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Caldwell County, NC Sheriff’s Deputy Demands ID From Couple Suspiciously Eating Lunch

North Carolina Deputy ID Couple Suspiciously Eating Lunch

Caldwell County (NC) Sheriff’s Deputy Victor Misenheimer approached a couple eating lunch in their car and falsely claimed they are required to provide ID to any police officer upon demand.

Note: The video and description included within this post was shared with Nevada Cop Block via reader submission. If you have videos, stories, upcoming events/protests, or personal interactions with the police (and/or “justice” system) that you would like to share, send them to us and we will do everything we can to bring it to the attention of the world. In addition, you can visit the Nevada Cop Block resources section for information and links to the rights of citizens when dealing with police, during which you should always be filming.

Chad Love, who submitted the video, states in his description below that he and his girlfriend were sitting in their car within a public park eating lunch when Deputy Misenheimer deemed that suspicious and began harassing them. Regardless of Misenheimer’s personal opinion, legally that is not a reasonable suspicion of them having committed a crime.

In addition, as Love also states in that description, North Carolina is not a “Stop and ID” state. (Misenheimer even aknowledges that it isn’t in the video.) In states without Stop and ID statutes, you are actually not required to identify yourself, even when there is reasonable suspicion. The reasonable suspicion requirement applies to when you can be lawfully detained by the police.

In states with Stop and ID statutes, being lawfully detained is what allows the police to compel you to identify yourself (otherwise you can be arrested for obstruction). However, if there is no Stop and Id statute in your state, you are not legally required to identify yourself unless you are actually being arrested (which would require probable cause).

(Also, “articulable suspicion,” which Deputy Misenheimer mentions in the video, is not really a thing. What he is confusing it with is the requirement that a reasonable suspicion has to be based on articulable facts. Essentially, what that means is they have to be able to explain a basis for the suspicion, not just state that they were suspicious of something.)

In most states, including North Carolina, the one exception that allows police to demand ID from someone occurs when they are driving. Legally, the police can demand identification from the driver of a car. That is based on the requirement to have a driver’s license when driving.

So, that would be the one instance in which Deputy Mizenheimer is correct in relation to Chad’s girlfriend having to provide ID because she’s the driver. However, based on the fact he doesn’t cite that as a reason and argues (incorrectly) about reasonable suspicion, Misenheimer doesn’t seem to actually know why that is. Regardless, he clearly doesn’t understand that it does not also apply to the passenger of a car.

Incidentally, whether you are a driver and/or have been legally detained, you are not required to tell the police anything beyond your identity. At all times, you have and should exercise the right to remain silent. Talking to the police is never a good idea and if the police are looking for a reason to arrest you more than likely all you are going to do is help them find one.

Obviously, there aren’t any “crimes” more serious than two people eating in their car at a public park in need of investigation out there in Caldwell County, NC. We should all thank Deputy Victor Misenheimer for the bravery he displayed on this video in heroically confronting these dangerous criminals.

Date of Incident: September 2nd, 2017
Officer Involved: Deputy Victor Misenheimer
Department Involved: Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office
Department Phone No.: (828) 758-2324
Sheriff Alan C. Jones: (828)754-1518
Facebook: Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office on FB
Twitter: North Carolina Sheriff’s Association

My girlfriend and I were sitting at the park in Sawmills, NC minding our own business. We had been at the park for about twenty minutes while we ate lunch. This occurred on Saturday September 2, 2017 at approximately 12:00 PM.

Deputy Misenheimer of the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Department decided to stop behind our car while we ate lunch. The deputy approached the vehicle and asked what we were doing and why. We advised him that we were eating lunch.

The deputy then asked for ID’s from my girlfriend, who was driving, and also from me. I advised him we hadn’t done anything and we don’t have to provide identification. My girlfriend complied with his request. While it’s not on the video, the officer threatened to arrest me under the resist, delay and obstruct an officer statute.

I asked what was his reasonable suspicion that we had committed a crime or were about to. The deputy then proceeded to to treat us like criminals. I did not give my ID and have logged a complaint with the sheriff’s department.

If you agree that this stop borderlines harassment, please contact the department at 828-754-1518 and let Sheriff Alan C. Jones know. Remember, if you don’t stand for your rights, they will continue to be violated. I have no problem with the deputy interacting with us, but North Carolina is not a stop and identify state and he made it seem like my refusal to provide ID was against the law.

This is government tyranny. The same thing we fought England over. Now is the time to stop this! I would have agreed with the officer in regards to there being reasonable suspicion if things had been different. For example, the time of day or night, it being Saturday, as well as the fact that there were other people using the park (none of that should be considered suspicious).

The officer stated we were suspicious. It’s a public park at noon on a Saturday. How is that suspicious? Especially, if we are visibly eating.

– Chad Love

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