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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for advice on how I should have reacted to a situation that occurred a couple nights ago. I ride late at night around my neighborhood (around 2am for 2 hours). My bike and I are very well lit. As I was riding along, a car coming from the opposite direction very slowly began to drift into my lane, to the point that I had to hug the curb. He was going very slow, so I wasn't really afraid of being hit, but it irritated me a bit. It was obvious to me that he did it on purpose.

So, anyways, I mutter under my breath a few choice swear words and continue on my merry way. My ride is more or less a lap around a two block radius, so it's kinda like running around a track - going two blocks, right turn, two blocks right turn, ect. During the back side of the loop I notice a car parked at an intersection I'm approaching. There is no traffic but he's just sitting there. I think that this has to be the same guy I just encountered and he's waiting for me. As I approached, I couldn't tell if it was the same car or not, but just to be safe, once I got up to it I began going around the back of it instead of crossing his path and potentially getting hit.

As I did this, the guy drove into the intersection and turned around, and began screaming, "Get your F$%king hands up!!" He repeated the command several times. He also had a flashlight up by his face so I was unable to see it and it was shining in my eyes. The car wasn't a marked police car. In Washington State we have open carry law, meaning that as long as your firearm is visible, you don't need a permit to carry it. When the guy started screaming at me, I figured he must have seen it hanging out of my pocket in my holster and was initiating a felony stop. Granted, this was a bit overkill, but I can imagine a cop getting a bit excited by seeing someone at 2am riding around on a bike with a gun in his pocket.

I stopped and complied by putting my hands up. He then began to grill me about why I was out so late and when I told him that I was just exercising, he didn't believe me and said, "Go the F#$k home, dude!" He said this several times, but didn't mention my gun. I started wondering if he was actually a cop or not. I still couldn't see his face or inside his car, so I asked him, "Are you a police officer?" To which he responded, "Possibly." Then he repeated, "Go the F home, dude." I was pissed off at this point because now I'm thinking I just got punked by some douche out playing cops and robbers. I said, "No, I'm not going home." He drove off.

All that to say, what would you have done? I went to the police station and the officer told me I did the right thing by cooperating with the commands, but that, yes, that wasn't a real cop most likely. It was just a guy with a flashlight being a jerk.

The options are not stopping and getting jacked up or even shot if he were actually a real cop. The "Get your hands up!!" scream was pretty convincing. What if he had seen my gun and commanded me to hand it over to him? Am I going to say, "Not until you prove you're a cop"? Probably another good way to get shot had he been real.

How do you know when an unmarked police car is real or not? When they're yelling to put your hands up, I picture the other hand is holding a gun and it's pointed at me, so refusing and saying, "Say, there buster! Show me your badge before I put my hands up!" seems like a risky proposition.

I've been riding this route for several months and this is the only time I've had trouble, other than being told I had to wear a helmet during a traffic stop (this officer didn't give two shits about my firearm, though he did run my name). I probably wont ever see this guy again, but it still chaps my hide falling for his ruse.
 

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I'm looking for advice on how I should have reacted to a situation that occurred a couple nights ago. I ride late at night around my neighborhood (around 2am for 2 hours). My bike and I are very well lit. As I was riding along, a car coming from the opposite direction very slowly began to drift into my lane, to the point that I had to hug the curb. He was going very slow, so I wasn't really afraid of being hit, but it irritated me a bit. It was obvious to me that he did it on purpose.

So, anyways, I mutter under my breath a few choice swear words and continue on my merry way. My ride is more or less a lap around a two block radius, so it's kinda like running around a track - going two blocks, right turn, two blocks right turn, ect. During the back side of the loop I notice a car parked at an intersection I'm approaching. There is no traffic but he's just sitting there. I think that this has to be the same guy I just encountered and he's waiting for me. As I approached, I couldn't tell if it was the same car or not, but just to be safe, once I got up to it I began going around the back of it instead of crossing his path and potentially getting hit.

As I did this, the guy drove into the intersection and turned around, and began screaming, "Get your F$%king hands up!!" He repeated the command several times. He also had a flashlight up by his face so I was unable to see it and it was shining in my eyes. The car wasn't a marked police car. In Washington State we have open carry law, meaning that as long as your firearm is visible, you don't need a permit to carry it. When the guy started screaming at me, I figured he must have seen it hanging out of my pocket in my holster and was initiating a felony stop. Granted, this was a bit overkill, but I can imagine a cop getting a bit excited by seeing someone at 2am riding around on a bike with a gun in his pocket.

I stopped and complied by putting my hands up. He then began to grill me about why I was out so late and when I told him that I was just exercising, he didn't believe me and said, "Go the F#$k home, dude!" He said this several times, but didn't mention my gun. I started wondering if he was actually a cop or not. I still couldn't see his face or inside his car, so I asked him, "Are you a police officer?" To which he responded, "Possibly." Then he repeated, "Go the F home, dude." I was pissed off at this point because now I'm thinking I just got punked by some douche out playing cops and robbers. I said, "No, I'm not going home." He drove off.

All that to say, what would you have done? I went to the police station and the officer told me I did the right thing by cooperating with the commands, but that, yes, that wasn't a real cop most likely. It was just a guy with a flashlight being a jerk.

The options are not stopping and getting jacked up or even shot if he were actually a real cop. The "Get your hands up!!" scream was pretty convincing. What if he had seen my gun and commanded me to hand it over to him? Am I going to say, "Not until you prove you're a cop"? Probably another good way to get shot had he been real.

