I am Afraid for my Country and the Younger Generation.

I am afraid for my country and the younger generation.

We were a country of laws and people who are known for being self-sufficient, self-reliant, strong and inventive. We led the world in inventions and creativeness. We are known the world over for being a “free” country. Why do you think the US has so many people trying to come here to live?

But now all I see and hear on our media, and on the internet, social media platforms and more are calls for a reduction of that freedom. We have been doing just fine for decades. Murder has been going down by double digits.(Check the DOJ Statistics), we have seen a reduction in all types of violent crime. Why is that? I am sure there are many reasons. But none of those reasons is because we have reduced peoples rights.

Now people are having an emotional reaction to the murder in Las Vegas. I understand completely. Having held people as they die and take their last breath, I know death. Having investigated fatal car crashes for years as a LEO, I had to tell more than one family of the death of their loved one. I know the pain and anguish these types of things cause. No one wants to see or have to experience any more of them. But therein lies the issue.

You cannot regulate or legislate murder or evil away. You can’t stop these shootings from happening. They happen and will continue to happen regardless of laws or limits we place on inanimate objects. Because when you think you have figured out how to stop the next mass killing, the killers use a car, or truck or plane. We had 59 people killed, murdered by guns. Not in Las Vegas but in Chicago in the month of Sept. Yet we heard nothing on the national level about that. Why because it does not play into the emotional attack that people need to try and take away your rights “for the good of all”.

Think about this statement for a minute, “You cannot make people safer by taking away the things that make them safe.” Regulating firearms any more than they are, or limiting any of the currently available firearms. In fact, there is only one thing that will deter or prevent the next murderer from attacking a target. If you knew of a pending attack. And could not stop it but only make it less likely to succeed or reduce the number of casualties what would you do? Provide more armed security? More law enforcement presence? Why? because they carry firearms. And the only way to stop an armed attacker is by an armed response. Why in the world do you think cops carry firearms? Because it’s a deterrent and needed to respond to armed attackers. Pretty simple. So what makes anyone with half a brain think that taking any firearms away from the law-abiding citizens of this great country will make them safer?

When there is any threat to the safety of our people in this country how do we make them safer? We post armed security or LE. While it would not have stopped the Las Vegas Murderer because of the positioning and location were chosen.

Here is my recommendation to reduce the number of mass murders involving firearms, and you have not heard it anywhere else yet. Instead of making it harder to purchase firearms by law-abiding citizens, make it easier. Allow people to carry a firearm concealed or openly if they choose, nationwide. Gun free zones? Outlaw them, except for certain specific places. Create a National Carry law that allows law-abiding citizens to carry concealed or openly nationwide. Instead of outlawing things that will not affect criminals one single bit, allow law abiding citizens to protect themselves and their families. For once realize that the vast majority of people in this country are good decent law-abiding people, and we should not let the very few cause us to regulate the rights of the majority.

God Bless the United States and its people.

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City of Ferguson Caves, Agrees to Pay Settlement to Parents of Michael Brown Despite Lawful Police Shooting

Only in today’s lefty courts of America can an attempted murderer’s parents profit from their adult son’s criminal actions and death.

I have seen and heard many things in my three decades as a cop, plus my military time. However, I recently heard that Michael Brown’s parents settled a lawsuit against the city of Ferguson for their son’s death.

These are the same parents of an 18-year-old adult who attacked and arguably tried to seriously injure or kill a police officer. The police officer was cleared in the shooting, as it was ruled justified. Yet even though justified and found lawful, the officer had to quit and move out of town for the safety of his own family. These are the same parents who, after the shooting incited violence, said, “Let’s burn this m——- down.”

Read the rest here.

It Takes a Good Guy With a Gun to Stop a Bad Guy With a Gun

“Law enforcement is reactionary by its very nature — remember, they come when you call, but you have to be able to call them.”

As news unfolded last week in this country, many things got splashed across our television screens and repeated over and over again. If the story is one of death or terror, it usually gets plenty of airtime and lots of print. A perfect example is the very newsworthy shooting at the Republican softball practice. A lunatic, left wing fringe ‘wanna-be killer’ tried to target unarmed and defenseless Congress members. It got the press time it deserved.

The attempted murder of our Congress members was stopped by two armed plain clothes police officers assigned as dignitary protection to one of the present members. Even after being wounded, they continued to engage the gunman. They were both transported to the hospital, and the gunman later died from his injuries. The other present members of Congress were fortunate the police officers had been assigned as protection.

Read the rest here.

The Media Creates the Hatred that is Directed at Law Enforcement…

“Having been stabbed with a knife and spent a month in the hospital during my service time I can tell you knives can and do kill people all the time.”

