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"Naked Man Arrested for Concealed Weapon":

Yep, that's exactly where it was. Police comment, "You can't get much more concealed than that."

Commenterlein (mail):
Ok, that was funny. But as a non-lawyer I am quite disturbed by the following statement from the article:

"When you're talking about an awl or an ice pick and you're dealing with somebody who's fresh out of prison, it's a weapon. That's a stabbing instrument," Horgan said.

Surely anyone on parole (or anyone else for that matter) is allowed to carry around a concealed awl or ice pick? What am I missing here? Sorry if I am just being dense, but I honestly don't get what the cop is saying.
11.10.2006 5:35pm
Steve:
Standard conditions of parole often prohibit you from carrying a dangerous weapon of any sort.
11.10.2006 5:58pm
Christopher Cooke (mail):
Ice picks and awls, and similarly shaped objects are smuggled into prisons (via this person's method of concealment) and used as weapons in prison. That is also what the cop meant.
11.10.2006 6:04pm
Glenn W. Bowen (mail):
just north of Berkley...
11.10.2006 6:25pm
ThirdCircuitLawyer (mail):
Is this sort of thing common in California?
11.10.2006 6:30pm
therut:
Sounds like a parole board did another fine job.
11.10.2006 6:46pm
tefta2 (mail):
Bezerkley!
11.10.2006 6:48pm
Jim Rhoads (mail):
Sheehan? Sheehan? Hmmmmmmmm.
11.10.2006 6:55pm
SlimAndSlam:
Surely the lawyers among the readership would be more interested in a story that was linked from the concealed-weapon page:

Is a Burrito a Sandwich? Judge Says No

(Upon hearing that story, my wife immediately asked, "Does this mean wraps aren't sandwiches either?" It's a tricky question, given the judge's reasoning in this case and how wraps are generally marketed...)
11.10.2006 8:33pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
Slim: I read the story to my wife, and the first thing she said was, "What about wraps?"
11.10.2006 11:05pm
beckett (www):
Um. Is anyone else a bit disturbed (apart from the mental imagery), that the police charged him with a concealed weapon? For one, he was obviously using it for pleasure, and for another, it's not like he easily could have wielded it against them. Guns drawn? For what? So they can take him down before he removes it from his rectum and stabs them?

I wouldn't be surprised if it falls within the letter of the law, but you've got to be kidding me. He's not in prison now: is he prohibited from carrying pencils and pens? What if the offending item had been a closed swiss army knife?
11.10.2006 11:26pm
whit:
"He's not in prison now:"

except, in regards to many of his freedoms, or lack thereof, when he is on PAROLE, he is effectively subject to many prison type rules...

"Sheehan, who was paroled from state prison last week"

parole, is, in effect, an extension of prison. you are not free when on parole, you do not have the reasonable expectation of privacy, that a normal FREE citizen has, etc and you are subject to a much stricter rule set. basically, to make an analogy to animal house - you are on double secret probation.

in california (not in my state) police basically have carte blanche to search people on parole just like prison guard would. don't need probable cause.


i am also not convinced hew was "obviously using it for pleasure", but that's also kind of irrelevant.

i'm not going to get into all the distinction of "dangerous weapon per se" vs. "dangerous weapon as used" cause that's another issue.

but for clarification - if he's on parole, he's essentially in prison, ... on the outside.

california is such a nanny state, i'm surprised they haven't prohibited the carrying of awls anyway. :l
11.11.2006 1:31am
Fub:
whit wrote:
california is such a nanny state, i'm surprised they haven't prohibited the carrying of awls anyway. :l
For what it's worth, I recall an appellate ruling that a butterknife is not a dirk or dagger within the meaning of CA Penal Code Sec. 12020. Can't recall the citation though.
11.11.2006 7:10am
McGehee (never been able to log in) (mail) (www):
Slim: a while ago on my blog I linked to a story about a student nabbed for a "weapon" that turned out to be a really huge burrito wrapped in foil. Now, I know a really huge burrito can be a weapon, but that's usually after you eat it...
11.11.2006 9:26am
logicnazi (mail) (www):
whit,

You aren't convinced he was obviously using it for pleasure?

He was caught NAKED and MASTURBATING with a LARGE TOOL in his ass. What more evidence would convince you?

I mean common he wasn't trying to get in anywhere undetected. If he had meant to be hiding a weapon for self defense don't you think he might have worn pants and put it in his pocket.

