Ohio cops encounter an armed Ohio resident.
This is the way it could have gone down instead
(This is a rendition of comments I made in this You tube video’s comment section)
Report of man wearing a gun at Convenience Store (you can adapt this scenario to accommodate 2 or more LEO’s, hopefully you will understand the spirit behind this advice)
Is he being threatening or seem intoxicated? Is he demanding money? No? OK I’ll check it out
Pull into the stores parking lot “Dispatch please run these tags for me”
Go inside greet clerk at the cash register, see if the guy wearing the sidearm notices you but don’t approach him yet, talk to Clerk instead “is he being bad guy? No?” OK depending on how the clerk responds maybe call for backup at this point. If the clerk indicates he’s not being a problem then make the first encounter
Make sure OC notices you by looking to buy stuff next to him, How’s it going? Can you believe the weather we’re having?
Engaging him in conversation allows you to assess if Open Carrier seems a likely danger to himself or others. No?
Take your merchandise move to a corner look at stuff &or engage in cryptic coded conversation with your dispatcher. If it hasn’t come in before get vehicle info from dispatch checking wants and warrants etc
Depending on environmental variables you can hangout in the store on your cellphone or whatever until he pays and leaves. Or you might try striking up a conversation “hey that’s a nice looking pistol what is it a ‘[guess wrong]’, yeah I’ve shot those but my hand just fits my model of sidearm better”
Once again threat assessment based on environmental variables
If he is responding favourably you might even introduce yourself and hold your hand out to shake, good bet that he will shake your hand and introduce himself back
Or if he is standoffish just loiter and observe, does he pay with plastic, will the clerk give you the name? When he leaves does he get into a vehicle or walk away? Get the drift? You are fulfilling your duty as a Law Enforcement Officer, you’ve shown the flag, you’ve made your determination from observing the situation, (maybe he’s wearing blood spattered overalls, and singing The Greenskeepers hit ‘Lotion’* to himself and you’ve had to stick a stake through his heart).
Most likely you have made cordial contact with a law abiding citizen and made, if not a friend, a person that probably trusts LEO’s just a little bit more than before this encounter.
Or you can act like a robocop reject, throw your LEO status around and convince him the people telling him you’re just jackbooted thugs are correct, that the cops are the enemy & you can’t’ trust the ‘justice system’ to help build &or sustain our civilization, and he needs to start looking elsewhere
Do I really need to do an advisory for a song about a serial killer who skins women and then wears the skin in the same manner that I wear a leather jacket?
* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CQokgv0dQw A song about Buffalo Bill, in the story Silence of the Lamb