Imagine the following: You’re in the military, but you’re not currently on active duty. You’ve still got most of your gear, but it just sits in the closet most of the day. You’ve been home playing video games for far too long and you’re itching to get back out there in your old gear and get some training in before you become a soft flabby fatbody. Normally, this would result in a trip to the gym. But for William Alemar that just wasn’t enough . . .

From The Journal in West Virginia:

At about 7:17 a.m., the Martinsburg Police Department received several calls in regards to an individual running and carrying a rifle near the area of Bulldog Boulevard and Raleigh Street in Martinsburg.

Apparently Mr. Alemar had decided to do some training and so he kitted himself out with all his sooper cool OPERATOR gear including an airsoft version of an AR-15. Then he went for a relaxing jog around the block in broad daylight. And while the orange tip of his airsoft rifle would give us gun owners a clue as to what was really going on and allay our fears, the average population just sees “GUN!”, doesn’t pass go, doesn’t collect $200 and proceeds directly to panic mode. Which prompted multiple calls to the police, who finally responded and held our hero at gunpoint.

Officers responded to the scene and located the man, later identified as 23-year-old William Everett Alemar, of South Raleigh Street, near the intersection of Silver Lane and Raleigh Street. When Patrolman M. Jones, Patrolman C.M. Richmond and Patrolman First Class E. Herb encountered the individual, he was dressed in full military desert camouflage and a ballistic vest and with what appeared to be an assault rifle across his chest, police said.

All three officers engaged Alemar at gunpoint and ordered him to his knees to be taken into custody.

While running around with your gear on isn’t really illegal in and of itself, the fact that he was apparently near a school has turned this enjoyable jog into a felony — specifically, the police are charging him with committing a terroristic act.

A terrorist act is defined under state code as an act that is likely to result in serious bodily injury or damage to property or the environment; intended to intimidate or coerce the civilian population; influence the policy of a branch or level of government by intimidation or coercion; affect the conduct of a branch or level of government by intimidation or coercion; or retaliate against a branch or level of government for a policy or conduct of the government.

“Because of his actions and his dress it alarmed and put individuals in the area in immediate fear for their lives,” Swartwood said.

Here’s where it gets even better: wearing body armor isn’t usually a crime in West Virginia. But when you’re in the process of committing another crime, it becomes illegal. So even though we applaud Mr. Alemar for actually having plates in his plate carrier and not just having it on for show, he is now looking at two criminal charges instead of one.

But, why? What possible motive could this man have for running around like he was training to be in the military? Could he be one of those “prepper” nuts? Or a member of a militia? Buried near the end of the article was this little gem:

Swartwood said Monday afternoon that police are still investigating Alemar’s motives. He is a member of the military, police said.

There’s a slight difference between what’s acceptable attire on base and off base. And for not recognizing that and running around in your duty gear with what looks to all the world like a real rifle and body armor – and netting two criminal charges in a single leap – we award Mr. Alemar with today’s Irresponsible Gun Owner of the Day award.

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78 Responses to IGOTD: William Alemar’s Armed, Body Armor Clad Run through a School Zone

  1. dumbass. in a civilian setting you want to work out with your gear just wear a backpack with your jogging gear. add weight to the pack for fitness results.

    • JWM hey “dumbass” (figured i would use your classy words) you train how you fight. I have jogged many days with full kit on around my neighborhood. Its common place. Do you serve? Probably some pog anyway.. Wearing an IBA is different then putting weight on your back.

      you probably think smoking a cigarette before you run is the same thing as running in a pro mask.

      Start asking important questions. Is it illegal to run with a weapon according to law? is it unlawful to wear a combat uniform? is it unlawful to own an airsoft weapon? did the weapon have a red tip to symbolize that it was not a real weapon? Well thats a yes. So what law did he break? None…

      These people should learn about their neighbors.. All my neighbors know me, they know i have guns, and they know that the neighborhood is safer with me in it because i will defend my neighbors.

      Only some pog would say put pts on and wear a bag.. I just dont know what to say, i hope you are at least in the armed forces for saying something so stupid.

      If you want to play “tab check” games we can play.

      • Aha! We have a winner! Well, I have a winner, if nothing else.

        Remember the old internet board rule, he who brings up Hitler first loses an argument? I’ve adapted that to modern times, and now it’s “he who accuses the other of being a pog loses”.

