We continued to stroll and stopped for Christina to look at some pretty scarves. The Security officers chose to follow us informing me that they had requested the Sheriff’s deputies and repeatedly speaking at full volume over their radios about the “man with a gun” in such a manner that it was disturbing to many people in the immediate area. After Christina was done looking at the scarves, no deputies had arrived, I had the security officer again confirm that he was ordering me to leave and why, for that of “possession of an unloaded firearm in public”.
With that we walked 50 yards to the Coffee Bean where my wife was sitting and went inside to order. In line I made a new friend who seeing the holster inquired about obtaining a CCW I told him that they are most difficult, but just open-carry. As we chatted I noticed a deputy walking by an eyeing me, so I of course waved to him.
The deputies came in and asked if I would step outside. I readily consented, conducting myself in a most friendly demeanor. They asked to check my firearm, and I readily consented, asking the deputy if he would kindly remove it from the holster. He expressed his appreciation in my request and stated that it would have been uncomfortable for him were I to. I concurred that I understood that it might which is why I requested that he do so. He efficiently checked it and replaced it. Throughout, the two deputies were most polite. I conveyed that I was trying to be especially cooperative as I understood what they needed to do and the uncomfortable situation it placed them in. As two other deputies arrived I offered if the wished to check it as well, they declared it was unnecessary as the others had just done so. The deputy asked for my name which I readily gave him but I declined to provide DOB or other. In response to other questions I merely stated that I would love to chat, but another time. They asked if they could check it again, to run the serial number, and I readily consented. They completed that check and the deputy kindly replaced the Ruger in my holster.
They inquired of me regarding the new law the governor signed that would make open-carry a crime (AB144) inquired if I knew when it took effect to which I answered that it was to take effect Jan 1st, 2012. They politely said that they did not know but that I was likely more knowledgeable in that area than they. I inquired if they were aware of some of the ‘exemptions’ in the bill, such as those for ‘attorneys’ and ‘bill-collectors”? They were not. I inquired as to how they were going to be able to determine who was an ‘attorney’, ‘bill-collector’, ‘retired cop’ etc?? No idea.
I was able to ask them if they felt that even someone who was not nearly as well trained as they might not still be a most effective deterrent to a criminal looking to attack “their daughter”? They acknowledged that it would of course be. I asked them, rhetorically, that if the politicians truly cared about protecting women, that every woman who obtains a judge-signed restraining order would be issued a handgun and that as an officer of the law would they not volunteer their time to take the woman out to their range and teach her how to use it? Yes of course. They understood it. They get that the handgun is needed to protect women, their wives, their daughters.
This was a well utilized opportunity to illustrate to four deputy sheriffs that open-carry gun owners are good friendly citizens, their neighbors. That open carry is what women, their wives and daughters need.
The young man that I met in line who asked me about getting a CCW who watched the whole encounter with the Sheriffs wants to open carry as well as my friends Christina and Frank!
Yes Frank took pictures of us dancin!
In the state of Mexifornia, obtaining a CCW is not that hard depending on where you live. And telling someone otherwise and to "just open carry" is irresponsible. What the hell is open carry going to accomplish if the zombies see that you don't have a mag in the firearm?!? And IMO your dog and pony show is what added to your wife's anxiety disorder.
From Sacramento Valley Shooting Center Newsletter.
Safety and CCW Classes
Getting a CCW permit in Sacramento County is very easy. Recent changes in issuing policies mean that as long as you are not a felon or have been convicted of certain other crimes you are able to get a CCW. Self Defense is good cause, you don't need to be a banker! You do have to pass a background check and pass a 16 hour safety course. Sac Valley can help you with the training. Call us to find out when the next class is on. FSC members get a discount!
It seems more & more L.E. Admins are realizing that they can't always be there to save you and are issuing a do it yourself kit.
I think OC in metropolitan areas is silly. Kind of like going into an ethnic neighborhood with slogans that insult that ethnicity. Sure, you have (or SHOULD HAVE) the RIGHT to do it...but is it really smart to do it?
