Home / Be The Change / Filming Cops / EXCLUSIVE: Black Man Harassed for Legally Open Carrying – Proceeds to School the Cops on His Rights

EXCLUSIVE: Black Man Harassed for Legally Open Carrying – Proceeds to School the Cops on His Rights

Bridgeport, CT – DonTrell Brown is serious about exercising his rights, and he has recently had a series of run-ins with the law as a result. Brown does not drink, smoke or use profanity, but he takes a gun with him wherever he goes, and in the state where he lives he is well within his rights to do so.

It is rare to see a person open-carrying their weapon in the state of Connecticut, but it is entirely legal, and according to the fine print of the law, a person is not required to show an officer their permit unless they are detained or were the victim of a crime. However, the police in Connecticut aren’t entirely aware of this fact, and their internal memos state that police are entitled to force any type of information that they want out of people.

Brown holds a masters degree and is well-versed in legal matters, so he knows the boundaries of the law and has no problem testing those boundaries.

In the past few months, Brown had a number of different run-ins with police, but just this week he was harassed and followed around town by officers because he was carrying his legally owned firearm. Brown was pressured by the officers to show them his permit to carry, but he refused and cited the law that he was not required to show them anything unless he was suspected of a crime. Police claim that they were responding to a call from someone who was threatened by the fact that he had a weapon, however, in an exclusive interview with The Free Thought Project, Brown said that the officers were eating at the restaurant where the first encounter took place, meaning that they had just happened to run into him, and were not responding to a call.

Since he was correct about the law, Brown was not arrested by police, however, he was denied service at the Subway restaurant, which has a no gun policy. Unfortunately, the police were not done harassing Brown but decided to follow him around town to other locations. Brown continued to stand his ground and the situation was resolved peacefully when the cops finally backed off.

The day after the encounter, the video quickly went viral and sparked controversy in the local area about whether or not a gun owner was required to show a police officer their permit if they are asked for it. Police and government employees are unanimously in agreement that people should be required to give police any information that they ask for under any circumstances, however, if this were actually the law, then people like DonTrell would quickly be arrested for not showing officers their permits.

Brown tells the Free Thought Project that it is important for people to exercise their rights, because if people don’t, then our freedom will disappear, which is why it is so important for him to open carry. He said that it is important for all gun owners to open carry, but that it was especially important for people of color, who are many times prevented from carrying or even owning firearms. He pointed out that some of the first gun laws in the country were put in place to prevent freed slaves from owning guns.

“What I did was not meant to cause any problems, just more to show people of color that people like MLK and Abraham Lincoln died for us (Black people) to have rights. So if we allow anyone just to violate them then their death’s would be in vain.  I for one am really thankful for everything they as well as others done for me to even be out of chain and shackles,” Brown said.

“I just want to be seen as an American with rights, not just a black man challenging the law,” he added.

The following videos show the encounters that Brown had this week with local police:


John Vibes is an author and researcher who organizes a number of large events including the Free Your Mind Conference. He also has a publishing company where he offers a censorship free platform for both fiction and non-fiction writers. You can contact him and stay connected to his work at his Facebook page. You can purchase his books, or get your own book published at his website www.JohnVibes.com.

