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SHALLOTTE, NC (WWAY) – A Brunswick County man says two state troopers bullied him while he was trying to pick up lunch Tuesday afternoon.

The reason: he was wearing a holstered gun.

“I like to protect myself and I have the right too,” Donnie Long said.

You don’t see it very often, but in North Carolina, a legal gun owner can wear a gun out and about. It’s called Open Carry, and the only thing that can stop you is a sign on a business barring your weapon.

Long says he carries a weapon for protection, so when he stopped by the Burg-Dog Grill to grab lunch Tuesday afternoon, he was surprised when he was chastised by the troopers.

“The other officer attacks me about my gun,” Long said. “He asked me who gave me the right to walk into a restaurant with my gun around a register, because I may rob it. I am no criminal.”

Long told us he’s lived in Shallotte his whole life and was shocked that it seemed the troopers were not aware of the Open Carry Law.

A spokesman for the Highway Patrol said Wednesday that he was not aware of this particular incident, but that he would look into it.

Long says he is still shaken up.

“I think it’s wrong for officers to attack you like that,” Long said. “They told me that I didn’t have the right to walk into the restaurant and that I couldn’t be around open cash registers. He gave out wrong information and I think something should be done about it.”

Long says after his run-in with the troopers, one of them showed up at his house yesterday and apologized for his behavior.

We tried to talk to the owner of the Burg-Dog Grill, but he said he had no comment.

Comment on this Story

  • David Byerly

    wow… I see you reaching out to this gentleman about a non-issue situation… when i contacted you about a matter that affects hundreds of thousands of NC residents having there rights taken away by NC gun laws …. and you say, good luck… was it because mine was an issue pertaining to a felony having his rights taken away, after they had been restored?… do you realize that the re-wording of the felony firearms act also divested the rights of another several hundred thousand of NC citizens that had not originally lost their rights. By simply changing the law to say that anyone that had committed an offense that was punishable by more than one year (even if they only got 3 month probation). Instead of the 2 years that it was. There are now people walking around that don’t even know that they could be facing felony charges because their rights “weren’t” taken away when charged… but, have lost them through legislation and don’t even know it and now face a felony… unbenounced to them… again …wow…

  • Doug

    YOU HAVE JUST PROVEN MR LONGS CASE RIGHT THERE AND TO STUPID TO REALIZE IT

    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
    …. MR LONG WAS GETTING SOMETHING TO EAT HE WAS NOT TRYING TO TERRIFY ANYONE

    (3) goes about on public highways

    (4) in a manner to cause terror to the people.
    …… ……. IN THE HOLSTER IS NOT CARRYING IN A MANNER TO CAUSE TERROR

  • Doug

    BLET covers all the Ch 20 and then some it just takes troopers longer to learn the laws.. This statement is proven in the previous comment that troopers did not know about the “OPEN CARRY LAW” … every law enforcement officer knows that NC is a open carry state…

  • Fred

    First, Chapter 20 is motor vehicle laws, nothing in Chapter 20 has to do with open carry laws. Second, maybe all of 20 minutes is spent on open carry in BLET because,BLET covers the basics until you can be formally trained by the agency that hires you. Last, the highway patrol spends even less time on it since their main area of law enforcement is related to traffic related offenses. So when you are trying to sound smart and use law enforcement lingo, maybe research it before hand. By the way I’m a full supporter of open carry and truly believe these troopers didn’t know the law.

  • Ken Soderstrom

    Since when do open carry supporters act like rats rear ends? Impoliteness doesn’t help the cause – particularly in public.

  • Guest 2012

    Anyone certified by NC Training and Standards has to complete BLET. Troopers have to go to their academy and take the same but much more advanced training. Open Carry is taught at BLET and no way can a LEO get certified until he completes the Open Carry portion of the Chapter 20 Statutes. There is a test that must be taken during every portion of BLET course. To claim that a NC LEO doesn’t know about the Open Carry law is a sign of dementia.

  • ILM NATIVE

    then why did they even hassle him…just showing their power? If they knew the laws then it was just plain harassment by the Gestapo.

