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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know you guys are not a bunch of lawyers sitting around waiting to answer my questions, but:

If I am a CCW permit holder in UT, I can carry concealed in public or I can carry open loaded.

If I am carrying concealed and am uncomfortable in a situation, say walking down the street, if I "uncloak" my holstered weapon on my belt to improve my response time, am I then brandishing by changing my concealed status?

or am I only brandishing if I draw the weapon, or am I brandishing if I uncloak in a "threatening" manner? Or is brandishing really just "in the eye of the beholder" and brandishing if the other guy feels threatened?

thanks, al
 

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You've got it all wrong, we are all lawyers who are waiting around to answer these questions. I am surprised i am the first one to pounce on this.
Lets see...you asked so many questions. Yes, No, No, No, No,No.

Actually there is no such word as "Brandishing" in Utah Code. Closest is 76-10-506 . The elements are basically display (or better) of a firearm with the intent to intimidate in a non-self-defense situation. (notice that it states "self-defense" situation and not "deadly force required self-defense.) The mere act of pointin' a Roscoe is not deadly force and has been held that it is a less than lethal alternative to the use of deadly force.

Clark
 

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So, Clark, I am a little confused by your reply.

If I display my weapon in a potentially harmful situation in order to quell a would-be attacker, am I doing something wrong if a hold a CFP?
 

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Sorry for the confusion. To answer your question, No, you would be in violation of any law 'if in the act of self-defense".
Technically pointing a gun at a bad guy with a knife running towards you is Aggravated Assault, but the affirmative defense to that is "self-defense. Same with 76-10-506, it is either threathening with a weapon or self defense.
Clark
 

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W. Clark Aposhian said:
Sorry for the confusion. To answer your question, No, you would be in violation of any law 'if in the act of self-defense".
Did you mean, "you would not be in violation of any law 'if in the act of self-defense"???

Sorry, I'm really new still and am a little confused...

Is it ok for me to go from CC to OC if I'm in an environment where I feel the need to have better access to my firearm?
 

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yung1s said:
Is it ok for me to go from CC to OC if I'm in an environment where I feel the need to have better access to my firearm?
I should really let Clark, the expert, answer this, but that's just not my style :)

My understanding is that revealing your weapon in an intimidating manner is threatening, and is a crime of some sort -- which sort depends on the specifics. However, if you do it because you have a reasonable fear, then you're threatening in self-defense. That means that while you have committed a crime, the law explicitly states that you have a valid defense. So, you could be charged and hauled in front of a judge, but unless the prosecution could prove that you didn't have a reasonable fear and weren't just trying to defend yourself, you'd be acquitted.

If, on the other hand, you reveal your sidearm in a way that is not threatening (e.g. the BG can't see you do it, or if a reasonable person wouldn't think you were doing it to threaten, etc.), then you're just rearranging your clothing, which you have every right to do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Wow, I just had an incredible experience--I was reading this post thinking--what a great question! I then realized it was my post from some time ago--DOH!!
I guess I still have some lack of clarity about this.
I agree with the yung1s clarification.
/ianal
 

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iampacking said:
Wow, I just had an incredible experience--I was reading this post thinking--what a great question! I then realized it was my post from some time ago--DOH!!
I guess I still have some lack of clarity about this.
I agree with the yung1s clarification.
/ianal
LOL. Deja Vu.

Seems like swillden has the best answer. Remember it all has to do with self-defense. Did you reveal the gun in self-defense? If the answer is yes, you should be OK. If you revealed it for other reasons, you are probably in trouble.

-PW
 

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The same principle applies to using your weapon. If you shoot someone, it's murder. But if you shoot them in self defense, you have a defense against the murder charge and are good to go.

I think the bigger question is whether showing your gun is a good idea tactically. Most criminals will cower if they see you've got a gun. For others, it might simply escalate the situation into a shootout.

Strategically, I would not show your gun unless you're all but ready to use it.
 

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apollosmith said:
The same principle applies to using your weapon. If you shoot someone, it's murder. But if you shoot them in self defense, you have a defense against the murder charge and are good to go.
That's not right. If you kill someone its a homicide, but there are different types of homicide: justifiable, negligent, criminal, vehicular, etc...

To be classified as a murder, the homicide must be criminal homicide and meet additional requirements.

I might not be exactly right in my explanation, but the point is that homicide isn't necessarily murder.
 

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I guess I must not be understanding the theoretical question correctly. To me this seems obvious, but since everyone else is in disagreement I'm thinking I'm missing something. Maybe someone can point it out to me?

Here's how I'm seeing it: the original question was of a guy in a theoretical situation where he found himself in a "bad" neighborhood and was worried for his safety. In order to both deter perps as well as improve his access time to his firearm he "uncloaked" his gun as he proceeded walking (I'm assuming he's on foot since it makes more sense in this situation than driving would). The question never stated he PRESENTED his weapon or otherwise removed it from it's holster. To me it sounds like he's asking if he can simply open his jacket and pull his shirt and jacket up over his holster as if he were OC'ing... which is, of course, perfectly legal... so... what's the catch that I'm missing here???
 

