Article by Andy Valadez
I do some marketing for The Amazing Doc Greene Radio Show and am the Marketing Director for the National Association for Legal Gun Defense otherwise known as SelfDefenseFund.com who sponsors the show. I am also a member of Open Carry Texas and appreciate all of the work they do to help restore our gun rights in Texas and in our nation.
As a Marine Veteran, dad, husband and community leader, I often go out on prayer walks in my neighborhood nature trail park in Northwest Houston.
These walks are relaxing and also give me time to think about many issues concerning our nation and my role in helping to be a force for good.
During my service, I have trained in the Marines on various arms to include hand grenades, machine guns to include the .50 caliber, the M-16, Beretta shotgun, Colt M1911 and Glock .45 and Beretta 9mm, the Claymore and anti-tank weapons – qualifying Expert (badge qualification) on the M-16 and the Beretta Pistol.
So, you can trust that I am a strong advocate for the 2nd amendment and the rights we have as citizens in America.
When Texas became legal to open carry, I took my family to the state capitol to celebrate the historic day and open carry in my area of Cy-Fair to help lead a positive change and normalize the site of a “good guy” with a gun with no problems.
For the most part, most officers don’t feel the need to ID me when I open carry out in public. I have carried at many rallies, first and second amendment demonstrations and protests – with no issues.
Well, yesterday (8.1.17) I was out on a 4-mile prayer walk open carrying my sidearm as I had done months prior and more recently weeks prior. I always make sure to wave and smile to everyone I encounter to normalize my presence in the park. Most folks smile and wave back.
Well this day, a precinct 4 Constable Officer had been called and wanted to ID me for open carrying, because he advised me that it was illegal to be open carrying in the park. I advised him that it was not illegal and he asked me for my License to Carry.
This was a violation of my rights, but I complied given that my area of park also has a water treatment facility and license holders are exempt and can possess firearms on the premises.
I write this blog post, not to bring shame to Precinct 4, but to ensure that the word gets out that according to our Texas Attorney General announced last week, the sight of a gun does not justify a “Terry” stop to ID per the Supreme Court.
You can read excerpts of the Texas AG amicus brief here as reported by Jeremiadus: https://jeremiadus.com/2017/07/26/texas-ag-carrying-a-gun-doesnt-justify-terry-frisks-grits-for-breakfast/
I did not record the interaction with the officer, but should have. Next time . . .
I did record the conversation with a Constable supervisor over parks which you can listen to here and Doc Greene has already talked about this on the air nationally.
I know folks will support the Constable in this case, but we must also ensure that our officers follow the law too when it comes to stopping citizens.
I did not have to show ID, he has the right to ask, but I have the right to say “No.”
Now, if I had broken the law or was legally detained, he has the right to demand my ID. There is a difference.
Things to consider. An article provided by SelfDefenseFund.com when it comes to the “failur to ID” in Texas: http://priceofbusiness.com/failure-to-identify-to-a-police-officer-laws-penalties/
While I am on my prayer walks, I will pray for you. On mission.
Walked two-miles, no issues.
Took another walk yesterday no issues although had a unmarked truck pass by twice. No stop.
So, went out on an armed prayer walk today (also walked on 8.2.17 the day after this post with no issues) on our jogging and walking track near my house in Cy-Fair. Heavy set guy on a bike, bewildered. Freedom looks odd to the mentally enslaved. I wave and nod as always. Well, he keeps buzzing around. First go around seems to look closely as to what I was wearing (had my AC/DC rock and roll shirt on today). Second go around, he is on his cell phone “Well, how long will it take you to get here.” (I actually turned down my music to hear him). He disappeared after that. Finished my walk, no police called to the scene. Had there been an encounter, I would have requested FOIA on that call to see what was said and how the call was handled. On mission.
About Andy Valadez
Andy is a former U.S. Marine (Desert Storm/Shield). Graduate from Texas A&M University with a degree in Marketing and Tulane University in Applied Business.
Andy has been married to his wife, Tina (a CPA in Oil and Gas), for over 29 years and they have two daughters Kayla (17) and Kenna (14), who are cool tech kids that love to sing and watch YouTube videos for fun.
Marketing Dynamics was founded in 1999 in Houston, Texas. The goal of the company was to service start-ups, help businesses grow, and teach the value of strategic marketing by sharing its expertise with clients and business associates.