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  • ᵀʰᶦˢ ᶦˢ ˢᵒ ˢᵐᵃᶫᶫ ᵗᵒ ʳᵉᵃᵈ ᵉᵛᵉᶰ ᶠᵒʳ ʸᵒᵘ ᵇʳᵒ⋅ ᴰᵒᶰᵗ ᵗʳʸ ᵗᵒ ᶜᵒᶰᵗᶦᶰᵘᵉ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ ᵗʰᶦˢ ᵇᵉᶜᵃᵘˢᵉ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵉʸᵉˢ ʷᶦᶫᶫ ˢᵗᵃʳᵗ ᵗᵒ ʰᵘʳᵗ ˢᵒᵒᶰ ᶦᶠ ʸᵒᵘ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ˢᵗᵒᵖ⋅ ᵂʰʸ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ˢᵗᵒᵖ﹖⋅⋅⋅⋅ᵍᵒ ᵃʷᵃʸ ᵇʳᵒ ᵃᶰᵈ ʳᵉᵃᵈ ᵗʰᵉ ᶰᵉˣᵗ ᶜᵒᵐᵐᵉᶰᵗ⋅ ˢᵗᵒᵖ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ ᵃᶫʳᵉᵃᵈʸ﹗ ᴵ ˢᵉᵉ ᵗʰᵃᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ᵈᵒᶰᵗ ʷᵃᶰᶰᵃ ᵍᶦᵛᵉ ᵘᵖ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦᶰᵍ﹖⋅⋅⋅ʷᵉᶫᶫ ᵒᵏ, ʸᵒᵘ ʷᵒᶰ ᵗʰᶦˢ ᵗᶦᵐᵉ, ᵇᵘᵗ ʸᵒᵘ ˢʰᵒᵘᶫᵈ ᵍᶦᵛᵉ ᵐᵉ ᵃ ᶫᶦᵏᵉ ᶠᵒʳ ʷᵃˢᵗᶦᶰᵍ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵗᶦᵐᵉ ᵃᶰᵈ ˢᵗʳᵉˢˢᶦᶰᵍ ʸᵒᵘʳ ᵉʸᵉˢ ᵗʰᵒ

  • “But, but, but… ‘rights’!”

  • What’s fucked up, besides that, is the fact the pigs intimidated the restaurant into refusing to serve the gentleman recording the video.

    • Businesses have the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason, (as long as it doesn’t violate the ADA Act). If you were to walk into KFC, they can refuse to serve you simply because they don’t like the cut of your jib. You can sue, and most likely you will win, but the point is that they can refuse for any reason.

    • Jason Edward Except they didn’t refuse him on their discretions. The officer bullied them into not doing it.

    • Yup, the officers bullied them. You’re right, Brandon. Because you were there, right? You seem to know everything which could only mean one thing, you were there.

  • Too many “open to discretion” type laws out there.

  • Most of them don’t. Some of them don’t care what the law is.

  • The guy was right on the law but wrong on his manners; the subway still refused to serve him.

    • They wouldn’t serve him because of the officer with the stupid hat telling them not to.

  • Good for this citizen. Rights and freedom! Fuck all of you who support police like this. May they press and take your freedoms only. If you want to be ruled. Move to China or North Korea.

  • This guy is my new hero.

  • The cops also arrest women for breastfeeding, even though it’s not illegal in any state or territory.

  • Viva la democracia,si Pepe.

  • Classic. Retarded law enforcers and who’s that monster fat ass donut eating fuckhead….?

  • If asked don’t you have to show your permit?

  • Guy making this video was a total dickhead. Big difference between exercising rights and being a shit for brains.

    • So the big black officer who waltzed his way in and when the guy asked him if he’s the supervisor the officer goes “you see the bars!” Wasn’t being a dickhead?

      Stop being a shmuck.

    • Exactly Brandon gosh some people

  • like the right to be stupid….?

  • Getting sick of this $#!+

  • I understand the police just approaching making contact. It strange a person carry a gun into subway, having law n enforcement back ground. Yes cops have enforce the law but also protect the public. I have no issue with the officer at least making welfare check on the person.

    • That’s fine. But understand as soon as he proves he’s just open carrying. Let him go.

      And there are subways in some real rough neighborhoods. So totally normal to be carrying on your day and just wander in there around lunchtime.

    • I don’t understand your comment “Sir you’re not guilty of breaking any laws and haven’t threw tend anyone or anything but….what are you doing?” Doe stay really ame sense to you? I’m black and I open Carry and I’ll school aby cop quick that stops or tries to detain me solely because I have a firearm. If I haven’t pulled it, threatened anyone, shot or basically am guilty of just legally open carrying then I’m being stopped for actually following the law which is a problem

    • The thing is I live in Texas and we have open carry and it states very clearly in the law that an officer has the right to ask you for your permit to make sure you have the right to open carry you can only open carry if you have a permit so they have a right to ask you if you have a permit

    • State laws are different everywhere, know your state laws. But it goes even further than that as you could be in violation of a municipal law and its all a racket to strip you of your rights. That are inalienable god given rights. The government has gone rogue and seeks a monopoly on power.

