December 18, 2014

In the News::

Sandy Hook Victims’ Families Sue Gun Store and Manufacturer -

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Police Officer Tweets Threats—Placed on Leave -

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Obama Gets New Surgeon General, America Loses -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Cops vs. Citizens, Part II: Ideas to Fix It -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Illinois Makes 1st Amendment Illegal -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Texas Man Charged for Open Carrying an AR-15

man-charged-open-carrying

What do you do when you are in an open carry state and you are arrested for open carrying? Derek Poe, age 26, had to face this exact issue at the Beaumont Parkdale Mall in Texas. He was on his way to his store of which he is the owner, Golden Triangle Tactical. During his casual walk through the mall to his store, he had an AR-15 rifle slung across his shoulder, a drink in one hand, and a bag in the other.

The aftermath was excruciating. Witnesses expressed that they were “terrified” and “thought they were going to die.” A warrant for Poe’s arrest was issued, and Derek Poe quickly turned himself in. He was not arrested, but his rifle was confiscated.

“You can open carry a long gun in Texas,” Poe said to authorities. They responded, “It’s against the law by the disorder of conduct law to do what you did.”

An investigation is ongoing prior to the confiscation of Poe’s rifle.

While it is technically legal to open carry a long gun in Texas, the rising reactions of fear that follow the sight of a gun have driven Texas police officers to find ways around this law to punish those who open carry a rifle.

It is legal in Texas to open carry a rifle as long as it is not done threateningly. Handguns can not legally be openly carried, and a concealed carry license is required to have a concealed carry handgun.

As frustrating as it is to me that Derek Poe was arrested for innocently open carrying when he was told it is perfectly legal to do so, the worst part is the reaction of those around him. If you or I saw somebody carrying a rifle around town, with a drink in one hand and a bag in the other, we would probably be more interested in what kind of gun he is carrying than worried for our lives.

This is because we are not afraid of guns. We realize that if we are to fear, we need to fear people instead of inanimate objects. However, this situation is a perfect example of the dramatic fear that is multiplying among our country. Shoppers around Poe did not see his innocent demeanor or his casual body language. They only saw his gun. If anything is going to destroy the Second Amendment, it will be the citizens’ fear for guns, more than the vote of any political leader. Why else would anti-gun political leaders instill so much fear for any firearm in U.S. citizens? If their agenda to disarm us is to succeed, they need to make us afraid of each other.

One person stated that they were afraid for their own life when they saw Poe strolling through the mall with a gun on his shoulder. I feel sorry for that person because they felt fear when there was no need to feel fear. I understand why this individual was afraid as I observe the breeding ground of anti-gun dialogue spilling everywhere, from television shows, to news articles, to social media. Our citizens, like this person who feared for their life, need to be educated on the difference between a criminal and an innocent, ordinary person open carrying.

If anything, I would feel safer knowing that a good man is safely carrying a gun nearby. It should be a comfort, knowing that if a criminal brings danger upon the public, somebody will be there to defend the innocent. If open carrying was completely socially acceptable, why would a criminal ever commit crime in public? If I was up to no good and I saw people open carrying around me, I would keep my head down and not do anything to get their attention. But of course, our country has a long way to go before open carrying becomes regular and casual.

To me, this story went deeper than a man being arrested for open carrying in a state where open carrying is legal. This, to me, is less about the law and more about the people. This is one other story to add to piles of motivation for Second Amendment advocates to spread the word that guns save lives. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. These are all phrases that we all know, support, and repeat to each other. But what are you doing to spread the word far and beyond? If our Second Amendment is to be upheld and saved, it will be saved by we, the people.

 

Chelsea Davis

Editor

chelsea

Comments
268 Responses to “Texas Man Charged for Open Carrying an AR-15”
  1. Ronald Lee says:

    Poe is welcome to move his business to Michigan. Michigan welcomes open carry. When the snow isn’t two feet deep I open carry everywhere I go. I have had only one proprietor ask me to leave and that was at my local Vietnam Veteran’s Post in Roseville, MI. and I’m a Vietnam Vet!!

    Michigan State Police Legal Brief No. 86.

    Officers are reminded that the Fourth Amendment protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures. Carrying a non-concealed firearm is generally legal. Officers may engage in a consensual encounter with a person carrying a non-concealed pistol; however, in order to stop a citizen, officers are required to have reasonable suspicion that crime is afoot. For example, officers may not stop a person on the mere possibility the person may be carrying an unregistered pistol. Officers must possess facts rising to the level of reasonable suspicion to believe the person is carrying an unregistered pistol.
    Officers are also reminded there is no general duty for a citizen to identify himself or herself to a police officer unless the citizen is being stopped for a Michigan Vehicle Code violation.

  2. jshe says:

    Did ANY of you even read this story?????

    The warrant was issued for Poe for the charge of DISORDERLY CONDUCT. NOT for carrying the AR15 through the mall. There is a big difference because carrying the gun was not against the law. The manner in which he did so was.

    The Disorderly Conduct charge is in the Texas Penal Code, Title 9, Section 42.01,(8) displays a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm.

    IF he slung the AR15 over his shoulder in order to get a reaction out of people, then Disorderly Conduct certainly fits the action. Lets not forget that a 30 round magazine was loaded in the gun too. Lets read again what several of the patrons of the mall had to say: “The aftermath was excruciating. Witnesses expressed that they were “terrified” and “thought they were going to die.” That certainly sounds like he “displayed the weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm. If not then why were the people alarmed. The police were 100% correct in investigating the complaint. The Judge decided to issue a warrant and Poe turned himself in to face the charges. Poe can fight the charge before a jury of his peers. I understand that Poe is pretty young and common sense does not always abound with someone so young but what he did was being STUPID in a NO STUPID ZONE.

    When this whole thing started, I said it’s people like Poe that will get our 2nd Amendment Rights taken away. I was right to an extent already. Prior to this happening, the mall allow people with a CCW permit to carry in their mall. After Poe’s stunt, they can NO LONGER DO SO. Signs have already been erected prohibiting the procession of ANY firearms in the mall.

    Now AGAIN before you forget what the warrant was for so lets all say it together: DISORDERLY CONDUCT!!!!!!!

  3. John says:

    Isn’t this mainly about sound judgement? With mall shootings on the rise and the recognizability of the AR, does it make sense to put yourself in the situation where people may feel threatened, even if that feeling is misplaced? We are all accustomed to police carrying firearms, and they are labeled as such, but when someone walks into a mall with a black gun, and he fits the physical description of the shooters in other mall killings, the first thing people see is the gun and the person carrying it, they are not trained to see the other indicators that the person is exhibiting. The question, I think, is should everyone be trained to know the difference. The answer, Yes. Will it happen, No.

    Avoid these situations while carrying your loaded AR15 in a mall by putting it in a case.

  4. MRC says:

    I agree with most all the others. He used BAD judgement period!
    That piece should have been in a case or box at the least.
    What an idiot….

  5. Mary says:

    People who keep doing this with the intent of causing a situation(and make no mistake, he KNEW he would cause a situation) are doing irreperable damage any attempts at open carry of handguns.

  6. Scott S. says:

    Why give the anti-gun zealots ammunition. I carry concealed and so does my wife. We are strong second amenndment supporters. Having said that I don’t think you will be able to convince me that this fellow did not understand exactly hat he was doing…Instilling fear in those around him. What other purpose would there be for “open carrying” an AR-15 in a mall setting. Hypothetically if he was one of the “crazies” that intended to do harm what better way then carrying the AR the way he did and then picking a spot and then “doing whatever craziness he intended”. I am not suggesting that this man’s motive was to do harm but in the environment we live we need to be aware of the people around us. I own many guns, handguns ans long guns, and if I was in a mall setting and I saw this man strolling through the mall with his AR I don’t care what he had in his hands I would call the police and discretely follow him and be prepared to “stop” any craziness that might follow. Oh yeah…I wouldn’t be following with my weapon drawn. My intuition and training would demand that I take action. An aside…a great book “the gift of fear” is a must read.

  7. ??? says:

    If it was a muzzie carrying a gun I am sure The Cops would have looked the other way.

  8. Barker62 says:

    I’ve seen more than a lot of assumptions about Mr’ Poe’s ‘motivation’. How about finding out exactly what that was? Has ANYBODY DONE SO? Has anybody ASKED him? No? Didn’t think so.
    From our perception, was it dumb..yes, probably. But we don’t know what was going thought his mind at the time. Was he just absent-minded that day? Could be – it happens. Not a good excuse but none of us are perfect either
    Should Mr. Poe have known and complied with the terms of his lease? Yea, verily, but then does anyone who was in the military know/remember EVERY thing from their enlistment papers? I know don’t…and neither do a lot of other GI’s.
    Another point brought out by a poster – certain signs HAVE to meet certain specific standards or they’re invalid, no matter what the intent of the sign poster was. In this case it doesn’t appear there were any signs of any type at the time of the incident. After the fact doesn’t count.
    If, as has been mentioned, he was wearing a shirt advertising business…so what? I do it all the time – of course my ‘advertisement’ indicates that I’m LE but again, so what.???

    Point I’m making is that even now there’s a lack of info related to the actual incident, a whole lot of theorizing and knee-jerk assumptions plus a bunch of useless name calling.
    Sit back, relax and wait for the resolution of the case. DON’t give the ant-2A people extra assistance with petty in-fighting, because whether you realize it of not, that’s just what a large number of you are doing.

  9. James Long says:

    Just like in “Minority Report”! If we think someone might commit a crime, arrest and charge him! Oh Oh, who is “we”?

  10. Vin says:

    Why would you want to scare a bunch of sheep like that….seems a little juvenile to me. And just WHAT IF another citizen thought it was an active shooter and wanted to be a hero? WHY take the chance… CASE THE WEAPON and stop being a douche.

  11. Vin says:

    Public places have been the target of madmen in the recent past and it has gotten much public attention. I think it was poor judgment on Poe’s part to carry an uncased rife through a crowded mall unless he had a reason to be actively armed.

  12. Guy Smalley says:

    mall is private property they have posted rules. As a shop owner he should be aware but if not it doesn’t matter.

    • Dale says:

      Apparently, it wasn’t posted until AFTER the fact! Therefor, he was still within his legal right under Texas law to carry a rifle openly! And, if he did this (as was suggested by another post) as a “going away present to his former land lords, so what? HE may have been stupid, annoying or whatever, but he was still within his legal rights!

  13. john w says:

    Well everyone I just saw on the local news this evening that Mr Poe in relocating his business down the road. Parkdale Mall where this took place is putting signs up NO FIREARMS ALLOWED. Mr Poe was charged with disorderly conduct. Now the push is to boycott Parkdale Mall with their no firearms decision. They have a right to choose as well as free Americans have a right to choose where they shop.

    • booger says:

      So…. he was not a gun dealer at his current (former) location, nor did he advertise any new/used
      guns for sale. Huh..?

      Why would you open a proper “tactical” store without any weapons..? You can only defend
      yourself so long only armed with tactical underwear, tactical bacon, tactical stapler, tactical belt,
      tactical pen and pencil set, and tinfoil to wrap around your head to deflect the mind control rays
      sent by the One World Government. Could he have been on a covert op – getting himself a
      tactical chimichanga platter down at the food court..?

      This whole charade may have been his going away present to his former landlords as well as free
      advertising for his new store location. Who knows..?

      Thanks for creating a flock of few dozen citizens whose most vivid (only?) impression of gun owners
      is now Rambo in the food court.

      • sally says:

        DAMN! This guy has tactical bacon in stock!? Guess I’m gonna have to make a cannonball run to Beaumont this weekend to pick some up!

    • Dale says:

      Well…if the mall is just NOW getting around to putting up signs, then I guess Mr. Poe didn’t violate any clause to the open carry law of Texas. For him to violate the NO WEAPONS clause, the mall should have had it posted PROMINENTLY before he open carried, and before his weapon could be confiscated. I hope he sues them for everything he can under the law!

  14. corbin douthitt says:

    Just ONE person had to ‘fear for his life” for the police to get involved. Even in Texas we are infested with hoplophobes that have moved here from Yankee Land.
    Sad, sad, sad.

    • john w says:

      Hey Corbin I’m afraid Texas may become so infested with the California liberals that we may at some time become a bleeding heart liberal state ourselves. That’s scarey as hell. Don’t forget Wendy Davis running for Govenor is a democrat. A long way from Rick Perry. How many other Govenors carry a Ruger and shoots a coyote dead while it trys to attack his dog. Don’t think a Texas democrat won’t vote gun control President Lyndon Johnson signed the 1968 Gun Control Act.

  15. dave says:

    Stupid, yes. Still this is a civil rights violation by the state. Indict Texas.

  16. Matt says:

    My point exactly. He did it because he could. Not because it was the most logical approach.

  17. Matt says:

    With all this discussion and disagreeing I can’t figure out why it has taken so long for this to come out. Ok I will say it, the photo of the smoking hot editor of the article and she likes guns. Take a minute to cool down as enjoy the scenery.

  18. Matt says:

    That would be one hell of a funny photo tho.

  19. Paul says:

    This guy was the OWNER of the TACTICAL STORE he was going to. He KNOWS what the atmosphere regarding someone openly carrying a AR or any firearm is in a place like a mall. Seriously, could he have not put the piece in a CASE which he undoubtedly SELLS in his store. This “in your face” type of activity only fuels the anti’s case. My opinion .

    • Vin says:

      Nobody is more pro gun than I and few have more AR’s than I do but Poe needed to use some common sense here….. it was a MALL for crissake.

  20. jon says:

    The law is the law, although I believe open carry should be for handguns also Texas law says long guns for open carry. This “Incident” should be settled in a Civil court where the local Police Dept. will have to “Open Carry” some CASH for Violating this citizen’s 2nd Amendment Rights and if “settled out of Court” should include a decree against all police departments further “infringement” on 2nd amendment issues. It would have been enough to question this “Gentleman” and find out WHAT, if any, his intentions were BUT…to add “ILLEGAL CONFISCATION OF HIS WEAPON ” ( AKA personal property) after the fact and after he voluntarily “Turned Himself IN” for a legal carry situation shows the need for further training for ALL LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS NATION WIDE ! This same situation happened in Gonzales , La. and had to be “settled out for an Undisclosed amount of money” by a small town that could have used that money elsewhere, however , because of the overzealous efforts (and ignorance of / or negligence of the law ) by the “Arresting officers” violated a citizens rights and could have possibly ended tragically if the officers had “ESCULATED” their abusive behavior to “gun violence” against a innocent VICTIM . Non the less, any officer who is involved in such Civil Rights Abuse should be TERMINATED and banned from Law Enforcement Employment in that State. As for those who go onto a “State of Panic” when ever they see a gun , how often do they call in a report of a person carrying a gun when they see a Police Officer. And then there are those who go out of their way to report “Legal Carry” because the are just ANTI-GUN. In the past this has happened with tragic results with Legal CCD holders being shot and killed by Police OVER RE-ACTING before they fully understand EXACTLY WHAT IS GOING ON AND WHAT THE PROPER RESPONSE SHOULD BE ! Those who fear guns are sometimes more dangerous than those who Legally Carry would ever be. BEFORE YOU TURN YOURSELF IN FOR ANY “LEGAL BEHAVIOR” …..BRING YOUR LAWYER !!! Whether the argument is the right way or wrong way to carry…..the Constitution does not make a distinction…it firmly states that IT SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED UPON!

