Open carry and dirty cops

Discussion in 'Legal and Activism' started by clip11, Jun 13, 2010.

  1. clip11

    clip11 New Member

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    I'm strongly considering openly carrying my pistol. Now I live in Detroit....not metro Detroit, but actually within the city limits. Theres a big push to get guns off the streets here in Detroit because of all the shootings that happen in the city.

    Gang squad cops are stopping people for things like broken taillights and loitering and using that as probable cause to search them for weapons. However, its only certain groups that they are doing this to, and I happen to be in that group. I'm a 23 year old black male, exactly the kind of person Detroit police DOES NOT want carrying a gun. Sure a middle age white man may catch some flak for open carrying, but I know if I do it, they may be ready to send in the SWAT team. I know open carry in Michigan is legal, but what if I am open carrying and some police arrest me and say I was CONCEALED CARRYING and charge me with a CCW violation, which is a 2-5 year felony and/or a $2500 fine? One night I was in a gas station by my house buying a cinnamon roll when two undercover cops came in behind me with their badges out and said they needed to frisk me because it looked like I might be carrying a gun. I had left it at home, but that wasnt the point.

    If 3 or 4 officers say I was concealed carrying when I was clearly open carrying, what should I do and what precautions should I take?

    P.S. I didnt mean anything against middle aged white men I was just illustrating a fact, so please, I'm begging you, no one get offended!

    http://www.freep.com/article/20100606/NEWS01/6060442/Cops-prowl-Detroit-for-guns
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2010
  2. RJCXJ

    RJCXJ New Member

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    As a middle aged white guy..... I am not offended at all....

    BUT it is my advice that if you can concealed carry.... do that if you know you are in an area that OC will just get you unwanted attention...

    MSP - Michigan's Concealed Pistol Law - FAQs

    AND even if you want to OC.... get your permit and then you don't have to worry. Sure you might get cuffed, but when they find your permit and you check out, the law is on your side.
     

  3. M14sRock

    M14sRock New Member

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    I'm not offended, Clip. Detroit can be rough.

    I am not familiar with any Detroit laws, but carrying a concealed handgun is a felony? 2-5 year felony? Seems a bit extreme.

    Does Detroit issue CCW's? Is open carry legal in Detroit? Open carry can become CCW if angles change.
     
  4. doctherock

    doctherock New Member

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    Its a shame that a law abiding citizen cant carry because of his race. It is unfortunate that one bad apple can ruin the whole bunch as they say. I hope all works out well for you clip and hope you can continue to carry for your protection. Dont know what else i can say other than that. I live way over here in Oregon and on the coast we don't have the same issues as the big city. Oh and no offense taken on the middle aged white male thing and that's coming from a 34 year old white male. You spoke it like you see it and I see it the same way from my shoes. Best place to get the answer you seek is an attorney or the courts.
     
  5. pandamonium

    pandamonium New Member

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    Clip, here's my 2 cent's, I do not know the laws there, but if your handgun needs to be registered and/or a permit to own, then before I walked out of the house, I would make sure I had ALL of my ducks in a row. Have any required pemits/licenses/I.D. cards or whatever you could possibly need, in your posession. Maybe open carry in a way that could not possibly be concealed, such as a shoulder holster.
    I do think you would be, lets say, looked at, by LEO's at every step. On the same note, the LEO's would probably get to know you by name and you would stop being looked at after a bit. You may even consider going into the closest Police station and discussing it, get their opinion and ( I can see it now) recommendations, if they have a heads up you may often just get a honk of the horn and a wave. Maybe.
    What ever you decide, do it smart and stay safe. Good luck!
     
  6. Pat-inCO

    Pat-inCO New Member

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    It sounds like you are contemplating both standing on Super Man's cape AND spitting into the wind.

    I would suggest you go to the PD and talk with them. If you get as nasty a response as you anticipate, then to carry would seem a poor choice. If they can provide you another option, or one that will minimize your potential exposure, it sure sounds worth the time.

    Detroit may be unique in the US but the police I have talked with and yes, even worked with, are much more cooperative when you come in low keyed and asking for their assistance. Yell or demand anything and many will be "less friendly". ;)
     
  7. opaww

    opaww New Member

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    No offence taken clip11, and sense I know and have seen what you are talking about happen myself. I can only say that things may change but not likely. One thing you can do is find a group of open carry supporters and join them in their efforts to be recognized by LEO's as simply Law abiding people who are exercising their rights.

    If you are with a group to start out open carry, it makes it safer and remember a video camera is your friend also.
     