    • And cops have no obligation to protect you or keep you safe.

  • The man did right by standing up for his rights, but to use profanity really hurt his cause. There was no need for it.

    • There is no such thing as “bad words” just words you find offensive and others don’t.

    • I didn’t say bad words, but there is such a thing as staying “classy” in stressful situations. What benefit was there from saying that last dick head while he was walking away?

    • Listen to the whole video, he was all “sirs” until he was away and then called them dickheads. If you are going to say it, say it from the jump

    • Because they were being dickheads. Acting in a threatening and intimidating manner.

    • Yes they were, but what did it benefit him to say it as he was walking away?

    • Probably made him feel better. It’s not as if he was going to get served because they bullied the counter people into not letting him eat there.

    • I get that, but then turn of the camera first. Or edit the video to take thst out. In my opinion, it made him look weak

    • They were dickheads. It wasn’t like he was lying or something. Get over your pc bullshit, Marcus.

    • PC bullshit my ass. You are missing my point. If he was saying it to call them out, then say it from the beginning. If he was saying it to make himself feel better, then it doesn’t need to posted up on the internet. Since he did post it, what was his intent? Do show him standing up for his rights? Good for him! To show that the police were being dicks? Even better! Why the include the comment at the end though? To prove a point? The point was proven in the video already! It seems more like he was trying to assert thst he was a badass. If that was the case, then why not call them dickheads to their faces? There is no PC in me, but why do you have a problem with me articulating an intelligent question as to what was the benefit to calling thme dickheads as they are walking away. PC shit, if you don’t like my opinion don’t read what I write then.

    • Lol super pc bullshit right now. You’re cooking up some pc bullshit gumbo right now. He made his point from the bery beginning which was ignored because they don’t know the law.

      They are dickheads. And your point isn’t intelligent. It’s you being offended by somebody elses choice in words.

    • I am offended by people acting like bitches and punks. If you want to glorify thsat, then congratulations, that must mean you are a bitch too

    • Wahhhhh!!! Words hurt me!

    • Grow up man. You don’t know me or my history.

    • I understand what you are saying. The more profanity used the more ignorant you sound.

  • Ok, its not technically the law…….but if people are ‘afraid’ and call the police, why not be an ambassador of good gun owners and show an ID. Just put everyones fears to rest. Explain how you dont have to, but just to be a nice guy, comply. He wasnt asking to confiscate.

    • Give an inch, they take a mile.

    • As a great song once was wrote…fuck the police

    • Because when you allow your rights to be violated it is no longer a right! Sorry to inconvenience the police with our rights under the constitution and laws of the land but heck no does one simply back down!

  • Cops go threw a generous training course, and the its all about civil and constitutional rights, and they like to play stupid, probably because they are mostly C grade students. Not a lot of strait A students apply to be a cop.

  • All cops are pussies period end of discussion

  • Laws are not relevant. The law is whatever the fuck they say it is.

  • They think their job is no to “enforce” the law. Its to be the law and as such they can just make up any law on the spot that they feel fits the “crime”: Welcome to the world of Judge Dread. Judge jury and executioner.

  • In detroit, almost every black person is open carrying. And I actually feel 100 times safer around them than the ones not.

    They got nothing to hide. Cops don’t hassle them here.

  • One thing I’m gonna point out, police are literally not there to protect you. This isn’t hate speak at cops I’m saying this because the police have actually taken it to the Supreme Court and won with the argument that they are not obligated or even supposed to be protecting or risking their lives for anyone so drop all the “the police have to make a welfare check and safety”nonsense. What the police actually are supposed to be doing is enforcing laws (hence law enforcement) police can’t pull you over “just to make sure you’re all legal” you’ve gotta actually commit some traffic infraction. That’s the way almost all contact with police work and this case is included. There is no law that says this guy could even have been addressed/detained by the police since he committed no crime and they had no articulate suspicion of a crime he was involved in involving his firearm so the whole incident was outside the law for them and a conflict that needn’t have occurred

    • Most cops will risk their lives to protect people irrespective of what some court says.

