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Civil Rights & Abortion Discuss Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier at the Political Forums; A case out of the First Circuit has some painful lessons for gun carriers in Georgia. A United States Circuit ...

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Old 01-09-2010, 10:49 AM
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Post Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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A case out of the First Circuit has some painful lessons for gun carriers in Georgia. A United States Circuit Court of Appeals last week upheld the constitutionality of pointing a gun at any citizen daring to carry, lawfully, a concealed weapon in public.

The First Circuit Court of Appeals is the Court just below the United States Supreme Court in the New England states. The case stems from a lawyer who sued a police officer after he was detained for lawfully carrying a concealed weapon while in possession of a license to carry concealed. According to the case opinion, the lawyer, Greg Schubert, had a pistol concealed under his suit coat, and Mr. Schubert was walking in what the court described as a "high crime area." At some point a police officer, J.B. Stern, who lived up to his last name, caught a glimpse of the attorney's pistol, and he leapt out of his patrol car "in a dynamic and explosive manner" with his gun drawn, pointing it at the attorney's face.

Officer Stern "executed a pat-frisk," and Mr. Schubert produced his license to carry a concealed weapon. He was disarmed and ordered to stand in front of the patrol car in the hot sun. At some point, the officer locked him in the back seat of the police car and delivered a lecture. Officer Stern "partially Mirandized Schubert, mentioned the possibility of a criminal charge, and told Schubert that he (Stern) was the only person allowed to carry a weapon on his beat."

For most people, this would be enough to conclude that they were being harassed for the exercise of a constitutional right, but the officer went further, seizing the attorney's pistol and leaving with it. Officer Stern reasoned that because he could not confirm the "facially valid" license to carry, he would not permit the attorney to carry. Officer Stern drove away with the license and the firearm, leaving the attorney unarmed, dressed in a suit, and alone in what the officer himself argued was a high crime area.

The attorney sued in federal court, but the District Court threw out his suit, ruling that Officer Stern's behavior is the proper way to treat people who lawfully carry concealed pistols. Mr. Schubert appealed, and the First Circuit upheld the District Court's ruling. The court held that the stop was lawful and that Officer Stern "was permitted to take actions to ensure his own safety."

The court further held that the officer was entitled to confirm the validity of a "facially valid" license to carry a concealed weapon. The problem for Officer Stern was that there is no way to do so in Massachusetts, where this incident occurred. As a result, the court held that Officer Stern "sensibly opted to terminate the stop and release Schubert, but retain the weapon."
Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

Yet again, the courts side with the police at the expense of our rights...
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Old 01-09-2010, 12:37 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

And then the court and police wonder why no one trusts them to do the right thing!
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:14 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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The attorney sued in federal court, but the District Court threw out his suit, ruling that Officer Stern's behavior is the proper way to treat people who lawfully carry concealed pistols
Wow!...

To be honest, I'd need to know a little more...

Quote:
At some point a police officer, J.B. Stern, who lived up to his last name, caught a glimpse of the attorney's pistol, and he leapt out of his patrol car "in a dynamic and explosive manner" with his gun drawn, pointing it at the attorney's face.
HOW did the officer get a glimpse?...Was it not properly concealed?...Did the guy just open his suit to pull up his pants and the holster was revealed?...Was the guy in a defense stance looking like he was going for something?...

I'd need to know more details on the "how", but I still believe this was abuse on the officer's part for everything that happened afterward...
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:16 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

I don't see a problem with it, depending on how itchy the cop's trigger finger was/is, and on how easy it is to fake a Massachusetts concealed carry permit.
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:28 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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I don't see a problem with it, depending on how itchy the cop's trigger finger was/is, and on how easy it is to fake a Massachusetts concealed carry permit.
Innocent until proven guilty...

It's disgusting for an officer of the law to declare the card invalid until proven valid...It should be the other way around...
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:39 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

I have a question. What was this guy doing walking "dressed in a suit" in a bad neighborhood?
Cause I know that people who are obviously "out of their class" go into minority neighborhoods to score drugs. And if he really was Jonesin' for some dope he would maybe have taken the chance of skipping by the drugstore right after work...

And did something like the above go through the officer's mind? Also if it was as bad an area as stated, wouldn't the officer have had a right to confiscate a weapon when that was weighed against getting shot?
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:54 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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Innocent until proven guilty...

It's disgusting for an officer of the law to declare the card invalid until proven valid...It should be the other way around...
Innocent of what?
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Old 01-09-2010, 02:18 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

ff66
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The court held that the stop was lawful and that Officer Stern "was permitted to take actions to ensure his own safety."
From what I read above the officer was never in danger or unsafe. But he left this man in that position.

Why have a conceal carry permit and officers like this who statement that only he had a right to carry a firearm in his beat.

I wonder how many shooting have happend in his beat, and I guess by his own statement he did each shooting.
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Old 01-09-2010, 02:37 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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Originally Posted by jabbo View Post
Innocent of what?
Innocent of presenting a false gun-carrying permit...The officer did not (and could not) prove it was false, but confiscated it (and the gun) anyway...
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Old 01-09-2010, 03:06 PM
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Default Re: Court upholds police pointing gun at lawful carrier

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Innocent of presenting a false gun-carrying permit...The officer did not (and could not) prove it was false, but confiscated it (and the gun) anyway...
The cop suspected it wasn't valid (either rationally or irrationally - cops unfortunately get their way in those cases, as long as they can make a plausible argument). If a cop pulls someone over and suspects the person's driver's license isn't valid then he has cause to refuse to let the person continue driving - he'll face absolutely no consequences (other than presumably his boss will make note of it and if the cop makes a lot of goofy decisions then he'll most likely get fired at some point).

There may have been abuse of power in the MA case - two court systems have said there wasn't - the circuit court decision was unanimous.

Hell...it happened in Massachusetts.
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