Concealed carry is a FANTASTIC advantage no matter where you are. Number one...it keeps the "stinky eye off YOU" and not from LE...but from everyone else, who's OPINION doesn't matter, but do you want someone with less than honest intent making YOU the first target to shoot? That round may come from behind from HIS concealed handgun you knew nothing about because it was concealed and you get shot from ambush...before you have the chance to react.
Take a banking institution for example. You are inside making your deposit or whatever and you are carrying open. A pair of armed robbers enters the bank, sees YOUR conspicuously displayed pistol, and before they even announce their intent they blow you to hell. Trust me, they aren't going to freeze in their tracks because you're carrying a gee-whizz tacticool 1911 or whatever. They aren't going to flee in fright because you are packin' a roscoe. The chances are very good that since they are already in for a penny, they might as well be in for a pound, and smoke you on the spot, then yell..."THIS IS A ROBBERY!". You have just been made an example of what not to do.
HOWEVER...if you're carrying concealed...you aren't THE GUY THEY SHOOT FIRST. Things may go smoothly if everyone listens, no one tries to be a hero, and by golly YOU are still ALIVE. They get their money, and de-ass the area. BUT...if things go badly, and they panic and start shooting people; you are still armed and may just have that one chance in a zillion to save your butt because YOUR roscoe was concealed.
Even when I was a detective and working plain clothes...my gun, badge, and cuffs were not visible. No one knew I was a cop until I identified myself, or was working a crime scene and had my badge out of my pocket and clipped to my belt. I never wore the silly OAKLEYS with POLICE emblazoned on the temples or the key lanyard with POLICE on the side around my neck with a PD ID on it. Why let some scumbag know who I was and give them an advantage?
You can bet if I was in that bank, I would be "Mr Compliant" until I had to act, and then and only then would anyone know I was armed. It's not cowardice or being chicken****...it's just sound tactical thinking. I'd a whole lot rather smoke a bad guy when I had all the advantage I could muster.
If the scumbags were armed with AK's, AR's, shotguns...what advantage does my pistol really give me? NONE if they know I have it. If they don't know...then that moment MAY arrive when I can take them out without getting my own silly ass or some other person's ass dead. Do I have the right to foolishly risk your grandma's life? Do I have the right to risk yours? Even if they miss me with that ambush shot...that bullet could, and may very well hit your wife, or mom, or whomever. Trust me, the scumbags aren't all that concerned with a safe back stop.
You never want to make yourself the obvious first target. Personally...I like being "Mr Gray". I don't want to be the one who is sticking out like a dildo at Disney Land. I'd rather be just another faceless guy in a crowd until I have to be otherwise. Then surprise surprise...I just RUIN'T YER DAY.
Personally...I'd do ALL I could to get a CCW in your state. Get SHALL ISSUE or MUST ISSUE laws passed, then work on open-carry too.
Carrying a defensive handgun is a PRIVILIGE in most states according to the laws in those states. It's not a RIGHT recognized by the politicians who legislated YOUR rights away. So, you have to work with what you have. If you live in an open carry-only state...then try to get CCW. If not...then work with what you have and carry open. But if you can, and have the choice...hide them roscoes.
I KNOW that the Second Amendment is the guarantor of your and my right to keep and bear arms...which to any thinking person means "The Right To Own And Carry Arms". Yes, it is and was always intended to be an absolute RIGHT. But the government has pissed on it, and now we are left with the PRIVILIGE to own and carry arms in some states...it sucks. I really hate it...but that's sadly the way it is.
Wow...too much coffee again.
Here's to the fight to re-affirm our RIGHT to keep, carry, use arms for self defense by our OWN decision and determination with NO government interference.
