Once again, the concealed carry supremacists are pointing out another open carry robbery. Here is the exact text of the original article:
Silent Witness is looking to the public for help identifying a man who stole a gun from a man in line at a Phoenix McDonalds, officials said.
Guns.com has good video footage of the incident, where the suspect, while talking on a cell phone, brazenly walks up to the victim and easily lifts the pistol from the victim’s back pocket before leisurely jogging from the store. From the video, the victim can be seen wearing a baggy shirt, and one could make the argument that this was an example of poor concealed carry rather than open carry. There is no middle ground between the two methods except Dumbass Carry (see below).
This incident spurred Bob Owens of Bearingarms.com to rail on open carry once again.
As a general rule, criminals are not intimidated by handgun open carriers in the slightest. They see the $300-$800 gun on your hip the same as they would a fat wallet, ripe for taking.
Uh, no Bob, they don’t. If this assertion was true, then carry gun robberies would be regular thing. Instead, they are very rare. Criminals see a gun and are deterred. It is far more the demeanor of the carrier rather than open carry itself that allows emboldened thugs to attempt and succeed at this kind of thing.
Do you ever notice that there is a dearth of stories with headlines like “Man Attempts Robbery of Open Carrier—Suspect Shot and Killed”? There is one recent story in Louisiana
I’d like to coin this half-assed not openly carried, but poorly concealed and unsecured method of carry ‘Dumbass Carry.’ Why dumbass carry? Because people who carry with a gun exposed in a pocket, improperly concealed, or without a holster are dumbasses. Wasn’t he worried about it potentially falling out? Quite frankly, if you take no steps to properly secure your gun and rely on half assed concealment, you probably deserve to get robbed.
Retention holders are unofficially mandatory for open carry. At the very minimum, a friction holster should be used, if not one with a thumb or finger activated latch locking the firearm in place. Citizens are at less risk for having their weapon snatched than police officers so a full Level 3 retention system with a locking hood is probably overkill.
Once again, this proves that the open carry myths of gun snatchings are the exceptions to the rule and have everything to do with the individual carrying, not the method used.
A mother legally openly carrying her handgun was unlawfully arrested at the Rainbow branch of the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District (LVCCLD) back on March 16. This is the latest incident in a string of Second Amendment abuses by the district which culminated in the defendant, Michelle Flores, being detained in front of her young children. She was also threatened with having her children removed by CPS. Ultimately, Flores’s handgun was seized and she was given a citation for trespassing before being released at the scene.
A lawsuit has been filed by Flores, who is represented by Ashcraft and Barr. A copy of the complaint is available here. Flores seeks damages pursuant to the provisions of SB 175/240 which allow for up to triple damages for any party adversely affected by an illegal firearm ordinance.
Openly carrying a firearm in a public library is legal in Nevada. In fact, several library districts, including the Henderson district and the Washoe District, recognize this fact. State law prohibits government entities from banning firearms from their buildings under state firearm preemption laws. Only the legislature can regulate where and how firearms can be carried. Furthermore, the library’s own Rules of Conduct don’t even prohibit openly carried firearms, only concealed firearms pursuant to state law.
Outside of Nevada, the Seattle, Washington library changed its policies on open carry and the Capitol Area District Libraries (CADL), Michigan, lost a suit for violating state law by preventing the lawful open carry of firearms. Additionally, Texas libraries are not allowed to have firearm bans as well, which includes the state's recent decriminalization of open carry. On the concealed carry end, the Denver Science Museum dropped its concealed carry ban because it was unenforceable per state law.
Flores told us:
I was inside for about an hour with no issues looking for books for my children. I passed by multiple staff members with no issues. I checked out a few books and was about to exit the library when the security guard began calling after me to tell me firearms are not allowed. I attempted to talk to the hired guard about the law and he summoned a library employee. She brings up an invalid rule the library has that they can prohibit firearms. She then summons the police. No one during this time ever asked me to leave the premises. After the officer’s arrived, I attempted to film the interaction and was instead placed in handcuffs with my phone and firearm taken from me. This all occurred in front of my young children (5, 3, 1). The officers never attempted to find out my side of events.
