Monthly Archives: September 2010

New Ride

So we decided the Camry was just boring, boring, boring. And got me one of these:

I like it.


I Like Arizona, Part (I’ve Lost Track)

Via Dave Hardy:

Here in AZ, with real juries, the results are quite different. A prosecutor once told me that he’d urged the County Attorney to stop prosecuting homeowners who shot burglars in the back. They’d just lost three of those cases in a row. Whatever the statute law might be, jurors saw one fewer burglar as a good thing and would not convict a fellow homeowner for having done a good thing.


ASU Boys Make Good

Both Ryan Bader and C.B. Dolloway (I saw each wrestle while they were at ASU) won their UFC fights tonight. Good for them!

I’m not sure what the deal is with both of them training at The Lion’s Den now rather than ACS – I’ll have to do somedigging into that.


The UN Can Kiss My…

Well, if you know me you already know my opinion on the UN.

Evidently Czech president Vaclav Klaus agrees with me.

In response to president of the General Assembly Joseph Deiss’ statement, at the opening of the annual gathering of world leaders in New York, that it was time for the United Nations to “comprehensively fulfill its global governance role.”:

“On the contrary, this is the time for international organizations, including the United Nations, to reduce their expenditures, make their administrations thinner, and leave the solutions to the governments of member states,” he said.

“The anti-crisis measures that have been proposed and already partly implemented follow from the assumption that the crisis was a failure of markets and that the right way out is more regulation of markets,” he said.

Klaus said that was a “mistaken assumption” and it was impossible to prevent future crises through regulatory interventions and similar actions by governments.

That will only “destroy the markets and together with them the chances for economic growth and prosperity in both developed and developing countries,” he said.

Well, yeah.


They Always Say That….2 Narratives, Pt. II

Alex Contreras had been in a gang, but his family and friends say he was trying to get out of it and had started covering his gang tattoos with other images. Brandon Beck had been a starting varsity football player at Chandler High School and a star baseball pitcher for his club team. His mom, a former Tempe police officer, and his stepdad, a current Phoenix police officer, doted on him. Both teens were starting to turn their lives around, their loved ones say.

Those who loved Contreras and Beck want it known that they were not punk gang members whose lives should be swept under the carpet. “I am Brandon Beck’s mom,” said Kris Oldenberg, of her son, who would have turned 19 on Sept. 9. “I just want somebody to know my son was a good boy.” Contreras’ brother, Ivan, said Contreras was working two jobs and studying to get his high school equivalency diploma. “My brother was a good person,” said Ivan, 15. “He was always there for me.” Family members and loved ones are upset over characterizations of Beck and Contreras, 19, as documented gang members. They also are upset that the shooting has been described as justified. This person shot two people multiple times but no shots were fired at him,” said Christine Vasquez, 40, of Bullhead City. “Who is responsible for serving liquor to minors? That led to this incident in the first place.”

Vasquez credits Contreras with saving her life when she was floundering in the Salt River, water over her head, and unable to swim. Contreras, who was in shallow water, “swam as fast as he could to get her and did,” said Vasquez’s daughter, Renita Garcia. “He saved her.” Last May, the last time Vasquez saw Contreras, he drove from Chandler to Bullhead City and spent six hours landscaping her yard. “He was in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Vasquez said of the shooting.

Sounds like a couple of great kids, right?

At the $2-per-person keg party, in the 600 block of North Sunland Drive, the trouble began when the party hosts, nervous that someone had a gun, tried to shut down the party. Police say that about nine street-gang members and their associates who were in attendance were unhappy with the decision to end the party and tried to leave with a keg of beer. They argued, fought and pushed people to the ground as they left, police said. Contreras lifted his shirt to show the gun, they said.

