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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 11/19/2003 6:36:16 PM EDT

Okay, basically my boss is concerned about armed robbery during the holiday season at the restaurant where I work.

Last year the general manager and my roommate were in the office counting money at the end of the night, when a man came in and robbed them. He told my friend to face the corner, cleared out the cash drawer and the safe, and took the surveillance videotape. He was never caught.

Anyway, this year, for the busiest week of the year, the GM was planning on hiring a private security guy to oversee the selling of gift certificates, which is a promotional thing we do outside the restaurant. It would be fairly easy to rob the employee selling the gift certificates, and sometimes we sell several thousand dollars worth a day right before Christmas.

I will be the employee selling gift certificates this year, pretty much full time all next month. This was planned ahead of time, and when I heard that they were considering hiring a security guy, I pointed out that I have a ton of security and firearms training, plus a CWP. (My boss doesn't know it, but I carry concealed at work every day.)

So for the last week of December he wants me to buy one of those 'Taxpayer' badges and 'an official looking shirt' and open carry while working outside the store.

Anybody have any thoughts on this? Quite frankly, I love the idea of open carry at work, it validates everything I believe about the 2nd amendment. I told him that I want a letter signed by him stating I am allowed to open carry on the property, mainly because it makes me feel a little better about this. I definitely will not be making a big deal about this at all at work, because I know better than to frighten people or turn them off to firearms.

So let me know what you think. Good idea, bad idea?
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 6:40:18 PM EDT
Well, here's the deal.

You are going to be your bosses watch dog for the holiday season. Fine, but if he will let you open carry at work in December, he should let you open carry all year long. That's the deal I would make with him.

Otherwise, I would say that I don't get paid to be your security guard and sell your gift certificates. Obviously be diplomatic about the way you say it but it sounds to me like your boss is being a cheap skate.

That's fine, just get him to agree to you carrying all year long.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 6:47:59 PM EDT
Check the laws regarding armed security guards CAREFULLY. Your boss may not be aware that he may/may not be asking you to break the law.

Link Posted: 11/19/2003 7:01:25 PM EDT
You realize that by open carrying, you are painting a large SHOOT ME FIRST sign on your forehead?

I would ask the boss if you can concealed carry instead.

I would also echo Ivgunner77's comments; if it's important enough for Christmas, it's important enough year-round.

Also encourage him to allow other employees to carry as well; I'd take the angle that it's easy to knock off one guy, harder to knock off the whole crew.

Lastly, I'd shy away from the badge and official-looking shirt--if you do that, and wind up getting in an altercation, you may be held to a higher standard as a "security guard" than if you were just Joe Schmoe employee who happened to be carrying. Unless you're getting paid very, very well, I don't think this restaurant is worth doing time for.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 7:03:29 PM EDT

Well, I took the course for a Class D security license several years ago, but ended up not working in the security business. I also spent well over a year on active duty after 9/11, carrying an M16 in an airport concourse and on city streets. Plus I have the CWP and shoot with FDCC once a month.

None of these things technically make me a professional security guard, but they all go a long way toward reassuring my boss I am the man for the job.

Also, I will be getting an extra $200 the week that I am doing the security work.

As far as the year round open carry, I am actually uncomfortable with doing it inside the restaurant. Because of the close quarters, I am constantly rubbing/bumping into people, and I don't like the idea of other people being easily able to touch/grab my sidearm. I carry my Glock 29 in a belly band on my right hip under my T-shirt, and can reach it quickly enough.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 7:03:45 PM EDT
I believe carrying at work is OK in Fl. Not sure if open carry is OK.
I personally think you would be better off carrying concealed. While open carry MAY deter someone from robbery it also may make you a bullet magnet.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 7:21:53 PM EDT
Skip the badge & shirt. In fact, forgo the open carry. Instead, carry concealed, loosely. I.e., use a IWB holster but don't totally cover it up with a shirt, just not immediately visable to ordinary sight. Next, get permission to stash a second weapon in a remote location. Could be a pistol or shotgun.