    • Most is a generous and unsupported estimation. Also “what some court says” is literally all cops are supposed to do. We’re taxed to pay for them to enforce existing laws that are legislated and then upheld or struck down by “some SUPREME court” not unspoken, personal, southern or whatever the hell else kinda law people think cops are out here doing.

    • I think this was good communication. I think when making a statement about the general behavior of officers it’s relevant to bring up the psychological screening involved in the selection process. Also, we shouldn’t be too vague about the situation. Truthfully, I walk these streets as a common man ready to dash into the proverbial burning building or do whatever because I’m observant and live to help others. That being said, i would do so without being paid. That’s not what we’re talking about here. We’re talking about when someone calls the cops on someone or even themselves because they’re exhibiting bizarre behaviour. Too often they come and violently arrest or worse when sometimes people just need space and time to de-escalate. The absolute unyielding rule of law over anything else leads to shitty outcomes. Sometimes throwing cops at a situation is not the answer because is it so hard to imagine that they approach every call with the mentality kill or be killed? I don’t think so, and there needs to be systemic changes when there are so many officers committing crimes themselves, because it shows even they don’t believe in the law.

    • Have a link to the court case?

    • Warren v district of columbia. Depressing read

  • This will happen to everyone.

  • i would have handled that diff. show him the fuckin permit and go on with your day

    • Our founding fathers could have payed their fuckin taxes and accepted the ban on rifles, I’m glad that didn’t happen though.

    • Jack, most normal people would have done the same. He could have showed his permit and schooled the cops on the law. Instead, he chose to provoke a confrontation.

    • the simple act of showing his permit puts them in there place

  • I thought it was bull shit. Dude had every right to tell them the law

  • this American knows the real laws

  • God no! Not a BLACK man with an open carry!

  • But there’s no racism.

  • You won’t see this “patriot” on “Fox News.”

  • #knowyourrights

  • To be fair though, white ppl also go through this. Im against any type of carry laws but cops think they are the law.

    • They think they are above the law, they also think that thier word is law. And they can arbitrarily create law.

    • And you will be one that if ever held at gunpoint will thank a person carrying.

  • pathetic

  • only in american are people this difficult and disrespectful to the people that put their lives on the line to protect us, people wonder why the police kill toll is so high in america. exhibit A

    • So this justifies killing someone? They enforce the law they don’t protect you. They will choose their job over your life any day

    • no it doesn’t but it does increase the odds of something bad happening( possible death) unfortunately life isn’t fair, some of the laws they enforce happen to protect people i hope you understand that. i know of officers dying protecting people/their communities, would you like the links??

  • i know you don’t have to be a helpful person but in my opinion you should be it reduces the amount of time you have to waste and the police hence giving them more time to catch and arrest the murderers, rapists and so forth, or you can be a difficult little kid and i say i don’t have to, you cant make me

  • Don’t you know? They ARE the law! At least that’s what they think.

  • This is not typical: Since he was correct about the law, Brown was not arrested by police.

  • Here’s the thing, if Subway was a gun-free zone, why wasn’t Brown locked up?

    Connecticut criminal code 529, section 29-28, subsection “e” states

    (e) The issuance of any permit to carry a pistol or revolver does not thereby authorize the possession or carrying of a pistol or revolver in any premises where the possession or carrying of a pistol or revolver is otherwise prohibited by law or is prohibited by the person who owns or exercises control over such premises.

  • He should’ve said ” y’all mutha fuckas are Makin me fear for my life…”

  • I have to ask: why is it necessary to point out he was black? Did it make a difference. Hell no! One of the cops harassing him was black. It’s a MAN being hassled for open carrying. People who constantly bring race up are the real racists.

    • Dear Tony. The reason it is important to point out that he is black is because had this man been white there is a 90% chance that the cops would never have even said a word to him. Seriously?? you really don’t realize this?? I think you do! My question is why do you have a problem people pointing out injustices towards blacks?? Do you think the US is really different than fifty short years ago. All of a sudden white supremacy is no longer happening?