        The logic goes, for JWM (and others) in case he doesn’t know about this, is that if you are not infantry, a grunt, you are a person other than grunt, and thus you know nothing. That’s a period behind nothing.

        • Tab check… Who are you?

          Ssg Damon Wilson
          Battle Company 2/503D ABN Infantry
          OEFVI and OEFVIII
          Infantry Squad and Team Leader
          Bronze Star Reciepient

          I won’t talk about what I have done, I’ll show what WE did on deployment. Go reference Restrepo, War by Sebastian Junger, or just look up battle company Korengal Valley. I don’t need to say anything, everyone else already has…

          FREE Billy!!!!! Click on my link. You will see exactly who I am on Facebook. I have been infantry and soft skill. You want to play, let’s play.

          Join the the group support William Alemar on Facebook.

        • Tab check… Who are you?

          Ssg Damon Wilson
          Battle Company 2/503D ABN Infantry
          OEFVI and OEFVIII
          Infantry Squad and Team Leader
          Bronze Star Reciepient

          Go reference Restrepo, War by Sebastian Junger, or just look up battle company Korengal Valley. I don’t need to say anything, everyone else already has…

          FREE Billy!!!!! Click on my link. You will see exactly who I am on Facebook. I have been infantry and soft skill. You want to play, let’s play.

          Join the the group support William Alemar on Facebook.

        • Tab check… Who are you?

          Ssg Damon Wilson
          Battle Company 2/503D ABN Inf

          FREE Billy!!!!! Click on my link. You will see exactly who I am on Facebook. I have been infantry and soft skill. You want to play, let’s play.

          Join the the group support William Alemar on Facebook.

  2. > the police are charging him with committing a terroristic act.

    Hmmm.

    The statute, as quoted above, says “A terrorist act is defined under state code as an act that is…intended to intimidate or coerce…influence…affect…or retaliate…”

    However thoughtless Alemar’s behavior, I see no evidence of “intent” required by the law to charge him with “terrorism”.

    “Disturbing the peace” is not “terrorism”.

    • It will be thrown out, but when enough people respond, the police have “to do something” almost “anything” to make people feel like they “have done something”. The normal tact is to arrest (or shoot) and let the courts figure it out later.

      It is an emotional response to an emotional response because remember the police have no duty to a specific individual but do have general responsibility for civil order. After all, the public will pay the prosecutors tab and this person will need his own lawyer. The legal bill will be enough of a fine to self censor. So, while he did nothing wrong, society has helped him to self censor. So, what we have now is laws to pretect against fear and we allow the police to shoot innocent dogs and men to make us feel better.

      This is no different than a local town where I live. The mayor lost some law suite and now kids can skate board in the park. No problem, mister mayor sends out the PD to keep arresting the kids. They are not charged and are released, but it caused enough nuasance with parents and kids that now the mayor got what he wanted, no more skating in the park because everyone self censored themselves. The mayor did some elegant math and figured, there are not enough parents who can oppose me election time, so I will do whatever the eff I want.

      If we lived in a different world, the police would have rolled up, asked, “hey dude, why are you scaring the heck out of everyone”. Tell him to take off the vest and plastic gun and give the guy a ride home. And tell everyone there was nothing to see here run along.

      • If we lived in a perfect world the cops would’ve asked him politely if he minded stowing the airsoft gun back at home and offering him a ride to go do so. If he told him them to eff off they’d shrug and go their own way.

        Or they could offer to hold it for him and meet him at some location to retrieve it when he was done with his jog.

        Police do not HAVE to arrest anyone. It’s nonsense. They have a considerable amount of discretion about how they want to handle any given situation.

        I personally know cops who won’t arrest kids they catch with reefer as long as they haven’t committed any other crimes. I would like to think one of them, who is a good friend (as well as a former Marine combat veteran) and has been for years, would’ve told this guy what the deal was and offered to hold onto it for him until he was done jogging around in full battle rattle like a motarded FNG.

        Police are public servants. Arrest and force should always be the last resort, even if the person who would otherwise be arrested is an idiot.

  3. Someone didnt think that one through… I really dont see how its a terrorist act though, yes bone headed but a felony?

  4. He probably thought he was within his rights. Just like the boobs that step into the street without looking either way because they know pedestrians have the right of way. They’re right, alright–but still setting themselves up for a bad day that could be avoided.