Here's the reason, crooks 99.9 times out of 100 case the place, usually more than once before hitting it. If there is someone that carries open, the crooks are likely to come in shooting, more so if there is potential for a big score. Also, tell no one of the plan, alot of crooks get info from the inside from other employees, ditto on stashing the second firearm. If you can stash it somewhere that no other employee will know about it, that is best. At the very least, carry a backup in a ankle holster for a NY reload. Don't know what you carry but D/A's with a hammer drop safety or decockers can cost you your life in a stressful situation. Be sure that you practice disengaging the safety on the draw, dry fire is fine, if your pistol is so equiped. If you have a Glock or a Sig, you're good to go. Spare mag for the primary in a proper carrier is a must. Scout the place for hard cover and harden areas if neccessary. If you have a podium for the hostess, stack it full of books. You should have at least two to three areas of hard cover with clear fields of vision. Carry a cell phone on you and a good light. If the place has security cameras, aim them on the entrances, avoid recording any areas that you might appear on video when engaging tangos. No matter how right you may be, it will never appear that way on tape. Plus, it doesn't do family and friends any good to watch you over and over on the news tagging a tango. My humble advice.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 7:26:00 PM EDT
Get what he wants in writing....
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 8:17:04 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AvengeR15:

...my boss is concerned about armed robbery during the holiday season ...

Last year the general manager ... (was) robbed.

..., the GM was planning on hiring a private security guy ...

Your "boss" is the GM right? And is this the same GM that was robbed last year? (If so, where's his CWP?)

More importantly, is the GM also the owner of the restaurant? (Doesn't sound like it.) If the SHTF who's word will carry more weight in court re: requesting/'authorizing' you to carry, the owner's or the GM's?

Open carry, things go south, customer gets shot and the owner will at least try to throw you and the GM to the wolves. While they're scrambling a defense to the lawsuit from the customers family.

Link Posted: 11/19/2003 8:29:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/19/2003 8:30:21 PM EDT by Skibane]
How does open carry make you any more of a "bullet magnet" than if you were a security guard dressed in full uniform?
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 8:36:14 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 9:43:31 PM EDT
This is from a cop point of view.
1. Don't open carry unless you want to get shot first. That is why I don't work banks.

2. Don't be the only one carrying unless nobody else will.

3. Be very careful if you have to use it. Read your states CCW very carefully. Just because you have a CCW and work there doesn't mean you are a SG under the law. Most CCW laws are very strict on when you can use force.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 9:54:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By piccolo:
Check the laws regarding armed security guards CAREFULLY. Your boss may not be aware that he may/may not be asking you to break the law.


Absolutely! I'd also like to echo those who tell you that the guy open carrying gets shot first, especially if your eyes and hands are busy dealing with selling gift certificates. If your boss is that worried, tell him he needs to hire a guy/some guys --maybe off duty cops with robbery suppression experience-- to watch your back while you sell the gift certificates, and you continue to carry concealed while you do it.

$200 a week is nice, but not worth your life. Plan accordingly.
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 10:28:45 PM EDT
I think I like the concealed idea a little better myself. No need to be obvious. Just my opinion. If one guy cases the joint and leaves after seeing your gun, great. If one guy cases the joint and still thinks it's worth it after seeing your gun, ouch, at best. Keep it as out of site as possible until you need it. Seeing a gun can be a deterant or a dare, depending on forces you can't control. Be careful, be ready, be careful.

Link Posted: 11/19/2003 10:36:06 PM EDT
Get it in writing from the boss he wants you to carry as part of your duties. In case you get involved in a shooting, it will be harder to throw you to the wolves.

Don't wear any of the "Shoot Me First" signs.

What the hell is a taxpayer badge? Other than potentially opening an impersonation charge, it's definitely a shoot me first target. (or the indication of a wannabee.)