A poster above this called the OP a "dog and pony show" and I tend to agree. If the property was private property at all...you could be asked to leave by security without being given a reason, if you fail to comply, then you are guilty of trespassing. Carrying an empty pistol is...what???? A paperweight? Even two loaded mags give you ZERO advantage over a scumbag with a knife or even an illegally concelaed pistol...you just painted the SHOOT ME FIRST sign on YOU. Creating a situation where deputies had to come deal with you and your posturing was a waste of their time. Debating the law, or their own habits and views concerning the Second Amendment was also a waste of time. Cops don't make laws, we enforce them. Period. You even wasted the time of the mall ninjas...I hated dealing with them as an officer, and by God I don't waste my own time dealing with them now that I am retired. Stunts like that, and yes to my mind it IS a stunt, is doing nothing for the cause but making a hole in time no one will ever get back.
You know, you could have been charged with trespassing AND disturbing the peace? Would that have been worth it? What if you got a year probation with a "posess no firearms" rider as a condition of that probation. You just made yourself a prohibited possessor even in your own home, so what would have been accomplished?
Well stated my brother!
The open carry versus concealed carry debate will rage like the 9mm versus 45 debate.
I support the RIGHT to do it....just not the thinking behind doing it.
I just get the feeling that the guys who are open-carrying UNLOADED weapons aren't "fighting" for recognition and affirmation of a right...they are getting "in your face" and trying to prove something or to illicite response from LE to grand stand.
I got a "man with a gun" call at a mall some years ago. The guy was mid 40's Average Joe type feller. NOT at all the kind of guy who would pique my curiosity or "spidey senses". Had I seen him carrying and no one had called, I'd not give him another thought and certainly not approached him. Open carry has always been legal in Arizona...no big deal.
HOWEVER....mall ninja makes the call. I catch the call. I go to the call.
I approach Mr. Average all the while the mall ninja is chirping in my ear..."I observed the suspect....blah blah blah"
First, I asked Mr Average to stand by for a second while I talked to the mall ninja. I ran his ID....never relieved him of his firearm...he came back no wants no warrants.
I told the mall ninja...."Number one, he's NOT a SUSPECT for anything. He's not breaking any law. He's within his rights to carry a firearm. Whether or not management here allows firearms to be carried on the property is another matter and a matter of POLICY not law, and there is NO sign anywhere that I can see that prohibits the carrying of a firearm, and certainly no signs as you drive onto the property. So, he hasn't even violated a POLICY yet because there is no obvious signage that he could reasonably be expected to have read. I can take this from here."
"Um, I guess he can stay if he locks up his gone."
"Okay, good you and I are done here."
I went back to Mr Average and told him..."I am sorry I have to be here having this conversation with you Sir. I know you're not breaking the law, and I know you have the right to carry in Arizona. The security guard told me they don't allow guns to be carried on the property. You can still go in the mall if you lock up your gun. Personally, I'd go to another place to shop because they are going to hassle you here and I don't want to have to come back for their silly nonsense. Do you have your ccw?"
He answered that he was waiting for it to come in the mail.
"Okay, cool. I was going to give you the name of a friend who does ccw classes at a reasonable price."
He thanked me and went to another mall a few miles away.
He WAS open carrying in a state where open carry has always been legal. He wasn't trying to be in anyone's face, least of all mine. He just wanted to do some shopping. The political climate in AZ is leaps and bounds away from that in Cali and your average person also knows open carry is legal (now ccw without a permit too) and won't bat an eye.
BUT...I still had to spend a half hour plus paperwork time on a BS call. If Mr Average would have got up on a soapbox preaching Second Amendment and giving ME a hard time....it would have ended poorly for him. He had been told at that time to lock up or leave. If he refused, now he is committing a crime (trespass even criminal trespass or EVEN misconduct with a firearm while trespassing). Obviously, I wouldn't go through all that nonsense because he understood where I was coming from and I am a BIG 2A guy...so we handled it right and no one got any feathers ruffled but the mall ninja.
The OP who ignored the security guard who DOES HAVE AUTHORITY at a closed event where they are hired to be....that wasn't kosher. Giving the deputies a hard time about DOB etc...really wasn't kosher. I get the feeling the OP was looking for confrontation...and really...a confrontation that isn't going to be won pissing in a mall ninja or a cop's pocket.
Open carry worked very well for him in TN. :D
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