Via All Nine Yards
The video shows Dale Norman from Fort Pierce being arrested for openly carrying a firearm.
As much as I hate that Mr. Norman got arrested, it is my opinion that he was breaking the law:
790.10 Improper exhibition of dangerous weapons or firearms.—If any person having or carrying any dirk, sword, sword cane, firearm, electric weapon or device, or other weapon shall, in the presence of one or more persons, exhibit the same in a rude, careless, angry, or threatening manner, not in necessary self-defense, the person so offending shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
Was he doing it on purpose? I don’t think there was mens rea in the event. Was it a stupid way to carry a gun? In the state of Florida most certainly.
We repeat over and over that Concealed Carry means concealed, not barely covering. His choosing of cover garment was ill thought as it was a much too short undershirt/tank top and carrying the weapon in an outside-the-waistband holster sealed the deal of his arrest. It is our duty to follow the letter of the law to avoid getting into trouble and that includes making sure we are wearing the proper equipment and garments.
I told of this story before. I carry also in a OWB holster (pancake) and wear a vest any time I step outside the house. Even so, there is always a risk of accidental exposure like the day I was at a gas station and while the truck was being filled, I headed to the store to buy something. Four officers of Miami-Dade Police were coming out and a gust of wind just blew wide open my vest exposing my gun. The four officers saw me and the gun, but none of them even made a comment and one nodded at me as sort of greeting and all returned to their vehicles.
Accidental exposures will happen but it is our responsibility to keep them at a minimum and to be able to demonstrate that if they happen, we were not being careless about it. Having a good holster that will not drop a gun if suddenly bumped into, carrying inside the waistband if we a wearing some light upper body garment or wearing a cover garment that is long enough to cover the whole body of the sidearm.
That the law sucks? Oh hell yes. But we don’t go ignoring or being careless about it. We fight to have it changed in our favor. What can you do? You can begin by joining Florida Carry and help with their efforts on passing Open Carry in the State of Florida.
In the meantime Mr. Norman faces the following if found guilty of a First Degree Misdemeanor:
(4) A person who has been convicted of a designated misdemeanor may be sentenced as follows:
(a) For a misdemeanor of the first degree, by a definite term of imprisonment not exceeding 1 year;
(d) $1,000, when the conviction is of a misdemeanor of the first degree.
Add to that lawyer fees, time spent in jail plus the loss of the gun.
Don’t be stupid, Concealed means concealed. Make sure your gun is.
UPDATE: Correction needed and thanks to Sean from All Nine Yards.
Mr. Norman is being charged with violation of Florida Statute 790.053
Except as otherwise provided by law and in subsection (2), it is unlawful for any person to openly carry on or about his or her person any firearm or electric weapon or device. It is not a violation of this section for a person licensed to carry a concealed firearm as provided in s. 790.06(1), and who is lawfully carrying a firearm in a concealed manner, to briefly and openly display the firearm to the ordinary sight of another person, unless the firearm is intentionally displayed in an angry or threatening manner, not in necessary self-defense.
(b) For a misdemeanor of the second degree, by a definite term of imprisonment not exceeding 60 days.
(e) $500, when the conviction is of a misdemeanor of the second degree or a noncriminal violation.