Open carry is legal in Michigan – that’s why the confrontation in this video has sparked a federal lawsuit

by Jason Howerton, The Blaze  |  published on January 14, 2014

Michigan-screen capture
In the state of Michigan, it is legal to openly carry a handgun. However, when a police officer in Grand Rapids responded to a March 3 call about a man doing exactly that, he drew his weapon and ordered the man to the ground.

The interaction was captured on video and will likely be used as evidence in a federal lawsuit filed by open-carry advocate Johann Deffert. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. district court in Grand Rapids, lists Police Chief Kevin Belk, Officer William Moe and two other officers as defendants.

Though the video only captures part of the incident, the police car’s dash cam captures minutes of audio. Police first dispatched an officer to investigate a “suspicious person” with a holstered firearm.

“It does look like he’s got a handgun on,” Moe can be heard telling a dispatcher in the video. The officer also suggests the man is “talking to nobody.”

With traffic stopped, Moe drew his firearm and ordered 28-year-old Deffert to the ground.

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