February 4, 2016: No to HB935 & SB1140

Florida Representative Gwyndolen Clarke-Reed and Senator Dwight Bullard propose identical bills in Florida that should die in committee.  HB 935 and SB1140 propose changes to Florida Statute 790.06.The first substantial change start at line 39 The new text would read:

“The licensee must state that he or she is in possession of a concealed weapon or firearm and display both the license and proper identification when approached by or upon demand by a first responder as defined in s. 112.1815. A violation of this subsection constitutes a noncriminal violation with a penalty of $1,000, payable to the clerk of the court.”

The current statute requires a permit holder to carry the permit when a concealed gun is carried.  It requires the permit and identification be displayed when demanded by a law enforcement officer.  A violation has a penalty of $25.  $25 to $1,000 is an onerous heavy handed penalty for a noncriminal act.  I am a software developer and know the placement and order of evaluation of “and” and “or” statements can make a difference in the outcome of a query.  As written, this gives to much prosecutorial discretion and judgmental over site of enforcement.  Why should a concealed carry holder announce this in a situation that has nothing to do with self-defense?

Look at Florida Statute 112.1815 to see the expansion of who can “demand”.

“The term “first responder” as used in this section means a law enforcement officer as defined in s. 943.10, a firefighter as defined in s. 633.102, or an emergency medical technician or paramedic as defined in s. 401.23 employed by state or local government. A volunteer law enforcement officer, firefighter, or emergency medical technician or paramedic engaged by the state or a local government is also considered a first responder of the state or local government for purposes of this section.”

I don’t understand the rational Clarke-Reed and Bullard are employing in making this change.  To what purpose is it useful to show a permit and government issued ID to someone who is coming to fight a fire or render medical assistance?  What would those people do with that knowledge.  Would they leave the scene or refuse treatment?  I certainly would not relinquish my firearm to anyone but a law enforcement officer in very specific situations.

Write your representatives to vote against these bills. 

 

 

 

 

 

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