With all of the talk and media coverage of the recent shooting in Virginia on how a lunatic lefty targeted Republican Congress members, this may have gone unnoticed but for the fact that I try to read any press, positive or negative, about the profession I have worked in all of my life.

I recently caught a headline on my Twitter feed (@downrangewithcw) that jumped out at me. “Pregnant Mother Shot Dead by Cops Whom She Called for Help.” If I was an average citizen who saw that and took it as truthful news, I would be outraged. How dare the cops gun down a pregnant female who called them for help without any justification? My anger and outrage would be justified, if that was the “whole story.”

Read the rest of the story here…

Florida Officers are NOT Taught Firearms Law in the Police Academy.

I can only speak for my state, Florida, but I have found something that is very eye opening and needs to be addressed by the State of Florida.

I found that in the Basic Law Enforcement Officers Training Curriculum there is no mention anywhere of the laws and procedures relating to firearms and Concealed Carry License holders and laws, and it is vital that it be addressed immediately as it could result in the serious consequences for both my fellow law enforcement officers, and the law abiding citizens of Florida!

I have been teaching and training law enforcement and corrections officers in Florida for more than 34 years. I currently am the Law Enforcement/ Corrections Training Coordinator at Santa Fe College, Institute of Public Safety in Gainesville, and have been there for going on 20 years now. I have been very active in the past in writing and developing the FDLE/CJSTC Curriculum that we use to teach in our basic courses, acting as an SME (Subject Matter Expert) for FDLE on several subjects.

As part of my duties as coordinator, it is important that I review the current curriculums and make sure that we are teaching all of the needed information to make our officers/ deputies the very best informed and trained LEO’s we can. In addition, the more knowledgeable our LEO’s are the better they are equipped to handle situations that arise during their careers, and also helps to keep them from being liable for any misdeeds due to the lack of knowledge or training. It was while reviewing last years and this year’s Basic LEO curriculum that I found a serious omission in the text and materials.

I am sure that if I asked you how much time we spend on the firearms laws in the State of Florida in the Basic Academy you would probably say at least several hours, right? I mean with over 1.7 million concealed weapons license holders, you would think that we would address these laws and the proper way of dealing with this group of law abiding citizens correct? Well, we do not. There is actually 0 (zero) time or lessons dedicated to the instruction of the Firearms laws in the state of Florida. Even though Officers are expected to know and deal with these laws almost on a daily basis. In fact, we do not cover the laws concerning the CWL holders of Florida and what is legal and what is not as it pertains to citizens possessing firearms.

There are even only a few very brief, very short mentions of the Florida Chapter 790 in the entire training text. One of which simply mentions that it is one of the warrantless arrest exceptions for “Carrying a Firearm in Violation of an Injunction (s. 790.233, F.S.)” and “Carrying a Concealed Weapon (s. 790.02, F.S.)”[1] in Chapter 1. Chapter 2 mentions it as one of the crimes in Chapter 2, Unit 3, Lesson 2, Elements of crimes where it covers “carrying a Concealed Weapon (without a license), s. 790.01, Misdemeanor/ Felony”[2]. That is it! That is the entire law enforcement curriculum on dealing with firearms laws.

It is understood that we cannot cover every law and every situation in the Basic Law Enforcement Academies. I know this better than most people. But I also know that with the increase in Concealed Weapons License’s in the State of Florida (now over 1.7 million!) officers are encountering the law abiding citizen that is legally armed more and more. And with several current cases and lawsuits against officers and departments for unlawful arrests[3], or otherwise unknowingly violating a law-abiding, licensed citizens’ rights and getting complaints filed against them, we need to do something to better protect our officers, departments and the law abiding citizens of Florida.

I first discovered this lack of information when working on an in-service training curriculum with the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office Training Unit. They were getting complaints about officers disarming CWL holders during routine traffic stops and were investigating the legality of this issue and trying to better educate their Deputies. I assisted with the curriculum due to my involvement in this subject matter for a number of years.  We developed and used a very good curriculum and taught their deputies during in-service about the current state laws concerning the carrying of firearms by citizens. Both lawful and unlawful, and the training was well received.

The major issue at hand is the practice of officers “disarming” lawfully carrying citizens on the side of the street without any further reason than they are armed. Any handling of a firearm (which the LEO may not be familiar with) on the side of the road or elsewhere is potentially dangerous. It has been discussed and there is case law to support the view that officers, while being able to use Stop and Frisk (F.S.S. 901.151) when someone is under investigation for a criminal act, and when finding that the person may be armed AND is a danger to the officer, the officer may frisk for weapons, it does not cover frisking or disarming a law abiding citizen, who is not breaking any laws other than a possible civil infraction of traffic law. Officers can and do ask motorist and passengers if they are armed, and rightly can do so. But by Florida law it is not covered that they can then, upon learning they are a licensed, lawfully carrying citizen, disarm that person and deprive them of their property. In fact, the courts have held otherwise. In fact case law states that it is not permitted.[4] In fact, Florida law does not require a citizen to notify an officer they are lawfully armed unless the officer directly asks the person if they are armed (790.06).

