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Dereck J Simonsmeier
Four days ago, Dereck J. Simonsmeier, 24 (pictured left, wearing grey-black), of Wisconsin whined in an op-ed that he was asked to leave a Pick 'N Save store (owned by Roundy’s Inc.) for openly carrying a .45 caliber pistol on his belt. Another customer felt uncomfortable by him and complained to the manager, who asked him to cover up the gun. He refused, even though he does have a concealed carry permit, and was escorted outside. His op-ed repeated some of the usual GOA/SAF talking-points, e.g.:
I carry it because it is my right and to protect the ones I love. Yet even with the welfare of others in mind, I am scrutinized and mocked for exercising my Second Amendment right. [...]

[The experience] has only made me more determined to familiarize myself with state laws and company policies, so that I will be prepared to confront those who would violate my Second Amendment rights.

He sounds like an upright "good guy with a gun," well trained with his weapon:
I am an American citizen, a college graduate, an Iraq War veteran, a brother, a friend, a role model and very soon I will be an uncle. For each of these people that I am, there is always one constant: I carry a firearm, concealed or open, legally, for the protection of myself, my family and my friends.
His op-ed was picked up and linked to by many thousands of pro-gun sites across the country. Maybe 100,000 or so such links:

For several days he was something of a poster-boy for open-carry advocates.

Well, guess what?  (See him wearing GOS orange, below...)

Just four days later he was arrested and jailed on gun-related charges, including endangering safety. Apparently, a friend called him to help in a dispute with her roommate. Simonsmeier (in mug shot) showed up with two friends, also armed, and threatened the male roommate with their guns.

He may get free legal advice from well-funded gun-advocacy groups, and he has only been charged, not convicted. Still, there are lessons here.

(I'm busy today so don't have time for more than a short diary on this, but it's an interesting case and I haven't seen mention of it yet on DailyKos.)

Originally posted to S. Wraight on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 05:14 AM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), notRKBA, and NotNotRKBA.

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