"And potentially the most important thing - Security Guard or not - Can you use deadly force to protect property in your state? Under what circumstances? You aare going to have to meet the "I was protecting the lives of customers and fellow employees or myself" standard if you shoot, and some places that can be damn dificult, especially if the perceived threat is not flagrant. And the DA has a hard-on for aarmed citizens. In other words, you get a drunk smart-ass that comes up and makes a joke and pretends to have a gun in his pocket and you kill him, wooooow nellie. Field day for the opposition.

Best bet might be to keep enough for change outside, and bring the cash in periodically. Then if somebody wants it bad enough, they can have it.

IT ISN'T WORTH GETTING KILLED OVER, they aren't paying you to be a target. (And despite what the bloodthirsty armchair commandoes around here may espouse, they aren't paying you enough to be a killer either.)

Link Posted: 11/19/2003 10:40:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/19/2003 10:42:20 PM EDT by PaDanby]
I see now that you are in Florida. From what we hear there are a lot of legal concealed carriers there. Anybody that seriously wants to commit an armed robbery must already be taking that into consideration. In light of that, they may be assuming you or somebody else is carrying and they still think it's worth the chance. (Or nothing might happen)

Just another thought.

How did somebody get in after closing and know where the camera tape was? or was the tape where the money was? Kinda convenient all around eh what?
Link Posted: 11/19/2003 11:06:38 PM EDT
I echo "carry concealed". If you open carry you run the risk of somebody sneaking up and snatching the gun from you as well.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:08:39 AM EDT

I should point out that I will I will be sitting behind a table most of the time, i.e. the weapon will be out of sight unless I need it. I am not overly worried about a lot of bystanders, because where I will be is a fair distance from the entrances, so there should never be very many people around.

I plan on carrying my Sig P226 in a Fobus paddle holster on my right hip, and probably my Glock 29 in an ankle holster. I will have two spare hicaps for the Sig.

I initially suggested to the boss that I should just wear khakis, a button up shirt and tie, with the 'taxpayer' badge on my belt, so that I resemble a plainclothes police officer to the untrained eye. My understanding is that the lookalike badges are completely legal, although of course I will check that out more thoroughly before I buy one.

After reading all you guy's helpful advice, I am probably going to push more strongly for the plainclothes wear, rather than the security type uniform. The boss' original concern was that I would be confused for an (unarmed) manager in shirt and tie, but I will have to get that one over on him.

Oh, and yes, the original robbery was almost definitely performed with inside information. Right now, the only people that know about the open carry idea are the GM and two assistant managers. I will also speak to them to make sure that no one else finds out beforehand.

Anything I am missing?
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:12:45 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/20/2003 5:17:12 AM EDT by Ross]

If he's paying you extra to do this, it will be considered security work (in fact you've even called it such yourself). If you are not licensed by the state of FL to be an armed security guard, you're leaving yourself, and your boss wide open to some very huge lawsuits.

While I'm sure you have more common sense, etc than most rent-a-cops with guns, the fact is you don't have the license to perform as a security guard in FL. The extra $200 is the thing that changes this whole set-up from you just being Joe Citizen, armed at work (which is perfectly legal in FL) to Joe Armed Security Guard. If you shoot someone, you can bet there will be a line of attorneys asking why you were playing secutiry guard, getting extra pay for it, and was not licensed, bonded and insured. They'll also be asking why your boss was acting as a security guard company without the required state licenses for that either (which is exactly what he's doing by telling you to go armed, and paying you to do it).

I had a CWP in FL as well as my security guard license (yes, I was a rent-a-cop in FL), and it's pretty specific in the FL statutes that cover security work that what your boss is proposing is illegal.

Carrying at work is fine. Defending yourself is fine. The big thing here is the extra money for providing security. Armed or unarmed, if you don't have the right licenses, you're opening yourself up really wide for loads of lawsuits. Being armed opens you up even more. The CWP is for your FL constitutional right to defend yourself. It is not a "guard card". Your right to open carry in FL is again a right because you live in the Sunshine State, but taking money to provide armed security is not.