  8. ninjatoth

    ninjatoth New Member

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    Like previously stated,carry in a way that cannot be concealed,like a drop leg holster,and please stay out of your vehicle if you are open carrying because you can't open carry while driving in MI,but i'm sure you knew that already.
     
  9. bkt

    bkt New Member

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    Neither a broken tail light nor talking with friends on a street corner are probable cause for the cops to do anything. The right lawyer could turn cops who thought otherwise into unemployable hamburger.

    Older folks remember a time when cops walked a beat and got to know people personally. Who in the neighborhood was OK, who was mischievous but not a criminal, and who the bad guys were. He was respected and liked by the community he worked in because he liked and respected the community. He was one of them.

    But today, things are different. Cops roam around in cars and never walk a beat. Cops don't stop and shoot the breeze with people in the community. They don't know the people and they distrust them. And the people distrust the cops. Our society has changed for the worse because of this. This division between the good guys in a community and cops is more deadly than we can imagine.

    Don't wear a shirt? Or bring along a couple friends?

    Also, know a good attorney and have a printed copy of the law with you when/if cops approach. Speak in a normal tone of voice, be polite, and show you understand the law. If you do that right, they might walk away...you're not what they're looking for.

    Set aside some money for attorney fees.

    Ain't America great? :(

    Lift up your shirt and spin 360 degrees.

    Being a young black guy should never be reason for cops to say anything to you but "Hi, have a nice day."

    You're screwed. You might want to consider moving out of that area before that happens to you.

    No offense taken. What you describe makes my blood boil.
     
  10. clip11

    clip11 New Member

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    I tried open carrying today, no cops saw me. But EVERYONE AND I MEAN EVERYONE, who did thought I was breaking the law by not having a permit. Someone even told me that MI was not an open carry state! I tried explaining it, but it was like trying to explain how to change a flat tire to a baby.
     
  11. clip11

    clip11 New Member

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    If I am wrongly arrested for open carry, could I have a lawsuit against the city?
     
  12. DrumJunkie

    DrumJunkie New Member

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    I don't know about a lawsuit against the city but I do not know the laws there. You might have legal ground to stand on for an unlawful arrest and/or detainment. Meaning you may cause trouble for the LEO that take you in or in some manner harass you but as far as a civil matter I would not think so. But like I said. I do not know the laws where you live.
     
  13. BigO01

    BigO01 New Member

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    Even without being a cop or a Legal eagle It's pretty easy to figure out your biggest problem with ANY Suit is in proving your case and you better have solid evidence against cops for that because even if you get lucky and get a favorable ruling the 1st round you'll have to deal with appeals that they will file to get a decision reversed .

    We had a young man here who had a case where he proved beyond a doubt that a cop was just hasseling him without any justifiable cause and it took him having Cameras mounted in his car that showed what the cop did and siad and still the reaction of the public was that he just "Must" have been in the wrong to have a copper after him and not too long after it was all in the news he reported that they were constantly on his tail whenever he left his home etc. in his car .

    I personally have a camera on my front porch due to problems with neighbors and had an incident with the local cops who were about to kick my you know what for absolutely nothing except sitting on my own porch reading a book minding my own business and they were called to deal with drunken neighbors and I guess assumed I was involved since I was outside .
    The look on the cops face when he saw the camera was absolutely precious another half a second and his partner would have hit me with his nightstick if he hadn't grabbed his arm as it was clearing the holder on the 1st guys side , worst part is the guy who started screaming at me and was about to hit me was a seargent who looked to be in his early 50's , so much for only dumb rookies pulling this kinda stuff .

    I suggest you live by the old saying "Cover your own azz" when planning on having to deal with hostile cops and get a hidden camera in your car if you intend to open carry while driving and one on you house catching you if carrying outside mowing the grass etc. .
     
  14. JoeB1987

    JoeB1987 New Member

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    Michigan Open Carry

    Yeah, people **** bricks when you carry now. Most people understand reasoning, some don't... With that said, keep a cool head, don't shout. If a shop keep looks like he's nervious because you have heat, step up and say something and If he's uncomfortable, leave. They have the right to tell you leave their property.

    Also, with the whole being in your mid-twenties, black, and living in detroit... well, you can't change the way the police see you. Move out here to the countryside (West Michigan). The police force is actually a lot less racist over here, the cops are just dicks to everyone:D. But they have less murders, rapes, gang violence, etc. to deal with, so they're just looking to write tickets instead of arrests. Any ticket they wite, I have gone to court to fight. They never show up :rolleyes:
     
  15. bkt

    bkt New Member

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    Go to nra-ila and print out the gun laws for your area. Keep them with you. If anyone gives you grief, show them the printed law.

    I've been hassled by cops and others at a gun range for my AR, so I printed out the local laws and keep it in my range bag. That shuts them up quick.
     
