Temple Texas is the last place you’d expect police to bring tyranny to it’s citizens, but in the video shown below, the police are shown illegally disarming and arresting Christopher Grisham, an active duty US soldier while on a rural hike to help his son earn an Eagle Scout badge.
Why was he detained? The first responding officer said that someone called in and reported a man walking with a rifle slung over his shoulder (which is completely legal). Mr Grisham asked the officer if he explained the law to that the person that called the police. The Sergeant responded “They don’t care what the law is.”
When he asked the officers what law he had broken, the Temple police officers invented a new crime – “rudely displaying a weapon.” Displaying a weapon rudely is not mentioned in any Texas law. In fact, you can openly carry rifles and shotguns in the state of Texas. A CHL is not needed to do this. However, you must do so in a manner not “calculated” to cause alarm; meaning you are carrying the rifle to purposely intimidate or scare people by threatening them or pointing it at someone. Mr Grisham was hiking in a rural area with his rifle on a sling. He obviously wasn’t out threatening anyone.
Several disturbing comments were made by the Temple police offers during Mr Grisham’s detainment.
At the 3:39 mark, after Mr Grisham explains Texas law to the officers, the first responding office quickly and sarcastically states that he “felt threatened” by the soldier and Eagle Scout.
At the 3:55 mark, the Sergeant in charge tells Mr Grisham that police are exempt from the law.
At the 5:15 mark, the offer tells Mr Grisham he’s a bad excuse of a dad, right in front of his son. I suppose he thinks that a good parent should never speak up and defend their rights.
At the 5:45 mark, the Sergeant states that all people that have guns are dangerous. It’s horrible to hear the police take this stance since only an extremely small fraction of gun owners have ever committed a crime. If we allow the police to treat all gun owners as criminals, then they could just wait at gun ranges and near other shooting and hunting areas to detain everyone they see, for no legal reason what so ever.
At the 5:59 mark, the Sergeant tries to compare people that carry rifles in Temple Texas to insurgents in the war in Iraq. These officers badly need a refresher course on American’s constitutional rights.
At 6:55, when Mr Grisham asks repeatedly what crime he is being detained for, the Sergeant replies “because you’re carrying a firearm.” Another fabricated law that they made up on the spot.
Mr Grisham eventually is placed in the police car and charged with “resisting arrest”, which he may have done verbally by arguing the law and defending his rights, but once he as booked into jail were reduced, but not dropped, and the Temple Police have refused to return Mr Grisham’s firearms or his concealed carry permit.
The open carry of long arms in Texas is a very common and legal occurrence. Not only are they carried for protection from attacks by people, snakes, dogs, coyotes, wild hogs, mountain lions, etc, they are also occasionally displayed during protests as an exercise of our American rights. The images shown alongside this text show people carrying long arms while protesting civil rights issues. These protests were done in urban areas without harassment by the police, so it’s particularly disturbing to see this happen in a rural area where rifles are used more often in peoples day to day activities.
The definition of tyranny is the arbitrary or unrestrained exercise of power; despotic abuse of authority. Inventing laws that don’t exist, restricting an American’s rights when he hasn’t committed a crime, and charging a person with a crime he hasn’t committed because you believe that police are exempt from the law definitely fall under that definition. It’s sad to see the police bring that kind of rule to the people of Temple Texas.
To speak with Officer Steve Ermis and Sergeant Minnicks of the Temple Police Department click here, or call (254) 298-5500 and ask them about how they train their officers on Texas gun laws and the US Constitution.