    • Yes, but you don’t get arrested for not looking both ways. There’s a difference between being unwise and breaking the law. In a nation of laws you should not be arrested for being unwise.

      • Didn’t say he should or shouldn’t have been arrested–just that some really bad days can be easily avoided. As far as an act of terrorism, that’s just outright bullshit.

  5. It appears at first glance to be a flimsy charge. The man has a right to do what he did no matter if the police like it or not, if the law allows him to openly carry an air soft gun.

    If he is allowed to open carry an air soft gun, then the rest is just bullying by the police.

    Just how “near” was he to the school? It appears to be harassment, if you ask me.

  6. …specifically, the police are charging him with committing a terroristic act.

    …which is bullsh*t.

    Jogging is not a crime. Jogging in gear is not a crime. Jogging with an airsoft rifle, while stupid, is not a crime. And if you look at the map-

    https://maps.google.com/maps?q=schools+near+Martinsburg,+WV&hl=en&ll=39.480593,-77.950745&spn=0.12269,0.131664&sll=39.450676,-77.972417&sspn=0.030686,0.032916&oq=sc,+Martinsburg,+WV&t=h&gl=us&hq=schools&hnear=Martinsburg,+Berkeley,+West+Virginia&fll=39.456872,-77.968082&fspn=0.122732,0.131664&z=13

    it is basically impossible to be more than a mile from a school within the Martinsburg city limits.

    It sounds a lot like someone wet their panties, and is determined to punish the responsible party, regardless of if they did anything that was actually illegal.

    • This guy wasn’t carrying a firearm, he was carrying a cheap motorized gearbox with a plastic/metal shell that’s designed to spit out plastic bb’s. I’m pretty sure school or no school that’s nothing close to terrorism seeing as he wasn’t even threatening anybody and minding his own business. He ran around with a toy and some wimp called the cops on him. “disturbing the peace” should not apply to irrationally fearful sheep calling the police on someone that is obeying the law and in no way making threatening advances towards others. The act of jogging with a plastic toy and military gear isn’t a crime…yet

  7. The charges are hogwash. That TTAG would add ridicule is also hogwash. And wouldn’t a prerequisite of recieving IGOTD be doing something irresponsible with a gun? He didn’t violate any laws, violate any safety rules, or do anything with a gun.
    How is that IGOTD material?

    On a side note, in order to avoid being hypocritical, an “unless committed by the United States government” addendum should be added to the definition of terrorist act.

  8. I’m going to be a bit judgemental and call the “operator” a dumbass. He is fortunate that he didn’t get shot. Some airsoft guns are very difficult to distinguish from the real deal at a distance. Similarly, an orange painted muzzle tip does not necessarily mean that the gun is a fake – I can spray orange paint on any one of my ARs if I had the inclination. I don’t.

    As reported, I would not charge this idiocy as a felony. Bad judgement, definitely, but bad judgement at the misdemeanor level. I’m not sure what paperwork is required for a felony stop with guns drawn, but I imagine it will be a fair amount. I’ve drawn down on a few airsoft commandos as well, and thankfully never shot any.

    I hope jail time hindsight will assist him in demonstrating better judgement in the future.

    • So, he wasn’t intending to scare people and he didn’t threaten anyone or actually hurt anyone or break anything, but he demonstrated poor judgement… fvck it, let’s throw him in a cage.

    • Why don’t you take some jail time yourself? You sound like you could use some time to think about your attitude. You can charge this idiocy any way you want, it’s what’s against the law that counts, not your opinion.

      • I’m not familiar with West Virginia laws, so I can’t say if there was one committed or not. If not, let him go. The felony shouldn’t stick.

        I’m not dumb enough to run by a school in combat garb with a realistic looking airsoft gun in tow, but I have looked for armed lunatics.

        Sometimes jail adjusts attitudes, sometimes not. It does tend to follow unwise and or illegal activities. I don’t support societies “Jackass” mentality, where people do foolish things, but can’t understand the consequences of their actions.

        If the police did over react, then appropriate punishments and / or corrections should be made. That’s how a department maintains discipline.

        Life is hard, but it’s even harder if you’re stupid. That’s as it should be.

        • I’m not dumb enough to run by a school in combat garb with a realistic looking airsoft gun in tow, but I have looked for armed lunatics.

