VIDEO: Michigan Cops Harass Citizen Legally Carrying a Gun
A Michigan man legally carrying a pistol openly in a holster was illegally stopped and harassed by Grand Rapids police in March of 2013 in an incident that sparked a federal lawsuit. Now the full video of the encounter has been released to the public.
Last March, Grand Rapids citizen Johann Deffert was peacefully walking on the sidewalk in his own neighborhood when police illegally detained him, cuffed him, threw him on the ground and then into a squad car, a federal lawsuit alleges.
In Michigan it is fully legal to open carry a pistol with the proper license.
Deffert is suing for $600,000 alleging he was physically assaulted by cops.
The video is revealing showing that police did not give him even a second’s benefit of the doubt and immediately treated him as a “nut” as one of the cops called him. This name calling is clearly heard on the video.
It is also clear that Deffert was doing nothing illegal. He was not waving his gun, he was not attacking anyone, nor acting strangely–though police claimed he was “talking to himself” at one point in the video, but that is a charge unproven by the video.
Deffert and his attorney say that he was mistreated by cops.
“The officers acted improperly that my client Mr. Deffert was not engaged in any unlawful activity. There was no reason for him to be detained, much less having loaded guns pointed at him,” Deffert’s attorney Steven Dulan said.
The police officer clearly treated Deffert as being guilty until proven innocent and even said as much on the video. The officer is heard telling Deffert that he can treat him however he wants to treat him until he, the officer, is satisfied that Deffert is innocent of any wrong doing.
“The fact that he said he wasn’t doing anything unlawful, and the officer saying yes you are until I prove otherwise, that goes against our state constitutional right open carry a fire arm in public,” said Bobby Wilmoth from Centershot Gun Range in Dorr, Michigan.
The harassment was apparently sparked by a citizen who called 911 because he didn’t know that open carry was legal in Michigan.
Police need to have open carry and concealed carry laws drilled into their thick skulls as these incidents are happening in every single state in the union. In every case police are treating law abiding citizens as criminals despite both the U.S. Constitution and local laws.
Sadly, no police officer in the nation seems to be properly informed about the very laws they are claiming to “enforce.”
Warner Todd Huston
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago-based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's BigGovernment.com, BigJournalsim.com and all Breitbart News' other sites, RightWingNews.com, CanadaFreePress.com, and many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs across the country to discuss his opinion editorials and current events as well as appearing on TV networks such as CNN, Fox News, Fox Business Network, and various Chicago-based news programs. He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on amazon.com. He is also the owner and operator of PubliusForum.com. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions : EMAIL Warner Todd Huston and follow him on Twitter, on Google Plus , and Facebook.