The female party host followed them to the street, arguing. Her husband went to her side, and was punched in the face and attacked, police said. Contreras drew his gun and trained it on the man and his wife, police said. The host drew his own weapon and asked Contreras to drop his, police said. It was after the party host was knocked to the ground, that Conteras continued pointing the gun at him and that Beck lunged for him, that the party host fatally shot them, police said.

Chandler police reported that the two were documented gang members and that Contreras had a semiautomatic pistol that he displayed and wielded. Beck, they say, attacked the party host at least once, punching him so hard in the face he knocked the man to the ground.

So – 2 great kids, turning their lives around, attempt to steal a keg of beer and when confronted about it start pushing people around. When the female host confronts them they verbally abuse her; her husband goes to defend her and gets punched in the face and a gun pointed at him. Host pulls his own gun and demands that Contreras drop his; he gets assaulted again, knocked to the ground and the other great kid “…lunge[s] at him…” and, in fear for his life, shoots the one attacking him and the one with a gun pointed at him and his wife. Later it turns out both are known by the police to be gang members, as are most of their friends who helped in this little escapade.

Why do these 2 themes seem to be at odds to me? 

If  I’ve been assaulted by a group of teenagers, punched in the face, knocked to the ground and have a gun pointed at me – I am in fear for my life. The characterization of this shooting as justified seems one hundred percent correct to me.


Makes me Glad I Live in Arizona Part 2

A press release from the Madison, WI police chief:

OPEN CARRY & THE MPD

New Charges To Be Issued Regarding Culver’s Incident

The Madison Police Department (MPD) has conducted a review of an incident that took place this past Saturday night at Culver’s Frozen Custard restaurant, 4301 East Towne Blvd. Based upon the further investigation, Chief Noble Wray has concluded the appropriate charge for all 5 armed individuals is Disorderly Conduct (DC). Accordingly, DC citations will be issued, and Obstructing a Peace Officer tickets given to two will be rescinded. 

Officers were dispatched to the restaurant around 6:50 p.m. after a 62-year old Madison woman called 911. She had just observed several men with handguns in holsters enter the crowded Culver’s restaurant. In her initial statement to officers, she stated” I didn’t know what the law was, and I thought I should at least call so the police can come and check it out cause I didn’t want to be that one person that saw guns and didn’t call, and then have something terrible happen”. In a follow-up interview with detectives, she further stated that she thought it was very odd that these individuals with guns would be at a family place. She noted she felt somewhat “rattled” and also “felt uneasy” about the subjects having the handguns at the family restaurant. She went on to say that they all appeared calm, but noted “people who shoot up restaurants also look calm before it happens.” She did state that she was very concerned that if she didn’t make the call and something did happen, she would feel horrible.

The MPD made contact Saturday night with the five men who were openly carrying handguns. Upon officers’ requests, three of five produced identification so that officers could determine they were not convicted criminals. Two of five refused to produce identification and were issued Obstructing a Peace Officer citations. It was determined they were not felons and handguns were returned.

The officers were faced with an ambiguous situation. When responding to investigate suspicious – or potentially dangerous – circumstances, police must: 

• Preserve or Restore Order and Public Safety.
• Investigate whether a crime had been committed, was being committed, or was about to be committed.
• Protect the Constitutional Rights of those involved. 

The complainant’s statement clearly reveals that she recognized the potential for violence from these armed men, and it was this fear that motivated her call to police. On the basis of this fact, the MPD will be rescinding the 2 obstructing citations. They were issued in error. Instead, citations for City Ordinance DC will be given to those who engaged in the behavior that led to the need for police to be called.

The DC statute does not require an actual disturbance take place, only that conduct in question is of a type that tends to cause or provoke a disturbance

Chief Wray wants to make clear: It is the department’s wish that concerned citizens call 911 when they see armed subjects. 

Following Saturday’s incident, he sent an internal memo to all officers:

MPD officers regularly are dispatched to reports of individuals who are armed with firearms. When responding to these incidents, officers should:

• Approach the suspect using the proper tactical response. The individual should be contacted, controlled, and frisked for weapons if appropriate. Officers should separate the suspect from any weapons in his/her possession during the encounter.

