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Airman in Need

flagellum

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As many of you know, concealed/open carry is not allowed on Base unless the individual is law enforcement, on-duty.

There are a couple things I know about weapons on-base:

They never be stored in the Dorms.

They may be stored at on-base housing with commander approval.

They may be stored at the armory.

As an E-3, I have no choice but to live in dorm housing.

I will not store them in the armory, for a variety of reasons.

It is my intention to propose a letter to the commander requesting that I be allowed to store the firearms in my car, within a locked container while I am on base. I bought one of those little tethered steel lock boxes. Here is my proposed letter, please feel free to critique it heavily.

Sir,

My name is Airman **********. I have a request regarding the policy regarding firearms storage on Base. I am requesting permission to store a firearm within a locked container within my vehicle. Many individuals such as myself choose to exercise their second amendment rights and carry a weapon off-base. This is a lawful act, and only serves to provide for the safety of the individual. I am in possession of a valid license to carry a concealed weapon, granted by the Las Vegas Metropolitan police department, and have shown competence in weapon safety and understanding of State, county, and city laws and ordinances. The reason I ask this is because as you know I may not at any time store a firearm in my dorm room, or carry such a weapon on my person while I reside on base. I also understand that with your permission, individuals may store firearms on base with approval from their commander.

I only wish to store the weapon under the condition that it remains under lock and key while on base. At no point would the weapon leave the locked container. I feel that this provides and adequate defense against unauthorized use by any individual, and adequate protection against theft.

My motivations for this request are that I may retain a sense of personal security when traversing the city of Las Vegas. Unfortunately, Vegas has one of the highest crime rates in America, and it is for that reason that I reserve my right to self-defense.

I respect the Work of our well trained Security personnel and regard the Base as a very safe place. I also have great respect for Metro, but I understand that they cannot be there to protect against every possible threat.

I appreciate you taking the time to read this, and look forward to your reply.

Very Respectfully,

Airman **************



http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/nv/las-vegas/crime/
 

varminter22

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Fallon, Nevada, USA
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One suggestion regarding:
I feel that this provides an adequate defense against unauthorized use by any individual, and adequate protection against theft.
Don't "feel" it.

BELIEVE it. Or FIRMLY BELIEVE it.

Maybe the same for "adequate". Perhaps "superb..."

Otherwise, good letter. And I wish you the best!
 

varminter22

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Statkowski wrote:
Letter back from your Base Commander: "Denied."

Don't like the rules? Live with them.

I spent enough time in the military, and at Nellis Airplane Patch when I was stationed at the Nevada Test Site, to know they're not going to bend.

Unfortunately, you are probably correct. Base commanders have a long history of denying such.

"Live with the rules"? Well, yeah, I suppose that is the bottom line. But rules don't get changed by not speaking up.

The Airman is to be commended for taking action.

I too spent enough time in the military (one score active duty and one decade of combined active reserve, inactive reserve, and fleet reserve) to have a darned good idea of how things work.

CPO, USN(RET)
 

AIC869

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Unfortunately, you're likely going to get it denied just as other members have already posted. Cars get broken into on base just the same as they do out in town. You'd think we'd have a lower incidence of dirtbags, but the military is a cross section of society with all the same plusses and minuses. No base commander is going to permit a weapon to be stored without positive control. While the armory may be more inconvenient, from his perspective at least it's, well... armed. If you lived in an apartment complex, you'd never leave a weapon in your car there. Someone will eventually know (besides yourself) that you keep a gun in the car. That word will spread whether you want it to or not. Your car will get broken into whether you want it to or not.

I've done plenty of traveling over 20+ years in the military, and unfortunately it's just a fact of life (using the armory for storage). Good on you for asking, but expect a definitive "no."
 

varminter22

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But he did say:
At no point would the weapon leave the locked container.
To me that means he would lock the handgun in an approved "safe" securely attached within the locked vehicle.

That would meet my definition of meeting safe requirements.
 

Statkowski

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"Live with the rules"? Well, yeah, I suppose that is the bottom line. But rules don't get changed by not speaking up.
And rules don't get changed because of an E-3, unless that E-3 can draft up one hell of a Decision Paper and get it past the Chief of Staff.

To me that means he would lock the handgun in an approved "safe" securely attached within the locked vehicle. That would meet my definition of meeting safe requirements.
It might meet yours, but it would not meet the Base Commander's definition. His definition is "Armory."