          Really? Your a California LEO. Your telling me you’ve never gone by a school in body armor with a real gun?

          Funny how the laws are only enforced by the gun grabbing LEOs against us “civilians”.

        • i’m not familiar with current wva law. but i am very familiar with wva leo’s. if they respond to a call and you brinf any sort of attitude with them you’re in for a bad day. i have also found them to be very helpful especially to servicemen. i can’t say what happened in this case but it must have been more than a desire on the cops part to jug somebody. this man’s actions showed an amazing lack of horse sense and maybe that lack of judgement carried over when the cops showed up.

        • @matt,

          Wow, you’ve really got me there. In this case, I guess I’d be a toy – grabber. (sarcasm off)

          I agree with Ralph on either a disturbing the peace charge, or letting our combat runner explain himself to his commanding officer. Yes, I’ve run through a school zone with a loaded gun and body armor during the course of my employment. That type of thing is a PITA. No, I would not do that while off – duty.

        • Wow, you’ve really got me there. In this case, I guess I’d be a toy – grabber.

          You took a oath and swore to uphold California’s ridiculous gun laws didnt you? People call the politicians gun grabbers, but they never lay a hand on them. People like you, act as the politicians right hand, and are more than willing to grab the guns owned by civilians, to further your own career.

        • @ matt

          You just clearly don’t understand how a CA LEO can be pro 2A, so I’ll stop trying to explain it to you.

  9. I know what I think means fly piss but the people around there need to get their heads out of their arses and smell some reality. Was this a smart thing to do, yes/no, well I do the same thing using my air soft toys. Though I do avoid school zones, I do my jogs in the country on the dirt roads where the only thing that can get up in arms are cows and farmers that will either smile at ya, laugh at ya, thank ya, or just shoot at ya. The last in the farmers defense was to help with the realism of the training. ;-P As far as those LEO’s go, they need to get a real job serving ice cream or something. Plus if he serves in the military in any capacity I think that the service should be the ones to slap his hands for having cab-in fever. Not the local yahoo’s that are board and probably haven’t left the county they are currently living in since they where 5 yrs old. I swear, the ignorance of the locals in OUR OWN country is staggering. Plus the fact of how they will treat someone who’s potently placed his life and the lives of his/her buddies on the line for the soul purpose of family, friends, and a pay check. Since we all know that only the crazy, bloody thirsty, murdering, killers join the military. It’s getting to the point where we should deport the sheep and cows of this great land of ours and keep the illegals. At least they are showing that they have a few brain cells that work above and beyond following the rest of the herd.

    • Not sure how it is now but before my discharge in ’04, if you went home on leave, you were strongly encouraged to keep your training up including doing runs like this. Even now in the area I live it is not unusual to see troops doing runs in full gear, minus the weapon, while home. But I also live less than 30 from socom and our schools still have jrotc, see them running in fatigues every day around 16:30.

      Its like i heard a guy say one time, if you drop a .22 snub revolver on he sidewalk in california, you’re going to jail, if you drop a .50 DE on the sidewalk in alaska, some one will hand it back and call you a dumb ass.

  10. I live in Martinsburg and theres another article in the Hagerstown Herald Mail about this. This guy probally wouldnt have been charged if he hadnt down this in the middle of the busiest part of town and next to a lot of schools but his judgement skills are way off.

    It also states that he is in the local Air Guard Unit… Most of the guys there need to read the Vurwapen Blog article titled “I am not an operator. Neither are you”
    http://vuurwapenblog.com/2012/06/26/i-am-not-an-operator-neither-are-you/

    • A couple of things.

      I don’t know what Alemar’s MOS is but like all members of the military he is subject to periodic PT tests for whcih has train for. It doesn’t matter whether he is a clerk in the BOQ or an AF secruity policeman. Failing a PT test is a career ender.

      Your reference is BS. Operator means many things in the military and intelligence worlds besides Army SOF. In intelligence an operator is someone like a case officer who works for the National Clandestine Service, the Defense HUMINT Service, FBI counter-intelligence etc. In the Navy an operator drives ships, subs, flies aircraft or is a SEAL. In the Army and Marines it is anybody who is in a combat arm including aviators. The Air Force term refers to pilots, air and missile crew and security police. Confining the term operator to Special Operations Forces is Medal of Honor/Call of Duty BS.

