Fish Or Man

Thursday, December 15, 2005

The Judge's Decision Is In

I just found out two minutes ago.

Oh, boy... ok... the bottom line is I WON MY APPEAL against the conviction of "warranting alarm" for open carrying a handgun in the city of Ellensburg.

Yeah, that's right. The Ellensburg case is dismissed, conviction over-turned. The city code was ruled inconsistent with the state version and preemption applied. The law was repealed!

I filed my complaint against Ellensburg police on June 1st, 2004, ten days after being stopped by police while open carrying. Only after the complaint was I issued a citation, (via mail which the post office failed to delivery due to street address/PO box differences).

The warrant that was then issued then lead to this police stop in Spokane. (Just glad I wasn't informed of the warrant by way of the "no-knock".)

The Ellensburg judge's decision reaches 6 pages, which I don't currently have in my hands yet, (more details later).

I fought this entire case pro se, without the help of the gun rights organization based in Washington State, (although it was requested).

And I am not alone in laying it all out on the line. Those that have the ability and knowledge to do so... must.

Update: The actual decision is up now.

Update for Washington State gun owners: Mr. Bill in the Claire files forum asked a very good question in this thread:
But as I understand it, what you succeeded in doing is to force an illegal city ordinance to be preempted and repealed. This is excellent, but if the cops had simply charged you under the state law rather than the city ordinance, you wouldn't have succeeded. So you (and all of us in Washington state) probably ought to figure that's exactly what will happen next time around.

Is there any way to open-carry in a manner that does not warrant alarm in others (legally speaking)?

I answered:
" wouldn't have succeeded."

Not necessarily. I then would have been forced to make my appeal on the law of "warranting alarm" being unconstitutional vague when attempted to be applied to a person peacefully carrying a handgun, (it also violates a citizen's right to bear arms, but that is actually another issue of the appeal).

and then followed up with this statement:

I believe the only precedent set with someone peacefully open carrying was a man in south Seattle carrying an AK type rifle strapped over his shoulders. They cited things as vague as him looking straight ahead while he walked, in order to claim the law wasn't being applied in a vague manner. (And that he was already packing a pistol concealed with his CPL to say the law didn't violate his "right to bear arms".) Another reason not to get a CPL, (beside the fact that a CPL is just playing into the gun control crowd's hands).

I have yet to see the precedent of someone peacefully carrying a handgun convicted under the "warranting alarm" bogus, law.


I believe the step is a large one from applying this law to someone carrying an AK, and then saying it can apply to a handgun. But, the truth is there is only one way to find out. Sitting on our collective hands, (hiding all weapons), and waiting for the NRA/SAF and others to play politics with our right to bear arms only helps the gun control organization gain more footing among the citizens who don't know the simple truth about guns.

As for me, I will live my life, complying with laws which do not violate a basic human right. As for the others...

And please, don't get me wrong on CPL's. We all have a choice of whether to get a CPL, and I understand why some make that choice. But, why in the land of the free we are required to make that choice is something I have yet to accept. As for more why I personally won't get one, I can't find anything wrong with this gentlemen's statements: bearman45.