  21. Matt says:

    Really that still would not have fired taken apart? Seriously, the article says while walking to his “shop” never about using it for self protection. But will agree with you a disassembled gun is pretty useless. If the gun was found to be unloaded when he was contacted. I would defend my opinion that he was an idiot and made a piss poor decision. But without having that info I guess we will agree to disagree.

    • Ken says:

      Where in the article does it say the gun was loaded? I’ve read the article several times and not once does it say it was loaded or in any position to be fired! So what right did the police have to file charges on him and take his weapon? They didn’t arrest him they had a warrant and he turned himself in.

  22. Matt says:

    Just because you are allowed by law to do something doesn’t override common sense. I support our rights but not his decision. Did he really need to sling the damn gun over his shoulder and carry it into the mall in the world we live in now. How about taking it down and carrying it in disassembled. Takes about 10 seconds to break that gun down to do so. If that decision was made we would not be debating the issue now. This type of poor decision making gives us all a bad name and is a black eye on gun ownership. People do these type of things because they “can” rather than doing it the right way.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      The rifle functions poorly when it’s disassembled. Maybe he had the idea that if you are carrying a gun for self defense – it’s best if it is ready to fire?
      .
      Of course you are probably right that this wouldn’t have been an issue if he had disassembled the gun, carried it in a case, left it at home, in a safe, at the bottom of a well…

      • JHopper says:

        I am sorry but was the mall in Texas or another part of the world I own several guns and walking in to my work thru a mall AR15 is not on my list at all for self protection

    • So Matt would it have made the person who called in feel any better if it were taken apart then carried in? Or does being a armchair quarterback with time to think it over what he shoulda,coulda, but didn’t do make you feel superior? Here think about this while driving home today think twice about cutting someone off and make sure you stop at that stop sign before proceeding down the road also watch how fast your going DON’T SPEED. If all of you who think this guy is in the wrong, would think twice and obey all the laws and use common sense then there would be less accidents and less people would die in automobile crashes. Instead of judging him, judge yourselves!!!

  23. Christopher says:

    Well, I checked the mall rules (http://www.parkdalemalltx.com/code-of-conduct) , and #20 of their “Rules of conduct” prohibits: “Carrying or displaying weapons of any kind except those carried by certified law enforcement officers in the performance of their duties”.. I don’t know for sure, but could that have been why the gun was confiscated?

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Wouldn’t that rule make it sort of difficult to operate a gun store in the mall?

    • Dale says:

      Just because it says it on a “web site” does not mean it was displayed PROMINENTLY at the mall! In most states that have such exceptions, the property owner must display a sign near the entrances/exits and it must not be cluttered by other signs, adds etc… , it must be PROMINENTLY DISPLAYED. Also, There have been cases were an anti-gun person pasted/taped their OWN UNAUTHORIZED signs at the entrances of malls or other private properties that are open to the public. Not as cut and dry as you might have thought.

      • HRM says:

        They are several issues at play here:

        -Mall is private property and has a “no guns” policy, which is their legal right to invoke. That is not why he was arrested. (see other posts) Who knows when Mr. Poe signed his lease, or when the Mall instituted the no guns policy. Their conduct policy is both broad and specific:

        http://www.parkdalemalltx.com/code-of-conduct

        -Mr. Poe rents retail space at this mall – (“http://goldtritac.com/online_store.html”) . “Safe solutions in an unsafe world.” is the company’s logo. Isn’t the element of surprise an important part of a self-defence strategy? Wouldn’t it be better to have a concealed weapon rather than have it strapped on your back…?

        -Mr. Poe was arrested for the reasons described in other posts. IMO, he was wearing his weapon in order to create a public spectacle; one which he knew some, if not many, of his fellow citizens would find threatening. In that sense, I believe that his behavior was imprudent, immature, and provocative,

        -golden triangle tactical does not seem to sell any guns, new or used. They do not advertise being an FFL dealer.
        Website looks like it was built by a 3rd grader. Site has probably had more traffic in the last 48 hours than in all the time that the store has been open.

        I live in GA. More and more retail stores seem to be putting “no guns allowed” signs on their front doors -which is their prerogative. Incidents like this one will only accelerate that trend.

        My opinion is folks who do concealed carry are exercising their right in a prudent, sensible and respectable manner. Clowns like Mr. Poe are imposing their rights upon their fellow citizens in a way that most open-minded people would find questionable, if not downright offensive.

  24. Jason Claviculus says:

    As the Malls are populated mostly with women and children throughout the day, one of the unfortunate aspects of this Kid/Mans behavior is that he is carrying his weapon loaded with a magazine, the rifle is slung on his shoulder offensively with barrel down as if for a quick use. This can and must be assumed to be threatening behavior. The Police have a duty to Protect and Serve all of us first, not just coddle this fools Constitutional Rights, taking his weapon is not unreasonable seizure given that he is both stupid, irresponsible and likely had ammunition in the magazine. The mere fact that he is walking into the mall with a drink in one hand and food in the other does not mean that he is not a threat as both hands can drop what they hold freeing them both. This guy is so stupid he willingly flaunts his right and shows no consideration for all of the other gun owners who use commonsense when carrying their firearms. We don’t need idiots owning guns. All that this guy has done is add another stick to fire that already burns. Unfortunately commonsense is not a requirement for being granted a Federal Firearms License either.
    This guy is lucky he is only being charged with a misdemeanor, I’d give him 50 lashes, a week in the stockade, and a beating behind the barn he wouldn’t forget. The BATFE should turn up at this guys place of business and go through him with a fine tooth comb because he has proved too the world that he is an idiot, stupid or both, definitely capable of doing things without thinking it through. That makes him dangerous.
    He is Chuck Schumer and Dianne Feinstein’s favorite kind of gun owners. STUPID.
    When it comes to our Gun Rights this Guy is public enemy number one.

    • JHopper says:

      YES SIR #1

    • Ken says:

      Jason I’m sorry were did it say’s his gun was loaded in the article? Oh I see just because he was carrying it it had to be loaded? You might ought to read the article again.

    • Dennis says:

      Jason I couldn’t have said it any better my friend

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Jeez, you want to lash us, beat us, steal our property, imprison us and set the BATFE on us – all for obeying the law.
      .
      What would you want to do if he had done something wrong?

    • Dale says:

      Gee…I hope that when Schumer and Feinstein come for YOUR guns that you still feel the same way! You dolt – in no way can his posture be construed as “THREATENING”! If the police had shot him, with his rifle slung and his hands occupied as they were with a drink and a bag, would you have called that a justifiable shooting? It is no more threatening to have a rifle slung across my back than for my neighbor to be walking his/her dog! In fact, I’d be more concerned about the dog!

  25. Steve says:

    As a left-winger and multiple gun owner I have to say that this article makes my side look really sad. The man had it in a non-hostile position with both of his hands occupied. What did those fools think he was going to do, tongue fire it? I also think that this so-called “law” that the police cited to confiscate his weapon seems even more idiotic than a Kardashian at a mensa meeting. Talk about a double standard.

    • Ken says:

      I have to agree 100% with you Steve. I too am a left-wing multi gun owner and if I were walking into say a gunsmiths shop with my rifle on my back it would set me off if the police showed up cause someone thought my gun looked scary. GET A FREAKING LIFE PEOPLE!!!! If we don’t stop the anti-gun people they will make it illegal for all of us to own anything including SQUIRT GUNS (for those of you that don’t know what that is, it is a water gun). As for a 30-06 sign it has to be a APPROVED SIGN not a PAINTED ON THE DOORS sign that has a circle with a gun in the middle with a slash thru it. That is not approved and anyone can beat that in court.

      • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

        Are you really left-wing? If so, why?

        • Ken says:

          Yes in a way I am. Why because people like this guy carrying the gun being picked on by some idiot who thought they were doing something good out of ignorance by calling the police, if they were educated on guns and maybe used a little sense and asked “Is the gun loaded and what are you doing carrying it in the mall for (I know I would have)? Then none of any of these statements by some gun savy people and some totally ignorant people would be happening.

  26. jshe says:

    First and foremost there is no bigger supporter of the 2nd Amendment than I am. I am also a big supporter of common sense. My comments are speaking from a logical point of view and personal vendettas against police or anyone openly carrying a gun are set to the side.

    Police have a job to do but so many are blaming them. First off, the warrant for Poe was NOT for carrying the AR15. His subsequent arrest was for Disorderly Conduct: Texas Penal Code, Title 9, Section 42.01,(8) displays a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm; In other words, carrying an AR15 down the isle of a mall is way out of the norm; other than being similar to recent mass shootings around the U.S. I’d say that fits the bill to warrant an investigation by the police. If they had not done so and Poe turned out to be a psycho and started shooting people, everyone would be blaming the police for not investigating the call. This is a no win situation for the Police.

    With that in mind, I’d like to know, WHAT do you expect the police to do? It was not the police that made the complaint and they only responded to the call by the people that were alarmed by a man walking down the isle in a mall with an AR15 strapped over his back. They did not arrest Poe but instead, presented the facts to a judge. That judge issued the warrant.

    A little common sense would have gone a long way and this whole thing could have been avoided. I keep reading these stories about people carrying around long guns, trying to get an reaction. I don’t know if Poe was doing that or not. He was young and sometimes the young tend to do stupid things. Like others said, just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should. There’s a time and place to openly carry a long gun but I’m thinking a public mall, during business hours, in the isle on the way to his store, is the place to do it. People doing stupid things is what will get our second amendment rights taken away.

    Lets see what the outcome is. If he carried the gun into the mall to get a reaction out of people then he should be found guilty of Disorderly Conduct. If he was just stupid and did not intentionally upset anyone, then hopefully it will be lesson learned and it won’t happen again.

    One last comment; If Poe was fearful for his life on his way to work and felt he needed a weapon for protection himself and that was the reason he was armed then maybe he should carry a concealed hand gun. Nobody would ever even know he was carrying a weapon, people wouldn’t get upset, he wouldn’t have been arrested, he would still have been safe, etc, etc, etc.

    • jshe says:

      Sorry, I meant to say:There’s a time and place to openly carry a long gun but I’m thinking a public mall, during business hours, in the isle on the way to his store, is NOT the place to do it.

    • Larry P says:

      Well put and right to the point. This guy had a point to prove and he got less than he deserved. He could have easily gotten more than he bargained for. Police are just a little apt to act quickly and violently to such an act as they are to just disarm him. Had I been in the Mall carrying by permit I might have held this guy at gunpoint, had someone call 911 and kept him covered until the police arrived. I believe that, considering recent events and the copy cat mass killers recently, it would be a prudent action to take to possibly save lives. Apologize later but don’t wait too late to take to take proactive action. Lots of folks in this country would still be alive if proactive actions would have been taken to prevent their deaths. I commend the police for taking the action they did and their restraint in taking it. He could have easily been shot.

      Larry

      • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

        You can’t do that – you can’t draw your weapon unless you are in immediate danger of losing your life or serious injury. Anything else is “brandishing” and can be a felony.

        • jshe says:

          Floyd, that is simply NOT TRUE, at least in Texas. Texans are allowed to protect themselves and you don’t have to let someone pull a gun on you or wait until they point it at you before you can draw your gun. It’s probably not your fault but it’s obvious that your views on gun laws are not based on the law but maybe what you want the law to be. Go to a CCW class and you will find how wrong you are and maybe save your life.

          If I were a criminal, I would like your view and interruption. Criminals love having an advantage on the public.

          • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

            I already have a CCW thank you. In California that is the law – you can’t draw your weapon unless you are ready to use it to defend yourself against an imminent threat of death or serious injury.

          • jshe says:

            This took place in Texas and California law has no bearing. I’m disappointed that you as a law abiding citizen can not protect yourself until the criminal has you at gunpoint but like I said earlier, that’s the (your) law.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      How was his conduct “disorderly”? Was he drunk? On drugs? Whistling? Chewing gum? Carrying a protest sign? It seems to me that that is just a bogus charge that the police use whenever they can’t arrest you for something real.
      .
      How can it simultaneously be legal to open carry in Texas and ILLEGAL? The judge got it wrong..

      • jshe says:

        Disorderly Conduct: Texas Penal Code, Title 9, Section 42.01,(8) displays a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm.

        The Texas Penal Code does not address drunk, drugs, whistling, chewing gum or carrying a protest sign. It says “displays a firearm… in a manner calculated to alarm. The interruption is left to the individuals witnessing the action. The people were obviously alarmed or they would not have called in the report.

        You may not agree with the way the law is written but that’s the way it is and Police are obligated to investigate the complaint. The Judge and Jury will determine guilt or innocence. You can not credibility judge the police for doing what they are paid to do; investigate the complaint.

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          So the only way that you can be “disorderly” in Texas is to display a firearm?
          .
          Is there any indication that this guy had “calculated to alarm” the mall patrons?
          .
          There’s always going to be somebody who is “alarmed” at almost anything. If I was to wear a white jacket after labour day and a mall patron became alarmed at my lack of fashion sense – would the cops be justified in citing me?
          .
          The police should have investigated, laughed, and gone away… they didn’t.
          .
          The judge got it wrong…

          • jshe says:

            Floyd R Turbo – In a word, no. There are 11 sections addressing of Disorderly Conduct, hence the #8 that I referenced. There are other sections of the clause, including: abusive, indecent, profane, or vulgar language in a public place, fighting with another in a public place or abuses or threatens a person. Like I said, there are 11 different sections or violations that address the criminal conduct of Disorderly Conduct.

            The “calculated to alarm” is not determined by the violator but instead by the “mall patrons” and how they perceived the action.

            Regarding your other comment about ‘white after labor day’; I think you are pretty safe to do so (at least in Texas). There is no law that prohibits doing so but just for arguments sake, IF there were a law that prohibited it, then the cops would certainly be justified in citing you. It’s not about what you want the law to be but what is actually written. I guess we’ll find if the judge got it wrong when the case is given to the jury. The cops don’t determine guilt or innocence. A judge can determine that but only if the defendant consents to that type of trial.

  27. john w says:

    Sophia would you consider Israel a 3rd world country? What about Switzerland? On another note what would the U.K. be considered? Israel and Switzerland have no gun control laws but the U.K. does. Just a thougth.

