Wednesday, May 28, 2008


I stopped a car the other day for a traffic violation.

When I got to the window and asked the driver for his driver's license, the driver said "I ummm...have a gun in my bag here". After drawing my own gun and asking my cover unit to step it up, I said "And, do tell, why exactly is it that you have a gun in your bag?"

I'm a police officer. Uh huh, I see. Do you have your ID card? Yeah. Where is it? In the bag with my gun and my driver's license.

I refrained from asking this fella how long he had been a cop, or who told him to act like this on a traffic stop.

I'm sure most of my copper readers already know this, but for the benefit of those who don't,this stop would go much more smoothly if it went more like this.

Do you have your driver's license?

Yes I do. It's right here in my wallet (which you hopefully keep on your non gun side).

Thank you. Oh, I see you have handed me an official police department identification card along with your license. I suppose that means you are also a police officer.

Yes, I am.

Notice,there was no mention of "I have a gun". No hands ever went anywhere near a gun. If you wanted to tell me you are a cop, that's fine too. Just don't say "I have a gun" and not identify yourself first. Stupid.

Common sense is becoming all to uncommon.


TheBronze said...

Not sure if this guy was just a 'tard or what.

You work in a different venue than I did, but I've never gotten too worked up about people telling me they have a gun in the car. Most bad-guy's aren't going to tell you (right away) that they have a gun in the car, although some may. Most cops will.

Anytime I've told an on-duty officer that I had a gun in the car, it was accompanied by both hands on the steering wheel. Most coppers I've dealt with are usually intuitive enough to read the situation properly. To/from work I would usually carry my roscoe in a fanny-pack that sat on the passenger seat. Usually, when the officer approached, he'd ask for my horsepower and I'd let him know that my DL was in that fanny-pack w/ my duty-gun (or some variation of that). In almost every situation where I've been stopped (after letting the officer know I had a gun in the car) it was followed up by "Who do you work for?" The one instance it wasn't was a Chippie that asked why I had a gun in the car.

As usual, delivery is key.

fuzzys dad said...

I think common sense is for most part dead.

USAincognito said...

Geez, did the guy have a death wish or something?!? *shaking my head at his stupidity!*

Officer "Smith" said...

Forgive me, but I just think it makes more sense to identify oneself by saying I'm a cop, than by saying I have a gun in the car.

If you say you're a cop, I'll assume there's a firearm in the car.

If you say there's a gun in the car, I'm NOT going to assume you're a cop.

Seems like a lot less trouble be forthright about who you are.

But that's just me.

TheBronze said...

I sure can't disagree w/ your logic!

: )

Berserk said...

I usually don't worry too much when someone tells me about their gun, either. In my experience, people who tell you are almost always cops (the only exception that comes to mind was a lady with a restraining order, a CCW, and a stalker). I have pulled a few guns out of cars with less savory characters, but none of them were all that forthcoming.

There is something to be said for proper delivery, though. I've been pulled over three times since I became a cop. Once I was in full uniform, once I just slipped my profession into the conversation when the officer was giving me the click-it or ticket spiel, the other time I was good friends with the cop who pulled me over. That one was the easiest. :)

5150Wife said...

It is interesting that there are differences in what is considered proper in different areas of the country.

My JD has taught me that if I'm ever pulled over when he's in the vehicle with me, I'm to keep my hands on the steering wheel and tell the officer first thing, "My husband is a police officer and he has his gun on him", then let the officer direct me from there on how he wants me to proceed. (which will probably be "step out of the vehicle", etc.)

Is that not the correct way to handle it?

Officer "Smith" said...

5150 - That's perfectly acceptable. The key is that you identified him as a peace officer first, THEN say he's armed. You don't start off with "My husband has a gun".