  • guesty

    Maybe they did it because it is funny to watch you get your undies all in a twist.

  • RobertG

    There is no place in this story where it is indicated the officers ‘Merely Inquired’ and they sure did not come to his house to apologize over a mere inquiry.
    Their the police nor the general populace his intentions? Unless you, the police or the guy down the street has a HARD reason to suspect us of something our intentions for living our lives is non of any of your business.

    But we are indeed living a new progressive/fascist era–from the drug laws, RICO, the Patriot Act and such Justify Your Existance is getting all to prevalent.

  • Karen232332

    It’s not an unusual weapon and is not dangerous until it’s out of the holster and pointing at your head with the finger on the trigger.

  • GK

    While it has been shown in court that item 1 was fulfilled by a handgun, it is obvious that 2-4 have not been met for the purpose of that dubious crime.

    2 – can you prove his intent, looks like his intent was to eat lunch
    3 – he was in a private business, not on a public highway
    4 – he was not causing terror, and the courts have already upheld that carrying a properly holstered handgun is not in itself enough to cause terror. If he was waving it around in his hand, that would be a different story.

  • nunyabiznezz

    I’m finding it rather ironic that when questioned about having a firearm on display in a public place, this guy immediately labels himself as a victim of bullying. “Bullying” must happen pretty frequently to this bozo if he feels the need to wear a gun to pick up a hotdog. I would venture to say that this probably isn’t the first time he’s felt “bullied”. …personally, I’m glad he was asked why he had it. These officers, nor the general public, would know what his intentions were when carrying a weapon. I also don’t understand how this person with his obvious knowledge of all things legal would think it was ok to park illegally in a fire zone which is what initially got the troopers attention anyway. I am a gun owner and defend our right to bear arms but this dude is laughable. Why not, when being asked why you had the gun on your person, wouldn’t you just answer respectively that it is your legal right and you were not there to cause any harm? But that would’ve made him seem mature and intelligent. Instead he’s whining like a sissy that he was bullied because he was asked a question. But he got to be on tv! And that’s awesome! Bet all the kids that bullied him in high school are envious now!!

  • mac

    all day and night these troopers run up and down the highways issuing tickets(strong armed robbery) for every thing they can think of showing no mercy unless of course you a pretty white woman then maybe. police wake up of morning they think to themselves whos life can i destroy today. who can i ruin and who can i rob to pay my salary to feed the government today

  • desert speaks

    Why aren’t our PUBLIC SERVANTS taught the CONSTITUTION?
    We know they don’t hire police officers/peace officers because they’re intelligent, in fact, if one is too intellegent, they are BARRED from becoming police/peace officers!
    This is a proven FACT!

  • ILM NATIVE

    all the times the State Nazi’s park where they are not supposed to (handicap spots, etc) or run up and down the roads speeding like heck to get to the doughnut shop to meet up with their buddies….thank a trooper, not in this lifetime.

  • Historyfan

    What this news story fails to address is that the Troopers DID NOT harass or bully this individual for open carry! His initial encounter with the Troopers in question dealt with the fact that he was illegally parked in front the restaurant. Mr. Long was NOT cited for this and should have been. It was only after the Troopers addressed this issue that they noticed he was open carrying. The Trooper who honestly did not know about open carry here in NC apologized to Mr. Long for his behavior. Mr Long, will you apologize to the Troopers for NOT citing you? Somehow I doubt it!

    While there are some in LE, at all levels of government, who do wish to strip us of our 2nd Amendment, this is not one of those times. As for GRNC, I support you but you need to get this right. There are two sides to every story and so far we have only heard Mr. Long’s, which I dare say is not 100% correct.

    WWAY, you should get your facts correct before you post such detritus!

    Let the armchair keyboard warriors respond.

  • LK

    Sounds like Long was “going armed to the terror of the public” and the troopers were fully aware of the law. Maybe he should be aware of the law, how the pubic perceives OC activism and just be happy they didn’t charge him instead of whining about how mean the troopers were to his gun :( Statute
    This is a common law offense. State v. Dawson, 272 N.C. 535, 541-42 (1968); State v. Huntly, 25 N.C. 418, 418 (1843); State v. Staten, 32 N.C. App. 495, 496-97 (1977) (citing Dawson).
    Elements

    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.