MSG, USA (Ret)
 

varminter22

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Statkowski wrote:
"Live with the rules"? Well, yeah, I suppose that is the bottom line. But rules don't get changed by not speaking up.
And rules don't get changed because of an E-3, unless that E-3 can draft up one hell of a Decision Paper and get it past the Chief of Staff.

To me that means he would lock the handgun in an approved "safe" securely attached within the locked vehicle. That would meet my definition of meeting safe requirements.
It might meet yours, but it would not meet the Base Commander's definition. His definition is "Armory."

MSG, USA (Ret)
Point well taken. I too suspect the response will be in the negative - but not necessarily because of the safekeeping mode; basecommanders have a long history of such.

But I still say the Airman is to be commended.

I would like to see a similar letter from EVERY military person on EVERY military base.

CPO, USN(RET)
 

SIGguy229

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Jul 23, 2007
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Stafford, VA, , Afghanistan
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Run it through the 1st Sgt...and your squadron commander....

Do not go VFR to the Wing Commander....

While I applaud your effort, and your desire to protect yourself, unfortunately your peers (and those before you of the same rank) have exercised extremely poor judgment. I support your effort, thus my recommendations above.

I will ask, though, why not store your POW in the SFS armory? You haven't addressed this in your letter--and will probably be the first thing asked by the 1st Sgt and Sq/CC. Really think this out. If you can make a good argument, and get the 1st Sgt to buy it, chances are the Sq/CC might take it up with the OG/CC, then WG/CC....the key is the 1st Sgt.
 

flagellum

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North Las Vegas, NV
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Thanks for all the input guys. I appreciate the encouragement, though I'm a little weary if I want to send this out at all. :?

As far as the questions about the Armory, Mostly it is because the Armory has hours just like anything else, and if I came back late off base I could not store my weapon when I returned, or for that matter check it out later in the evening. Also it is a tedious process. I've heard from nay that they treat your guns very poorly there as well. Not to mention I don't 100% feel comfortable registering all my firearms with the base, though I would not use that reason if I were to present my case.

Though quite honestly, I don't know If I will request at all.
 

SIGguy229

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flagellum wrote:
Thanks for all the input guys. I appreciate the encouragement, though I'm a little weary if I want to send this out at all. :?

As far as the questions about the Armory, Mostly it is because the Armory has hours just like anything else, and if I came back late off base I could not store my weapon when I returned, or for that matter check it out later in the evening. Also it is a tedious process. I've heard from nay that they treat your guns very poorly there as well. Not to mention I don't 100% feel comfortable registering all my firearms with the base, though I would not use that reason if I were to present my case.

Though quite honestly, I don't know If I will request at all.
I've also heard stories of guns in the Armory....but haven't experienced it myself--and I've stored my guns in a few USAF armories.

In regards to availability, you may want to talk to the duty armorer...they are usually flexible.

Now that I think of it, that may be a better course of action for you to address with the 1st Sgt & Sq/CC. You'll need to do some legwork--find out what the SFS policy/SOP is regarding storing and access of POWs (privately-owned weapons). Once you find that out, make some suggestions (if needed)...

You are going to run into the typical excuses: not enough manpower, why do you need...blah blah blah...<insert other excuse here>. Don't take that as an answer. First, manpower is always going to be an issue (not your problem). Second, you do not have to get further than "off-base, I'm responsible for my safety". Identify a requirement--see how they fulfill the requirement.

Is there a gun club on base (I've never been to Nellis)? Are there other Airmen in the same situation? Instead of being a lone voice, maybe the commander(s) do not know how many people are affected by the SFS policy.

Stress you want to stay within the rules, but are at a cross-roads when it comes to travel off-base (balancing personal safety off-base with security on-base).

Just some suggestions.
 

New Frontier Armory

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I'm active duty also, but I don't live in the dorms, or on base for that matter. However........

I shoot on base 2 to 3 times a week. There is a gun club on base and you are allowed to transport your gun there, so if you do happen to get stopped you might reply with I was coming from or going to (depending on what direction you were facing) the R&G Club.

I've only been pulled over once and basically got strip searched because of all the guns in my truck, luckily none were loaded, but after crap like the Ft Hood shooting, these SF's guys are overly protective when they run into firearms. After it was all over I had the troop and his supervisor feeling pretty stupid once I educated them on being able to bring guns to the club to shoot (which you think would be common sense)



As far as storage, your best bet is to find a buddy off base and store them there.

The rules are the rules, and remember, this isn't the civilian world.....your rights go out the window when you snap your pic for that ID and drive through that gate.
 

flagellum

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Thank you all for the input.