    • sally says:

      No, I was trying to point out to JHopper his view was warped. We don’t become a 3rd world country by allowing LEGAL open carry. It’s lllegal in all the 3rd world countries I know of, (and most other DEVELOPED countries) to even own guns. Sheesh, can’t we all just get along…… ;-)

  28. Matt says:

    This is a prime example of the society we live in. Blanket policies across the board affect the law abiding citizens. You have the criminals and the mentals acting like the fools they are and rather than address the problem PEOPLE this is the outcome. PEOPLE AFRAID OF OBJECTS NOT PEOPLE THEMSELVES. Then you have the knuckheads out there walking around with guns just to “exercise their rights” wanting to cause alarm and butt heads with law enforcement. This is not a gun control issue it’s a people control issue. When this country makes people accountable again for their actions maybe things will change.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Who knows Derek Poe may be the Rosa Parks of the 2010s.
      .
      A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
      .
      “OPPOSITION TO GUN CONTROL was what drove the black militants to visit the California capitol with loaded weapons in hand. The Black Panther Party had been formed six months earlier, in Oakland, by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale. Like many young African Americans, Newton and Seale were frustrated with the failed promise of the civil-rights movement. Brown v. Board of Education, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 were legal landmarks, but they had yet to deliver equal opportunity. In Newton and Seale’s view, the only tangible outcome of the civil-rights movement had been more violence and oppression, much of it committed by the very entity meant to protect and serve the public: the police.”

  29. john w says:

    To all here in this glorious debate on freedom to exercise our rights. In a small town a few miles from Bmt Tx called Orange. On the I-10 corridor on the Tx- La border not to long ago in a car parts store. A former U.S. Marine Corp vet who served in Iraq died from a gunshot from an off duty Orange police officer. He wanted a refund for a car part and when the store wouldn’t give it to him he got vocal. Inside the store was the off duty po. The officer told him to quiet down and the young fella told him n***er stay out of it. The officer was black the former marine white. The vet went out to the truck to leave and the officer approaced him firing I believe one round to the torso killing the young man. The vet had no weapon and posed no serious threat to anyone. The grand jury no billed the officer so no crimial charges were filed. The Orange PD fired the officer and this is from someone who we consider responsible to carry and protect the masses. We can debate all we want but the fact is COMMON SENSE needs to be utilized. I am pro 2nd amendmemt. Hell I’m pro constitution. I am a Life member of both the NRA & TSRA.
    But c’mon people exercise your rights but use common sense in doing it. In fact it wouldn’t hurt using a bit of common sense in the debate on this forum. Remember we’re NOT at war with one another. We just have opposing views and a little respect for each who chooses to express those views wouldn’t hurt. I will agree to disagree with anyone. You want to disagree with my view? Ok I respect that now respect me and my view.

  30. Larry P says:

    Good. Stupidity has no excuses. Open carrying an AR with a mag attached, through a public Mall, strapped to your back makes this guy either the dumbest butthead in the world or he is just plain dumbass. Someone that stupid should be prohibited from owning a firearm and should not get his rifle back as an example of how stupidity with firearms cannot be allowed. Don’t blame the public or the cops for reacting how they did. Lack of reaction and not taking appropriate action in situations has gotten to many people killed in this Country already.

    That guy gives a bad name to every gun owner in the Country and, IMHO he was trying to make a point in doing what he did or trying to cause a panic on purpose. Dump, ignorant, stupid, irrational and, perhaps, mentally ill. All rights have limits. He exceeded those big time.

  31. JHopper says:

    Again does anyone Know Mr Poe’s behavior during this stop/investigation … There may be more to this story … For those that thinks is acceptable to strap on a long gun and stroll through the streets of your town because it’s not against the law .. Wake up … the society we live in is not going to nor should allow it … I am sure there has been numerous citizens (law abiding) stopped because they were openly armed … I commend law enforcement for doing so .. It is there job!!! And did Mr Poe react respectfully ? Until you know that stop condemning the Police … stop blaming concerned citizens that sees a person in a public area with what appears to be a loaded assault rifle and put the blame on Mr Poe … Smart enough to run a business but not to know this was would cause panic … Anyone ever think this could be to draw attention to his business ? I am armed right now and the Chief of Police in our Town just left my business not knowing that …. All though I had the right to be armed openly … Common sense … Common Sense …. Common Sense Just amazes me how so many smart people can think Mr. Poe’s actions were justified …

    • Dale says:

      Common sense is not the issue here! Seems to me that YOU are making a lot of assumptions of the facts not represented in the story! As it was represented in the article, Mr. Poe is the one who had his civil rights violated and we should ALL be vigilant AGAINST any form of Gov. abuse against a citizen!

  32. Sophia says:

    Guns are illegal in 3rd world countries. Name one where you can legally own much less open carry a long gun.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      There are no guns in Mexico…

        • sally says:

          Mr. Turbo to clarify, I was originally replying to JHopper and his warped view that allowing open carry in Texas would make us like a 3rd world country. My point was (too subtilty made I guess) that is is illegal to own guns in all third world countries that I know of. Arizona has open carry and most would not consider it “like a 3rd world country”. I like the “bring you gun to work day” idea. Maybe it would make people less nervious if they understood what an AR15 is, or how to clean a Glock. Unfamiliarty breeds fear and kneejerk reactions.

  33. Stan j says:

    The PD violated the law and should be prosecuted for it. They are hired to enforce the laws that are in the books, not something from their imaginations.

  34. Sophia says:

    Permit? We don’t need no stinking permits to open carry a long gun in Texas.

  35. Bob says:

    Derek must certainly have no common sense. Sure it may be legal to open carry a rifle in Texas but come on, use some common sense. From the picture on this page, he has a 30 round magazine mounted in the rifle. Is he asking for trouble or what. I live in an open/conceal carry anything State with out a permit but with today’s feelings about firearms and all the shootings in schools and malls, you need to use common sense. Best remedy would have been to put it in a case. Out of sight, out of mind. Second best would have been to not have the magazine installed in the rifle with the bolt open. Derek is either living life in the white zone, uncaring about other peoples feelings, looking for attention or stupid. We don’t need people, especially people who claim to be smart about “tactical situations” adding more fuel to the anti-gun fire. He does need to learn a lesson and being charged with disturbing the peace is appropriate.

  36. HRM says:

    Parkdale Mall is private property. He was renting retail space in their mall. I assumed that he signed a lease (and a mountain of other papers as well)

    This is on the Website for the mall……

    http://www.parkdalemalltx.com/code-of-conduct

    It’s pretty, long, detailed and specific. It prohibits… (SCROLL DOWN).

    #20 – Carrying or displaying weapons of any kind except those carried by certified law enforcement officers in the performance of their duties.

    What part of this isn’t clear…?????

    • JHopper says:

      HRM I agree he should know better

    • sophia says:

      Did the mall have a 30.06 sign posted? Had they informed their tenant of these policies? If not, doesn’t excuse him being stupid, but it would be interesting to know. They do have a responsibility to inform him of their choices regarding firearms on their property.

      • HRM says:

        I would be willing to bet that in the lease agreement that he signed was an acknowledgment that he would abide their published codes of conduct, etc. He got a “packet” of paperwork .

        If they didn’t have those 30.06 signs posted they will have plenty of them now, as probably will any other properties that this real estate developer owns. (nice work, Mr. Poe)

        http://goldtritac.com/index.html

        company website does not advertise firearms. Only firearm parts. Ammo too. Gunsmithing link is down so that work could well be done off premises. So……there might not be many guns in his store, if at all.

        My guesstimate about this episode:

        80% publicity stunt / free advertising
        20% striking a blow against The Zionist Cabal ™ – (per following link)

        http://goldtritac.com/the_liberty_project.html

  37. lancellott says:

    To me the issue is not whether it was smart to sling a rifle across his back. The big problem is the confiscation of the weapon, why is that necessary? By whose authority was that done? The whole property forfeiture going on right now is way out of control. Similar situations have occurred in San Antonio, near Ft Hood and in the Killeen area. In my opinion it is LE that needs to be reigned in – not the citizens.

  38. Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

    In Israel people walk around with AR15s ALL THE TIME. I was in a McDonalds and a young man came up and stood in line next to me. I realised that he had an M-16A1 slung over his shoulder. If that had happened in the US everybody would have run screaming into the parking lot. And these are probably fully automatic or at least selective fire because they are issued by the military. In spite of their prevalence (or possibly because of it), the incidence of gun crime in Israel is very low.
    .
    Using “disorderly conduct” as a catch-all “crime” in order to essentially ban guns is a very bad idea. Suppose I was to say “obama should be impeached” in the mall, and some people became unruly as a result? Should my first amendment rights be taken away because when I used them the result was “disorderly conduct” on the part of OTHER people?
    .
    Our Constitutional rights are there to limit the actions of the GOVERNMENT – in this case through the agency of the Police Department. We give the police a lot of disgression – if they abuse that trust they should be made an example of immediately so that others will behave better.

  39. john w says:

    I live where this took place, Beaumont Tx. The fella in the middle of the controversy has a shop in the mall. The shop carries AR uppers, magazines so forth. In Texas it’s been legal for years to open carry rifles and shotguns. The excitement took place when he walked in to the mall with it slung over his shoulder. With the rash of shootings taking place across the country I don’t feel the Bmt PD was out of place checking it out. I can walk from my shop to my truck and if the PD were to drive by I’m sure they would stop to check out what I have. I have many class 3 in SBR, suppressors and full auto. You don’t know the intentions of the person until you check that person out. Right now he’s charged with a misdemeanor. Would I walk in to the local mall with an AR slung over my shoulder? No I would not! Is it legal in Texas? To my knowledge it is. Do you want people walking in the malls with slung rifles? I don’t. Why because a rifle in a self defense situation where there are many people pose a lot of dangers to innocent bystanders. To much penetration for one. If you are concerned for your safety then get a CCW and carry a handgun under your shirt. I get the point he wanted to make. It’s legal in Texas and I’ll do it. I get that. But some common sense must prevail. So when I get the desire to sling my full auto SBR with Gemtech suppressor over my shoulder I will instead put my IWB holster on with the compact 45 instead. Nuff said fellas.

    • Jeff says:

      Good response John W.

      • semperfi says:

        Yes – a good response in caving in to those who perpetuate the myth that an inanimate object is evil. Failure to exercise your rights (such as following the law) results in you losing your rights. John_W has the right to carry a concealed handgun (assuming he is following the law). Mr. Poe has the legal right to open carry his AR-15. To say it is better if he didn’t means you are saying it is better if the law did not exist. When you give in to the opinions of others AGAINST the validity of law, you lose and they win. And you then lose that right.

        • Daniel Martino says:

          You have the right to masturbate quietly in your house until your dick falls off. I suggest you exercise your right a leave the rational conversation to rational people. Good try, though.

        • john w says:

          seperfi, you ever think that by doing this sort of thing it will do the exact opposite? By that I mean maybe at some point the state will change the law to say something like all rifles and shotguns in transport shall be locked in a case and out of sight. The state of Texas is one of the most gun friendly states there is but you should not abuse those rights because you have those rights. It all goes back to common sense. Use common sense and don’t create a problem. I guess when that Tx state trooper pulls you over for a violation you stick your AR out the window and say I got my rifle. What’s gonna be his response to that. Bolt open no magazine I bet your butt is gonna have some explaining to do. But you exercised your right.

          • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

            “..the right of the people to keep and BEAR arms shall not be infringed”.
            .
            For many years there was a group in Califonria that open carried (unloaded) long-guns as a protest every year. Then they made a law against it. It’s being litigated now.
            .
            Appeasment doesn’t work…

          • semperfi says:

            @john_w – I think that by NOT exercising your rights, those rights eventually go away and you lose that freedom. But your analogy is flawed as the reason why many here think Mr. Poe is in the wrong is because he did not exercise good judgment and some mall shoppers were scared or offended AT THE SIGHT OF HIS FIREARM. Those mall shoppers were not in a personal relationship or “event” with Mr. Poe; at least, the article does not say Mr. Poe met anyone on his way to the store. Sticking the barrel of a long gun out a car window at an approaching police officer is an act of aggression. If Mr. Poe met mall patrons along the way and acted in a threatening and aggressive manner, then there would be cause for alarm. Unfortunately, these days what a “reasonable” person considers threatening is becoming a lower bar. Note that this is how Australia lost their gun rights – by making the firearm an evil object, and people were afraid to own firearms lest others think badly of them. Australia still has some firearms but ownership is onerous.

          • Dale says:

            Really? Now you are going to resort to hypothetical’s that don’t have anything to do with the story or how it was presented in this specific article? As presented in the article, Mr. Poe was carrying a rifle slung over his back, a drink in one hand, a bag in the other. If the photo is real, he was even carrying it MUZZLE down. Nothing threatening there! As presented in the article, it is LEGAL to open carry a rifle in the state of Texas! It doesn’t matter what YOU or I would or would have NOT done in regards to the issue of open carry, that fact is it is LEGAL in Texas! Mr. Poe was the one who had his civil right VIOLATED when his rifle was confiscated by the police! WE SHOULD ALL BE OUTRAGED ABOUT HIS RIGHTS UNDER THE LAW BEING VIOLATED!

        • Jeff says:

          In the mall rental contract, there is a clause that states that no firearm is allowed on the property except by the police. This was taken from another comment

          At the present time, property rights still take precedence over RKBA. As a property owner, it is 100% within my rights to bar you access to my property if you have a weapon – even if your weapon is legal and the property in question is a place of business. This mall is private property. They have a no “guns policy” (see website “code of conduct”) Mr. Poe was renting retail space on their private property. Mr. Poe’s business does not currently advertise that they are a gun dealer nor do they have any guns advertised for sale. New or used.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Common sense SHOULD prevail – but I think we as a nation went past that threshold a long time ago.
      .
      Should the Beaumont PD have checked this guy out when people started complaining? Yes – they should have asked him what his intentions were, he could choose to answer, or not – and then they should have let him go on his way. They should NOT have confiscated his firearm.
      .
      The 2nd amendment doesn’t say anything about concealed compact .45s – it says “arms”. The PD needs to pay attention to the 2nd amendment AS IT IS WRITTEN.
      .
      Is it unnerving to see a person with an AR15 in a public place – it sure is. It’s unnerving to be at the range and have somone fire a .50 caliber two lanes over. But you get over it. One of the prices of freedom is that you have to trust people that you don’t know to behave properly.

    • JHopper says:

      I agree it !! I never blog or post but this one got to me!!

    • Dale says:

      PLEASE…..I have no problem with the police asking a few questions! The problem is that they OVERSTEPPED their authority! Once the police had determined that NO CRIME was/had been committed, he should have been sent on his way WITH his rifle. It does not matter if it was a bolt gun, a lever gun OR a semi-auto. gun! They had NO PROBABLE cause to confiscate it and I hope he sues the dept./officers involved for all he legally can!! His civil rights were violated, can you say the same for ANYONE else in that mall on that day at that hour? I THINK NOT!! Oh…and for all the ninnies who get scarred at the sight of a “black rifle”, GET A GRIP! I When you live in a state that has LEGAL OPEN CARRY, you should at least be familiar with the gun laws of your home state, even if you chose NOT to own or carry a firearm! I also live in a state that has legal open carry. While not everyone chooses to exercise that right, I have NO problem when I see one of my fellow citizens exercising it in public. Good grief, our founding fathers must be spinning in their graves!

