Sunday, July 28, 2013

WI:Open Carrier Narrowly Avoids Being "Swatted"

On the Wisconsin forum at, Law abider, a regular member, recounts a near Swatting, by a convenience store clerk:

On Friday night I was at the above mentioned gas station with my son who is 20 years old. He wanted one can of flavored beer which he got and we went to the counter. I am Ocing which I do all the time. I have been in that gas station before a gazillion times Ocing and have bought my snoot.

 Anyway, the cashier who I have not seen before asked for an ID. I looked at her and said 'My ID?" She said, "no, his". meaning my son's I said "I am buying the can." 
The clerk seems to misunderstand Wisconsin law.  It is legal for a parent or guardian to buy alcohol for a minor to be consumed in the home.   Law abider and his son go to another store and buy the beer.  They then go home.  Law abider explains:
 a fer(sic) minutes after we arrived home, I get a call from my constitutional leo buddy asking me where I was.

" I said "at moms'."

 he said "I need to come over and talk to you." 

"Good" I thought since I had been trying to get hold of him for a fer (sic) days.

 he came over in a police SUV and with his partner in a regular squad car. he said" some one just filed a complaint against you and I know it is false."

 he proceeded to tell me the events that unfolded after I left there. he got a 911 call saying that an Arab was at the store and because he was not served, lifted up his shirt and flashed a gun and left in a maroon car.

 I was in a white caddy. Then they did see a maroon car going up the highway and called for massive backup. Three squads from hastings (sic) MN across the river and two Pierce county deputies swarmed this maroon car and at gunpoint hauled out the terrified owner.

Further inquiry by the police revealed Law abider's name from the store clerk.  Security camera footage was requested, and the case will be referred to a detective. 

It appears that the clerk may have made false statements previously, and there may be both criminal and civil actions against the clerk.

Fortunately, Law abider was known by the local police.  He says:

Thank God My leo buddy and his partner whom I also know were working the overnight shift! 
But what about those who are not fortunate enough to know the local constabulary?  I have been stopped while open carrying in Arizona because someone (probably a Canadian winter visitor) did not understand Arizona law and exaggerated a bit.   But I was a known quantity, having trained many local officers. 

What about the driver of the maroon car that was in no way involved?   The clerk put the driver at considerable risk. 

If this goes to court, we will likely not hear any more about it for some time.

This is the kind of positive police work that we seldom hear about, because no one was shot, beat, or ended up in the hospital.  It also points out the obvious advantages of knowning and supporting your local police.

54 Colorado Sheriffs have shown that they belong in this category.

I have read posters on statist blogs that have advocated calling police on open carriers.   Sometimes those calls are "enhanced" to make them a bit more interesting.   It is a dangerous and irresponsible practice that needs to be stopped with appropriate legal sanctions.

Fortunately, police are learning.  We still see overreactions in some locations, such as a few days ago in Wisconsin  near Eau Claire or Thursday in Maine, but they are becoming less frequent as more people exercise their rights.

Dean Weingarten

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