And they thought they were free?--Woman Defends Self:Police Take HER Gun Defends Herself, Cops Take HER Gun!greenspun.com : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread
March 2nd, 2000
From: Linda Hamilton
On Wednesday, March 1st, at about 12 noon, I turned left onto Rt. 2 in North Adams eastbound over Florida Mountain. I drove for about 30 seconds, at which point I noticed an 18 wheeler looming in my rearview mirror. He drove up to within ten feet of my Blazer, and then lunged his truck at my vehicle as if he was going to ram it. He then pulled out, as if to pass me - we were on a 2 lane road - and then pulled back in behind me. He repeated this behavior four times.
I was in fear for my life! For over a quarter mile there is no place to pull over, and nothing but abandoned mills and private houses. There were no other people around.
I am a lawfully licensed gun owner, with a concealed carry permit. I don't hunt. I carry a gun for one reason: personal protection.
I took my .38, put it in my right hand and put my hand back on the steering wheel. The truck driver immediately backed off. I pulled in at the first place there were people and a pay phone. I called the Shelburne State Police barracks, and I told them of the incident thinking, of course, that they could intercept the trucker before he hurt someone.
As soon as I mentioned what I had done with my gun, I was put on the defensive by the officer on the phone; instead of thanking me for handling the situation in a responsible way, and one in which I protected myself and hurt no one, the issue suddenly became the gun and only the gun, and not the fact that my life, and probably the lives of others, were in jeopardy from an out-of-control trucker. The trooper said to me, "You should not have drawn your gun; a complaint could be filed."
Excuuuuuuse me, but why on earth am I carrying a gun? To keep my hip warm? I have been a gun owner for several years, and this is the first time I have had a gun in my hand outside of the target range.
I should interject here that I am a 53-year-old woman. I am a Registered Nurse Anesthetist - you know, one of those Medical people who saves the troopers' lives after they have been shot by bad guys! I am married, and I have raised two children. I have driven hundreds of thousands of miles, and never even had a speeding ticket. I also believe in God and am a Christian. (We all know what a terrible crime THAT is nowadays!)
But the story does not end there. When I reached the top of the mountain, two troopers from the Cheshire barracks were waiting for me, and they pulled me over. Apparently the truck driver had seen them there, and had given a report to them that someone had pulled a gun on him. Not only that, he had given them a description of my car.
Both of these troopers were women, and their behavior was as bullying and unreasonable as that of any out-of-control male troopers. Hence my apology to all you males.
My daughter is a few years older than these two troopers appeared to be. When she was about 12, I realized that she was being "dumbed down" by the school system, that she was not being taught the Massachusetts nor the U.S. Constitution, or about how precious our personal freedoms are - or once were - in America, so I taught her these things myself. I naturally figured other mothers were doing the same thing for their daughters, but I apparently was mistaken, at least as far as the mothers of these two troopers were concerned.
The two female officers asked my permission to search my vehicle. I refused, but they did it anyway. They called in my I.D., and they were informed that I was a lawful gun-owner, with a permit to carry "for all lawful purposes," yet they confiscated my gun on the spot. They are going to excuse themselves, I am sure, by saying they had "probable cause." By the time they did this, they had checked my I.D., searched my vehicle, heard my explanation, and even with all that, they never called the Shelburne barracks or checked out the truck driver!
I put them on notice that they were leaving me defenseless, and that I wanted a police escort home. They refused. (Are you surprised?) They did not charge me with any crime, and still have not done so. They also called a detective from North Adams, who stated that "...it was against the law to have a gun in my car," which is completely untrue.
This same detective later admitted to my attorney he "... really did not know much about the gun laws."
-- INever (ineverchecked@Myonebox.com), March 07, 2000
ooops, i stuttered when i wrote the headline....
-- INever (ineverchecked@MYonebox.com), March 07, 2000.
Loss of freedom does lead to stuttering.
-- Normally (Oxsys@aol.com), March 07, 2000.
i hope Linda is going to check with some of the pro-US organizations that defend our rights and think about filing a law suit. i also wish she would go after that trucker. that is horrifying but i have seen it happen with my own two eyes.
it is the same as with religion and state issues. sometimes those in authority (like school principals, school boards--like the police) just really don't know what the law allows. they, hopefully, will be "informed" if a lawsuit results.