    Punishment

    Class 1 misdemeanor. G.S. 14-3(a).

  • Guido

    He would be safe. Southport cops don’t eat there.

  • kiawah

    One of the two troopers?

  • guestyI

    We should organize an “Open Carry” day here in the area and exercise our 2nd Amendment right. An open carry day might help educate both the public and our ignorant LE.

  • Robert T. Willis

    it’s a good thing you’re not in a position to judge anyone else’s actions! Because you are judging someone without having all the facts! Grow up!

  • Paul Valone

    Mr. Long: My name is Paul Valone and I direct Grass Roots North Carolina (www.GRNC.org), the state’s primary gun rights organization. I would appreciate it if you could contact me at President@GRNC.org to discuss your problem further.

    Many thanks,
    Paul Valone

  • ILM NATIVE

    the state trooper that came to my house to get off my property and that I could give a crap for his apology. Every time you have an encounter with cops use your phone and record it, then post it where ever you can so they can be shown to be the thugs they are. REMEMBER RECORD EVERYTHING.

  • Stone Tyler

    It’s a good thing Mr. Long is not a 90 pound schizophrenic kid. Open carry or not, he’d be dead right now.

  • The Troopers must have been out of touch with long standing legal precedent of the NC Supreme Court in State v. Kerner (state and local agencies may not ban open carry under NC constitution).

    I’m glad it worked out in the end.

    Learn more at OpenCarry.org.

  • 357sig

    These Troopers would have been asking black people why are they standing next to an open cash register, back in the day. They have been trained to see the public as the enemy.

  • Guest Reply Redux

    1. “Long told us he’s lived in Shallotte his whole life and was shocked that it seemed the troopers were not aware of the Open Carry Law.”
    Mr. Long…with the turnover with police down there…they hadn’t had time to study the laws…and on top of that…your gun was fancier than theirs…so there you have it…jealousy :-(

    2. (Quote) “We tried to talk to the owner of the Burd-Dog Grill, but he said he had no comment” (Unquote) He wouldn’t, about another’s business.
    It’s “Burg-Dog Grill”…the correct way of your spelling it would be…”Bird-Dog Grill”…burgers made from Bird Dogs.
    I bet what the owner of Burg-Dog Grill is really thinking (without commenting is)…”Man…business will BOOM NOW!”

  • Douglas Matthews

    Since when does GRNC give a rat’s rear end about OPEN carry, Mr. Valone? GRNC has repeatedly used OPEN CARRY as the sacrificial lamb to liberal groups and legislators for the sake of advancing concealed carry. Is the sudden change of heart genuine or merely for the sake of publicity?

  • 1492

    Unless this is your first day at this site, you should know by now that everyone here has the right to their own opinions, regardless of whether you agree with them or not.

    You have every right to disagree with that opinion. You also even have the right to take the low road and be immature enough to call someone a “pig” or whatever.

    You most definitely do not have the right however, to tell someone else what they should or shouldn’t post. That would be like me telling you that YOU didn’t have the right to post what YOU posted. I doubt you would find that acceptable.

    Just saying ……

  • Guest-o-matic

    …and I won’t be going out in public flaunting a firearm swinging off my hip, mine will be concealed. But you do whatever ya want there big-shot. I’m just not one to be antagonistic and abrasive in public, legal or not.

    And to your point, I don’t give a flyin’ rats backside what YOU or anyone else thinks about my posts OR what YOUR opinion is as to what I may be considered. I don’t “need” or request anyones support, in particular the ignorant, name calling, paranoid, anti-establishment cop haters. “Wink”!

  • Southern Born

    For someone who doesn’t care, your a (man or woman on fire)!!! if you don’t care what people think then quit posting, just look in the mirror and spout you BS at your own image. I think you need our approval or you would just quit posting. You should be Ashamed!!! of course its just my opinion.