    • Relax

    • I disagree with you. Yes, the fact that the open carrier is ‘black’ is an important fact. Not because it’s a racist point. It’s actually a very real and powerful point to make. Acknowledging the fact that black male American citizens are racially profiled by law enforcement is simply being REAL, not racist. We ALL need to get our non-racist heads out of the sand and start being strongly ‘anti-racist!!!!’ And, as old wisdom goes, you must first acknowledge the problem before you can fix it. ♡

    • Lily Shilo…. EXACTLY!!! ♡♡♡♡

    • Lily Shilo I can’t buy that. As the creator of Open Carry Vancouver, I know many open carriers of other races who get hassled just as much as this guy did, and more. I think that we can all agree, though, that racism was pretty much a moot issue finally until Barry got into office.

    • The rudest cop there was a black cop, and the dumbest one there was white, the mexican cop at least acknowledge the law and told the others to calm down.. So why was it important to say he was black? That big cop wouldve done the same thing and had the same attitude with a white guy, i believe. This isnt a race issue, its an issue of cops not trusting the law abiding citizens. Quit crying about race bullshit and start crying about shitty cops!

    • The supervisor was black also, what pertinence does his skin color have. Its a persecution of gun owners and those who seek to be free. Slaves dont have the ability to protect oneself. The like to remind us we are slaves otherwise we might actually stand up.

    • Really? Blacks are harassed more often by all authority.

    • Rufus Warren This is not about race. This is about the harassment of an open carrier.

    • The new racist. Be racist and play victim of racisim. Oh stop talking about race… no fool the black dude Wasn’t harassing and white dude kept follow on him afterwards

    • Tony Thomas…. this video is about an open carrier being harrassed by policemen. And, it’s also about many other things!! This video is going to mean something different to different people. What IS or IS NOT significant is going to depend on each viewer. The video stands on its own! Logically, racism and racial profiling isn’t any less real because you ‘know many open carriers of other races who get hassled just as much……’

  • .

  • The website is full of bullshit ads, dislike.

  • Open carry is a horrible idea. Concealing you weapon is alot smarter. If I was a bad guy about to pull off some bad guy shit I would go ahead and take out the guy wearing his pistol in plain sight.

  • When you get paid to kill with the slightest perceived threat, then why take time to learn laws?

  • Meanwhile in Oregon

  • I am on Brown’s side. My colleagues and I frown on open carry by citizens, but prefer concealed carry. I am not anti against open carry by citizens, it makes a lot of people nervous.

  • I totally feel safer around people carrying weapons.

  • Right on brother!!!

  • Don Trell Brown, HELL YEAH!!!! Excellent job! I’m impressed and I commend you. You’re breaking new ground, leading by example and lighting the way for those lost in the dark. By standing up for your own rights you’re also standing for the rights of other black men who dont feel the same entitlement that they deserve and should!!! You’re fighting the good fight, keep it up!!! ♡

  • All this open carry stupidity will lead to less freedom and more anarchy. It’s coming. Free thought project my ass. This is ignorant thought, whether it’s been made into a right or not, keep your guns at home.

    • Make me.

    • What good is the means of self defense if you leave them at home…..

    • It will be worse when many open carry. More frequent gun fights with innocent people getting caught in the crossfire. Yeah, there are bad cops and bad guys, but it’s not going to help that anyone with a license can go around packing heat when they get a sub sandwich. If I was a cop and everyone is open carrying, I think I would be more apt to go to the gun. Weaponizing society is dumb.

    • And, Vince Rangel, it’s that “make me” attitude that makes you mentally disqualified to be carrying a gun around in public. Step back and grow up beyond elementary school, meet you at the bike racks, attitude.

    • Bret Moose Would you threaten to shoot someone if they punched you in the face, and stole your wallet?

  • Concealed carry is the way to go. That way you can avoid the clean up crew

  • Who gives a shit if the citizens is black, cops harass white people and Mexicans too! The video is about shitty cops, NOT a black man defying the law. Smdh

  • Well, here in Canada you would not get far out in public carrying a gun. No matter what colour you are. Americans and their guns. Sheesh. Why are they all so afraid?