Flores was released with a citation for trespassing (NRS 207.200). A librarian read her the trespassing statement and banned her from library property for a year.
Flores's friend arrived to assist her and videotape the encounter. Nevada Carry has reviewed the video. Though her friend was observing the encounter and not interfering, he was ordered to leave the area or disarm. He chose to put his gun in his car. A confrontational officer approached him and said “That gun looks like it’s partially concealed. […] It looks like it’s black under there.” Flores’s friend informed the officer that he had already removed his handgun. The officer asked the friend to identify himself and what he was doing there.
“You’re not involved here, so leave,” the officer said. “Cause you’re not involved with what we’re doing at all, so go ahead and leave here. We’re talking care of business here. Now I’m advising you once. That’s your one warning. I’m going to give you one warning, so leave.” This behavior isn’t unusual. A videographer Mitchell Crooks was beaten in 2012 by an LVMPD officer who was upset with being filmed. An officer suggested that even though Flores’s friend’s holster was empty, he could be considered to be carrying concealed when the officer saw the holster.
The cooler officer called out that he and Flores’s friend already spoke. The aggressive officer then walked away. Flores was then uncuffed and signed the citation. The officers were apparently unaware of state firearm preemption laws. The librarian read the trespassing warning to Flores and prohibited from visiting any LVCCLD library for one year.
No trespass occurred
Flores was cited for trespassing, a violation of NRS 207.200, despite never actually violating any provisions of that section. The violation has two elements.
Subsection (a) Going into a building "with intent to vex or annoy the owner or occupant thereof, or to commit any unlawful act." First, Flores had no intent to vex or annoy the library staff or the patrons. Additionally, there was no alarm or panic, nor did she behave in a disruptive manner, which might constitute other criminal behavior.
Second, Flores did not enter with intent to vex or annoy. Her behavior would have been otherwise unremarkable, save for her handgun. There was no reports of disturbed or alarmed patrons or any other criminal behavior. Had Flores somehow been committing a disturbance, Metro probably wouldn't have taken nearly an hour to arrive.
Most importantly, no unlawful act was committed. The library district has repeatedly cited NRS 379.040 as its authority to illegal ban firearms. That section gives only the board of trustees the authority to make reasonable regulations. The library Code of Conduct, which was last approved by the board of trustees in an unrelated update in Jan. 2011, only prohibits concealed firearms in conformance with state law. The district cites a policy that they have circulated to staff which was never approved by the board of trustees (at least since 2004).
The policy is merely an administrative response when citizens' objections forced them to manufacture something. Since the ‘policy’ was never approved the board of trustees, it is not an enforceable regulation per NRS 379.040. District bureaucrats made up the ban.
The library district's own administrative policy, even if somehow considered enforceable, is specifically prohibited by state preemption of firearm regulation. Such a policy is null and void as the district has no authority to regulate the carry of firearms.
The officers made an arrest on false pretenses at the behest of the library staff. LVCCLD is so bent on illegally prohibiting firearms that it is willing to see mothers with children arrested and to invite a lawsuit, at taxpayer's expense. Unfortunately, Metro police administration placed its officers in this position by failing to properly educate their employees on the legality of open carry and changes in state law. This isn’t the first time Metro illegally interfered with an open carrier because of officers’ ignorance. LVMPD officers also ejected a legal open carrier from the Clark County Fair.
The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District knowingly and willfully violated the provisions of firearm preemption. In November, a group of citizens warned the board of trustees that their administrators’ actions were flying in the face of state law. Despite repeated public protest and outcry, the district has continued its abuses and usurpations.
Library counsel, attorney Gerald Welt, stated in a private conversation, which was recounted on Facebook (see image) that he was aware of the preemption law, but open carriers would still be kicked out and he expected the district to be sued. If these allegations are true, they are totally irresponsible. Taxpayers should not be forced to bear the burden of officials’ malfeasance.