How do you know when an unmarked police car is real or not? When they're yelling to put your hands up, I picture the other hand is holding a gun and it's pointed at me, so refusing and saying, "Say, there buster! Show me your badge before I put my hands up!" seems like a risky proposition.

I've been riding this route for several months and this is the only time I've had trouble, other than being told I had to wear a helmet during a traffic stop (this officer didn't give two shits about my firearm, though he did run my name). I probably wont ever see this guy again, but it still chaps my hide falling for his ruse.
I am not sure what advice you are looking for. The event is over, and its a pretty unique scenario. I dont see any other options that what you did. Just because he was fake doesn't mean you couldn't have gotten shot if you did not comply
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I guess you're right. Thinking back on it, I should have kept going until he turned on his lights (which he obviously didn't have). As far as getting shot, I was mainly talking about if it had been a real cop. There's no way to tell.
 

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Unmarked police cars still have blue and red lights on the inside. Real police officers will also produce identification if you demand it. Whether or not you think the cop is real, keep your mouth shut and refuse to answer any questions without a lawyer present. Nothing you say to a cop (a real one) will vindicate you in court.
 

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So would you have refused to put your hands up until you saw the flashing lights?
I would have tentatively had them up but also demanded to see proper police identification.
 

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All that to say, what would you have done? I went to the police station and the officer told me I did the right thing by cooperating with the commands, but that, yes, that wasn't a real cop most likely. It was just a guy with a flashlight being a jerk.

The options are not stopping and getting jacked up or even shot if he were actually a real cop. The "Get your hands up!!" scream was pretty convincing. What if he had seen my gun and commanded me to hand it over to him? Am I going to say, "Not until you prove you're a cop"? Probably another good way to get shot had he been real.

How do you know when an unmarked police car is real or not? When they're yelling to put your hands up, I picture the other hand is holding a gun and it's pointed at me, so refusing and saying, "Say, there buster! Show me your badge before I put my hands up!" seems like a risky proposition.
For the most part you did the right thing. For your safety you needed to comply.
What you should have done though was rather than asking if he was a cop, you should have asked for his name and badge number. A real cop would have no issues giving you that information immediately. Another thing you can do if you're unsure whether the cop is real or fake is demand a supervisor be called to the scene.

If you're going to open carry, you really should understand your rights/laws and how to interact with police confrontations better.


The event is over, and its a pretty unique scenario.
Actually, no it's quite common. Police often don't understand carry laws and neither do people who carry. Mix the two together and you get bad situations. You could spend all day watching youtube videos about it. And those are just the ones that get recorded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I am pretty up on the open carry law and have had several interactions with LE while carrying and never had a problem. The law doesn't cover what to do when confronted by the scenario I presented.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
While I can appreciate your position on relating with the police, I'd like to have a more cordial relationship with them rather than adversarial. I realize that's not always possible, especially when accused of a crime. I live in a fairly shitty neighborhood and have to call them often, so being on their good side might help with response times 😄
 

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I am pretty up on the open carry law and have had several interactions with LE while carrying and never had a problem. The law doesn't cover what to do when confronted by the scenario I presented.
Except you didn't know to request identification. Whether confronted by a fake cop, or real cop, it's something to know. Because even real ones will sometimes refuse to give you their identification. Which is a sign they're probably up to no good.

Oh, and you should really consider getting a Gopro or other camera on your bike if you're going to ride around at 2am while carrying.
 

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Yeah, I see your point on the ID. I was just thinking tonight that I need a GoPro.
You really should. And put it on top of your helmet so it's nice and visible. Always a good deterrent to bad behavior.

One thing to keep in mind is that at night, you're not going to get much quality video. In your scenario, you'd get the car coming into your lane, but likely not be able to identify it. When it was stopped at the intersection you might get decent video if your lights are bright enough. When he had the flashlight on you, the flashlight would wash out all the video. But you'd have the audio. Which would be good to have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would have at the very least been able to get the plate number. The cops seemed very interested in finding this guy. I have a 200 lumin headlight on my bike and a 300 lumin rechargeable light on my head, though it only last an hour and a half before needing to be recharged.
 

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I dunno...........riding around a bad area after late at night, advertising my GoPro, might not be such a great idea!

But I don't have a visible gun, so there's that too.
 

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The other night I was on my way home after work when I saw this dude on a bike going around the block multiple times. It was 2am and he kept going around and around, I think he may have been casing the neighborhood because on top of that, he was carrying a gun. I don't know if was a lookout or something. I wanted him out of the neighborhood and so I jumped out of the car and pretended to be a policeman to scare him off.
 
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I guess if I felt threatened I would have rode to a brightly lit area with people around if possible and called 911 to verify. You won't get in trouble if it is a real cop and they'll nab the guy if it's a fake cop. If I were a bystander I would have been wondering wtf you were doing also, it does seem strange.
 

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I can't believe this. We're in the Lounge for crying out loud. The only acceptable answer is this;

You were packin' heat for chrissakes, put a cap in his a**!
 

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Am I the only one who thinks the OP's behavior is just a little bit weird and invites similarly weird behavior?

Why ride around 2 am? Furthermore, why repeatedly ride laps around a neighborhood? If I noticed someone doing this in my neighborhood I'd be perplexed. I'm not saying you don't have the right to do so, but it just strikes me as odd and I'm not really surprised you had this confrontation.
 
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