      • “Operator” is simply slang and has no official meaning in the Marine Corps and probably not in the other services either.

      • Sorry, argument does not fly. You can train for PT tests realistically yet without carrying something that resembles a weapon.

        You can get, cheaply, a metal bar that you can run with at port arms all day without attracting much attention. Walmart sells inexpensive load bearing vests that you fill with lead inserts to simulate weight, no need to bring out the flak jack with SAPI inserts. You can still run in issued boots and utes, if ou want, or just use issued boots but get a pair of non-descript navy blue utility trousers (like Coast Guard ones) that won’t attract much attention.

        For the record, I can’t stand the word operator (I operate a keyboard all day long!); the “God bless our troops, particularly snipers” stickers make my blood boil; I get a coronary at a lot of military misuse of the language (e.g. vice; per; either. If you are (former) military, you know what I mean!). There, had to get it off my chest!

        • Who said I thought it was a good idea to PT with a weapon? If he had been geared up with no weapon he would have looked a little goofy but nobody would have felt threatened.

  11. I am usually not a fan of Henry”s but on this one I am with him 100%. I will give the cops the benefit of the doubt about detaining him but once they established that he had airsoft gun, was a member of the military reserves and had no intent to commit a crime they should have let him go with a stern warning and howls of laugheter. He commited no crime and I hope he wins a a big settlement from the State of West Virginia. I think the cops were pissed off that they had to come out and deal with this and instead of just giving him a hard time came up with a bunch of phony charges. An IGOTD award may be appropriate because he did upset the public and presented a poor image of gun owners.

    • but once they established that he had airsoft gun

      Why does this matter? WV is a open carry state. If it was real, he would have had just as much right to carry it as a toy.

      • Matt:

        I said that I understand why they might want to check him out because it’s not an everyday occurrence to see a jogger in full military gear running through the streets with a suspected firearm. I also said that they should have let him go once they determined he was just a tad bit overzealous in his PT regime.

        You need to let things go sometimes. You have too much attitude and if you lived near the state of nature you would end up getting pummeled by someone who felt you needed an attitude adjustment. Your parents obviously did a poor job in teaching you that if you want to be left alone you need to be less confrontational.

        • So if I see someone wearing a yamaka in my neighborhood, is it ok to call the Police, and have them check them out? It isnt a everyday occurrence near me. You never know if they might be a member of the Irgun.

          I’m sure that would happen Mr. Internet Tough Guy.

          The police were the ones who were confrontational here, not the airman.

        • Down on the Farm they teach you to look for the person or thing that doesn’t belong. I don’t know about you, but if I see a lone guy (with or without a yamaka) running down the street in combat gear with a rifle I go straight to FPCON Delta. It just doesn’t look right. While he was technically doing nothing illegal it did warrant a second look. What it didn’t warrant was an arrest. At worst they should have referred him to his commanding officer for possible NJP.

          Now if I see twelve armed geared up guys running down the street at dawn I figure it’s a squad doing PT and don’t give it a second thought. You, on the other hand, probably think that it’s preparation for martial law.

          By the way I am a German Lutheran who, like Field Marshall Erich von Manstein, has some Jewish antecedents. Unlike Manstein I am not a careerist who would do the Nazi thing to get ahaead.

  12. Clearly a moron with a serious case of the brain farts. I agree that the charges won’t stick, that’s ridiculous. He could have been a kid dressed up to play paintball or airsoft. Why he chose that location for this gem of an excercise routine is beyond me. Why not go to the woods or the boonies?

  13. This sort of stunt is a dividing line between people – between those who think it was not particularly bright but not worth breaking a sweat over, and those who are astounded by its stupidity, are amazed that it did not end up worse than it did, and just can’t understand why a grown man would run around a town in tactical gear and what amounts to a toy gun.

    A felony? A terrorist act? Unless he intended to scare people, it was neither. So, I agree, that’s an unsupportable reach by the authorities.

    But, my God. If you want to run around in tactical gear and an assault rifle, go back to active duty. Two weeks after someone in tactical gear shoots up a theater, he decides to wear basically the same get-up and run around with what most people would think was a live rifle. Who does that and expects any reception other than the one he got?