Shouldn't That Be Illegal?
Nevada hasn't overlooked open carry in public buildings as some sort of bygone tradition that legislators have forgotten about. A look at other states, as we have done with Frontier Carry, will show that in the Intermountain West, the ban on openly carried firearms in public buildings is an exception to the rule. Only Colorado expressly allows a blanket ban of openly carried firearms, while exempting concealed carry in those public buildings without security screening. Texas, which recently decriminalized open carry for licensed individuals, enacted open carry of firearms dating from the 19th Century to prevent blacks from carrying arms.
In fact, an analysis of these states, plus the Idaho Supreme Court case of Re: Brickey reveals that open carry is recognized as the constitutionally protected form of carry. Nevada has prohibited unlicensed concealed carry in one form or another since the early 1900s as have most of our neighboring states. The concealed carry of firearms one hundred years ago was only then just beginning to lose its reputation as something only a thief, bandit, or burglar did. Hiding a gun implied that the person carrying was also trying to conceal criminal intentions. Only with the vilification of guns starting in the 1910s through the 1930s did self-conscious citizens desire to transition to concealed carry.
Yet only rarely are openly carried weapons regulated and almost always in blanket 'all weapons' bans, such as at schools. It is tacitly understood that open carry in all but the most specific of circumstances, is none of the government's business. So no, allowing openly carried weapons in public buildings isn't a legislative oversight, rather it is recognition that government has no power to regulate the open carrying of arms. Nevada's gun laws aren't some error or accident of history.
Members of the public can contact the library district to express their opinion at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-507-4400. Operations Direction Jennifer Schember can be emailed at Schemberj@lvccld.org.
Cross-posted from NevadaCarry.blogspot.com
For gun owners, Red Rock is a unique carve-out in Nevada because it is the largest swath of land open to the public where carrying loaded firearms is prohibited. The red rocks and sandstone cliffs of Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area that dominate the western skyline of Las Vegas is a BLM-administered area, separate from the National Park System, which does allow firearms. Long have local gun owners bemoaned the outmoded regulations without attempting to solve the problem. Congress won’t remedy this right on their own, but we can ourselves.
Readers are aware that state law prohibits local and state agencies from making their own firearm laws, including state parks, except for regulation unsafe discharge of firearms. Some may be familiar with the change to federal law under President Bush’s tenure that permitted firearms in National Parks (including recreation areas like Lake Mead) as long as the weapons are carried in accordance with state law.
Specifically, loaded firearms are prohibited in Red Rock. Ammunition and magazines/clips cannot be on or in the weapon, except for legal hunting as permitted. The excerpt regarding weapons is below, while the full Supplementary Rules are here. The penalty is up to a $1000 fine and/or 12 months in federal prison (43 CFR 8360.0-7).
How stupid is it that you can have a gun, and even carry it on your person, but it has to be unloaded? The rules will not prevent a criminal from carrying illegally or prevent illegal target shooting. There is no benefit of this rule and the few seconds spent loading a gun could be the few seconds that give a bad guy the advantage or allow a cougar to strike. On top of that, it is immoral to effectively disarm the citizens who won’t carry at all because they don’t understand the nuances of the law.
Basic firearm safety dictates a firearm should be handled as infrequently as possible. The best place for it is left alone in its holster. Loading and unloading a firearm introduces unnecessary variables that could lead to a negligent discharge. Creating the potential for an accident negates any alleged gains. Also, in a self-defense scenario when adrenaline is pumping, fine motor reaction is lost, making it more difficult to load and chamber a round before firing.
These rules were added shortly after Red Rock’s official inception as an NCA. The supplementary rules for Red Rock were published in the May 21st, 1993 edition of the Federal Register, which is the federal government’s journal. Federal law allows the interior secretary (via the BLM’s state director) to make supplementary rules and orders for the national conservation areas under his jurisdiction (43 USC § 1701).
