Legal Concealed Carrier Gets Arrested At Gunpoint In Texas For Being A Legal Concealed Carrier

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 10 months ago

Click2Houston.com:

ROSENBERG, Texas –Alonza Gonzalez was turning right near 59 and FM 762 several months ago but just recently received the dash camera video after he filed public records requests.

“Just because I have a handgun on me and a license to carry should not be a big deal, but that is what made it the turning point,” Gonzalez said.

In the video, you can hear Rosenberg Police Officer Schnacky say, “You got your drivers license with you and insurance?” Gonzalez said, “Yeah, what’s the reason you stopped me?”

The officer then said, “I’ll tell you in just a minute.”

Schnacky continued, “You have your handgun with you today? Where is it?” Gonzalez replied, “On me, on my right side.”

At that point, the officer called for backup, seemingly because the driver had a concealed handgun.

When the backup officer arrived, he was told Gonzalez was not being cooperative and then he pulled his gun out of the holster and walked up to the truck window.

Schnacky can be heard saying, “Mr. Gonzalez, get your hands up on the wheel, both of them. Appreciate it. Here’s what I want you to do. I want you to step out of the truck for me; when you do so I want you to keep your hands on the back of your head, OK?”

Seconds later, Gonzalez was arrested: “You’re under arrest for your traffic violations.”

Video is at the link.  According to Fox News, “an internal investigation concluded the officer who pulled Gonzalez over followed all proper procedures.  It also reported that the officer had resigned and was no longer on the force.”

I think the police are lying.  I don’t think this followed procedure at all.  I don’t think it’s procedural to unholster weapons for people obeying the law.  If so, the police can produce said procedure and prove me wrong.  If I’m wrong, why is the officer no longer with the department?  And if I’m wrong and the police are being honest, why do they have a procedure that orders (or allows) them to unholster weapons against peaceable citizens when there is no threat?


Comments

  1. On November 23, 2015 at 3:34 pm, Archer said:

    Under what procedure is it proper to arrest someone for traffic violations?

    I’m not in Texas, but I know of no traffic code violation (e.g. speeding, failure to signal, running stop sign, etc.) that rises to the level of a full-on arrest.

  2. On November 23, 2015 at 3:49 pm, John Shore said:

    Starting from the ending, it IS legal in Texas, or so I’m told, to make a physical arrest for certain traffic violations–and others have stated that the particular violations Mr. Gonzalez allegedly committed are contained within that short list. However, the reason behind making a physical arrest for mere violations is to ensure court appearance; I see no information in the article that tells us that Mr. Gonzalez was any sort of flight risk, nor any cause to demonstrate that his violations were of such an egregious nature as to warrant his physical arrest for public safety.
    There is nothing in Mr. Gonzalez’ behavior that indicates a lack of cooperation, or any indication of his being a threat. It is not necessarily ‘procedure’ to unholster a firearm in a citizen contact such as this, but it IS legal and acceptable if there is a perceived, and valid, cause to do so. Absent either of those factors, drawing a firearm (complete with the ‘cool’ hiding-behind-the-thigh) is counterproductive and an overreaction, very likely to provoke ‘unpleasantness’ where none is needed. Further, making a physical arrest for mere traffic violations of a common nature, of a legally- armed citizen, is contrary to common sense: It exposes both citizen and officer to an unnecessary escalation and heightens the risk to all involved.
    In a state that has legally-authorized CCW in place, it should be no surprise to come across an armed citizen during a traffic stop; In fact, it should be expected and readily dealt with as a matter of course.
    Here, though, the original officer didn’t accept the logic that a legally-armed citizen was hardly likely to be a nefarious threat, and relayed his inexperienced misgivings to the second officer (who was even worse in this regard, having the opportunity to de-escalate and choosing to escalate instead). Their mutual inappropriate behavior fed upon itself, escalating the normal contact into a ‘high-risk’ one. I have seen similar things happen in my career: One officer becomes excited or misperceives a situation, goes off on a tangent, and the second one may just ‘play along to get along.’ Sometimes, the arrival of a of more experienced, calmer officer may de-escalate such a situation; This didn’t happen here.
    As an example, my state has Constitutional carry, with the legal provision that a carrier must notify an officer of being armed on first contact; My last (and only post-retirement) contact with a state trooper during a traffic stop just a year ago resulted, after my advisory, in the trooper saying, “Well, if you don’t touch yours, I won’t touch mine!” in a pleasant, offhand manner–and that was the end of it.
    What occurred here was a near-infantile overreaction to a perceived, but non-existent, threat, followed by an overbearing exercise in police power, and an unnecessarily-forceful physical arrest without real cause. Clearly, the first officer had it in mind to punish Mr. Gonzalez for merely exercising his rights under Texas law, and acted accordingly. I hear nothing in the officer’s voice to indicate fear or excitement–only a hint of sardonicism in his tone.
    Unfortunately, I do not think that Mr. Gonzalez has an actionable tort, or a Federal civil-rights violation; What both officers did was ‘legal,’ but both were unethical.
    Sadly, being ‘rude’ under color of law is not an offense.

  3. On November 23, 2015 at 4:20 pm, UNCLEELMO said:

    Is it department procedure to call for backup when citing a CCW permit holder for not using his turn signal and for having a driver’s side window? Seems a bit extreme.
    Also, I wonder which one is no longer on the force; the one who made the stop or the one that had his weapon drawn.

    My personal opinion is that Cop #1 woke up on the wrong side of bed, and took it personally when Mr. Gonzalez had the temerity to pull into the intersection in front of him. But that’s just my opinion. It’s worth what you paid for it.

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You are currently reading "Legal Concealed Carrier Gets Arrested At Gunpoint In Texas For Being A Legal Concealed Carrier", entry #14315 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Police and was published November 23rd, 2015 by Herschel Smith.

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