He isn't in jail anymore it would be a lot easier for him just to buy a knife.

Also the fact that it was covered in tape suggests to me that it was deliberately blunted to go into his ass making it unsuited for immediate use.
11.11.2006 2:10pm
whit:
no, im not convinced.

and like i said, it's irrelevant

it's similar to carrying without a permit (in those states that require a permit)

it doesn't matter that you are carrying cause u think guns are sexy, or inserted in an orifice, or whatever.

you need a permit to carry. you don't have one. it's a violation
11.11.2006 2:27pm
markm (mail):
whit:

1) Wher os a permit needed to carry an awl?

2) By your logic, it would also be a violation for parolees to use any object at work that could be used as a weapon. No restaurant kitchen jobs, there are knives around. No Carpentry or mechanics: screwdrivers and hammers can be weapons. Not in the mail room: boxcutters. Might as well just abolish the parole board, no parolee is going to be able to get a job...
11.11.2006 4:38pm
markm (mail):
Correction: 1) Where is a permit needed to carry an awl?

Why do all blog comment forms have a comment entry box that's too small to see more than a couple of sentences?
11.11.2006 4:42pm
ScottB (mail):
Beckett- if the offending item had been a knife with a blade of over 2 inches, the penalty is a parole revocation pursuant to 3056 of the California Penal Code, and up to 12 months in prison.

markm- the parole agent will give the parolee an exception for tools used in the course of employement.

Parolees are prohibited from carrying any dangerous weapon, such as a "stabbing instrument" or a knife with a blade of more than 2 inches. This is a condition of their release from prison. The bare facts in the story clearly support an administrative parole violation for "possession of a concealed weapon."

The felony charge of 12020(a) of the California Penal Code prohibits possession of a "dirk or dagger" on one's person. Although there is no definition of "dirk or dagger" in the Penal Code, case law has defined the term to include modified bayonets and butterfly knives, and the courts take into account the surrounding circumstances in deciding whether the weapon is unlawful. I doubt anyone will argue about the "on one's person" element.

Logicnazi- I assume most readers of this blog haven't spent much time in prison, but the electrical tape provides better grip in the course of a fight, when the icepick may get covered with blood. This is a common modification for prison weapons, and based on the officer's training and experience, could certainly support probable cause for the arrest for 12020(a) PC.
11.11.2006 8:39pm
fishbane (mail):
Might as well just abolish the parole board, no parolee is going to be able to get a job...

Have you seen how this works in some places (Texas, for one)? Abolishing the parole board would be counterproductive: they extract a lot of money from parolees attempting to stay out of jail before locking them up again. It is an industry in many places. Goodness, next you'll call for an end to red light cameras and DUI reform, and then where will local government make money?
11.11.2006 10:12pm
fishbane (mail):
I doubt anyone will argue about the "on one's person" element.

Just because this is an attorney's blog, why not quibble? I think "on" and "in" are different, else being stabbed while being on parole would be a violation, surely not a reasonable outcome.
11.11.2006 10:14pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
Just because this is an attorney's blog, why not quibble? I think "on" and "in" are different, else being stabbed while being on parole would be a violation, surely not a reasonable outcome.
Being stabbed isn't a violation because of a lack of mens rea, not because it isn't on one's person.
11.11.2006 11:54pm
whit:
"Wher os a permit needed to carry an awl?"

the issue is not the carrying of the awl. it was the carrying of the awl *****CONCEALED***** which is what the article references. read for details

"2) By your logic, it would also be a violation for parolees to use any object at work that could be used as a weapon. No restaurant kitchen jobs, there are knives around. No Carpentry or mechanics: screwdrivers and hammers can be weapons. Not in the mail room: boxcutters. Might as well just abolish the parole board, no parolee is going to be able to get a job..."

no, that is not my position at all. read it again

carrying it CONCEALED.

there is a difference between using a butcher knife at your workplace, and walking around in public carrying a butcher knife concealed under your jacket.

the issue is the CONCEALMENT of the weapon, however absurd his method of concealment, NOT the carrying of it.
11.12.2006 1:02pm
whit:
also note that in some jurisdictions, parolees ARE prohibited from having certain jobs where deadly or dangerous weapons are used, especially around other people.

iirc, in MA you cannot be a barber if u are a felon.
11.12.2006 4:31pm