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 Long Ago LEO gets taken down... 
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 Post subject: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:20 pm 
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...sort of. Ran home to St. Cloud to do the bi-weekly assessment of the yard, pick up the mail and touch base with the neighbors yesterday afternoon. I took the Z3 which is not configured well for inside or outside carry, so I donned a shoulder holster. Normally I park in the garage and access the house via the secured backyard, but having forgotten the garage door opener, I parked on the street and entered via the front door. After knocking off the to-do list, I was crossing the front yard when I heard someone yelling at me. To my right and about a house and a half away were two of St. Cloud's finest, posed in the classic Weaver, drawing down on me. I put my hands out in front of me; a pile of mail in one and the car keys in the other. I let them know I was hard of hearing and could not discern their (exact) commands. Dropping the mail and keys would free both of my hands, so I didn't want to do that without instructions to actually do so. Two more officers appeared from different angles from adjacent properties and it was readily apparent a man-with-a-gun call had gone out. Obviously not from any of my immediate neighbors, since they know me, but possibly a fellow on a bike that rode past me while I was putting some things in the car.

The lead officer asked if I had a permit and proceeded to retrieve it from my back pocket. The MOMENT he saw my identification, he put one hand on my closest extended arm and started to push it down, instructing me to put my hands down. The four officers apologized repeatedly and we discussed the general dilemma when responding to these types of calls. Since I'm home infrequently, I encouraged them to keep stopping anyone taking things out of my house. :D They also promised to note on my 911 file not to respond with such urgency to similar calls involving my address.

Following a little cop talk, they cleared the scene and the entire encounter was probably around 10-minutes with the identification and de-escalation process being less than 2-minutes. My gun, motives for carrying, etc. never came into question. They also promised to inform the complainant that I was legally carrying (and to butt out). Seriously though, I'm retiree age wearing dress slacks, shirt, tie, gold accessories and such? Musta' been one paranoid neighbor in the next block.

Some would argue that it was unecessary to draw on me, however it was not uncomfortable (for me) and only took a few moments to resolve. All-in-all, I was impressed with St. Cloud's response and dropped a note to Ballantine this morning.


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:30 pm 
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Quote:
gold accessories and such


Bling!

I'm sure that's what did it.


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:51 pm 
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Kinda lookin' like John Gotti, maybe?

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:53 pm 
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tman065 wrote:
Kinda lookin' like John Gotti, maybe?

I dunno. I strongly doubt he looks seven years dead. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:56 pm 
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A question...

What ID did you show them, per chance?

-Mark


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:57 pm 
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joelr wrote:
tman065 wrote:
Kinda lookin' like John Gotti, maybe?

I dunno. I strongly doubt he looks seven years dead. :)



Joel's a wiseguy :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:01 pm 
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tman065 wrote:
joelr wrote:
tman065 wrote:
Kinda lookin' like John Gotti, maybe?

I dunno. I strongly doubt he looks seven years dead. :)



Joel's a wiseguy :roll:

:)

... which is even funnier after you hear my rap about the local 2A activist group as the "Hopla Nostra."

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:15 pm 
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Based on what I just read, I don't think congratulations are in order. It sounds like you were minding your own business, not acting suspicious nor threatening, yet the mere presence of a holstered firearm got you treated like a dangerous criminal. I haven't worked in your field, but I can't imagine ever growing comfortable with guns being pointed at me. A jumpy trigger finger could have easily left you full of holes.

Further, I also can't help but wonder how the treatment would have differed if it was one of us ordinary Joes with just a PTC, not an LEO ID. I'm guessing the apology would have sounded more like a scolding about "covering that damn thing up."

I'm not trying to cop-bash. I know cops. I like cops. I realize it's a tough job. It just sounds like some training is in order, not accolades for a job well done.


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:32 pm 
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You mean you didn't get belligerent and call the officer a racist and refuse to show your id and complain about this is what happens to a long-ago LEO... oh wait, you never said you were a buddy of Obama... :)

Sounds like a slightly over-the-top response was handled in a calm manner by you, but I don't think I will ever say that having guns pointed at me was not uncomfortable! I had an incident at basic training where I was playing range safety after completing a live fire course and a fellow soldier swept me with his barrel - luckily for him, I was pretty sure he was unloaded at the time, but he did get the hint when I "explained" to him that if he pointed his M16 at me again I was going to beat the snot out of him with the brass rod I was using to run the barrels! :) (or some words to that effect - I might have been a little more verbose!)

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:34 pm 
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macphisto wrote:
It just sounds like some training is in order, not accolades for a job well done.

Yeah, what Mac said -- all of it.

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:42 pm 
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Mac got directly to the point I was beating around. :lol:

-Mark


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 3:06 pm 
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Thanks for sharing Long Ago LEO. I think it's a good thing that some neighbor or passer by is keeping an eye out for bad guys. Having said that I'm also in the camp that would have found the events disconcerting. :shock: :evil:

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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 3:51 pm 
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All points are well taken. I was conflicted whether to post this as an isolated incident or not, but given some of the accounts of similar encounters that escalated unnecessarily, I thought the deceleration was so fast that the department deserved a nod for backing down without any bravado to cover up their (possible) over-reaction. I probably could have calibrated my words better (thanks Obama) by not saying I was comfortable being under the gun(s), but meant simply that the guys seemed very measured and I never sensed something about to get ugly. Sure, I don't like seeing the end of my OWN barrel, so I can't argue the point that it was actually "comfortable" with weapons trained on me. In our follow-up cop-talk, I covered the point about being the only pedestrian within a block, minding my own business, on my own property, in business attire, etc. But, knowing their struggles with balancing an armed citizenry and the possibility of a BG pulling off an armed burglary in broad daylight, I was content with how it was handled. Again, I have some biases.

As for my ID, my permit is in the card window of my wallet - other ID was undoubtedly visible once that was removed, but was not mentioned. Admittedly, the most senior guy on the scene indicated he thought he recognized me from his days with Champlin PD back in the 80's. Coincidence, because I had no clue who he was.

And the gold accessories? Oh man. That was bad. I meant my wedding band, watch, tie chain, etc. Certainly not bling on THIS old, white-haired, over-the-hill, been all I'm gonna' be, kinda' white guy. :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 4:00 pm 
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I am curious however, how you (anyone) would have envisioned this call to have been handled better? Unholstered, but not trained on me? Approached with no offensive display at all? In other words, given the nature of the call and unknowns, what was the teaching moment that could have been gleaned from this (if anyone cared)?


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 Post subject: Re: Long Ago LEO gets taken down...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 4:05 pm 
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The proper response to a person calmly going about his business with a holstered gun is a calm, holstered cop -- if there is any reason at all to investigate.

When I had my encounter at Cub Foods, no weapons were drawn on either side. That was the right way to handle it.

In my own yard? I think "get off my lawn" might have been appropriate.

As a former police officer, what was the reasonable suspicion that a crime had taken place that justified their stopping you, let alone pointing deadly weapons at you?

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