  • Soputhern Born

    you must have never ever taken the time to read QUEST-O-MATICS comments, he constantly ridicules and calls people names, I for one have no problem with your post, but the poster you are defending is the biggest perpetrator of the those very offenses. of course I have done it as well. It feels good when I do it to him. I open carry and I have Conceal Carry Permit, its cheaper than buying a jacked up truck. It makes me feel more macho.

  • guesty

    “So a LEO could watch you get attacked, do nothing to save you, and not be found to have any liability or responsibility.”

    One phrase for that: “Dereliction of duty”

    I agree with everything else you posted.

  • Southern Born

    ? if its a misdemeanor, then yes they can just sit back and watch. Of course they took an oath, you know the one where they will serve and protect. So watching could be a moral dilemma they would have to live with.

  • As a matter of fact…..The courts have decided that an officer does NOT have the responsibility to protect you. Sorry, you are on your own.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/28/politics/28scotus.html?_r=0

  • guesty

    “Dereliction of duty” isn’t a criminal charge, it is a reason an officer can and will be fired. Unless the officer is independently wealthy, he/she needs the job to get paid.

  • John Smythe

    That is an often misunderstood SCOTUS ruling. It by no means implies police can stand around while someone is attacked. What it does mean is that for example; a woman takes out a Restraining Order and the male shows up at her house and assaults her, the woman would not be allowed to sue the police for not being there to protect her. The intention is to avoid law suits against the police for not PREVENTING every imaginable crime. The police cannot be everywhere all at once. I hope that helps.

  • Abraham Collins

    That oath is to protect and serve the CONSTITUTION! Not your pansy derriere!

  • Southern Born

    I believe was written to protect the citizens!! so his oath was to protect and serve my rights, not your right to eat Donuts and harass Law abiding citizen’s. and by the way all you over ego but wipes, we pay your salaries. also I believe this organization is known for underhanded bas-ac-kwards protection of the citizens. So you quote it your way Cop Worshiper, He works for the citizens so he should be ready to wipe my @#$ and its derriere if need be!! If not then get a job where he can serve his self like at DUNKIN DOOUGNUTS…

  • trash

    Unless posted at the business, they should have never even opened their mouth. It is OUR 2nd Admendment Right to carry. As long as he does not pull it and point it at someone unless it is self defense.

  • Robert T. Willis

    to the troopers that stop the man because he had a gun and holster… Ever heard of the law is no excuse… You have no excuse for your actions you should know. I am so glad I don’t work in law enforcement anymore with officers like this

  • guest7969

    Of sad when the top of our law enforcement doesn’t know the law…

  • ronald dunlap

    These officers must be fairly new or Rookies..I know several Veterans on the NCSHP..And they know the laws about open carry and concealed carry..So does most Deputies in this County..If you can legally own a gun and or have a Conceal Carry permit then you can carry it in a restaurant or store as long as they do not have a No Weapons allowed Sign in plain sight..That is what the laws states and has nothing to do with a cash register being in operation..

  • Big m

    Government Storm Troopers on duty!

  • WhyAskForWhat’sYours

    Not everyone wants to ask for permission to carry. I, for one, do not have or want a CCP. NC is a state that recognizes your liberty to carry. Use it or lose it!

  • Guest-o-matic

    Why would one want to display his weapon open on his hip? Sure, it’s legal, but not smart and can be cited as “Going Armed to the Terror of the Public” especially if repeatedly asked by the store owner to remove his weapon from the public premises.
    Ya know, it’s cold outside, dude. Just leave your shirt-tail out or wear a coat to cover up your protection (after you obtain a CCP). It just doesn’t work to walk around in public with your piece’a swingin’, legal or not. Believe me, most will see you as an oblivious kook rather than John Wayne. Geeez…

    We ask the same from those that think it’s “Cool” to have 4x pants and flaunt their underwear! You know, that “Quick Access”, prison look?