  • Lawyers and Judges doesn’t even know the law! Laws they think is law are not even laws, but legislation or codes. How can a police with a 6 months study can actually know anything at all! They are only following orders!

  • Supervisor could barely fucking walk

  • See, the problem is the gun and amplified by being Black, wow!

  • The slave is not alowed to rights under the U.S. Constitition.

  • I don’t think this man would have been harrased for open carrying had he not been black. A policeman’s job is to exercise the law. If this state says you can open carry and you only have to show your permit if you are a suspect in a crime, the police should know and exercise that law

  • I had an accident in my truck one Friday. It’s front end was wiped out. Someone sideswiped me spun me into the curb at forty five miles an hour and didn’t stop. But the cop asked if I needed a ride back home. I said sure. He took my license and insurance card and went and sat in the car until the tow truck got there about 45 minutes. During that time I grab my ukulele out of the back of my truck and started playing a little while walking back and forth on the sidewalk.. After the tow truck got there he came and handed my license back to me and saw that I had a gun owners carry permit. He asked me where my gun was. I looked at him like the Nazi he was and said what difference does it make? Don’t you think if I were going to have used it I would have used it by now ? He says if you have a gun you are supposed to inform me that’s the law. He said I don’t know what they taught you in your silly gun course but that’s the law. I said no its not if you ask me about my gun I have to tell you but I do not have to tell you if you don’t ask. He said no you have to inform me if we have an encounter. I said I didn’t know this was a encounter but you are incorrect I do not have to inform anybody that I am carrying a weapon unless a law enforcement officer asks me. So he asked me if I had my weapon on me. So I told him yes. He asked me where. I said in my right pocket. He said I can’t tell there’s anything in there. I said that’s the point He argued with me once again saying that it was my responsibility to inform him I was carrying before he asked.. So I googled it. They hate being wrong. And I hate that they don’t know the very laws that they are supposed to be enforcing. He then told me he wasn’t going to give me a ride without relinquishing my weapon to him. I said I would never relinquish my weapon willingly to any government official. And I would walk if I needed to. The tow truck driver spoke up and said that’s okay I’ll give you a ride home I don’t care if you have a pistol in your pocket He handed me my police report got in his car and hastily drove away. They don’t like when they are proved wrong about the very law that they are enforcing. Know your rights know the law and don’t let these people bully you into submission. I was polite enough about it but I really felt like jumping down this guys throat and calling him all kinds of insulting names and treating him with the rude contempt with which he treated me when he thought he was right.

  • They may not know the law, but they all know to stop a black man for anything, how to kill and unarmed black person too.

  • A lot of people jumping ship cause the dood is black. I’d be genuinely terrified too, and I’m apart of the minority groups. However, I will add that I would be scared of the dude having a gun more so than him being a black dood.

  • I wonder wht the video cut short? I bet he went to cross the street without the signal and that’s when they got his info for jaywalking. They always follow you around when you embarrass them untilnyoubinfract a minor petty code, then they come down on you.

  • OMG….and this is one of the reasons stupid Americans keep getting shot by cops. Yea most of the cops that do the shooting are cowards, but if a cop asks to see a permit that allows you to carry a firearm in public (which isn’t unreasonable, he just wants to make sure you are who you say you are and your aren’t gonna go shoot up another elementary school.), just show9 them….Americans and their rights eh…have some fucking respect for the law and the people that enforce it.

  • Think about it

    The police are the ones disrespecting the law here. They have no legal right to ask to see the permit. Whether or not you like this man’s attitude or the things he says, he is the one who is right. There is no lawful reason for police to even speak to him if he is not suspected of violating the law.

  • ryan Israel

    How come a story like this never says “White man”?

  • GnomeCoach

    Calling the police ‘dickheads’ at the end of the first video seems to clash with wishing the police a good day. I suspect there is an element of taunting in these confrontations.

    • James Michael

      Maybe the sworn servant should obey his oath and the law…..

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