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      In Israel people walk around with AR15s ALL THE TIME. I was in a McDonalds and a young man came up and stood in line next to me. I realised that he had an M-16A1 slung over his shoulder. If that had happened in the US everybody would have run screaming into the parking lot. And these are probably fully automatic or at least selective fire because they are issued by the military. In spite of their prevalence (or possibly because of it), the incidence of gun crime in Israel is very low.
      .
      Using “disorderly conduct” as a catch-all “crime” in order to essentially ban guns is a very bad idea. Suppose I was to say “obama should be impeached” in the mall, and some people became unruly as a result? Should my first amendment rights be taken away because when I used them the result was “disorderly conduct” on the part of OTHER people?
      .
      Our Constitutional rights are there to limit the actions of the GOVERNMENT – in this case through the agency of the Police Department. We give the police a lot of disgression – if they abuse that trust they should be made an example of immediately so that others will behave better.

      • Daniel Martino says:

        He was showing off. End of story. Personally, I don’t want to live in a country that is so used to mass death that the sight of an AR doesn’t raise a pulse or two.

        And say a mentally unstable person wanted to raise hell. Guess who’s first in line to get shot in the head. A little tasteful discretion goes a long way.

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          That’s NOT the end of the story my friend. His motivation is NOT the issue…
          .
          Compared to Europe the US has a high rate of violent crime, but compared to most countries in the world our rate of violent crime is very low. It is the people that make the difference – not the firearms. Remove firearms from the US civilian population and the rate of violent crime will INCREASE because the criminals will still be armed.
          .
          If you want to reduce the amount of gun violence caused by crazy people you need to regulate the crazy people and not the guns of law abiding people.

  40. Ken says:

    I personally would be more concerned with someone wearing pants down to their knees and having a backpack on the back then someone with a gun strapped across their back. I’m not a person to call the law every time I see a gun, I believe in the 2nd amendment and wish we could carry openly. Those that are going to do something like hold someone up aren’t going to carry open anyway. If the store owner wasn’t the store owner and just some guy looking to get in trouble I seriously doubt he would have had his gun strapped across his back, he would have had it at the ready!!!

  41. JHopper says:

    To comment on a previous post … I have absolutely NO anti gun agenda and should I see an individual walking anywhere with a assault rifle I shall be alarmed and act accordingly … Again I love my guns and gun rights but get a clue common sense carries you a long way in life

  42. nagmashdriver says:

    Ironically enough, this is a case that the ACLU should be taking for him, pro-bono. If they fail to do so, I would be happy to contribute (however modestly) to his legal defense and I’m sure that many other gun-owners would, too.

    • JHopper says:

      I would not .. Why would Mr Poe do this other than to prove he has the right to? How many law enforcement officers or military personnel have you seen casually strolling in public places with long guns strapped on them just because they can? Truth is they can not …. Why should and would we allow an individual stroll through a mall bank restaurant with what appears to be a loaded assault rifle … Can anyone tell me what this accomplishes ? I carry a .40 Sig everyday I don’t display that , because I have common sense … I own several assault weapons the are in a case when they leave my house until the get where they are going …. WHY because common sense prevails

  43. Kenny says:

    I believe this is wrong in grandstanding like this and waltzing through an area of probably 50% non gun educated people.
    I have been a gun dealer for 40 years and never had a thought to grandstand to attract this kind of attention on my way to work.
    Looks pretty dumb to most clear headed folks. People have a lot of fresh memories of several killers doing the same thing, waltzing in a movie theater or a school or a mall and just start shooting anyone in sight.
    Anyone should know a tactical rifle is a outdoor weapon, not a cc weapon.
    Plain old stupid people give more ammo to the anti gunners pulling crap like this.
    They are ponncing on it already.

  44. Scott says:

    I Hold the man carrying the gun at fault for not showing some common sense himself. I am avid gun owner but have enough sense to case a weapon when going into a public environment. Was he trying to draw attention to his self? Famous words” just because you can doesn’t mean you should”. I think he did a disservice to us all by flaunting a weapon in a situation where he should of known what the reaction would be.

  45. Jason Claviculus says:

    This Kid/Man is an idiot. He has a magazine in his gun and deserves to be in trouble for his ignorant behavior. I say he is just a wanna be tough guy and thinks he looks like a real bad ass man with his gun exposed. I don’t care what his intent may have been at the time, it’s irrelevant. This is the wrong way to advertize his business if thats what he is doing. He jeopardizes our right to open carry by being inconsiderate and what he is doing is not exercising his right but is just pushing the envelope and shows that he is an unthinking moron who shouldn’t have an FFL or a weapon. Open carry is fine by me, I believe in the second amendment and wholly support our right to Keep and Bear arms but it is fools and idiots such as this guy who give the Gun Haters all the ammo they need to go after our guns. This guy is one of the reasons why we are losing our rights. Why no gun case? Why the magazine in the rifle? Guns are not for idiots or fools and this guy deserves to lose his weapon. This just shows total lack of respect for the situation and his whereabouts. As a Gun Store owner this guy should know better and he shows nothing but contempt for our rights, arrogance and his own ignorance. Slap him down as hard as the law can. He is a fool and needs to wake up, but not at the expense of “Our Rights”

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      The law says that he gets to do that. If anybody is going to get slapped (legally) it is the cops.
      .
      Gun haters won’t even pay attention unless someone gets killed.

  46. sandybob says:

    Those “offended” or “scared” obviously possessed an anti-gun agenda, and saw an opportunity to advance their cause so they took advantage of it. Police are obligated to respond to the complaints. End of story. Get a clue and learn from it.

    • Daniel Martino says:

      Or maybe, these people were just trying to enjoy their afternoon without some clown walking around with an AR on his back. I realize I’m talking to the gun nut forum here but give me a break. I carry my gun in a concealed holster. I don’t feel the need to swing it over my shoulder and parade it around just because I can. It’s rude and inconsiderate.

      • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

        Why are we “nuts” because we don’t agree with you?
        .
        Does the sight of an AR15 immediately prevent you from enjoying your afternoon?

        • semperfi says:

          Seems like Daniel has an issue with 2nd Amendment rights.

        • Dan Martino says:

          Yes it does. It does because when I see people pretending they are G.I. Joes I think “This guy just can’t wait to shoot someone.” It demonstrates that Poe lacks certain social graces. We see misfire accidents happen every day and I really don’t want to be around people like that.

          In the 0% chance that a mentally unstable person decides to start shooting, I’m running. If Poe wants to be a hero, good on him, I’ll buy him a Coke but in all likelihood, he’s gonna be the first to die.

          I don’t want to live in a police state. I suggest you stop watching so many movies and start thinking about peace and solving mental health issues.

          • Dale says:

            YOU are a friggin’ idiot! A POLICE state is where only the POLICE are allowed to have/carry guns!!! A FREE state is where the CITIZENS are able to exercise there inherent, GOD given rights to be armed whether in their own homes OR in PUBLIC! Oh…and by the way, the 2nd amendment does NOT end at my property line, NOR does it make qualifications for, or separate into divisions of “concealed” or “open” carry! It very plainly states that the right of the people to be at all time armed “…shall NOT be infringed.”

            • HRM says:

              At the present time, property rights still take precedence over RKBA. As a property owner, it is 100% within my rights to bar you access to my property if you have a weapon – even if your weapon is legal and the property in question is a place of business. This mall is private property. They have a no “guns policy” (see website “code of conduct”) Mr. Poe was renting retail space on their private property. Mr. Poe’s business does not currently advertise that they are a gun dealer nor do they have any guns advertised for sale. New or used.

              Short term – this sounds like a wonderful publicity stunt – particularly if he is wearing a T-shirt with his company logo.

              Bad thing for us – another 50+ people believe that gun owners think that their rights to BRANDISH a weapon in public are more important than their right to enjoy a peaceful meal. They tell their friends, and they tell their friends.

              Some of you folks really need to spend some quality time outside of the “unconditional gun rights” echo chamber.

          • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

            If all the “GI Joes” agreed to wear “Hello Kitty” T-Shirts when they carry their AR-15s, would that make you feel better?

      • Dale says:

        It’s only RUDE or INCONSIDERATE when some one points or “covers” some one else with their weapon! Personally, I’d be a whole lot more comfortable if we all just carried out in the open. No big deal. We all just exercise our constitutional rights. Those that chose NOT to carry, well…that’s your choice as well.

  47. BayouBorn says:

    It is all about perception. Mr. Poe was perceived to be a threat because he had a rifle over his shoulder and as one reader already noted a “scary AR15″. He was carrying a bag in one hand and a coffee in the other casually walking to work. Both hands have something in them. How is that a threat? Has society gotten that scared? Would there be a difference if he was carrying a sword? LE being what it is could not legally prosecute him for open carry as that is legal in the State of Texas supposedly. So, in all their wisdom that say that he disturbing the peace and creating a panic. Got him. On the other hand, I see you walking down the street and I call the police, give them a description and say you are a threat to me and others in the area. LE will assuredly come and stop you and start asking questions to ascertain whether you in fact are a threat to anyone. I would be willing to bet that you would call that harassment and as soon as you were let go be calling a lawyer. The type of rifle he was carrying made it a big deal also and it should not have. Whether it was an AR15, a shotgun, a bolt action rifle or a bb gun is irrelevant. Someone would have called law enforcement. You know, there are more people killed in car accidents each year than anything else but you never hear someone say “OOHH, look at that scary car!” That is because the press doesn’t sensationalize cars as they do guns. Cars don’t sell newspapers, but gun stories do.

  48. Brian says:

    I am a big supporter of gun rights but am totally against open carry. What purpose does it serve? If I am out in public and want to carry for self defense I certainly don’t want people to know I’m carrying. If there was a criminal around, who do you think his first target will be?

    Open carrying a long rifle is ridiculous! You may be exercising your rights but it serves no purpose. If you are just transporting your firearm from place to place why not stick it in a case? Openly carrying it will only scare non gun owners and advertise the fact that you have an expensive rifle to criminals, which makes you a target!

    That being said, I am a huge fan of concealed carry. I think every law abiding citizen should be allowed to concealed carry.

    • Dale says:

      Whether you agree with open carry or not on a philosophical level, and don’t understand what purpose it may or may not serve, the fact is it was LEGAL! What Mr. Poe did was LEGAL! It was Mr. Poe who had HIS civil rights violated, and we should all be outraged by that! It does not matter one wit if YOU or I or ANYONE else would not have open carried! The fact is that it was/is LEGAL, and Mr. Poe committed NO CRIME! The only crime that was committed was when HIS PROPERTY WAS SEIZED by the very authorities who should have been protecting HIS civil rights! I have no problem with a concerned citizen calling the police, or the police asking what is going on, but once it has been determined that NO CRIME HAS/IS BEING COMMITTED, that should have been the end of it and Mr. Poe should have been sent on his merry way with no more hassles from the police! Period! End of Story!!

  49. Shooterman says:

    I live in Beaumont. There is a small voluntary police substation at the Mall. Pay attention- the rifle was slung over his back by the sling, the muzzle was pointed downward at the floor, he had a drink in one hand and a bag, possibly breakfast in the other. Anyone with an IQ greater than their shoe size should have been able to ascertain the gentleman was not a threat to anyone.

    His rifle was confiscated and later, he was charged with a misdemeanor of disturbing the peace. SAY WHAT? He then went to the authorities and turned himself in.

    Good Googly Mooglies, Gadzooks, and Ye Gads and Little Goldfish, what has this country became?

    Let it be known, as well, in the same fair city of Beaumont, more years ago than I care to remember, at about age 15 or 16, I drove to downtown Beaumont ( Beautiful Mount ) parked, walked into a sporting goods store, put my money on the counter and walked out with a brand spanking new Mossberg 22 rifle. No background check, no age check, no check on my sanity, and in all the years I had that rifle it killed a lot of paper targets and turtles, but was never aimed at a human being, let alone shooting one.

    • Dale says:

      I agree with you! What I don’t get is why all of these ninnies who think it was irresponsible of him don’t understand is that what HE did was perfectly legal in the state of Texas! What the police/law enforcement/government did in confiscating his firearm was ILLEGAL! Just because some of us don’t agree with his actions, WE SHOULD ALL BE STANDING UP FOR THIS GUYS (AND EVERYONE’S) RIGHTS!!

  50. Dennis says:

    I have to draw a line of distinction on this issue.

    With all the negative media against guns in America today this man just gave the enemy more strength and has reinforced the fear of guns in our society.
    This is nothing we need to do right now in this current political climate. I mean really what was his point. If he needed to get it to his store he could have easily carried it in a gun case so as not to alarm unaware Citizens. Or unarmed Citizens that would naturally feel vulnerable.

    I am not totally against your comments. I know it is not against our Second Amendment Rights to open Carry a Rifle in any State in America but you have to understand we are fighting sometimes an indivisible enemy. What I mean by this is the fact that our Law Makers are passing Laws under the Radar constantly to over ride our Constitutional Rights. We must be more aware of this and use Wisdom in our actions so we can continue to move the tide back in our direction and this is going to take patience and a lot of cooperation on our part in doing the right things.

    As Gun owners we must be considerate of our every day Citizen, that do not own guns, and that have been scared out of their minds about all of these blown up media stories. No I am not saying these shootings are not happening but the media is working in concert with our Government to take our guns so we must at all cost out fox them and I just do not believe this is the way to do it.

    Just my thoughts….

    Dennis Ploof
    Gun Dealer & Certified Instructor
    Range Safety Officer
    NRA Recruiter
    Gun Safety Instructor

    http://www.gunnews.com/man-charged-open-carrying-ar-15-texas/

    • Dale says:

      NOTHING YOU SAID changes the fact that what Mr. Poe did was LEGAL!!! What the police did in confiscating his weapon was ILLEGAL! I TRULY DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY SOME OF YOU DON’T GET THAT AND HOW YOU CAN POSSIBLY ARGUE AGAINST THIS GUY! If you disagree with his actions on a philosophical level, or think it was unwise or that ‘YOU” would have done it differently, FINE! I get that! But what is at the core here, and I don’t see why some people don’t seem to understand this, is that it was still LEGAL! WHAT THE POLICE DID IN CONFISCATING HIS RIFLE WAS “ILLEGAL” !! THAT is the crux of this whole story! Should ANY one of us be subject to seizures by the authorities when there was NO CRIME COMMITTED?! Not the country our founding father envisioned!

      • Dennis says:

        I did not say that it was not Legal. I simply stated that it was not necessarily wise and will continue to hurt the cause of freedom and continue to threaten our Second Amendment rights just because you can do something does not make it wise to do it. The Liberal Media in concert with our Government are looking for things like this to justify infringing on our rights and if we continue to do things like this just because we legally can does not necessarily help our cause. I am a gun Dealer myself but I do not need to show off my AR-15′s at the mall where it will scare a lot of people that know nothing about guns and all they hear in the News is they are killing people everywhere. When you and I know it is not the gun but the crazies that are killing people. The real fight is to stamp out every Politician and everyone that supports anti gun activities remove them from the public eye even if it takes drastic measures and I am not justifying killing people as some would suggest.

