Wisconsin is an open carry state, but these assclowns were on their way to a Farmer’s market in Appleton…where families usually are…families with children. I get the open carry thing, but these guys head their heads firmly shoved up their ass.
With that said, I do think the cops who responded overreacted - one cop initially drew his gun, another attempted to turn off one of the guy’s video camera being used to film the encounter - and it seems like they haven’t been trained in how to deal with open carry demonstrations. But I don’t blame them for being annoyed. This stunt was just plain stupid.
Two men heading to Appleton’s downtown farmers market with AR-15 rifles slung over their shoulders and handguns in holsters swiftly attracted the attention of police officers last weekend.
Now, they’re attracting attention across the Internet, with some gun rights advocates expressing outrage that the pair were held at gunpoint and handcuffed, while others voice frustration at what they consider a foolish and dangerous stunt.
The men, Charles Branstrom, 27, and Ross Bauman, 22, ultimately were released without tickets or charges.
Branstrom recorded the confrontation with Appleton Police. About six minutes into the recording, one officer sees Branstrom’s camera, confiscates it and attempts to turn it off — but stops only the video. The device continues recording audio for about 45 minutes.
Gun rights advocates think the police acted inappropriately.
“I would never blame police for following up on ‘man with a gun’ calls, but they still have to behave within the limits of the law and abide by people’s constitutional rights,” said Nik Clark, president of Wisconsin Carry, Inc., a gun rights group. “I believe the police were acting outside of their legal authority when they pointed guns at the individuals and involuntarily detained them.”
Milwaukee’s police chief ridiculed the pair.
“In a post Aurora-Newtown environment, it’s a reckless and irresponsible stunt to strut around in public with an assault-style weapon and think police should assume you’re well-intentioned,” Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said Thursday, referring to mass shooting incidents in Colorado and Connecticut.
“It’s just absurd,” Flynn said. “This has nothing to do with the Second Amendment. These characters and those who support them should be ashamed of themselves.”