How to deal with Law Enforcement

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Many of us that carry a concealed weapon wont ever have an encounter with Law Enforcement. However, if you are pulled over here's some tips to help you avoid trouble or going prone out on the side of the road.

If your issuing agency has placed restrictions on your CCW that indicate that you must notify law enforcement when you are carrying, DO IT! Failing to do so will get your permit pulled.

  • Roll down your window and turn on your dome light if it is dark.
  • KEEP you hands on the steering-wheel.
  • Don't look all around waiting for him to get to you. Keep looking forward until he reaches the car. GIVE HIM the element of surprise.
  • Don't yell out the window, "I've got a gun". Instead, be sure gun is CONCEALED prior to stopping the car. When the officer approaches a statement like, "How are you officer? Before we begin I want to let you know that my Sheriff/Chief of police has issued me a concealed weapons permit and it is currently (name location).
  • Get your wallet OUT of your pocket before stopping the car. Law enforcement officers are used to seeing movement in the vehicles they stop. You may think you will alarm them by moving about in the car, but you wont. This allows you to have you license and your CCW in hand before the officer asks for it. This is especially important if you carry on your side and keep your wallet in your pant's pocket. You don't want his partner on the otherside of the car see you "reaching for your gun".

Having a CCW and being in possession of your firearm in the vehicle IS NOT grounds for a search. Everyone has different thoughts on this, but to me, what's in my car is MY business. If the officer feels there is a safety issue I can gladly step out of the car for him. I can also give him my firearm to hold while he is writing my ticket. What I can't do is be asked to give up my 4th and 5th amendment rights.

If the officer asks your to relinquish your firearm to him, DO IT. The side of the road is NOT the time to argue with the police.
Don't answer question like, "where are you coming from, what have you been doing tonight" etc. It is possible that an armed robbery just happened and your car matches the description of the get-away vehicle. In that case, you don't want to accidentally put yourself at the scene of the crime. Do NOT be rude, but don't answer either. A deputy just told me the other day, "People who have nothing to hide, say too much; If you have nothing to hide, you still have something to fear."

NOTE: IF you are carrying a .45 and you tell the officer that its the only firearm you have in the car but he sees a box of .357ammo, an ammo cartridge or ANY other indication that there may be more firearms in the car he/she has the legal authority to search the car based on probable cause. TIP: Keep you car clean of any guns, ammo or ammo boxes that don't match the caliber of the guns on your permit.

Law Enforcement officers often get a bad name thanks to social media. I've always said, "I have to deal with law enforcement once, maybe twice in three years, depending on how bad my driving is. They have to deal with several members of the general public everyday. The jerk-to-Nice guy ratio is in our favor. Be a nice guy to them and the same will most certainly get returned.

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