    • Hold on,
      So it is illegal to run in cammo gear because some idiots may get scared?
      Is it illegal to run while open carrying?
      Is there a dress code for 2A?

      WTF, the guy’s rights were violated because somebody got scared around him… Next time you’ll see people arrested for “running while black” – but that won’t be in any papers as it does not print well…

      • I don’t think everything is nearly so black and white as you suggest here. To use the dusty old analogy: freedom of speech does not mean that you can yell fire in a crowded theater. I’ve acknowledged that the cops overstepped by arresting him, but if there was a law against ferocious stupidity, he would have broken it here. As far as running while black is concerned, I have absolutely no doubt that more than one black teen ager, running through a neighborhood, has been detained. I can think of one who was walking through a neighborhood recently, and was shot.

        • What a horrible comparison. Wearing body armor is in no way analogous to yelling fire in a crowded theater.

          I hope your not referring to TM. We all know he was on top of GZ pummeling him. A far cry from just “walking through a neighborhood”.

        • What a horrible comparison. Wearing body armor is in no way ana logous to yelling fire in a crowded theater.

          I hope your not referring to TM. We all know he was on top of GZ pummeling him. A far cry from just “walking through a neighborhood”.

  14. Judgment = FAIL
    That aside I think that the charges should be thrown out. He was dumb but didn’t actually break any laws as far as I can tell.

  15. BS charges, the result of largely useless people in pants crapping hysteria mode.

    This is exactly the reason that the normalization of firearms in society should be a priority for those who profess to give a crap about the right to bear arms.

  16. I have question to pose: how would you expect the police to repond?

    They allegedly recieved multiple calls of a man in combat gear running with a gun – probably described as an assault rifle. Through a school zone. There have been multiple active – shooter type incident across our nation. If you actually were an LEO, and we’re actually charged with the duties thereof, how would you have responded?

    I agree that the felony charge is weak – but this incident clearly necessitated a Code 3 response, and put people at risk. I’m thinking either a disturbing the peace charge, or just letting him explain himself to his commanding officer.

    • …how would you have responded?

      Given that it would take me about two seconds to realize it was a guy with an airsoft toy slung over his shoulder, who happened to be running around like an idiot, I would have rolled up beside him and said: “Excuse me, sir. There are a lot of overly excitable people around here who have been calling 911. You may want to head home before someone with a lesser grasp of the obvious than me shows up.”

    • I have question to pose: how would you expect the police to repond?

      They shouldnt have responded at all. WV is a open carry state. Even if it was real, it should draw no more of a response than someone speaking in public.

      Through a school zone.

      Give it up with this school zone bullshit. The majority of most cities are “school zones”.

      There have been multiple active – shooter type incident across our nation.

      There have been multiple incidents of cops shooting innocent people. When are they going to start investigating each other?

      If you actually were an LEO, and we’re actually charged with the duties thereof, how would you have responded?

      I would have told the caller that it is perfectly legal for someone to carry a gun, and to stop wasting my time.

      but this incident clearly… put people at risk

      How were they at risk? From a heart attack from seeing a gun?

  17. Dumb, dumb, dumb. Criminal too, but not felonious. Disturbing the peace sounds right, because it’s usually a misdemeanor and the max sentence is a fine and a short jolt, not necessarily served in the hoosgow and certainly not enough to have his gun rights stripped. However, Alemar could be charged with “Felony Stupid,” which is a fairly serious offense requiring a lifetime to correct.

  18. First of all, the “terrorist act” charge is complete hogwash and will get thrown out. He might still be on the hook for the body armor if they can dream up something else to charge him with.

    As for kitting up and going for a jog: When I first moved into my house, I considered creating a “pill” and stuffing it in a rucksack, taping up and slinging a metal pipe, and going for a “boots and utes” run myself. As a Marine, and I had the gear, it seemed like a natural thing to do. I didn’t do it because I’m far too lazy; but it was a thought … Particularly when I was considering applying for a commission post-9/11 (which I’m going to maintain that I would have followed through were it not for some persistant tendonitis in my right hamstring).

    I wouldn’t take out an Airsoft gun though … Primarily because I don’t have one, but also because I cannot blame anyone for seeing one at a glance and going into “panic mode.” I suspect I would raise a few eyebrows just running with a ruck and boots and utes, but I think that carrying a pipe would have clued in 99% of the folks that saw me.

