VIDEO: Michigan Cops Harass Citizen Legally Carrying a Gun

VIDEO: Michigan Cops Harass Citizen Legally Carrying a GuA Michigan man legally carrying a pistol openly in a holster was illegally stopped and harassed by Grand Rapids police in March of 2013 in an incident that sparked a federal lawsuit. Now the full video of the encounter has been released to the public.

Last March, Grand Rapids citizen Johann Deffert was peacefully walking on the sidewalk in his own neighborhood when police illegally detained him, cuffed him, threw him on the ground and then into a squad car, a federal lawsuit alleges.

In Michigan it is fully legal to open carry a pistol with the proper license.

Deffert is suing for $600,000 alleging he was physically assaulted by cops.

The video is revealing showing that police did not give him even a second’s benefit of the doubt and immediately treated him as a “nut” as one of the cops called him. This name calling is clearly heard on the video.

It is also clear that Deffert was doing nothing illegal. He was not waving his gun, he was not attacking anyone, nor acting strangely–though police claimed he was “talking to himself” at one point in the video, but that is a charge unproven by the video.

Deffert and his attorney say that he was mistreated by cops.

“The officers acted improperly that my client Mr. Deffert was not engaged in any unlawful activity. There was no reason for him to be detained, much less having loaded guns pointed at him,” Deffert’s attorney Steven Dulan said.

The police officer clearly treated Deffert as being guilty until proven innocent and even said as much on the video. The officer is heard telling Deffert that he can treat him however he wants to treat him until he, the officer, is satisfied that Deffert is innocent of any wrong doing.

“The fact that he said he wasn’t doing anything unlawful, and the officer saying yes you are until I prove otherwise, that goes against our state constitutional right open carry a fire arm in public,” said Bobby Wilmoth from Centershot Gun Range in Dorr, Michigan.

The harassment was apparently sparked by a citizen who called 911 because he didn’t know that open carry was legal in Michigan.

Police need to have open carry and concealed carry laws drilled into their thick skulls as these incidents are happening in every single state in the union. In every case police are treating law abiding citizens as criminals despite both the U.S. Constitution and local laws.

Sadly, no police officer in the nation seems to be properly informed about the very laws they are claiming to “enforce.”


Posted by on January 14, 2014.
Filed under 2nd Amendment, Asshats, Big government, Constitutional Issues, corruption, Courage, Culture, Culture Of Corruption, Democrats, Liberals.
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago-based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's and,,,,, Human Events Magazine, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events.He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on He is also the owner and operator of Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions, EMAIL Warner Todd Huston: igcolonel .at."The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it." --Samuel Johnson

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  • Rodney G. Graves

    Ask for a million, with half waived if both officers are fired.

  • jim_m

    What a shocker that the citizen knows the law better than the dirtbag cop.

    The idiot cop expects that we should have to notify him when we want to exercise our rights.

  • ddavison

    “In Michigan it is fully legal to open carry a pistol with the proper license.” – not true. Read MSP 750.234d ( ) and Legal Update 86.

    You don’t need a license to carry openly (with exceptions)

    • Scalia

      Your link returns the following:

      Page Not Found

      The page or document you have requested could not be found on the Michigan Legislature website.

      If you were looking for a section of the Michigan Compiled Laws, it might have been repealed.

      If you got here from your own Bookmark or Favorite, please delete and recreate it.

      If you followed a link to us from another website, please notify them that their link is invalid.

      • ddavison

        sorry about that – try now.

  • GarandFan

    “Sadly, no police officer in the nation seems to be properly informed about the very laws they are claiming to “enforce.”

    That’s a rather broad brush Todd.

    • Walter_Cronanty

      While you’re correct that it’s a broad brush, I’m beginning to think it’s the correct size. As one who used to work in the Prosecutor’s Office, and also taught First Amendment Rights at the local state law school [adjunct], many police officers are good, but, oh my, there are many that shouldn’t even be crossing guards – and good luck trying to get rid of the bad ones.
      The amount of arrests of citizens for doing nothing but videotaping police officers while they were acting in public proves that many officers either don’t know the law, or don’t care to obey it.

      • jim_m

        Come to Chicago where police have been convicted of shaking down citizens and the CPD has had to pay out some $30 million over the last decade in lawsuits for everything from assault to torture and false imprisonment. In Chicago the police are the enemy of the public.

  • Jack Zimms

    Police Officers should be fired.

  • stan25

    Good luck on drilling that into the cops’ heads. They are indoctrinated from day one that Joe Sixpack is the enemy to the police state, while the true criminal is treated a hero.

  • LiberalNightmare

    More and more, I think that professional policeman are not the answer.

    Policemen should be part of the community, policing their friends and neighbors. They shouldn’t be above the citizens and they shouldn’t be allowed to have an us vs them mentality.

  • jim_m

    The problem is not that police are corrupt or that they are insensitive to people’s civil rights. The problem is sovereign immunity. The police feel that they can do whatever they please and that they are untouchable for any consequences for any mistakes.

    In this case the officer is ignorant of the law so he errs on violating the person’s rights even though it is obvious that they are not a threat or causing any sort of disturbance. I wager that if he were concerned about being held responsible for violating the rights of innocent civilians he would think twice about doing so. Until we remove sovereign immunity or at least limit it we will continue to get this.

    • Walter_Cronanty

      Police officers have qualified immunity – that is, for liability to attach, they must have violated a clearly established constitutional/statutory law, acted unreasonably and caused some sort of harm [that's a paraphrase/simplification]. It’s not total sovereign immunity.
      I agree with LN, above. It seems like many officers are getting into an “us against them” mentality. That, coupled with the wealth of military material being given to local police departments is unsettling, at best. I know they have a tough job, but there has to be a happy medium. If not, it won’t be just militia-type nut jobs or thugs in the hood who lose respect for them – and that will not be good for the police or the general public.

      • jim_m

        I will agree about the us vs them attitude. I have several college friends in law enforcement and they exemplify that attitude all the time. It’s an attitude that dehumanizes everyone outside of law enforcement.

      • jim_m

        I will agree about the us vs them attitude. I have several college friends in law enforcement and they exemplify that attitude all the time. It’s an attitude that dehumanizes everyone outside of law enforcement.

  • LiberalNightmare

    • jim_m

      As far as I am concerned cops are guilty until proven innocent in these things. That’s how they treat us, that is how we should treat them back. With the growing number of incidents like these they no longer deserve any presumption of innocence.

  • Shawn Foster

    I have seen it a shit load of times. The cop ask’s the open carrier
    for a copy of the law! Shouldn’t the cops at lest know open carry laws?