• Officers should conduct a thorough investigation to determine whether any violations of state statute or city ordinance have occurred. Some of the relevant offenses to consider include:
• Carrying a Concealed Weapon (§941.23)
• Disorderly Conduct (§947.01)
• Carrying a Firearm in Public Building (§941.235)
• Carrying Handgun Where Alcohol Beverages May be Sold and Consumed (§941.237)
• Being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm (§941.29)
• Safe Use and Transportation of Firearms (§167.31) 
• Possession of Short-Barreled Shotgun or Short-Barreled Rifle (§941.28)
• Gun-free School Zones (§948.605)
• Possession of a Dangerous Weapon by a Person Under 18 (§948.60)
• Endangering Safety by Use of Dangerous Weapon (§941.20) 

• Officers should verify that the firearm is not stolen, and attempt to verify that the person possessing the firearm is not legally barred from doing so (as a felon, due to an injunction, etc.). However, someone who has been detained is not legally obligated to provide identification to officers if no criminal ordinance violations have occurred. A person who refuses to provide identification should not be arrested for obstructing; however, if probable cause for another offense exists the suspect should be arrested for that offense and can then be identified during the citation or booking process.

• When responding to incidents involving subjects openly carrying firearms in public places, officers should investigate to determine whether the suspect’s actions caused or were likely to cause a disturbance. The primary factors to be considered include the location, time of day and witness/bystander perceptions. Remember that the disorderly conduct statute does not require that an actual disturbance take place, only that the conduct in question be of a type that tends to cause or provoke a disturbance. 

• It is my expectation that MPD officers encountering individuals who are armed with firearms in public places will take a pro-enforcement approach. If the investigation shows probable cause for a violation, the suspect should be arrested or cited.

I expect lawsuits; a Wisconsin Carry member won a substantial judgement from the City of Racine for an obstruction arrest (probably why the MPD dropped the obstruction charges but cited all 5 individuals for DC); I’d expect to see the disorderly conduct definition curtailed by a similar suit. Small steps…


Makes Me Glad I Live in Arizona

from Wisconsin Carry Inc.:

Saturday night at approximately 7:30 pm 5 Wisconsin Carry members were peaceably dining at a Culvers in Madison.

8 Madison Police officers arrived and demanded ID from our members. As Wisconsin is not a police-state, Wisconsin law does not require you to provide identification to an officer unless you are operating a motor vehicle.

2 Wisconsin Carry members, in consideration of their legal rights politely declined to provide ID and were handcuffed, detained, and issued citations for obstruction.

Wisconsin Case-Law clearly states that refusing to give your name is not grounds for obstruction.

“No law allows officers to arrest for obstruction on a person s refusal to give his orher name. Mere silence is insufficient to constitute obstruction.” Henes v. Morrissey,194 Wis. 2d 339, 533 N.W.2d 802 (1995).

Wisconsin Carry filed suit against the Racine Police Department on January 8th 2010 for unlawfully arresting one of our members, Frank Hannon-Rock, on obstruction charges for refusing to provide ID. Wisconsin Carry obtained a $10,000 judgement against Racine in that case where the Racine City Attorney explains to the Racine City council that the officers did not have the authority to arrest Mr. Hannon-Rock.

audio of that encounter is available here:

http://www.youtube.com/wisconsincarry#p/a/u/1/PuiO8tixuKY

Wisconsin Carry will be taking action against the Madison Police Department and the officers who illegally detained, handcuffed, searched, and cited our members.

Wisconsin Carry, Inc. is a non-profit Wisconsin corporation dedicated to the protection and expansion of the right of law-abiding Wisconsinites to carry in the manner of their choosing. http://www.wisconsincarry.org

Nik Clark
Chairman/President – Wisconsin Carry, Inc.

H/T to Fred