  19. It’s not the laws decent folk have to be worried about, it’s the “unspoken laws” and the incredibly malleable laws.

    The guy did absolutely zero things illegal. Not the sharpest tool in the shed, but still nothing illegal. His only crime was disturbing the self-induced stupor of the American public’s fantasyland condition white.

    How long until open carrying makes us “terrorists” for disturbing the lemmings’ peace? How long until publicly speaking against the President makes us terrorists? (disturbing the delicate sensibilities of the ruling party’s followers) How long until voting for a certain candidate makes us terrorists? (retaliate against a branch or level of government for a policy or conduct of the government, as the lovely statute there says).

    We may not agree with people who do this (or we might), but it’s a slippery slope to make it punitive. Stupidity isn’t criminal. If it was, there wouldn’t be a progressive party.

  20. I can understand what was going through his mind. I’m a greenside Navy Corpsman and an old one at that. Old and at times slightly over weight, trying to keep up with the kids. Before my last deployment with an infantry company, I took it upon myself to prepare for the push by humping five miles every other day with everything issued to me on my back. One mistake I made: I didn’t wear my plate carrier with plates inserted about my torso. Instead, they were nicely tucked into my Sally. Kevlar as well. The difference? Purgatory and hell. I had all the weight but with out the constricting charater of the plate carrier wrapped around my expanding chest, I robbed myself and damn near fell out of the first hump with the company. So lesson learned: Train like you fight. As for a weapon substitute: I use a sliver less 4×4 with eye hooks and my sling.

  21. It seems like most people agree on point that he shouldn’t have been arrested. I agree as well, he really wasn’t breaking any laws. What I immediately thought of was the “joker” in the Colorado movie theater. Wasn’t he wearing a gas mask and body armor? So I have to think that it makes sense that someone might see this guy, freak out and call the police. You just never know who the nut heading out on a shooting spree and who is just using poor judgement. I also have to think that the police reaction and the harsh charges were likely politically motivated because of the Colorado shooter as well. Hopefully it WILL be thrown out, but you have to wonder if this poor fool won’t end up being a judge’s political sacrifice.

    But in the end, regardless of the guy’s lack of good judgement, this should have never gone beyond the police briefly questioning him, or perhaps a reprimand by the military for breaking regulations.

  22. The real issue I have with anything in this article is the definition of the “terrorist act”

    “; influence the policy of a branch or level of government by intimidation or coercion; affect the conduct of a branch or level of government by intimidation or coercion; or retaliate against a branch or level of government for a policy or conduct of the government.”

    It sounds like the government has written themselves a “protest free” card.

  23. I happen to know this man personally. He is a very close friend of my husband’s and currently in the VA National Guard with him. He is not at all the way the police describe. He is a genuine individual who takes his military career very seriously. Unfortunatley, with the National Guard they do not have a readily available training facility but are required to gear up… in between drill weekends… and train… train… train. Although not on active duty…. these facilities should be made available to ALL military.

  24. @ Davis I agree.

    I am a Medic in the Texas National Guard. I have transferred to an infantry unit from 6 years in a combat support hospital. I have now been in this unit for two years and i Ruck every day on my own, albeit no weapon. Why? because I sucked at rucking, I desired to be as fit as my infantry counterparts and I take my obligation to my country seriously. I use my GI bill to go to school and I work quite a bit. I don’t have the time or money to go to a gym. Also I don’t get to do unit wide PT everyday like an active duty unit will. Its 1 weekend a month and 2 weeks in the summer folks, that’s it. I wear my ruck, my uniform, my body armor and my kevlar. Lucky I live in Texas where the police are not armed thugs looking to bring down a young soldier because they could not make it into the military themselves.

    I was only stopped by texan officers once but i understand, the sight of a guy in body armor can trip out the timid. But my neighborhood has gotten used to my work out.

    I understand i am “not an operator” I am not trying to be. The saying goes “Train how you fight” and i don’t fall out of ruck marches anymore. so screw you guys. They have ruined this kid’s career with no mercy. All the while they let their drunk coworkers make use of that oh so nice “Thin blue line”

  25. This is a blatant violation of his civil liberties. These cops are obviously morons if they couldnt tell that the gun was an airsoft gun. Typical idiots that when given a badge and a gun think they make the laws.