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Revealing your firearm could still get you in some trouble in a few cases. Say for instance some guy takes your parking spot. You get out of the car, walk up to him and pull your jacket aside to show him your gun and say "are you sure you wanna park there?”

But just a casual adjustment of clothes, removing a coat or jacket, bending over or sitting and your firearm shows and you will be just fine. Even tucking your shirt in when entering a scary part of town is just fine, as long as you are not threatening anyone you are just fine.
 

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bane said:
Here's how I'm seeing it: the original question was of a guy in a theoretical situation where he found himself in a "bad" neighborhood and was worried for his safety. In order to both deter perps as well as improve his access time to his firearm he "uncloaked" his gun as he proceeded walking (I'm assuming he's on foot since it makes more sense in this situation than driving would). The question never stated he PRESENTED his weapon or otherwise removed it from it's holster. To me it sounds like he's asking if he can simply open his jacket and pull his shirt and jacket up over his holster as if he were OC'ing... which is, of course, perfectly legal... so... what's the catch that I'm missing here???
That is exactly what I was wondering about... you answered the question to the 'T'. Everyone is so knowledgable here - it's awesome! :D
 

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Gee I don't think you need much help brandshing. Just pull out your gun and wave it around. That should do it. :D

bran·dish [ brándish ] (past and past participle bran·dished, present participle bran·dish·ing, 3rd person present singular bran·dish·es)

transitive verb

Definition:

wave something about: to wave something about, especially a weapon, in a menacing, theatrical, or triumphant way

http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_18615 ... ndish.html

Tarzan

(Sorry guys I just couldn't resist.)
 

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Good topic. It's hard to give clear answers to these questions because every case is different, and each case has a different set of circumstances. Regarding the OP's original question, based on what he described, there is no crime being committed. However, when you add other people, and confrontation, to the equation, then you have to analyze the whole situation from start to finish.

Here's my 2 cents, fwiw. Keep in mind, when you talk about committing a crime, there are 2 things that need to be investigated and/or proven, the Act and the Intent; Actus reus and Mens rea. When LE investigates, they look What criminal act was committed, and what was the Intent of the actors involved.
My understanding is that revealing your weapon in an intimidating manner is threatening, and is a crime of some sort -- which sort depends on the specifics. However, if you do it because you have a reasonable fear, then you're threatening in self-defense. That means that while you have committed a crime, the law explicitly states that you have a valid defense.
Sorry for the confusion. To answer your question, No, you would be in violation of any law 'if in the act of self-defense".
Technically pointing a gun at a bad guy with a knife running towards you is Aggravated Assault,...
It's actually Incorrect to say that you've committed a crime, or 'technically' committed a crime, by simply drawing or showing a gun, or even shooting someone, during a confrontation. What was your Intent?

If LE can't show/prove Intent, (mens rea, acting with criminal intent) there's No crime and they wont pursue charges. Neither will the County Attorney or D.A's office. If by chance you do get charged, then (in an Ideal world....) the state, county city would have to prove the Act And Intent in court. Thats where you would present your facts about why your actions were done in 'self defense'.

Probably the most common mistake people make when it comes to this particular topic, or code 76-10-506, is they Escalate the problem instead of avoiding the confrontation, or area, in the first place. ie; If some guy wants to confront you during a road rage, dont flash your weapon, or pull over and be a mutual role player. Call the police or drive to a police station.
ie; If you're walking down a sidewalk at night and you're walking towards a group of 'scary looking people', find another way to go, or cross the street. IF you decide to walk into the crowd, don’t display your gun like the you're the 'Man', just be ready in case things go Really bad.

Just remember, A gun should never be shown Hoping to Scare possible Threats away. Its a tool that kills. Take it out only when you need to stop someone from killing you.
JMHO
E
 

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TMG said:
...If you're walking down a sidewalk at night and you're walking towards a group of 'scary looking people', find another way to go, or cross the street. IF you decide to walk into the crowd, don’t display your gun like the you're the 'Man', just be ready in case things go Really bad...
Good point. :idea:
 

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I agree with TMG's points about not showing your weapon and choosing an alternate solution. That is exactly how I would approach that type of situation. I was merely trying to target the "legality" of the situation.
 

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Just to muddy the waters here, If you do display your weapon in self defense, Should I contact the police and explain the situation? Just in case they play the victim role and call them on me?
 

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I think it is very important that you do call the police if you must present, or show your weapon in self defense. Often victims get the wrong end of the stick because they were not first to call. For those of us who refuse to join the modern age and spend thousands on cell phones--hopefully someone witnesses and is able to either call the police on your behalf, or lets you call on their phone. This is what happened when I was assaulted over four years ago, and even though the sheriff's office did not arrest the culprit when presented with overwhelming evidence of his guilt. But at least I knew I wouldn't be prosecuted or charged unduly.
 
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