Wednesday, December 30, 2009

police cannot detain people for openly carrying guns

this was a case in New Mexico
clipped from

On September 8, 2009, United States District Judge Bruce D. Black of the United States District Court for New Mexico entered summary judgment in a civil case for damages against Alamogordo, NM police officers.  The Judge's straight shootin' message to police:  Leave open carriers alone unless you have "reason to believe that a crime [is] afoot."

In response to a call from theater manager Robert Zigmond, the police entered the movie theater, physically seized Mr. St. John from his seat, took him outside, disarmed him, searched him, obtained personally identifiable information from his wallet, and only allowed him to re-enter the theater after St. John agreed to secure his gun in his vehicle.  Mr. St. John was never suspected of any crime nor issued a summons for violating any law. 

no theater employee ever ordered Mr. St. John to leave.  The police apparently simply decided to act as agents of the movie theater to enforce a private rule of conduct and not to enforce any rule of law.
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