See the difference? It's one thing if you've had all the training and the certificates and a licensed, bonded and insured security company is your employer. As long as you followed legal policies, it's hard to get into much trouble if you have to defend yourself. But if you are unlicensed but being paid for a job that the state has a legal requirement to be licensed for (i.e. armed security) you'd have a pretty hard time convincing a jury that you were the "right man for the job".

The extra $200 a week is nice, but it leaves you open to every lawsuit you can imagine, and possibly criminal prosecution by the state (as it is a law that you need a license to be an armed security guard in FL).

Your best route would be to carry concealed, carry all the time, all year round, and not get paid for it. Then you are just Joe Citizen. Unless you have other licenses that say you aren't Joe Citizen, it's best to stay Joe Citizen.

Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:23:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By piccolo:
Check the laws regarding armed security guards CAREFULLY. Your boss may not be aware that he may/may not be asking you to break the law.


Piccolo he should be ok. As long as he does not work for a contract security company, he should not need any type of license(for armed security) to carry open or concealed at work. He would just have to have permission from his employer. Though to tell you the truth I'd feel better CCW than open with the posibility of having a crap load of cash around. As anyone who really wants that money will just see the gun and may just decide to take ya out first thing before taking the cash.

AvengeR15- ya may want to talk to the boss man again as wearing something to make you stand out may not be the best thing to do. You want to be as low key as possible. If he wants visible security go with a contract security company. I sure has hell wouldn't want to be wearing anything that says shoot me first than take the money. And that is what you would be doing. Also if he wants you to do this than thats what you do the security and nothing else. Just something to think about. and be on the safe side and check with the state to find out what regulations they have as far as contract security being armed and "store" security being armed. There may be some problems but there might not be. You may have to get a license from the state either way. Make sure that that gets looked into and you know for sure.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:26:42 AM EDT
This is a horrible idea. However, from the tone of your posts you're planning on doing it anyway. I'll go ahead & waste my time typing up a response in the hope that you're looking for ACTUAL advice.

In Florida....
If you took the classes for the 'D' license then you know that there's a 'G' license required for carrying a gun. There are also internship type times for each. You don't have ANY of these so what you're planning to do sounds illegal to me.
The law in Florida is such that you can only use deadly force in response to deadly force (basically). You can't draw down on someone because they're robbing you. If some guy grabs the cash box & runs off, you legally have to stand there with your dick in your hand.
If you insist on getting a badge, be aware that 5 and 6 point badges, as well as ANY badge with the Florida state seal on it is illegal.

In general...
Most of you guys are missing out on the point of the security guard. They are not there to actually DO anything, they are there as a deterent and as a sad show of force. They really are nothing more than an armed witness. The idea is not that they'll do a damn thing once you're robbed or being robbed, the idea is that they'll make people think twice about even trying. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't. Nothing in this restaurant scenario has the same effect.

If you are the one that is going to be sitting outside, you should have a weapon CONCEALED on your person, and no badge. The weapon should be carried in such a way as to be easily deployed both sitting and standing. That's it.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:30:56 AM EDT
I say don't do it. Let your boss hire the armed security guard, thats what they get paid for, your job is to sell the gift certificates, not to provide security. That way if something does go wrong, it's his ass, not yours.

Why take a possable risk of losing your CWP, possable jail time, countless $$$ and the ability to have firearms if you do shoot someone over the companys money. It's only money. And screw that badge thing, all it does is makes a target to shoot at.

Remember. CYA
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:35:59 AM EDT
Having done some limited security work for kicks in my younger days, I highly recommend you read Ross's post again.

It's true that a uniform will deter some criminals just as a gun in plain sight will, but the uniform also implies certain training and bonding to include state and local legislation compliance.

In business, sometimes you just have to say "I'm not going to jail for you."

Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:52:56 AM EDT

Thanks for your advice guys. I am going to print out this thread and show it to my boss.

It may be best for me simply to work while carrying concealed, in normal clothes, and defend myself if necessary.