I did call security forces, and they didn't really know anything. Well, they told me stuff, but I could tell the guy was making it up on the spot. They couldn't cite any letter or Reg where the policy was written.

I did look into the affairs of other bases, and found this:
http://www.littlerock.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123166684

This was almost my question exactly, and the results were likely similar to what I might experience.

I do store my weapons off-base, though pretty much right outside the gate. Until I move off base, this is the only reasonable option.

*Sigh*

Well I suppose rules are rules.

Oh and BTW was just in New Frontier Armory, you guys are awesome.
 

Nevada carrier

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When I was stationed on Fort Bliss, We where also authorized to store out firearms at the Fort Bliss Rod and Gun Club. You could investigate if Nelis AFB has a similar recreational facility.

I know this doesn't give you what you want, that being the ability to arm yourself at will and at a moments notice, but you also must understand that being in the military subjects you to a whole different justice system.

Military basses are highly sensitive facilities and I find no fault in your chain of command for taking extreme precautions with regard to who, what, when and where firearms may be possessed while on base. Yes the Ft Hood shooting was a tragic and deplorable incident, but also keep in mind that aside from property crime which does tend to be high on military basses, violent crimes against persons are fairly uncommon barring your occasional fist fight over a girl at the bowling ally.

The Ft. Hood shooting was a massive failure of the chain of command to recognize a dangerous person and take appropriate security measures. I believe there have already been many modifications to training regimens and security procedures implemented by the military in response. You are probably more likely do have an F-22 Raptor fall on you than you are to be a victim of a crazed gunman on base, but thats just my opinion.
 

DVC

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flagellum wrote:
As many of you know, concealed/open carry is not allowed on Base unless the individual is law enforcement, on-duty.
This policy may have come down from the Five-Sided Square. If so, your letter could come back later and snakebite you.

If, OTOH, this is local-option, I would suggest that you find a few like-minded folks onbase (is there a shooting club? Can you start one?) and make an organized proposal for a change in policy. It would be better to get officers on your side (does the rule apply to them?), field grade if possible, who can get some positive movement going before the formal request.
 

erichonda30

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May 27, 2010
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PAHRUMP, Nevada, USA
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DVC wrote:
flagellum wrote:
As many of you know, concealed/open carry is not allowed on Base unless the individual is law enforcement, on-duty.
This policy may have come down from the Five-Sided Square. If so, your letter could come back later and snakebite you.

If, OTOH, this is local-option, I would suggest that you find a few like-minded folks onbase (is there a shooting club? Can you start one?) and make an organized proposal for a change in policy. It would be better to get officers on your side (does the rule apply to them?), field grade if possible, who can get some positive movement going before the formal request.
can people in the military protest or picket their base or will they give you shock therapy to the balls for even thinking about it
 

DVC

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erichonda30 wrote:
can people in the military protest or picket their base or will they give you shock therapy to the balls for even thinking about it
No, that's one of the rights they give up in order to protect OUR right to do so.

Which is why even the newest E-1 is worth more than any dozen of the average politican . . .
 

Nevada carrier

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DVC wrote:
erichonda30 wrote:
can people in the military protest or picket their base or will they give you shock therapy to the balls for even thinking about it
No, that's one of the rights they give up in order to protect OUR right to do so.

Which is why even the newest E-1 is worth more than any dozen of the average politican . . .

That being said, almost nothing decided in the military is arbitrary. If you make a request and are denied, you will always be given an explanation as to why. When I was in the military, if there was something I wanted approved, I just kept shipping it up the chain of command reformatting my request to counter the basis for it's previous denial until eventually some authority had no way to support a denial.

On one occasion I was recommended for non judicial punishment. this gives me the right to request trial by court marshal. doing so subjects me to a harsher penalty but grants me the right to a staff judge advocate appointed attorney. doing this also gave me the right to discovery, the right to confront witnesses against me and to call witnesses in my defense. rights that a servicemen does not have under NJP. Ultimately I was acquitted of any wrong doing when many would have been found guilty under NJP.

The reason I'm telling you this is because under any justice system, everything rests on which side of the argument knows more about the system and can exploit it's loop holes, not who's argument has more merit. This is the source of both the greatest strengths and the greatest weakness of the United States justice system as well as the UCMJ. study the regulations, be it Army, AF or DoD. chances are you will find something to support you case and get what you want. You just have to be able to craft an effective argument.
 
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