        I pulled over to rescue a mother and baby from a burning car yesterday and while in the middle of the rescue and in all of the smoke and confusion someone unidentified pulled up behind me and got out of his car, pulled back his jacket that covered his firearm and started running to me with his hand on his gun.
        I could do 1 of 2 things here.
        1) Panic and pull my gun on an undercover agent and possibly both of us would have been shot or even possibly killed.
        2) Yell stop and Identify yourself or I will draw on you.
        Guess what he did. He stopped and yelled back I am an undercover agent stopping to help and properly Identified himself thus preventing what could have been loss of life for both of us.
        So just because I had the right to draw on him coming at me with his hand on his gun and not knowing who or what he was this would have been an unwise decision.

        Believe it or not I am on your side we may just not agree totally on how to handle certain situations.

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          Why on earth would somebody feel the need to draw their weapon if they were trying to rescue someone from a burning car?

          • Dale says:

            I’m with you on that one! What was he going to do, shoot out the fire? Mr. Poe never “brandished his weapon! it was SLUNG the whole time! Nothing he did was illegal under state law.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Maybe Rosa Parks should have sat at the rear of the bus – after all, she took a chance that White people might have mistaken her for an: “Uppity-N*gro”

  51. Justin says:

    I am so sick an tired of people open carrying long guns just to prove a point. Funny thing is, I am very pro second amendment and I own more firearms than your average gun owner.

    I just don’t see the point in carrying a rifle slung over your back into a crowded mall. With the recent mass shootings, what do you think the bystanders reaction is going to be? Carrying an AR on your back is also putting yourself in danger. You could become a target for robbery or be shot by a trigger happy concerned citizen.

    Lastly, open carrying long guns does nothing to help our cause. It actually hurts it. You are adding more fuel to the political fire and they will write a new law outlawing the open carrying of long guns in populated areas. Mark my words.

    • Dale says:

      You may not get the point, but that does not change the fact that what Mr. Poe did was LEGAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was Mr. Poe who had HIS RIGHTS violated!! Good grief! WE SHOULD ALL BE STANDING ON THE SIDE OF KEEPING OUR RIGHTS, NO MATTER WHAT YOUR PERSON VIEW/PHILOSOPHY IS ON MR. POE’S ACTIONS. What He did was entirely LEGAL! What the police did was to ILLEGALLY confiscate a PERSONAL POSSESSION! Is anyone REALLY in favor of the police/government doing this to ANY AMERICAN CITIZEN? Illegally confiscating personal property from a citizen when NO CRIME has been committed?! ’cause that is exactly what has happened and is being discussed here!!!

  52. Nathan says:

    I love guns and do not want them taken away. But you people that actually believe it is right for a man to open carry a slinged Assault Rifle to his back in a Mall!! Are you kidding me…. Yes people should’ve scared and fear for there lives. How can you ignore all the public shootings. COMMON SENSE!!!! You can be a proud gun owner but you don’t carry a Assault Rifle around town. If you want to become a cop.

    • Dale says:

      Oh…so only police can walk around armed and exercise the 2nd commandment? Funny…I’m looking at a copy right now, and it doesn’t say “the right of the police…”, it says “the right if the the people…” – Hmmm…People, the comon man or woman, the average citizen, doesn’t that mean YOU and Me and Mr. Poe? See, states (governments) have powers invested in them BY the PEOPLE!! People have rights that are inherent in their existence!

  53. Forrest Halford says:

    One can have freedom of speech guaranteed by the constitution, but it still requires that one use common sense and not say “Hi Jack” on an aircraft, shout “Fire” in a crowded theater, or joke that you have Bird Flu in a doctors waiting room.
    I am a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, a licensed gunsmith and strongly dislike big government.
    This fellow did not use common sense. Unless he is mentally handicapped he KNEW what the likely response in a mall (for gosh sake!) would be, to carrying a rifle around. Laws that allow open carry of rifles are intended to allow people to transfer weapons going to and fro when hunting, walking along the road to a path into the woods when hunting, or other such common sense conduct. This guy made a stupid decision.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      So now our fundamental human right to self-defense is dependent on what other people are “comfortable” with?
      .
      “…the right to keep and BEAR arms shall not be infringed”
      .
      Except if somebody else has a hissy fit because they think that guns are scary…
      .
      Anti-gunners have succeeded in stopping WalMart fromn selling firearms in some places, and Ebay won’t handle guns online. Their intent is to remove firearms from the public sphere so that gun owners can be marginalized. We need to push back wherever we can, or we will wake up and there will be enough people who are scared to death of guns so that the second amendment can be repealed.

  54. Ray in KY says:

    To me with everything ongoing with mass shootings and people’s fears, there is a time and place for open carry. A mall is not one of a place to carry an AR style rifle. That setting would be out of doors in an open field or rual road. Open carrying a sideare if OK by me as long as the local and state laws allow. Why bring unneeded attention to yourself and your 2nd Admendment Rights and put them in a bad light. It’s like as a child taking a Christmas Present to school and showing off what you have. Just because you have individual rights doesn’t mean you really have to let everyone else know you are exercising them.

    • Dale says:

      Uh…state law DOES allow it. Doesn’t matter if it is a rural road, an open field OR a public venue such as a mall. And as children, we were ENCOURAGED to bring our belongs to school and show them – it was called “show and tell”. Aside from that, if we fail to EXERCISE our rights, we eventually LOSE those same rights! Government is always trying to expound its’ own power and authority. The way it does this is by curtailing or limiting our rights. The first ones to go, are the ones they think we won’t miss! The ones we won’t miss are the ones we forget to exercise!

  55. MLB says:

    Legal or not, it’s an exhibtion of bad form to carry and AR through a mall. That’s just poor judgement

    • MRC says:

      I second this opinion 100%. Poe you are an idiot! That piece should at the least been in a covered bag or a box!

      Really!

      Just makes my Pro Gun Head spin! Hope you and others have learned a thing or two about proper discretion when transporting any weapon!

  56. Dave says:

    There’s an interesting social phenomenon to be observed here. This man was regarded as “suspicious” because he was in possession of an object that has been demonized by the mass media. One can argue that he “should have known better” (I personally would not conduct what proved to be a psychological experiment in this way–that’s just me), but “not knowing better” is not a crime, and none of us have any control over what another person thinks or feels.

    The other side of the coin: if this man had been wearing clothing that resembled a uniform or even a suit with a badge on his chest (or a jacket that said “SECURITY” or what have you), passersby would have been more likely to be curious than frightened. In fact, if he was the proverbial “lone nut”, but dressed as if he was an “official”, the reaction would have been the same.

    • Rick Jerman says:

      Not everyone in the mall would know who he was and a man with an AR slung over his shoulder is reason for concern. He should have use some discretion and carried the weapon in a case.

  57. JHopper says:

    Reading all the comments after making my post really concerns me … I love my firearms … I believe that if anyone who is legally able and wants to carry one should be able to NO matter what state he or she resides in … But for the people condemning Texas and calling people cowards for not excepting an AR15 strapped to an individuals back walking thru a mall … I really do not want to be in your ideal world … I believe it would be too much like a third world country … Common sense is lacking is this techno world … The law enforcement officers may have over reacted but how did Poe react to them when approached ? As I see the picture of Mr Poe there appears to be a mag in the well .. Who among anyone that posted on here would not be alarmed with your spouse and child walking through a mall seeing this …
    COMMON SENSE …. DO NOT give the gun grabbers any more justification to take more rights away

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Some fair comments here:
      .
      “I believe it would be too much like a third world country”.. Many people have noted that places like Somalia have (apparently) very high rates of gun ownership (video from Somalia always seems to show young men with AKs), and yet they have a high rate of gun crime. What they DON’T point out is that civilian ownership of AKs is ILLEGAL in Somalia and has been since 1963. It’s just that the criminals ignore the law and the civil authority is so weak that they cannot enforce it. In self-defense most of the few remaining law-abiding citizens arm themselves and thus they become outlaws in turn. The first step to turning this situation around would be to make it legal for the Law abiding to own firearms and start going after criminals with weapons. Of course that is unlikely to happen since the criminals own the government.
      .
      How many people who freak out at the sight of an AR15 are going to be able to tell that there is a magazine in the rifle?
      .
      If I was there with my Wife and kid I would probably leave, just in case. But I wouldn’t immediately freak out. There have been a couple of times when I have seen stressed out (armed), cops who looked like they were on the verge of snapping. Nobody started running for the exits.
      .
      We need to resist the gun-grabbers attempts to remove firearms from the public sphere.

  58. Butch says:

    J.C. makes the best points in all of the above comments. While I support our Texas law allowing open carry of long guns, Mr. Poe could have used much better judgement by carrying in a case or a box. Gun enthusiast that I am, I would have serious reservations about intent if I encountered someone carrying a long gun in a crowded shopping mall. The article stated that Mr. Poe owned a “tactical” store in the mall. If Mr. Poe were to sell a “modern sporting rifle” to a customer, would he encourage that customer to walk through the shoppers in the mall carrying that rifle in the open, knowing full well that not all the other shoppers present would be comfortable in that situation? Our gun rights are being infringed everyday, but our failure to exercise good judgement and common sense does not help the situation at all.

    • semperfi says:

      I disagree. Failure to exercise your rights (such as following the law) results in you losing your rights. You have the right to carry your rifle in a box. Mr. Poe has the legal right to open carry it. To say it is better if he didn’t means you are saying it is better if the law did not exist. When you give in to the opinions of others AGAINST the validity of law, you lose and they win.

      • Daniel Martino says:

        There’s a time and a place to “exercise you rights.” It’s not whenever and wherever. There are children at the mall. I don’t want my kid to see an AR and think it’s just something normal. If – for instance – he happens to find one they assume it’s benign. We must remember that these are serious instruments of war. Not just some cool toy to carelessly swing around.

        We all talk about education and responsibility. I think this demonstrates a severe lack of responsibility on Mr. Poe’s part. I support the police.

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          An AR15 is NOT an “Instrument of War”. An AR15 is semi-automatic. The M-16 is Fully automatic.
          .
          Firearms will continue to exist in the world whether your kid sees them or not. I suggest that if you want to protect your child you need to instruct them in gun safety rather than pretending that firearms don’t exist.

          • Dan Martino says:

            All guns are instruments of war. Extinguishing life is their one and only purpose.

            But that’s not the discussion here. The discussion is about Mr. Poe blatant disregard for public peace and selfish pageantry. You assertion that guns will exist whether my kid sees them or not is mute. What our society does not need is people like Poe being self righteous. He owns a gun store. He will profit IMMENSELY from this story.

            We all enjoy our rights. You don’t have to go to bat for this profiteer. All you’re doing is lining his pockets and weakening the publics acceptance of firearms.

          • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

            Nuclear weapons were designed to kill, and are weapons of war, but (except on two occasions), their ONLY use has been as a deterrent – in other words they have been used to keep the peace.
            .
            MOST Peace Officers NEVER fire their service weapons at a criminal during the course of their careers. Thus even though their firearms were designed to kill – their practical use was as a deterrent.
            .
            Whether the deterrent is nuclear weapons, or the firearms carried by Peace Officers – the effect is to PRESERVE life from criminals – not extinguish it. Thus your argument that the only purpose of firearms is to “extinguish life” is logically unsound.

            “All guns are instruments of war” – REALLY, is a derringer an “instrument of war”?

            On the contrary – this “profiteer” is the one who is “going to bat” for ME…

        • Debbie says:

          All guns are instruments of war and extinguishing life is their only purpose….
          Wtf ? Your comment is nuts.

          I’m recovering from an auto accident caused by texting and driving
          First…compare the rate of injuries caused by that
          Second…4 years with nothing to do but therapies yo get better. I have been a cpl citizen for years so
          As my own personal therapy.. Target shooting became my daily therapy.
          This doesn’t mean I’m going to use my collection to harm anybody.
          Just destroys paper and metal targets. But it has been the best therapy for many others I found out.

          • Dan Martino says:

            Come on Floyd, surely you’ve heard of World War II. I seem to remember the Japanese attacking Pearl Harbor BEFORE we attacked them. Where’s this deterrent you speak of? And it’s not as though we SHOWED them the nukes and they shit themselves and surrendered. We ended up dropping them on their heads and killed hundreds of thousands of people. In what world would you really call a nuclear warhead a means to keep peace. Just so we’re all clear, everyone pointing a gun at one another isn’t peace, it’s a cold war, a stalemate.

            So I read your argument as saying that if you point a gun at me and I point a gun at you, that’s peace because we are preserving life?

            And yes, a Derringer is an instrument of war. It’s not a hammer. It’s not a frisbee. It doesn’t build hospitals or feed poor people. It’s a silly little gun. And what do guns do? They shoot bullets. And what do bullets do? They destroy whatever they are fired at.

            Guns weren’t invented so Debbie could recover from her accident. The were made to neutralize your perceived enemy. Whether you’re on the offense or defense, they do the same damn thing. They don’t make a wise men of fools. They aren’t diplomatic. They are tools. Instruments. Nothing more.

            Poe is a perfect example of a “good guy” with misguided intentions. The police at the mall were keeping the peace. They took his gun because he was being irresponsible. It’s an accident waiting to happen. What if someone came up behind him and knocked him out and stole him gun? What if it accidentally discharged? What if someone perceived him as a threat and opened fire? Too many ‘what ifs’ for me.

            Nothing keeps peace like rational citizens engaging in respectful conversation.

            This conversation is boring. I’m out.

          • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

            Nuclear weapons have kept the major powers from attacking each others since the end of WW2 – that’s 69 years. Based on the death toll from WW1 and WW2 I would venture to guess that nuclear weapons have saved tens of millions of lives.
            .
            I don’t know if the Cold War was peace or a stalemate – it doesn’t matter. Nuclear weapons weren’t used to “extinguish life” but rather to preserve life – which is the whole point.
            .
            If Cops having firearms keeps criminals from harming innocent civilians that’s a good thing – and the presence of firearms wis a good thing also.
            .
            So your definition of what consitutes a weapon of “War” is: “anything that shoots bullets”? So just exactly what kind of firearms are we going to be able to own if they’re not allowed to shoot bullets?
            .
            If Poe can’t be trusted with firearms because somebody might: 1) Sneak up behind him, 2) Cause a negligent discharge, 3) Shoot him because he looked like a threat – which one of us CAN be trusted?

  59. MikeM says:

    Fear of firearms and disregard of the Bill of Rights is what is being propagandized in schools across this nation and being propagated by the liberal controlled media. By doing so, the regard for rights and rational thought and response is being eradicated. Knee-jerk reaction and thoughtless capitulation is the order of the day and plays directly into the hands of those in the Government who would throw out the Constitution and abolish the rights of citizens.

    In 1968, I boarded a commercial flight. In front of me were two men with rifles in soft cases. No one ran screaming from the air terminal or the airplane. Everyone boarded and the plane departed and landed at its destination with no problems. In high school, students would bring guns (in the trunk of the car or behind the seat of a pickup. No problems ensued and the only arguments in the parking lot were the relative merits and demerits of different firearms for hunting purposes. Teachers and administrators would usually join in as most were sportspersons. (Yes, females would join the discussion.)

