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WVRecord - Wheeling police sued for harassing open carriers

Mike

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http://www.wvrecord.com/news/236624-suit-seeks-to-halt-harassment-of-citizens-carrying-firearms-in-wheeling

SNIP

WHEELING - Two Ohio County men are challenging what they claim is a campaign of harassment by Wheeling police against citizens lawfully carrying firearms in the Friendly City.

The city of Wheeling, its police chief and three of its officers are named as co-defendants in a 41-count civil rights suit filed by Keith Owen Campbell, and his father, Larry A. Campbell. In their complaint filed in U.S. District Court on May 11, Keith, 45, and Larry, 70, both of Wheeling, allege the city violated, among other things, their Second and Fourth Amendment rights when officers detained Keith, and temporarily confiscated the handgun he was carrying without any probable cause.

. . .

According the suit, Jewell, like Kotson, admitted while the open-carry of a firearm was legal in West Virginia, "'The mere carrying of a gun is suspicious and thus grounds for the stop.'" He added, "'The police can stop any person with a weapon at any time and run their name and the gun's numbers."
 

Yaki

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QUOTE=Mike;1564369]http://www.wvrecord.com/news/236624-suit-seeks-to-halt-harassment-of-citizens-carrying-firearms-in-wheeling

SNIP

WHEELING - Two Ohio County men are challenging what they claim is a campaign of harassment by Wheeling police against citizens lawfully carrying firearms in the Friendly City.

The city of Wheeling, its police chief and three of its officers are named as co-defendants in a 41-count civil rights suit filed by Keith Owen Campbell, and his father, Larry A. Campbell. In their complaint filed in U.S. District Court on May 11, Keith, 45, and Larry, 70, both of Wheeling, allege the city violated, among other things, their Second and Fourth Amendment rights when officers detained Keith, and temporarily confiscated the handgun he was carrying without any probable cause.

. . .

According the suit, Jewell, like Kotson, admitted while the open-carry of a firearm was legal in West Virginia, "'The mere carrying of a gun is suspicious and thus grounds for the stop.'" He added, "'The police can stop any person with a weapon at any time and run their name and the gun's numbers."[/QUOTE]


Isn't the first rule you learn about gun safety is not point a weapon in the direction of someone let alone their head? :banghead:
 

thebigsd

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According the suit, Jewell, like Kotson, admitted while the open-carry of a firearm was legal in West Virginia, "'The mere carrying of a gun is suspicious and thus grounds for the stop.'" He added, "'The police can stop any person with a weapon at any time and run their name and the gun's numbers."


Isn't the first rule you learn about gun safety is not point a weapon in the direction of someone let alone their head? :banghead:[/QUOTE]

A gun by itself does not justify reasonable suspicion especially when it is legal to open carry in WV. I can't wait to see how this plays out.
 

MKEgal

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in front of my computer, WI
According the suit, Jewell, like Kotson, admitted while the open-carry of a firearm was legal in West Virginia, "'The mere carrying of a gun is suspicious and thus grounds for the stop.'" He added, "'The police can stop any person with a weapon at any time and run their name and the gun's numbers.
Wasn't it Delaware v. Prouse that spanked some PD's collective weenie for stopping a car for the sole purpose of checking to see if the driver had a valid license?
Stopping a car for no other reason than to check the license and registration was unreasonable under the 4th amendment.
Delaware v. Prouse, 440 U.S. 648 (1979).
If they can't stop someone driving (which on public property requires a valid license) to check license & registration,
WHY do they think they can stop someone just because s/he's carrying (which not only requires no license, but is a protected civil right) & run a background check & pistol trace???

And since SCOTUS says the peaceful exercise of a civil right is not & can never be a crime, unless a carrier is doing something else questionable the LEO has no grounds for a nonconsensual contact.
The Claim and exercise of a Constitutional Right cannot be converted into a crime.
Miller v. U.S. , 230 F 2d 486. 489
 

jt59

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I hope that they take this to its natural conclusion and not settle before it goes to trial. It would be great to get more case law on the books when we get the opportunity.
 
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papa bear

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one thing the story affirms for me is that LEOs do not know anymore about fire arms than any other citizen.
gatta love those 'CDL organizations
 

Gunslinger

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Free, Colorado, USA
According the suit, Jewell, like Kotson, admitted while the open-carry of a firearm was legal in West Virginia, "'The mere carrying of a gun is suspicious and thus grounds for the stop.'" He added, "'The police can stop any person with a weapon at any time and run their name and the gun's numbers."[/QUOTE]
Good for them! Who cares what the Supreme Court says.
 

MR Redenck

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Upon removing the magazine from the pistol, Jewell attempted to eject the one bullet in the chamber. In doing so, while disabling the manual safety, Jewell pointed the pistol at Larry's head causing him to leap out of his seat.


OK, this is a problem!! What kind of complete POS idiot Cop would point a gun at someones head while disabling the safety. Im sick and tired of reading about cops pulling stupid stunts like this. This lawsuit is well deserved and maybe those idiots will get a lesson in manners and ethics!
 

John Canuck

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Wow. So much for the argument that the police get all this great training with guns and should be the only ones. Jewel sounds like an incompetent boob.
 
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Blk97F150

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Grapeshot

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Excellent read and in this layman's opinion a well prepared/written document.

Only thing that would make it better is if the plaintiffs both had digital recorders running - I see no mention of such.
 

Clevispin

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"Larry Campbell" is referred to in the docs as a Vietnam vet (helicopter). I think I recognize this name - Anybody else? Written up in book on the war? Just curious. MIKE
 

John Canuck

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Oh, there's more detailed in the complaint:
http://www.wvcdl.org/litigation/Wheeling-Campbell/003.pdf

Page 5, Line 29 is where the Statement of Facts begin (the details of the police encounter, step by step...). Line 77 is particularly disturbing:

Unknown Officer No. 2 then replied: “Oh, we won’t taze you. We’ll shoot you.”
Oh I read it before, but you're right... not only is he an incompetent boob, but he is dangerous as well.
 

tcmech

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I know it will never happen but I would love to see the police officers in question in federal court for violation of the 4th amendment rights of the open carriers.
 
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