In order to prevent citizen complaints and lawsuits for violation of citizens’ rights, do away with the unnecessary handling of firearms on the side of the street, and to increase the trust of the citizens with our police officers statewide (which is vital right now considering current events) I respectfully request that the CJSTC consider adding a lesson on Chapter 790, Firearms Laws and include as part of that, “Law Enforcement interactions with Concealed Weapons License Holders”.

This training is vital to our current situation and may help prevent unnecessary litigation and even possible injury or worse happening to one of our LEO’s or a law abiding citizen. And it is important to remind everyone involved that there are multiple cases now of lawfully armed citizens saving the lives of Police Officers across the nation! Lawful gun owners are not the problem or the enemy!

 

Refs:

1 Florida Basic Recruit Training Program, Text Book 1, Version 2016.07, Page 52 & 53.

2 Florida Basic Recruit Training Program, Text Book 1, Version 2016.07, Page 74.

3 Freeman & Florida Carry v. City of Tampa, et al./ Norman vs. State of Florida (currently under review by the Florida Supreme Court) / Florida Carry v. City of Daytona Beach

4 741 So.2d 1268 (1999), Bruce WELCH, Appellant, v. STATE of Florida, Appellee. No. 98-2615. District Court of Appeal of Florida, Fifth District.

[1] Florida Basic Recruit Training Program, Text Book 1, Version 2016.07, Page 52 & 53.

[2] Florida Basic Recruit Training Program, Text Book 1, Version 2016.07, Page 74.

[3] Freeman & Florida Carry v. City of Tampa, et al./ Norman vs. State of Florida (currently under review by the Florida Supreme Court) / Florida Carry v. City of Daytona Beach

[4] 741 So.2d 1268 (1999), Bruce WELCH, Appellant, v. STATE of Florida, Appellee. No. 98-2615. District Court of Appeal of Florida, Fifth District.

 

Americans’ Respect for Police Surges Toward All Time High

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By Chris Wagoner:

Contrary to what you hear from law enforcement political groups and talking heads (like some sheriffs and police groups, the Florida Sheriff Association for one!), the vast majority of police are not against legally armed citizens. There are a lot more for than against it. Just look at when and how most cops encounter firearms. Usually, a firearm has been used in a crime or is carried by someone they stopped on suspicion of a crime or some other illegal activity. Since cops are not in the habit of stopping legally armed citizens, they do not encounter them as much as bad guys with guns. In light of recent events—like the lawfully armed citizen in Florida who stopped and shot a criminal trying to kill a deputy on the road—officers realize that lawfully carrying citizens are not a danger to them and in fact may be just the opposite sometimes.

So it should come as no surprise that if you talk to most street cops and ask them if citizens who carry legally are a problem, the answer will be “no” in the majority of cases. What they will tell you is that criminals who carry guns are the issue and that when they encounter a lawfully carrying citizen, most of the time they are the most honest, polite, and cooperative people they encounter. Every concealed license firearms carrier I have ever met on the road as a patrol deputy was a great person. During calls for service or traffic stops, every time I ran into an armed citizen, they were the ones who seemed to be the calmest and most helpful.

Read the rest of the story here…

What’s With All the Police Brutality?

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By Chris Wagoner:

The protesting of police shootings and police brutality has sky rocketed this year. I see news reports with groups wanting “justice for Freddie” or for the latest person shot by police. If you listen to the media, all they seem to focus on is police violence. You see so much news these days about police accused of, and sometimes even arrested for, various crimes resulting from acts of violence. Now, first let’s make something very clear, I am not saying that the police do not commit crimes, or that they do not commit police brutality. Let’s get that out of the way. I am sure they happen. But it is my contention that they are not an “epidemic” or a nationwide problem.

I say this because in 2012 there were about 313,910,000 citizens in the United States and 670,439 police officers. That meant there were about two police officers for every 1000 citizens. Sworn officers made up about .22% of the US population. During any given year officers come in contact with about 16.9% of the US population, with about 3.89% of those contacts resulting in arrests for something. Think about this… 670,439 cops made contact with more than 53, 050,790 citizens! Now this is for any reason from traffic stops to making reports, traffic accidents, anything. Of all the millions of contacts citizens had with police, only 26,000 complaints of excessive violence were made against police. Of those 26,000 complaints, only 2,080 were found to be sustained, meaning they were true or had some substance to them, or 0.0039% of all police contact resulted in a verified complaint regarding the use of excessive force.

Read the rest of the story here….