    Yes, it’s a different day and time. However, much of the attack against the 2nd Amendment initiates from the schools. Instead of teaching a balanced view toward firearms and the responsible and legal use of them, fear and loathing is being foisted on the youth of this country. This is a sure way to eradicate not only the 2nd Amendment, but also the rest of the Bill of Rights.

    • Dale says:

      Even in the 80′s, if someone brought a rifle or a shotgun in their car or truck, it would be no big deal. I even had one fellow student bring his shotgun to class and give an overview on how to clean it. The assignment was to give the rest of the class instructions on how to do something others may not have been familiar with. He got an “A”.

      Now days, there are students who get expelled for making a fist and pointing there finger like a gun -

  60. Mith Radates says:

    Given the recent high-profile stories about public-place shootings, he would have been much smarter to break it down and put it in a bag or box. Sometime, even when you’re right, you’re wrong. Reality is a bitch.

  61. JHopper says:

    Let me add thathat I do not believe the individual should have been charged with a crime just STUPIDITY

  62. Kosh75287 says:

    While I am 100% sympathetic to Derek Poe’s situation, we should also remember that just because it isn’t illegal to do something, it doesn’t necessarily mean that said actions are prudent, widely accepted, or justified. He probably could have avoided a whole world of legal entanglements, just by carrying it over his shoulder, in a Gun Case.

    It’s a shame that we live in a society populated by gutless, clueless ninnies, but we probably should learn to expect problems or at least whines from them. Until we better initiate the Walter Mittys in our midst into the proper role of firearms in society, things like this will happen from time to time.

    • stefan says:

      If he would have been carrying the gun in a gun case, they probably would have arrested him for carrying a concealed weapon.

  63. Jon says:

    Folks this kind of thing is going to be our new normal. Liberals destroy the economies and political landscapes of their own states, then flee to states where traditionally conservative governments have maintained some semblance of sanity. Once there, they set about destroying their new homes. They don’t even understand that their reshaping of the new homes only remakes them into the very nightmares that they fled from in the first place. They cannot learn that THEY ARE the problem they seek to flee.

    Read up on the migration statistics in America and you will see.

    • Dave says:

      The question could be resolved via the too-often forgotten concept of Private Property. Does the mall owner have a policy regarding openly carrying firearms inside the mall? If so, visitors and tenants must abide by it.

  64. JHopper says:

    I have own and carried firearms since I have been of age to. I have use firearms in past employments… I have many concerns that our rights to own firearms are in danger now more than ever… But what sane person walks through a mall with an assault rifle strapped to his back without fearing it could cause emotional distress to most around him…. Being a conceal firearms carrier I probably would have put him to the floor until the authorities arrived … I own several assault rifles and I think what this individual done was careless and without thought to the people around him… It is people such as this man that makes it harder for people with common sense to possess firearms…

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      You’re going to draw down on this guy just because he was carrying a gun? YOU were carrying a gun!
      .
      As a CCW holder you should know that the only time you can draw your weapon in public is if you’re about to use it, and the only time that you can use it is if you feel that you are in immediate danger of being killed or seriously injured. Anything else is “brandishing” and it can be a felony depending on the jurisdiction…

  65. Rick Jerman says:

    Concealed carry and open carry laws require common sense. This young man showed a total lack of any common sense. Law enforcement should have made an arrest. Sense Texas has open carry laws most likely charges would not be filed, However a review of this young man’s permit is in order. Our right to “free speech” does not give us the right to yell “FIRE” in a crowded theater. This same common sense rule applies in this incident as well. I am speaking after 39 years in law enforcement.

  66. Erik says:

    I’m about the biggest gun enthusiast out there, and I also live in a state (NC) in which open carry is also perfectly legal. That being said, I almost never open carry. I used to. People (well, those who notice, anyway) tend to get very frightened by the open presence of a firearm, including a handgun. Occasionally, somebody strikes up a conversation about the gun, but that’s a rarity. Sometimes they simply want reassurance and ask, “Are you a police officer (no)?” Sometimes, they would grab their kids and leave the store in a hurry. The time someone called the police, which ate two hours of my time, was the last straw.

    Please note that I don’t find any of the above reactions unusual or out of line. People are scared of other people walking around with guns. In light of the various public mass shootings, most people would be, at the very least, unsure of the motives of a person walking around the mall with an AR or AK strapped to their back. To make things worse, this guy that was arrested had a mag in the receiver (!) of this totally unsecured rifle and nobody had any idea whether or not a) it was loaded or 2) this guy was crazy and going to unload on others. Should he have been arrested? Well, probably not. Were people out of line for being scared and calling the police. Nope. Not at all.

    Anyway, after the police wasted two hours of my time that day, I simply used my concealed carry permit from there on out. The guy could have put his AR in an unlocked rifle case and also served the purpose of getting his gun to the store. He could have protected himself just fine and also not scare the bejeezus out of a mall-full of shoppers. If anything, carrying a rifle through a crowded mall is going to scare the average person away from guns, not work for the cause.

    Another thing about open carry: By open carrying instead of concealed carrying, you take away one of the greatest advantages you have in a self defense situation: the surprise that the criminal doesn’t know you’re armed.

    I just don’t think it’s wise to open carry, even if it is legal, in most situations.

    Erik

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      Everything that you have said is logical and makes perfect sense – it’s also irrelevant.
      .
      In places like Israel where AR style rifles are a common sight – nobody thinks anything of it. If we allow the media to demonize firearms so that carrying them openly is no longer allowed, it won’t be very long before carrying them concealed is outlawed, and then keeping them at home will be outlawed.
      .
      Perhaps we should encourage schools and businesses to have a “bring your firearm to work day” – so that the non-gun owning public can get over their hoplophobia.

      • Daniel Martino says:

        You are a lunatic! The middle east – especially Isreal – is a hotbed for religious and social unrest. Is that the kind of America you want to live in?

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          Your observation has reinforced my point.
          .
          It is true that the majority Jewish population in Israel is afflicted by a violent minority of Palestinian Muslims who have frequently stated their desire to exterminate the Jews – and have occasionally attempted to do so.
          .
          Initially Israel attempted to minimise the violence by outlawing firearms but it soon became clear that this wasn’t working – so they changed tactics. Now almost all Jews are trained in the use of firearms (through the military), and fully automatic weapons are a common sight on Israeli streets.
          .
          Rather than resulting in bloodshed this policy has decreased the amount of ethnic violence directed against Jews by almost 100% – and a side-effect is that there had also been a reduction in the amount of violent crime.
          .
          It is not the firearms that make Israel violent (quite the opposite), it is the PEOPLE who live there. That dynamic pertains in the US as well. (And everywhere else).

    • Dale says:

      SOME people are frightened when they see a firearm being carried in the open. NOT everyone, and certainly not the majority of people I know. I would be more concerned about the guy walking his dog in the park. Of course being armed, I could shoot the dog if it got off its leash and attacked anyone.

  67. DD says:

    I agree 100%… The guy was just looking for attention, and he got it.

  68. Jon DeVaux says:

    The owner’s an idiot. Walking thru a mall with a tactical weapon, stupid. I’m an FFL retail dealer and would never, NEVER, go to my shop with a AR strapped to my shoulder or back. When a customer leaves our store, the gun is in a box, case, or sleeve. Gun rights, fine, stupidity, no.

  69. ProCommonSense says:

    “The man sauntered through the shopping mall, an AR-15 casually strung over his back. Some people stared and perhaps squirmed a bit while a few mothers hustled their children out the nearest exit, planning to continue their shopping trip the following day. Nobody called the cops because it was his right to openly carry a long gun.

    The man continued walking until he reached the overly crowded center of mall, the food court. He then finished off the last beer he ever intended to drink and placed the bag containing the severed ears of his recently deceased family onto the nearest table. He casually unstrung the AR-15 from his back and opened fire on the unsuspecting crowd.”

    Now Chelsea… here’s my challenge to you:
    You say people “need to be educated on the difference between a criminal and an innocent, ordinary person open carrying.”

    If you can tell me how I can tell the difference between my fantasy maniac and Poe I will agree that the people involved in this case reacted hysterically. .

    Poe doesn’t need to go to jail… he just needs to grow some brains. His actions, and others like it, are the biggest dangers to our 2nd amendment rights. Just because you CAN do something, doesn’t mean you SHOULD. Things like this frighten the general public and lend support ridiculous laws.

    RIGHTS WITH RESPONSIBILITIES!
    USE COMMON SENSE PEOPLE!
    Best Wishes.

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      The answer to that scenario is that in a nation of 317 MILLION people with AT LEAST 4 million AR15s in circulation, the number of mass killings involving AR15s can be listed on the fingers of one hand.
      .
      Sure, if you see a guy with an AR15 on his back he MIGHT have a bag full of severed ears with him as well, but that is like saying that if you see a poodle walking down the street it MIGHT be rabid. That COULD be the case but it’s not LIKELY – and it doesn’t make any sense to call animal control to come and get the RABID dog – just because you’re afraid…

      • Dan Martino says:

        There’s a difference between being afraid and being concerned.

        • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

          And animal control comes – realizes that the poodle DOESN’T have rabies, but they take the dog anyway and then they don’t contact the owners or tell them what they have to do to get the dog back.

  70. Dennis says:

    I have mixed emotions about this scenario. On the one hand I agree that it’s legal to open carry a long gun and it should be. But I am having some problems with someone carrying it thru a mall. The writer says she would feel safer knowing a good man is safely carrying a gun nearby, how does she know the person is a good man? Just by the way he is carrying it? With all the random shootings in this country and abroad, it’s hard to know the good guys from the bad guys. I know I wouldn’t do this because I realize that some people would be adversely affected. I just think some common sense should prevail in a situation like this.

  71. J.M.S says:

    I agree with Jeff, J Johnson and J.C.. A little common sense would go a long way. With the scare tactics used by the media, I would not take an AR into a public place such as a mall slung on my back. What do you think would happen? I am not agreeing with what the cops did, but if it would have been in a case nothing would have happened. Many people are afraid of an AR because it has been so vilified by our politicians and the media. The drones in the mall would not know the difference if one had a magazine in it or not, they would just freak out as they have been programmed to do. Yes, no crime here, move along…..

  72. Brenboy says:

    Contradicting laws and the overlapping application of each is the problem… a law used as a ruse to confiscate based on personal “perception” of a threat is the thin edge of the antigun wedge… hope he has a good lawyer. Funny that he was NOT arrested, cop probably wanted his rifle. Unknown is whether they had to confiscate it from his store… given that he has a store in the mall… that would be a serious infringement also.

  73. b.moore says:

    There seems to be many concerns in this. True enough that we were not there to understand how one could be fearful. But based on the reports that he was just walking to his store in a calm fashion says a lot. There should have been video to show his behavior and determine if an over reaction had occurred.
    Additionally, if this “disorderly conduct” becomes a tool for anti gun people we are screwed. What if he was loading legal items from a van to his store and someone reported that and they were in fear of something bad? Would the police be able to make a good judgement on that?

  74. Michael says:

    Chelsea is so right when she said: “If anything is going to destroy the Second Amendment, it will be the citizens’ fear for guns, more than the vote of any political leader. Why else would anti-gun political leaders instill so much fear for any firearm in U.S. citizens? If their agenda to disarm us is to succeed, they need to make us afraid of each other.” When the government can turn us against each other with fear and distrust, they can divide us and we are no longer “One Nation, Under God, Indivisable”. Read your history books, the term “To divide and conquer” was fact. Read what Hitler did to gain control over a nation…. We cannot let this happen to us, to many have given their lives to let this continue.

  75. Merle says:

    @ JC

    “in such a manner”? what “manner”?

    1. walking around with an angry facial expression and negative demeanor? aggressive body language?

    2. rifle slung on his back (no hands touching), shopping bag in one hand, drink in another, and no negative body language or facial expressions?

    who would be given pause by number 2?

  76. J.C. says:

    Consider the situation. I own, use and carry firearms, but seeing someone carrying an AR slung across his back in such a manner through a busy mall would give me pause. How can you tell the motives and mental state of the carrier? Was the bolt open and tagged? Was there a magazine in place? Would he have been targeted carrying a lever or bolt action rifle? An AR, originally designed for military use, can easily be perceived as threatening. Poe’s arrest and confiscation of his firearm were over the top, but I can see an admonition and return of his firearm once he was at the store.

    • M.J. says:

      I agree. With the seemingly casual way that mass shootings occur these days, I would absolutely head the other direction. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to wake up one day to a story saying “Witnesses said he was calmly having a coffee before reaching a particular store and killing his ex-girlfriend and several bystanders”.

      I don’t think it’s the public’s fear that is the threat to 2nd Amendment rights, it’s people like this who feel the need to push the boundaries. “The law says I can carry a rifle, so I’m going to pick the most hotly contested weapon I can and stroll through the mall.” Stupid and irresponsible. I don’t think he should be charged (he was within his legal rights), but he needs to reconsider his actions. Flaunting the law and your right to do something is not a very good way to preserve that right. Other posters have it right, losing this battle in the court of public opinion will lead to restrictions, and situations like this only fuel the fire.

      • Dale says:

        Since when is engaging in a LEGAL activity specified so by state law “pushing the boundaries” or “flaunting the law”? If i am allowed to drive a car, is it pushing the boundaries because I want to drive a Bugatti veyron instead of a Chevrolet? Now the Bugatti will go a hell of a lot faster and looks more aggressive than the Chevrolet, but I’m not talking about driving it recklessly or speeding. I’m talking about driving in a civilized manner with a very expensive and sleek looking car.

        So it is with his rifle. It might be an AR pattern rifle and not a lever action or a single shot or a bolt action, but it was not being handled in a threatening or aggressive way. He may have appeared foolish to you or me, but he was within his LEGAL RIGHT and was NOT COMMITTING a crime when he did it, according to the article.

        Physical appearance should NEVER be confused with or be applied as the lit-mist test to when something is being judged as threatening. Just because something is “racy” in appearance or “looks aggressive because of its’ color or sleek lines, or removable magazine, does NOT automatically make it dangerous or illegal!

        Gee, I hope that others will stand up for you when they come to take your car – er…rifle!

    • Dale says:

      I also own, use and carry weapons daily both on and of the job. NOTHING Mr. Poe did as described in this article would have given me ANY cause for concern, and if it had I would have been more inclined to observe him for a short duration of time, BEFORE I would have called the cops. Yes, I blame the ninnies in the mall AND the ignorant cops (ignorant of the laws THEY are supposed to be enforcing or RESPECTING)! YOU SIR, ARE ONE OF THE NINNIES!

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      It’s not reasonable to immediately assume that a person with a gun is a killer. Do you immediately assume that people driving cars are about to mow down pedestrians? When you see a cop with a gun do you immediately assume that they are going to murder people even though cops are eleven times more likely than civilians to misuse their firearms?
      .
      If you don’t like the way the second amendment is written there is a process for changing it. I would suggest you might want to change it to:
      .
      “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. Except at the mall.”

  77. Jeff Nobottom says:

    They have rifle / shotgun cases that he could have put the gun in and nobody would care or notice. Some people have no sence.

