Fish Or Man

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

But... He Was Coming Right For Me!

Just because I take off the badge doesn't mean I have to act like one of them, do I?
An off-duty Kennewick police officer is accused of pointing his gun at a Meals on Wheels volunteer in a road rage incident...."

"...The man, who was not identified by police, told investigators he stopped his truck after he looked in his rearview mirror and saw Bonnalie waving his arms as though wanting him to stop. Bonnalie, who had his preschool-age child with him, reportedly stopped behind the man.

The driver reportedly had been helping his sister deliver meals to senior citizens, and thought he may have lost an item from the truck. He told officers he got out of his truck, looked at the meals in the back, then walked back to talk to Bonnalie.

As the man approached, Bonnalie, who was not wearing his uniform, allegedly pointed a loaded handgun at the man's chest..."


Now this appears to be a clear-cut charge under the state law, (worded NEARLY identical as the Ellensburg city code I am currently being charged under), RCW 9.41.290.
"It shall be unlawful for any person to carry, exhibit, display, or draw any firearm... ...in a manner, under circumstances, and at a time and place that either manifests an intent to intimidate another or that warrants alarm for the safety of other persons."

Police have an automatic out under the exception to this law,
"Any person who by virtue of his or her office or public employment is vested by law with a duty to preserve public safety, maintain public order, or to make arrests for offenses, while in the performance of such duty."

There are also exception for self-defense under this STATE law, (plus a few other exception).

The reason I say the State law is NEARLY identical to Ellensburg City code, is because the Ellensburg code doesn't allow ANY exceptions. Which means, any person inside the city limits of Ellensburg drawing their weapon in self-defense is in violation of the city code. Which also means the city code is UNCONSTITUTIONAL and in direct violation of WA State Constitution Section 24, "The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired..."

Yet, the judge already denied my motion for dismissal on these grounds, (a whooping 2 minutes decision, surprise, surprise), so this decision looks to be made on appeal. Also, I can't take the issue to the jury, because they are only to decide questions of fact, not questions of law, (or so the courts would like them to believe.) Jury nullification, anyone?