  16. ninjatoth

    ninjatoth New Member

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    Michigan is an open carry state,pretty much always has been,and up here in rural Mid Michigan no one cares,but you are in Detroit,and cops that live in and grew up in Detroit probably don't have any idea of Michigan laws.I would suggest you pick your time to carry wisley,If it is broad daylight and you know you should be safe,then don't carry,if you are going out walking at night and feel like you need it,wear a black gun in a black leg holster against black pants,and no one will even notice,but it's still legal.Just remember that driving a car,riding a motorcycle,or even a bicycle is illegal without a CPL,and you cannot walk through school property or other gun free zones.
     
  17. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Stopping someone for a broken tail light is perfectly legal. IF loitering is against the law in Michigan and or Detroit, then stopping and talking to someone for violation of that statute is also perfectly legal.

    Many officers forget the rules of Terry vs. Ohio. The "Terry Frisk" is a legal investigative tool, BUT to satisfy "Terry" the officer must have a reasonable suspicion the person is armed. Simply putting your hands on someone because they "may" be armed is not legal. It does not matter what color they are or what neighborhood they are in, it is not legal. It is a 4th Amendment violation (unreasonable search and seizure).

    Officers in rough areas feel compelled to fix the crime problem. Sometimes they forget the proper steps that MUST be taken. Expediancy takes the place of proper police procedure. Officers in particuarly bad areas have had guns pulled on them, been shot at, been shot, seen their friends get shot, etc. When your life is in jeopardy on a daily basis, it is hard to do anything except try to disarm as many people as possible so you can live to go home at the end of your shift. This is not an excuse...it is a reality. It does not make the shortcuts legal or "right". It simply "is".

    My advise to officers in areas like this...Get out or accept the dangers. Stay legal or we all suffer the consequences.

    My advise to you clip11, tread lighly.
     
  18. Jo da Plumbr

    Jo da Plumbr New Member

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    Well this is going to start trouble

    In my opinion you are looking for trouble and will likely find it. Yes the cops are going to stop you if they see you with a gun. I think they should stop you. Here in LA if there is someone walking down the street with a gun I would want the cops to stop them. Too many A hole gang bangers, and flat out whack jobs out here to think no problem with open carry. And when the cops do stop you and find out your carrying just to prove a point! They have a tough enough job to do with real bad guys. They don’t have time to spend checking out why you’re walking around with a gun. They will be pissed. You’re likely going to get ordered to the ground at gun point, cuffed, arrested for some charge like resisting, and of course have your gun confiscated. Then you can get a lawyer and fight for your rights. Good luck.

    And that’s a good scenario. I think it also very likely some gang banger will see your gun and think that’s a lot nicer then this rusty POS pistol I have. Then he quietly walks up and shoots you in the back of the head and walks away with his new gun.

    I would never open carry here in LA. IMO that is just painting a huge target on my back.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2010
  19. clip11

    clip11 New Member

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    I understand that, but I have a right to open carry! I cant have my rights stepped on because the cops are scared or have my my property seized. If thats the case then Detroit is a police state.Alot of times I think the police don't want anyone to carry or have a gun. I read in Milwaukee where open carry is also legal, the police chief was ordering his officers to stop and arrest people for open carrying. Why? No law is being broken. Police are supposed to enforce the law, not make up new laws because they dont like the ones on the book. I hope someone sues them and takes them to the poor house!
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2010
  20. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    I don't disagree it is a right. Just because we have certain rights does not mean it is a good idea to exercise them all the time. For a person to stand alone at a Klan rally and recite MLK's "I have a dream" speach would be reckless and inviting disaster.

    Is Detroit a Police State? Maybe. I have not been in Detroit in many years. It might be. For the Milwaukee Chief to order illegal action is, well, illegal. Officers have a duty to disobey illegal orders.

    Very true, officers are supposed to enforce the laws. Most laws have some degree of interpretaion attached to them. If an officer believes your open carry is also a breach of the peace and prone to incite a further problem, he also has a duty to intervene BEFORE the further problems arise.

    I am of the understanding Detroit is already in the poor house. You can try to sue the officer personally, but if he is acting under the color of law and with in the agencies policies, you will not be able to get to him. You will get to the agency and the governmental entity it belongs to. You might end up with a worthless check from the city of Detroit.

    IMHO, open carry is not prudent in a major metropolitan area. There are too many "non-gun" people from the mayor to the average citizen. It will be difficult to find a jury pool sympathetic to your cause. If you want to be the catylist for change, knock your self out. You will likely end up a martyr for the cause. Haven't we had enough young black martyrs in the last 50 years?