    And how could you, the moron that wrote this article, call this soldier an “irresponsible gun owner”? HE WASNT EVEN CARRYING A GUN, you jackass. Last time I checked theres a huge difference between airsoft and a firearm.

  26. Sorry Bud, your article isn’t funny and it detracts from the constant and continued efforts to abuse Veterans and their rights that has become the norm in this country anymore. From gun grabs to “kidnappings” and detention in VA psych wards. It’s all an effort to stereotype these good men who serve their country in shit-holes you’ve only seen in movies. Do a little research for your articles at least. Martinsburg, WV has been sued in the past for abusing run owners rights. This is nothing more but the same, with officials over reacting to the situation. If DHS and FEMA wasn’t involved here there would be no terrorism charge against this fine man. His decision may not have been the smartest but your writing comes closer to a terrorist act than his actions. If the knock ever comes to your door and the FBI and SS tell you they are there to look after your “health”, I doubt you will receive the same support we give to men like Billy.

  27. How many times are people going to use the old B.S. excuse about yelling “Fire” in a crowded theater? I call bravo sierra because if I yell “The sky is falling!” it is the responsibility of people to verify and assess any danger before reacting. Just another case of this country’s refusal to accept responsibility for their own actions. The lemmings who crush each other in a theater have a choice to react calmly and LOOK for the fire themselves instead of crushing each other. But it is always easier to say “he MADE us do it” than it is to take responsibility for your own actions. So the use of the “fire in a movie theater” excuse is not a valid one for infringing on First Amendment rights, just as there are no excuses for trampling the rest of the Constitution or Bill of Rights. This man was WELL within his rights. There was a clear overreaction on the part of the police officers involved, fitting in with the demonizing of active military and veterans going on nationwide right now. Wake up, people!

  28. I know Billy Alemar personally, I was his First Sergeant for B Co 3-116th INF, Virginia Army National Guard (the unit to which Billy is still assigned) from 2009-2011. Billy is a fantastic kid and has been running in his plates and vest for a while. Why he added the airsoft gun I have no idea. Was it dumb, yes. Was it terroristic or criminal, no. I hope the charge gets thrown out (he’s due to go to court tomorrow). If it doesn’t get thrown out there needs to be a serious outcry about individual rights and how this DA has exceeded the boundaries of permissable governance.

    • 1sg I envy you. Thank you for coming here and posting. We need more leaders like you. “I will never leave a fallen comrade” you are the epitome of that statement.

      Ssg Damon Wilson
      Infantryman and Special Operations Combat Medic
      2003-2009 2/503D Inf.
      2009-2013 USASOC

      Free Billy!!!!

    • I’m one of the people trying to support Billy. I have spoken to people in his unit and friends of the family. I understand that Billy, like all of us, is human and is subject to lapses in judgment. His actions, however, do not fall within the charges brought against him by the Prosecuting Attorney’s office.

      Here is the article I wrote up for Billy, which also has links to his FB support page, etc.

      Please take the time to read the article, to visit the page, and to make the personal decision of whether you believe this soldier is deserving of support rather than ridicule.

      http://scbugbee.wordpress.com/2012/08/28/the-case-of-william-everett-billy-alemar/

  29. I am a vet, and the father of an Iraq war vet, both of us served with the 29th Infantry Division on active duty, and this young 29th Infantry soldier needs our help. Please contact the prosecuting attorney in this case directly and let her know how you feel about her charging this combat veteran with terrorism.
    I have contacted her via e-mail, attempting to use logic to make the case for charges to be dropped, and she responded with the following statement.
    “I respectfully understand your position; however, in this very narrow instance, the law of my State was broken. There are issues in this case which have not and will not be disclosed to the public. We have soldiers who train in my community all of the time without incident, this case was an exception. I am cooperating with all agencies to bring this to a successful conclusion in the best interest of this soldier and my community. Thank you for your interest”.
    Sincerely,
    Pamela Jean Games-Neely
    e-mail address : pneely@berkeleywv.org

  30. The lack of discretion by the investigating officers is troubling.
    Sure take him in. get his story, call his CO, hand him over to his command. Let them lecture him on conduct off base.

    But to refer it to the prosecutor seems to be either an over reaction, or hoping the prosecutor will do the downgrade.

    If this guy was a good troop he is now toast.
    If he wasnt, the Command failed to deal with their responsibility

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