  • The most obvious reason to wear a firearm in open carry is because the person doesn’t have a conceal carry permit. The next reason would be to enforce a right, both in the US Constitution and the NC Constitution, to bear arms. If a person doesn’t enforce their rights then the right slowly fades until it is no longer a right but a historical fad which is no longer needed in todays world. Lose this right and get ready to lose others. Which right would you be willing to give up? Your first, second, fourth???
    You should also keep in mind that the courts (lower and higher, civil and criminal) have repeatedly ruled that law enforcement is NOT responsible for your safety. Law enforcement is only responsible to investigate crime after it happens. So a LEO could watch you get attacked, do nothing to save you, and not be found to have any liability or responsibility. Some people are willing to take this risk, some aren’t. I accept that it is my responsibility alone to protect myself and my family. I find it interesting the number of people who don’t accept that responsibility.

  • law-abiding

    Its hard to read your reply and not shake my head. Wearing a weapon on your hip cannot be cited as ” Going armed to the terror of the public “.
    Do you have additional facts or was there an assumption on your part and you adding to the story? If a store owner does not want weapons in there place of business all they have to do by law is display a sticker saying so. As you stated in parenthesis, with a CCP you can let your shirtail out or cover it with a jacket. Without it your charged with carrying a concealed weapon which is a serious offense. So without one, open carry on your hip is your only option. And, its lawful. You also go on to refer to this law abiding citizen as a kook and refer to the quick access prison look. For doing something that is legal to do. I will agree that open carry will bring more attention from law enforcement and if you want to deal with that, then its each individuals choice and not for others to judge.

  • Jonny

    You CAN NOT be charged with “Going Armed to the Terror of the Public” or “brandishing” for exercising you right to bare arms. The NC surpreme court has ruled on this very matter.

  • Smitty

    No brag Guest-O-Matic. It’s called protection. Protection from renegade citizens and renegade cops….something Brunswick County seems to have a VERY large problem with. Most all of your posts seems to be met with a majority of disagreement. Perhaps all of society is astray?…Not! Back off and the majority of society will support you. Until then…you’re considered a PIG.

  • ILM NATIVE

    He can open carry he has that right, going armed to the terror of the public is only used when you are threatening someone with harm or implying harm with your actions. You need to read the store owner did NOT ask him to leave it was the Nazi troopers who started this. Well it could have been some wussie like you that complained. Who knows. Just cause you can not get a CCP don’t be jealous of us that have them.

  • truthseeker

    Maybe some retraining for these supposedly Officers of the law is due. How can they enforce law when they do not even know what it is. As usual with state cops they are brash, rude and inept. I guess that is why they write traffic tickets and let the local police handle the real police work. Highway Patrol is like the meter maids of Law Enforcement. You have a home break-in, get robbed you call WPD or the Sheriff. You travel 5 mph above speed limit you get SHP, what a joke!

  • DUG

    Baaaahaaaaaa I love this one !!!

  • antithug

    enforce the law when you don’t know it? Come on guys, get it together.

  • guest45

    I find myself getting uncomfortable out in public and restaurants with all the “supposed to be leo’s with gun’s in plain view and no recognizeable uniforms, from paramilitary dress to quick draw holsters strapped down on their knee’s, driving everything from golf carts to Humvees, what a strange world we live in lately.

  • Guest-o-matic

    There is an open-carry provision in NC law. Those of you that want to publicly display your weapon to everyone, go ahead and help yourself, it’s a personal preference. I simply choose the concealed carry method when I choose to carry, which isn’t often. I don’t go downtown at night and I don’t cruise through Creekwood looking for hookers or drugs. Thusly, I am rarely if ever concerned about my personal safety in this town. I also maintain at least two additional, yet effective methods for personal protection that don’t require things that go bang.

    If you choose to open carry your weapon into a public facility, you have to abide by the owner of that facility. If he has a sign that states “No Firearms Allowed, concealed or otherwise”, don’t bring it in. If he DOES NOT have a sign and you are displaying your weapon AND if his customers complain that YOUR display makes them uncomfortable, he has the right to ask you to remove and place your weapon in your car or leave his facility. IF you refuse his demands and he calls the police after you obstinately refuse and say, “It’s my right!” The police upon arrival and after the same request is denied, can and will charge you with “Going armed to the terror of the public”. This is only one of the many scenarios where that can be applied and was explicitely explained by the state certified firearms instructor that lead my concealed carry class five years ago.

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