Federal law is broken down into three main segments: The United States Code (USC), roughly analogous to the Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS); The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR); and internal federal agency regulations, which are published in the Federal Register. Agencies are authorized by Congress to make regulations in their area of operation, such as the ATF’s various administrative rulings. Now to make specific ‘park’ rules, based on the unique needs of the given area, the BLM’s state administrator can make supplemental rules (43 CFR 8365.1-6), as long as the public is given notice of the proposal and time to make comments.
No other federal ‘parkland’ in Nevada prohibits legally carried self-defense weapons, loaded or unloaded, including the two other conservation areas, Sloan Canyon (south of Henderson), and the Black Rock Desert. Sloan Canyon is managed by the Southern Nevada BLM office, which manages Red Rock.
Only two other Conservation areas, the Wallace Forest in Idaho and the San Pedro Riparian area in Arizona, have firearm possession prohibitions. Both are outdated as well (2000 and 1989, respectively). Even in California, the ‘Lost Coast’ conservation area allows loaded open carry under that state’s quirky carry laws. As mentioned earlier, National Parks and Wildlife Refuges allow firearms in accordance with state law (§ 512. pg. 31 “Credit CARD Act of 2009”), though guns are still prohibited inside federal facilities (18 USC § 1930).
How to remedy
The public should be allowed to carry firearms loaded for self-defense, not just in light of the Second Amendment, but because of the dangers inherent in today’s world. One should not be forced to be disarmed or carry a ‘neutered’ unloaded gun because of an outdated regulation. Heaven forbid anyone is attacked by a cougar or coyote, not to mention potentially being the victim of a crime at, or to/from, Red Rock. The right to loaded self-defense should not disappear because someone crosses an invisible line into a wild desert park. There is nothing inherent in Red Rock that makes visitors any less susceptible to danger.
Taking into consideration the state laws of Nevada and no prohibition on other federal recreational lands, Red Rock’s loaded gun ban is an anachronism. 1993 was a different time in America. Handgun ownership and self-defense carry was not nearly as popular as today and “shall issue” concealed weapon permit laws had yet to come to Nevada and sweep across the nation. As more and more people recognized the need for self-defense weapons and the attitudes in the country have changed, it is time that unusual, out-of-touch regulation disappear.
The rules are not federal law and do not require legislation to change, which would be a pipe dream with the current president. Rather, a gentle campaign of public pressure through petitioning the state director John Ruhs to amend the Supplemental Rules to allow loaded firearms to be carried for self-defense. Additional support could be sought from Nevada’s republican Congressional delegation (the Democrats probably wouldn’t agree).
Public pressure can change things. It may be as simple as a few nice, well-written letters. Imagine if thousands of Nevadan gun owners, hikers, bikers, and concerned citizens petitioned the BLM to restore their right to effective self-defense?
Notwithstanding the supplementary rules, 43 CFR 8365.1-7 says that state still law applies, meaning that Nevada’s concealed carry laws and lack of an open carry prohibition or ban on loaded handguns in cars would not be illegal. So there is recognition of state law already in place, though not as specific as one would hope.
Temporary closure orders for events such as Burning Man would probably require some sort of federal preemption legislation, but given the highly specific nature, limited duration, and legitimate concerns (hippies+drugs+guns=bad idea) make this a more palatable exception rather than an outdated blanket prohibition on loaded firearms.
We are asking for a small change to the law to bring Red Rock in conformity with other federal areas and the rest of Nevada. We are not asking to allow target shooting with its attendant trash and safety problems.
There will always be the leftists (often involved in environmental and outdoors groups) and anti-gunners who will ill-rationally protest the restoration of gun rights, but rights and truth win over hype and lies any day. On top if it all, guns are already allowed in Red Rock, just unloaded. Many practice unloaded open carry where the pistol is on one hip, the magazine on the other, and can be loaded in an emergency with a quick reload and rack of the slide. The unloaded guns haven’t hurt anyone or the wildlife; why would loaded guns make any difference?
So gun owners; are you on board? Sign the petition here!