-- tt (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2000.
Common sort of confusion. They were applying the department RULES to a civilian.
Of course, she doesn't come under those rules. And, yes, she can make it very hard for them if she wants to.
She should settle for an apology. AFTER her attorney explains to them just how far she can take this if she wants to, and the chief has a meeting with his crew and explains that dept rules on drawing guns do NOT apply to civilians.
The car search without a warrant is what can really get them in trouble, BTW.
-- Paul Davis (email@example.com), March 07, 2000.
She needs the ACLU for this one! Paul Davis is right on!
-- Archiver (Archiverr@archiverr.xcom), March 07, 2000.
Seems to me it matters little what the laws are when it comes to guns and "perceived" terroristic threats these days. Everyone perceives they are being threatened, and the paranoia of such is so deep that regardless of the LAW, you will be denied your rights.
You'd think with the law on your side it would be sorted out 'later', but unfortunately it will probably be brushed under the rug.
Now me, and this is just me -- I'da flipped the trucker the bird with the meanest look I could give
and when he got behind me, he would have gotten the worst brake job he's ever seen. I think I could outrun an 18 wheeler going UP a mountain!
rulez, rulez, too many damn rulez.
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2000.
Was Linda going a "reasonable" speed? If so, than she has my sympathy. If not, could the trucker have trying to get her to speed up? Truckers have a schedule to maintain, something other drivers tend to forget when they nod off and go 30 mph in a 55 mph area. Granted, this teamster may have gone to the extreme, but I'd like to hear his side of the story, as well.
-- (email@example.com), March 07, 2000.
Sorry, but I think you were wrong to have displayed the gun. Unless you plan to shoot, the gun should not have removed.
Did you intend to shoot the truck driver while the truck was in motion??
Could driving with the gun in one hand have caused you to have an accident?
My impression is that you took the gun out so that the truck driver would back off. You were trying to intimidate him. This is NOT what a gun should be used for.
My suggestion, FWIW, is that you need to take a concealed carry course with a reputable instructor.
-- Lynn Ratcliffe (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2000.
My Dear Inever,
I to have had some rather "close encounters" with a trucker. And I "was required" to tell a state trooper at the border check station AZ/N.M. line. That if she would, to go over at the truckers' check point (they were requirded to check in when they crossed into AZ also- for fruits and veggies). And tell the driver. That when we both pulled back out on the interstate to continue our trips. And he again got behind me, and forced me to drive a hundred miles an hour to keep in front of him (the fellow would not pass, nor would he let me drop into another lane so that he could pass either.) But he sure was grinning from ear to ear, when he pulled up behind me and required of me to drive like a mad man, to keep from being ran over.( My then wife and three young sons in the car with me).
In any case, I informed the lady trooper that I was armed (you can carry in AZ with out a concealed carry permit-so long as it is in sight.) And got out of my car, went to the trunk and pulled out my gun belt and strapped it around my waist.....My trip finished uninterupted.
I would how ever suggest that you look up Title 18 sec. 241 of the United States Criminal Code. Read it closely ( and remember that you had your personal property taken from you with out a warrent for a judge having athority). And since it takes two to enter into a conspiriacy! And both of them have taken a oath to uphold the constitution! And your rights were taken from you!
I am sure you CAN think of some things you can sue for. Incidently! It is nice to have a glove box loaded with zeroxed copies of this law (to hand out to the fellers so that they "know" that you know about the law LOL.
"As for me...I shall finish the Game"!
-- Shakey (email@example.com), March 07, 2000.
Someone indicated that Ms. Hamilton was using the handgun to "intimidate" the truck driver and that it was wrong to display the gun in such a manner. It appears to me, however, that she was being threatened with a deadly weapon -- the truck -- in an aggressive way. . .and therefore had every right to exercise her right of self defense.
-- Steve Singleton (Ssngltn@aol.com), March 08, 2000.
Is this a near-instant replay? Anyway, far be it from me to question the accuracy of a story related by such an objective and disinterested witness.
-- Flint (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 08, 2000.
Title 18 sec. 241 doesn't prevent police from taking 'evidence' for use at trial. Police never need a judges order for that.
-- TECH32 (TECH32@NOMAIL.CON), March 08, 2000.