A flurry of 911 calls were placed earlier today and a Madison Heights high school full of nervous students was placed on lockdown today after a man when on a stroll through the snow just off campus with a rifle slung across his back and a pistol on his hip.
Lamphere High School in Madison Heights was placed on lockdown after a man was seen carrying a rifle near the school.
Only 7 Action News has obtained video of the man walking down 13 Mile Road and in front of Lamphere High School in Madison Heights with that rifle strapped on his back.
Police say the man identified himself as an Open Carry advocate who was exercising his rights. In Michigan it is legal to carry either a handgun in a holster or a long gun that is not pointed in a threatening way in public.
Madison Heights Police made sure the man did not intend to enter the school and let him continue walking. They did not ask his name or destination.
Law enforcement officers were diverted, and school was disrupted, because this “gentleman” insisted on open carrying past a high school, seemingly with the express intent of getting a rise out of authorities and making a public spectacle out of himself.
Most gun owners support the theory of open carry, and most have the basic sense to understand that it should not be used in such a manner that it can be taken as a threat against the public, or against private individuals.
Unfortunately, individuals have abused open carry in various states to the point that restrictions have been placed upon open carry. Sometimes, this sort of trolling has led to open carry being outlawed entirely, with California being a prime example.
Here in my home state of North Carolina we’ve had open carry for as long as I can remember, but it is reigned in by a curious statute called “going armed to the terror of the people.”
Going armed to the terror of the people (NC Common Law Crime)
A person guilty of this offense
(1) arms himself or herself with an unusual and dangerous weapon
(2) for the purpose of terrifying others and
(3) goes about on public highways
(4) in a manner to cause terror to the people.
It appears to be a specific law triggered to stop the specific kind of behavior that we saw from this open carry activist in Michigan today.
If this sort of intentional trolling of schools and other known “soft targets” continues, you can fully expect from gun control forces to start pushing for a similar law in Michigan and other places.