I will tell the boss that I don't want the extra pay, simply because that leaves a suspicious paper trail in case anything happens, as mentioned above.

Norman74, good advice about the badges. I was actually going to head up to the gun store you used to work at to look for one next week, now I guess that is a no-go. I spoke to you briefly about that place at the 3rd anniversary FDCC shoot, don't know if you remember or not.

Oh, and of course in between now and then I am going to hit the range three or four times to practice drawing and firing from a sitting position, just in case.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 5:55:51 AM EDT

What got me motivated to do this most was, as I mentioned in the original post, my roommate was robbed at gunpoint last year at this restaurant.

When he described the event to me, I was completely able to put myself in his shoes (feeling the fear & helplessness, not knowing if you are about to be shot in the back of the head, etc) because I had been in the same office doing the same job as him many, many times. I was always unarmed as well, because I did not have a CWP then. I don't want the same thing to happen to me.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 6:02:29 AM EDT
limaxray and others have voiced my thoughts too, if you're the only one with a pistol on his hip you'll be the first one to take a bullet. It would be much better to carry conceled so you'll have the element of suprise on your side if anything does go down. Also, it would be better for two or three people at your work to carry in case one of you is "occupied"(read, taking a dump) plus you could watch each others six that way also. Most places allow for emploies to carry at work with their bosses/owners permission but I'd still check the local laws. If you serve alcohol it may be impossible for you to carry, CHECK the LAWS. It would be sad for you to save someones life because you had a pistol only to spend a butt load of time in jail.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 6:03:34 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AvengeR15:
Norman74, good advice about the badges. I was actually going to head up to the gun store you used to work at to look for one next week, now I guess that is a no-go. I spoke to you briefly about that place at the 3rd anniversary FDCC shoot, don't know if you remember or not.

They have them (or did when I worked there) that are legal, I just wouldn't recommend it.

Is all this taking place in Gainesville?
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 6:07:46 AM EDT
Let's see, you're sitting alone, outside, selling gift certs, but are carrying openly.

The Bad Guys get plenty of time to figure out you're a threat. You get zero time to figure out who's the BG.

BG #1 pretends to want to buy gift cert, "accidentally" drops cash, keys, soft drink, whatever to distract you. BG #2 pounds you on the back of skull with a brick, takes your gun, and goes inside to rob the rest of the store.

Will your boss cover your medical / legal / burial costs if something bad happens? Is it in writing? Is he authorized to do so by the corporation? Does he or the corporation actually have the $$ to make good on that? I didn't think so.

I dunno. The whole deal seems funny. Prior inside job robbery? You'll sell the certificates but get extra money for being your own security? My spider sense is tingling. Sounds like a bad, bad, idea. Don't do it. In fact, get the heck out of there. If there's any chance ANYONE in that store knows that you MIGHT sometimes carry concealed, you're in danger.

Link Posted: 11/20/2003 6:10:30 AM EDT
Your boss is trying to save money by not hiring a security company. The question is - do you have the personal liability insurance to cover anything that may come up if you have to use your gun in a "security" capacity? However, if your boss wants to give you a bonus for doing such a good job selling gift certificates, and you happen to carry concealed for your own protection (as you stated you already do), that would probably be OK.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 6:23:58 AM EDT

Norman74, no this is not in Gainesville.

Everyone else, I am not going to give away all the details for robbing me over the internet, but suffice it to say that I will not be outside, just outside the restaurant. Also, it will be EXTREMELY DIFFICULT for someone to case the joint and get any useful information at all, without me knowing it. Lastly, no one can walk up behind me.
Link Posted: 11/20/2003 10:59:03 AM EDT

Well I talked to my boss this morning, and showed him a printed copy of the first page of this thread, and he agreed we shouldn't do the security thing. I will still of course be carrying concealed when I am working there, but that will be all, I imagine.

On a positive note, he and I started talking about guns, and it turns out he owns a Bushy AR-15, and might even attend the next FDCC shoot with me. So score one for our team!
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