  78. RCG says:

    And it would have been a big deal to put it in a soft case and sling it over his shoulder, avoiding instilling fear in passer by’s wondering if the guy was going to go psycho and start shooting? What a jerk. And don’t hand me that “it’s legal” crap, Many folks are are highly fearful now due to all the negative media about shootings. What is the benefit of open carry anyway?. I carry concealed. My father did for 30 years, so did my brother… never an issue or incident. By the way… Yelling “FIRE!” in a movie theatre when there is none is not necessarily protected under the First Amendment.

    • Dale says:

      You can’t seriously be comparing “yelling fire” in a crowded theater to Mr. Poe’s exercising his right to be armed in a public place! He was NOT waving it around, or being aggressive in any way! He was NOT threatening anyone! Don’t forget that his second amendment rights aside, it is specifically LEGAL to open carry a rifle in public. NOTHING he did that day warranted having his firearm confiscated! So, you tell me, who’s civil rights were violated that day? The OTHER patrons at the mall? NO – Mr. Poe was the ONLY one on that day at that hour who had HIS rights violated when an overreaching law enforcement agency CONFISCATED his LEGALLY OWNED/CARRIED weapon!! It does not matter one bit weather ANY of us AGREE or DISAGREE on a philosophical level with what Mr. Poe did! The simple fact is that what he did was LEGAL, and he was within his rights to do it! I would hope that all of us would put our personal PREFERENCES aside, and support Mr. Poe on THOSE GROUNDS!! LEGAL OPEN CARRY IS JUST THAT, LEGAL!!!

      • HRM says:

        The mall is private property. They have a “no guns on premises policy”. It’s on the Mall website. That means “no guns allowed on the premises”.

        This “victim” owns this business:

        http://goldtritac.org/

        They do not sell firearms. They only sell firearm parts. Relevant??? The “gunsmithing” section of the site is down so there is no indication whether the gun smithing is done on premises.

        He is, at best, ignorant of the law. Maybe this was a publicity ploy.

        Hypothetical…..

        If 100 people were in Taco Bell, and someone walked in with an AR-15 strapped to their back, I would estimate that 90+ customers would LEAVE. Myself included. If I was concealed carry at the time, I would make sure that I always had a clear shot at him while I departed the premises. Suppose he comes in for lunch 3x per week. How is Taco Bell supposed to react? They will put up “no guns allowed” signs

        Now, what happens if Taco Bell decides they don’t like the sporting team that I support and they order me to leave…? (Call the police. You are being harassed)

        • Dale says:

          Hypothetical isn’t good enough. And, I believe that the law states that the private property owner must post a sign in a PROMINENT LOCATION, such as next to an exit entrance point. So – web site most likely doesn’t cut it! Again, according to the article, he was legal in what he was doing. If other patrons in your ‘hypothetical” choose to leave, that is their right. But, what is really at the core of this is a violation of civil rights and and illegal confiscation of his private property!

          None of us should be subject to having our property being confiscated by ANY law enforcement personnel when there has been no crime committed. You may not agree with his choice in this matter, you may think it was foolish on his part, but that does NOT validate an overreach of authority by law enforcement. You may not even agree with the state law that permits open carry of a rifle, but your opinion doesn’t matter when a law officer is supposed to be protecting and honoring our civil (constitutional) rights.

          His were violated, NOT any of the other patrons who might have felt “fearful” just because they chose not to carry or even own a firearm, and are thrown into a “tizzy” just because they see one in public! Mr. Poe was not “brandishing” his weapon, and according to the article was within his LEGAL rights under Texas state law to be engaged in open carry!

  79. gfh says:

    A little subtly would go a long way. How about carrying it in a case. If that is the actual photo, the gun looks loaded. Who took the photo? Was he out to gain a little fame? Why scare citizens unnecessarily? Who needs a loaded AR-15 in a shopping mall? This guy did nothing to help the pro gun cause.

  80. Bryon says:

    It is our responsibility as gun owners to be smart about how we handle guns. If he simply strapped a gun to his back and walked into a mall, that was not smart handling. Yes I do agree body language should suggest that there was nothing to fear, but do to antigun issues it would have been a smart idea to have it in a gun bag. They have a concealed carry permit so people do not react the way they did here. I don’t believe that open carry of a long gun means walking around malls, fairs, carnivals, or other areas of mass people with a long gun on your back is what that law is about. It is more about carrying in the field or in your truck or somewhere where carrying openly makes a little more sense. Again, gun owners need to be smart in how we handle guns, in private and in public.

  81. C6corvette says:

    I believe the open carry law is for hunters and not for people to carry an AR15 in a public place. If this guy owns a tactical store why in the world did he not use common since an have the gun in a case – no one would have noticed.

    • tjtex says:

      Sure they would. Same guy who complained in the first place.

    • Ken says:

      No C6corvette open carry means anyone in TEXAS can carry a long gun openly. Only handguns have to be concealed with a permit in public. Texas does not require anyone to have their guns in a case for transportation or for any reason. I suggest you read up on all the Texas firearm laws and Texas Parks and Wildlife regulations before stating any thing about Texas gun laws.

  82. B says:

    It may be the law that you can legally open carry, but why would this guy put more fuel on the anti gun fire. Put it in a carrying case. I personally have a soft one that can be slung over the shoulder. IMO this guy and others like him do more harm than good for 2nd amendment

    • tjtex says:

      Sorry – that gun case thing won’t wash – If I was the complaintant in the mall i’d be peeing my pants if I see a gun case – might have a gun in it – that’s your logic.

  83. Butch says:

    I own a gun shop and I have better sense than to walk around a mall with an AR slung across my shoulder. A person with the mindset of mass shooting in a crowded place has mental problems. You cannot look at a person and determine with all certainty that he is sane or mental. In anything you do in life, you need to use common sense. This man knew that carrying an open rifle would cause attention. That is probably why he did it. Now he is paying for his decision. If you want to make a statement, be prepared to suffer the consequences. You have to agree that he did not use common sense or make an intelligent decision to carry an open weapon through a crowded public space. If you feel the need to do that, go to a gun show.

    • Barker62 says:

      You might want to re-read the story. Mr. Poe owned a shop IN the mall. He’d picked up some food for himself(sack in one hand and ‘Big Gulp?’ in the other hand. Under those circumstance it’d be only natural to sling the rifle over his shoulder. In another story I read it was stated that he’s done so a number of time previously and all the staff in the other mall stores were well familiar with this and had no problem with it. It was a CUSTOMER who freaked out, not any mall employee, and the local PD was called, NOT mall security who, had they even been asked would have vouched for Mr. Poe..
      Your assumption that he did it to ‘make a point’ or ‘garner attention’ is of-base. Common sense? How about your lack of same in making the decision to attribute unverifiable actions to this man?
      BTW, being a badge wearer for around 37 years I would have checked out the situation, verified the info/situation, told the man “Have a nice Day’ and moved on. One of the things I’ve learned is think with your head, NOT with your cajones. You tend to live longer that way.

  84. Texasreb says:

    Posting here is like eating that rotten apple the webmaster throws up.
    I good comment was just lost !

    More ridiculous BS by nanny state. Just like those idiots in Beaumont mall !

    • HRM says:

      “nanny state”. Nice one. Very constructive. Those most afraid in the food court were probably sending (coded) text messages (in Arabic) while eating (tactical) popcorn (in preparation for Jihad). Mr. Poe should run for Governor.

  85. John Gould says:

    While I understand annd agree with open carry, I can understand the mall patron’s reaction. I don’t believe anyone had to suggest that she be in fear for her life. With the recent number of nutcases that have gone into public areas to get their 15 minutes of posthumous fame, seeing someone carrying a loaded AR or AK that you don’t know. Someone whom you have no idea of their mental state, and with the heightened awareness of these unfortunate incidents, well you can begin to see why someone might be frightened. The fact that 70 to 85% of gun violence is with handguns, doesn’t lessen the impact of seeing someone caffying an AR openly. Sure, you’re in texas, wear a holster with your sidearm, but keep the rifles in a range bag.

  86. Jeff says:

    You say, “… when there was no need to feel fear.” How do you know that? You weren’t there but you have such psychological clairvoyance that you could tell that this man was safe. You are talking with perfect hindsight but the other people in the mall didn’t have that advantage. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean that you should do it. A little common sense might have been in order. You can’t pass a law that says that people aren’t allowed to be afraid.

    • JJohnston says:

      No, but you can have cops who have the courage and integrity to ASK what was happening, and once they are told, to say, “Okay. There’s no crime here. Sorry to have delayed you.”

      • Citizen John says:

        The mall cops would have known the guy and I’m sure that he would have tried to explain who he was. I would have had the gun in a box myself but he shouldn’t have been arrested if the cops had done a minimum of investigation.

        • Jeff says:

          How do you know it was the mall cops who stopped him? And even if they knew him, how would they know that he wasn’t having a bad day? There are two things that happened here. One, he was stopped. Two, his gun was confiscated. The story says he WASN’T arrested. I mean, was this the beginning of hunting season? Was this a rural mall? Were there other people carrying rifles? Was the guy wearing all black gear? I would at least want the guy questioned. I would want the police to look at the whole situation and act accordingly. I don’t know the laws of Texas enough to speak about the gun confiscation.

          • Brendan says:

            You entirely miss the point. The guy OWNS a shop in the mall. It is LEGAL to open carry a rifle in Texas. He had the rifle on his back, a bag in one hand and a drink in the other. Now how could he be a threat? I’m sure someone coming in to shoot the place up is not going to nonchalantly just walk in tward a place of business he owns with his hands full. Someone panicked and that is part of the problem. The politicians and the anti gun nuts have everyone so wound up they are scared of their own shadows, and that is a shame. Yes be alert, but also don’t be afraid simply because you see a gun.

          • Jeff says:

            Brendan, you say, ” Now how could he be a threat?” What do you expect a guy to look like who is a threat? I disagree with you. How did they know he had a store in the mall until after they talked to him. I am always going to be aware and concerned of someone carrying a rifle through a mall. That is an unusual thing to see a rifle being carried in a mall. What if he had been nonchalantly carrying a rifle toward a school. Not on school property but toward the school. Should he be questioned?

            You go on to say, “Yes be alert, but also don’t be afraid simply because you see a gun.”

            It is not seeing a gun that was the problem, but seeing a gun in a mall deserves some questions being asked.

        • sophia says:

          They didn’t arrest him. My question is under what law did they keep his rifle? If they didn’t arrest him and they are keeping his property, on what basis is this being done? That is as big a concern to me as his possible arrest. Confiscation of legally owned property?

          • Cliff says:

            That is called illegal search and seizure

          • Dave says:

            There is almost certainly some “civil forfeiture” law in place. There is one for practically anything. And if there is not, police have no problem confiscating whatever they wish from people on the slightest excuse, knowing that a legal challenge will be more expensive and troublesome than replacing the property.

            In the spring of last year, police entered my home on at least two occasions (once while I was not there) without a warrant and removed approximately $2000 worth of personal property. They left no receipt. Inquiries as to the whereabouts and return of the property led to blank stares and at least one denial that it had ever existed.

            • Rick Jerman says:

              I can speak for Oklahoma and I believe it is the same in TX. He would be given his weapon back unless there are circumstances we are not aware of.

            • sophia says:

              The Fourth Amendment
              The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

            • Jeff says:

              Dave, how about “stop and frisk”?

            • Dave says:

              I regard “stop and frisk” as unconstitutional and hope that as soon as possible, there will be a court ruling barring it. Unfortunately, those who are “stopped and frisked” (and don’t think the police do not know this) tend to be those who cannot afford to bring an action in court, either to get the initial ruling or to have it enforced.

              In my case, the entire apartment complex in which I live (144 apartments), was the focus of a “sting operation” by an area “drug task force”. My guess is that they realized they had found an easy way to keep an eye on over 400 people–and out of any 400 people selected at random, surely there will be some drug users/dealers. The “sting”, which included surveillance, the use of “snitches”, and a near constant visible police presence around the complex, lasted from April to September and ended with two arrests.

              I became ill in April and when a neighbor became concerned about my condition, she called for an ambulance. Instead, three sheriff’s deputies came to my door and said they were “taking me to the hospital”. They asked me to sit on the stairs in the hallway while two of the deputies went into my apartment and began moving things around. I asked if they had a warrant and was told: “we’re on a medical call–we don’t need a warrant”. I was eventually told “the only choice you have is whether you are going to the hospital in an ambulance or in the back of my squad car”. I asked for an ambulance and at that time, one was summoned. Why did police respond to a specific call for an ambulance (and not accompany an ambulance)? I suspect it may have had something to do with the “drug operation”. They were looking for an excuse to search and were not concerned about the 4th Amendment.

              I was hospitalized for four days and when I returned home, I found that someone had entered my locked apartment during my absence and that a number of items had been moved around. Several days later, I had another visit from police, who informed me that they had removed some of my personal property (three flare launchers, which they claimed were “firearms”) and that “we’re just waiting for the charges to come through”. No charges were ever filed as it is not unlawful for me to own a flare launcher or a firearm.

              After that visit, I checked through my possessions and found that far more was missing than the three flare launchers. Oddly, though it was alleged that I “had illegal firearms”, none of my guns were removed. Pocket knives, valuable antiques, and money, however, were missing. No receipt was left for any items removed and I never saw a warrant or a copy thereof. Inquiries to the sheriff’s department revealed that they supposedly at least have no record of any property having been removed from my home.

      • Jeff says:

        Yeah, that would be acceptable. But the people in the Mall were not being crazy by being afraid.

    • Andy says:

      To start, I fully support open carry. I do however agree that fear of the unknown or of the uncommon had to be felt by many. Quite simply, if men and women make the practice of open carry more common-place, the shock factor would be greatly reduced. If I saw an unknown man walking in town with a rifle on his shoulder, I may wonder a bit; but, ultimately not fear him(not the gun), because I exercise my right to protect myself 24-7!

    • Derek says:

      People being offended or irrationally afraid isn’t against the law…but that is also no reason to bring criminal charges against someone who wasn’t participating in an unlawful act. If they are so afraid…and so offended…they should take it to their legislator and see if they can change the second amendment…until then they can go scratch. Their misplaced sensibilities are no cause to infringe upon anyone else’s rights.

      • Jeff says:

        The story doesn’t say criminal charges were brought against the guy. It says that an investigation is ongoing. A guy walking through a mall with a rifle slung over his shoulder is out of the ordinary. It should be checked out by the police.

        • BluesStringer says:

          And a guy spewing idiocy on the internet under the protections of the First Amendment should be investigated for disturbing the peace of all those who are exposed to such idiocy. I’m sure you’ll understand when they come to your door, confiscate your computer or iPad or whatever conveyance you use to spew with, and tell you that your rights don’t mean squat, not because you did anything illegal, but because reactions by others is their “probable cause” to force you to comply with laws they’re making up as they go, right?

          And don’t tell me it’s different. What I describe above is no different at all from what happened to the young man in the mall, only a different right was violated. Quit being an idiot. Either you fully support the Bill of Rights or you fully support tyranny. There is no in between.

