Lee Davis: 6th Circuit Rules That Park Ranger Was Right To Detain Man Carrying AK-47

Sunday, September 30, 2012 - by Lee Davis
Lee Davis
Lee Davis
In Embody v. Ward the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that a park ranger did not violate the rights of a man who wore camouflage and carried an AK-47-style pistol across his chest with a loaded 30-round clip in a Nashville park.

The gun toting man from Brentwood, Leonard Embody, sued park ranger Steve Ward for detaining him at the Radnor Lake State Natural area back in December 2009. Ward held Embody while he investigated whether the gun was legal and whether Embody had a permit to lawfully carry it. The investigation revealed that Tennessee law allows guns with barrels of less than 12 inches in state parks. Luckily for Embody, his gun just squeaked by, with his barrel a half-inch under the limit.
The stupidity of the Tennessee legislature to pass such a law allowing a man to bring a AK-47 into a state park was not at issue.

Embody also painted the  tip of his gun orange, an attempt to make the gun look like a toy. The Sixth Circuit said that given this, “An officer could fairly suspect that Embody had used the paint to disguise an illegal weapon.”

The Court also mentioned the concern raised by other park-goers: evidently one person raised his hands in the air when he ran across Embody while two other park visitors came to Ward to say they were “very concerned” about the man. Later an elderly couple reported that a man was wandering through the park with an assault rifle. All of this was further evidence, according to the Court, that Ward behaved reasonably when detaining Embody.

The Sixth Circuit said that Embody’s detention was predictable and that Embody himself suspected it might happen which is why he carried an audio-recording device on his person. The Court clearly felt little sympathy for Embody, saying that having worked hard to appear suspicious, Embody cannot later complain because park rangers took the bait.

Full opinion can be found here.

(Lee Davis is a Chattanooga attorney who can be reached at lee@davis-hoss.com or at 266-0605.)

Northwest Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Unchanged At 5.6 Percent In October

The Georgia Department of Labor announced on Thursday that the unemployment rate in the Northwest Georgia region in October was 5.6 percent, unchanged from September. The rate in October 2014 was 6.8 percent. While the rate was unchanged, the number of initial claims for unemployment insurance rose by 741, or 29.1 percent, to 3,291 in October. Most of the increase was due ... (click for more)

October 2015 County Unemployment Rates

County unemployment rates for October 2015, released Wedesday, show the rates decreased in 90 counties, increased in four, and remained the same in one county. Specific county information for October is available on the Internet .   Davidson County had the state’s lowest major metropolitan rate in October at 4.2 percent, down from September’s rate of 4.6 percent. Knox ... (click for more)

Fire Breaks Out At McKee Bakery Plant 2; Damages Listed At $15,000; Propane Tanks Were Near Blaze

Fire broke out at a McKee Food plant at Collegedale on Saturday night. At 6:45 p.m. , an employee at McKee Foods called 911 call reporting a fire at McKee Foods Plant 2 located at 10260 McKee Dr. Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department responded and arrived on the scene reporting flames 15 feet high at one end of the building of Plant 2. According to fire officials, ... (click for more)

Woman Shot Saturday Night Near O'Rear Street

A woman was shot while driving on Saturday night. Just after  9 p.m.  the Chattanooga Police Department responded to reports of a person shot. Once on scene, police located a female victim near the 2500 block of O'Rear Street suffering from a life-threatening gunshot wound to the face. The victim was driving a vehicle when the vehicle was struck by gunfire. She  ... (click for more)

Lung Cancer, The Deadliest Cancer In The United States

This time of year, I remember to give thanks for my faith, my family and friends and my health. Recently, I learned that lung cancer is the deadliest form of cancer in the United States; in fact, more Americans die each year from lung cancer than any other type of cancer. One in 13 men and one in 16 women will develop the disease in their lifetime. It’s important to learn about ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Trouble With Chicago

On “Black Friday” night, I saw television footage of what was said to be about 2,000 people marching in protest in Chicago. The very vocal mob descended on the toniest street – Michigan Avenue – to spew its rage over a police officer who shot and killed a 17-year-old, this over a year ago in October of 2014. The just-released tapes of the incident embroiled the blacks who insist ... (click for more)