          • Jeff says:

            Well, I hope you feel better attacking me on a personal level, but in one of my other comments, I said I didn’t know the Texas law well enough to speak about the confiscation of the rifle. But I am comfortable with the police checking out a guy walking through a mall with a rifle slung over his shoulder. If you hate that so much, how do you feel about the “stop and frisk” stuff that goes on in New York City. The great, great majority of those people stopped are law abiding citizens and they don’t even have a rifle on their shoulders. They might have droopy pants on though. That looks much more dangerous, huh?

          • BluesStringer says:

            Jeff, “Checking a guy out” and stealing his property for which there is no valid probable cause or court order allowing them to do it are not concepts that belong together in the same sentence. Fine, “check the guy out.” “Excuse me sir, would you mind telling us where you’re going with that rifle?” “No problem officer, my name is yada yada and I own the TACTICAL STORE here in the mall. I’m going to work.” “Thank you sir, have a nice day.” and they’re GONE! Not only was he not “checked out” with no valid probable cause while he was walking through the mall though, it was at least a day after the “incident” (that the cops manufactured) that a warrant was issued and for which he turned himself in. The story is unclear whether or not he was carrying his rifle when he turned himself in, or if the Stasi actually went to his home or business to confiscate that which he has a right that shall not be infringed to own and carry.

            Now, as to your non-sequitur question about how I feel about “stop & frisk,” the answer is quite simple – I don’t support the denial of 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th or 10th Amendment rights against any citizen anywhere in this country ever. I detest Brown Shirts no matter where they gather, and detest them even more when their motivation for trampling on people’s rights is race-based. So how do you think I feel about stop & frisk? A truly vapid question, but there it is, answered in plain English for you – I hold contempt for all the oath-breakers, from the Supreme Court on down to the lowly beat-cop who participate in such despotic behavior.

            Now, show me the same courtesy by answering my question to you – tell us that you’re alright with having your computer seized because of causing a disturbance with your 1st Amendment-protected speech so that you can establish your consistency in being OK with what happened to the terrifying 2nd Amendment-advocating young man in the Texas mall.

            • Jeff says:

              Blues Stringer, I said in my comments that I didn’t know Texas laws enough to speak about the confiscation of the gun. I am just saying that it was correct for the police to check the guy out.

        • Dale says:

          Yes, the police SHOULD have checked things out. But once that it was determined that no crime had taken place, he should have been sent on his way WITH his rifle. YOU are missing that specific point. NO CRIME HAD BEEN COMMITTED, PERIOD! It is LEGAL to open carry a rifle in Texas, he wasn’t doing it in a threatening manner (slung across his back with a drink and a bag in each hand – really – how is THAT threatening) , and once the police had finished talking to him THEY HAD NO PROBABLE CAUSE TO CONFISCATE HIS RIFLE! I hope he sues the pants of those clowns!

          • Jeff says:

            Dale,
            I have said in a number of my comments that I don’t know enough about Texas law to comment on the confiscation of his rifle. I have only said that I have no trouble with him being checked out by the police.

    • PF says:

      Paranoid schizophrenics get medicated, or institutionalized when their fears become incapacitating.

      Paranoid schizophrenics should not be allowed on the police department.

    • Paul Foreman says:

      “Just because you can do something doesn’t mean that you should do it.” As a retired cop, I agree. It “appears” or seems to me, that this man carrying a AR was showing off. In spite of the legal aspect, this is a dumb thing to do. Lets compare it to say a really gorgeous young women wearing a thong bikini while walking thru the mall. She has a right to do so, its legal, but is it common sense knowing the reaction she would get? (Ok, sure the guys would enjoy it)
      I look at it this way: If a mad man was entering the mall with a shotgun hidden under his trench coat, and came up behind this open carry guy, guess who would get shot first?

      • Jason says:

        Paul – As a retired cop you say – “Just because you can do something doesn’t mean that you should do it.”. Give me a break man. Texas has a law that says you can open carry a long gun. The problem is that the Texas PD is looking for ways to get around the law (really breaking the law themselves) and enforcing their own “policies” … not the law. As a retired cop I am sure you are well aware of departments doing this … enforcing a policy or their own view of how things should be … instead of doing what you are paid to do – protect and serve and yes enforce the law. I’m sorry but this man’s rights have been violated and the Texas PD is the one that has broken the law here. Wake up and smell the coffee buddy … one day the liberals may be coming for your guns as well …

      • Daniel Martino says:

        Nailed it. Thank you Paul.

    • Ray Marotta says:

      Scared much? You just might have a point had this “evil man with a gun” been carrying it at either
      the “high ready” or “low ready” position. A man with a weapon slung across his back with a bag in
      one hand and a drink in the other isn’t usually perceived as a threat except by those with serious personal
      courage issues.

      • Jeff says:

        Okay Ray, what ever you say. I guess you want non gun enthusiasts, who are shopping in a Mall, to be able to discern what is a threat or not.

        • BluesStringer says:

          It’s not about what other citizens think, they literally don’t matter a wit in this. What matters is that law enforcement should have protected the enumerated, articulated, unalienable, God-given right of Mr. Poe to *bear* his weapon over and above the irrational, pants-wetting fear of others whom the Constitution doesn’t contemplate government getting involved in in any way, shape, manner or form.

          What is more significant though, is that law enforcement in this case, and many more similar to it, aren’t concerned at all with what other people think. They aren’t even concerned with whether or not the subject is a legitimate threat. That can be determined from simply observing from a distance that the subject is not handling his weapon in an illegal or threatening manner. No, what they’re concerned with is illegally imposing their own personal feelings or beliefs about what constitutes an “appropriate” way or place to carry a weapon, regardless of the fact that the law does not empower them to even question someone engaging in a perfectly legal act.

          The cops were not “correct” as you allege above, in “checking the guy out.” There are both laws and Supreme Court rulings which state unequivocally that cops must have “articulable suspicion” of a crime either having been committed, or about to be, before they are legally authorized to “check the guy out.” Further, Terry vs. Ohio (SCOTUS) says that engagement in legal actions and/or behaviors may not be used by law enforcement as articulable suspicion, thus, Mr. Poe was “checked out” illegally, and it is Terry that proves my statement above true, that what other citizens simply think or feel about another citizens actions or behavior has no bearing whatsoever in a cop determining what is legal (or not) for him/her to react to complaints from them. They still have to follow the law even if the scared citizen is peeing their pants right in front of them.

          • Jeff says:

            Blues Stringer,
            Do you feel the same way about “stop and frisk”?

          • BluesStringer says:

            Asked and answered in my first reply to you. Do you even read who you’re replying to, or stop to see if they already responded to your question(s)? Like I said in my first reply, quit being an idiot.

  87. allen r haney says:

    This guy was stupid. I believe in the right to bear arms and but have some common sense. I live in missouri and you can open carry any firearm but if you go into a mall put your rifle in a case. Its just common sense not to cause fear. Im sure this is a good guy but I disagree with his actions.

    • tjtex says:

      Read the story – he was carrying the firearm legally to a place of business that sells/repairs firearms. How, exactly is he, or a customer, supposed to get their firearms in and out of the store? The problem is the clowns here and the cops there that think they can run everybody’s lives. Yes, Mr. Poe needs to go after everyone involved, the complaint, the cops, the DA, the city of Beaumont – everybody. As far as a case goes, the last time I bought a rifle it was unplanned and I didn’t bring a case with me. The answer was to carry the rifle out to the car in a totally non threating manner. Guess what happened? Nothing. So especially, considering that both his hands were full and the rifle was slung, what, exactly, could be considered a threat?

      • john w says:

        tjtex I live in Bmt. I’ve been to the store in the mall. It’s not a gun shop. He does not sell nor repair firearms. He has AR uppers which need no transfer and other equipment. I can walk in to Gander Mountain across the street off Dowlan Rd. purchase a firearm and walk out with no problem. I can also go in to have a firearm worked on inside the same store but it won’t be slung over my shoulder with a 30 round mag in it. Big difference.

      • Jeff says:

        His store didn’t sell guns.

        Also Mall rules:

        (http://www.parkdalemalltx.com/code-of-conduct) , and #20 of their “Rules of conduct” prohibits: “Carrying or displaying weapons of any kind except those carried by certified law enforcement officers in the performance of their duties”

  88. farm guy says:

    I guess since our leader can break any law any day, we all fear for our lives. To truly educate the public, the media should HAVE to give reports of armed citizens saving lives, daily, EVERY time they want to give a story about a criminal moron shooting someone.

  89. Brian Melton says:

    There’s no reason for anyone to “open carry” in the mall!! Regardless of the state or how you feel about gun control, strolling through a mall with a rifle is going to generate unnecessary attention….

    • Floyd R Turbo (American) says:

      And once you have put the mall off limits, what other places would you like to restrict?

    • James Long says:

      Brian, you have captured the essence of the gun control, speech control and other wing nuts. There doesn’t need to be a REASON for one to exercise one’s rights!

  90. Bill says:

    It appears that Mr. Poe was completely within the law when he was unnecessarily harassed by the Texas Police. This is a case that the NRA legal defense team should have been all over, but where were they?.

    The NRA is much too busy in a possible conflict of interest event in Texas. The NRA Outdoors has been too busy booking a group of radical hunters on what they call the Texas Helicopter Hog Hunt. This is an event where NRA members pay a few thousand dollars apiece to be flown around over Texas fields slaughtering wild hogs, one after another, left wounded lying on the ground.

    Many NRA members have called this event the Texas Helicopter Hog Slaughter and are thourally ashamed that they are members of an organization that would not only condone this event, but brag about sponsoring it.

    Many regular members and Life members are against this hunt being sanctioned by the NRA. Some members and Life members have even quit the NRA over this NRA Outdoors sponsored event.

    The NRA has ignored requests my dozens of their members to cancel and withdraw support of this event.

    I expect that we will wee more of this performance from the NRA until the membership at large decided to withdraw their financial support of the NRA and opts to join in with other organizations like the Gun Owners of America that stick to what their members are looking for.

    Have a Quality Day!

    Bill

    • Norton says:

      Not
      Really
      Against gun control -

    • Dale says:

      Before you go off half cocked, you should know that feral hags are such a problem in Texas and other southern states that they are considered vermin! One female can produce more than 10 piglets in a litter, and they have multiple litters a year. and pigs are able to reproduce at months, not years of age! So you can see the the feral pig problem grows at an exponential rate! Feral hogs cause billions of dollars in crop AND property damage each year! If left unchecked, feral pigs would wipe out most of southern agriculture in a very short time, and they are always spreading farther noth. So, don’t go off criticizing something you don’t know anything about or don’t have a working knowledge of why something is done a certain way. I’ve seen the damage that feral hogs can do to farms, ranches, parks, fences, buildings, dams and anything related to human civilization. Mass hunts are just one method that is used to try an keep their numbers in check.

  91. I have thought that Texas would be an excellent place to retire. Now I have serious doubts. Is it just a matter of time before the Progressives have overwhelmed Texas as they have done Colorado?

    • DB44 says:

      It’s not the progressives, it’s the Yankees that are working on overwhelming Texas. They’ve screwed up their own states and moved here because there are jobs and lower cost of living. Of course, in their limited wisdom, they then want to make Texas like the state of ruin they left.

      • Tom Owen says:

        DB44, Amen! Same thing happened in Jackson, Wyoming, from the 70′s on…got so badly Californicated that I had to leave there and move back to the real Wyoming. Now that town, Casper, has become so liberal that when I return to Wyoming, it will be to either, Sheridan (first choice), or the South Fork of the Shoshone River. BTW, once I move, if you’re a politician, pay attention to the three signs I’ll have in my drive: #1: “No Trespassing–Survivors Will be Prosecuted”, #2: “Due to the High Cost of Ammunition, Do Not Expect a Warning Shot”, and #3 (about 200 yards form the house and the closest to it) will read, “If You’re Reading This, You’re in Range!”. Will have warned ‘em three times–that’s enough.

        • Jack Bacon says:

          Tom, Come on down to Saratoga or Encampment.! It’ll be a cold day in hell before any Californication takes place there and everybody carries or at least has a gun close at hand and nobody gives it a second thought.! And more importantly the sheriff and deputies have some common sense.!

      • Frank Johnson says:

        You can make the same argument for the state of the entire country. Why do we allow people to immigrate here from countries with radically different cultures? How many news stories have you seen about Muslims committing “honor killings,” for example?

    • Ray Marotta says:

      I’m from Colorado and, we’ve got the gun grabbers on the run here.
      Two State Senators recalled and, another resigned in cowardice. There’s
      more to come…

      • nagmashdriver says:

        I escaped the PRK for Arizona and I’m very proud to say that I contributed financially to both recall campaigns for your state. Way to go, Ray!

  92. Citizen John says:

    I wonder who suggested to them the operative words, “Fear For Their Life”, the cops maybe.

  93. Barker62 says:

    I think I would file charges against the PD for their outrageous conduct. If Mr. Poe’s conduct was legal then that of the so-called complainant’s is irresponsible. Maybe filing charges against the complainants would educate some…. It really frustrates me when ignorant people stir up trouble – there really ought to be a way to minimize this.

    • Ray Marotta says:

      Get That ENTIRE city government involved in a civil rights lawsuit.
      Then file suit against the officers involved, the District Attorney as individuals.

  94. michael says:

    I thought Texas had it together. Well you know what comes out of Texas Cows and Queer laws. Please tell me I an wrong. Niw I have to get all mh family anf friends out. Where do I go now. You know Texas is the only sek lf sufficient State with a Quality infrastructure. The rest is a nightmare. I bet the Kenites who complained dont own a gun. Tgst should be a crime. If so and they feated for their lives. We all should send them to Chicago with pockets full of 1 dollar bills. In the middle of the night. Or Atlanta Georgia. Maybe a rental car in a rest stop in florida. Hell lets send them to all yhree. After Chicago, ifin then alive. We can have a drink and laugh it off. Unlike that poor Texan.

    • Ray Marotta says:

      Texas is being polluted by Californicators and New Dorkers. Chase these clowns out
      of the country and, the USA will once again be the best place in the world to be.

      • Gary says:

        Well just who do you pick to make the decision as to who stays and who goes?This type of action doesn’t sound to me like what this country is based on. When people like you start deciding who gets to stay and who has to leave then this country is in real trouble and may as well toss the constitution into the crapper.

      • Mike says:

        Here here Ray, right on!! The same thing happened to my wonderful State of Colorado 15 yrs. ago. Now everyone can see what it’s become!

      • Tom says:

        I think the point of the article was not about open carry but about the fearful reaction people have towards guns. Added from the terrible events in Colorado, Connecticut and the on going daily violence in Chicago people have become increasingly ignorant and fearful of firearms. It does not help that there are too many voices with political slants (e.g. hard right/left) that cloud the subject of the 2nd Amendment.

        When the fear of firearms is removed, I believe that society would recognize the difference between hostile intent and a person with a drink and a shopping bag in hand.

        Tom B****
        Firearms and Shooting Sports Instructor
        Austin Texas.

    • RAPTOR555 says:

      Spell Check badly needed!

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