I’m not sure if Travis Heinze was subjected to police harassment, legally speaking. Utah’s Illegal Immigration Enforcement Act (HB 497) requires residents to carry identification documents on them at all times. Police are required to ask for and examine the ID of anyone they stop, detain or arrest. So once he was detained, Mr. Heinze was legally obliged to show his ID. The question: did the cop have enough reasonable suspicion to detain Mr. Heinze in the first place?
Anyway, fast forward to 4:44 to see a more pressing problem. When Mr. Heinze follows an officer’s request to show his ID, he does so by reaching into his bag. The deputy then draws his gun…understandably, I’d say.
Heinze should have informed the officer where his ID was situated and asked how the deputy wanted him to proceed. To do that, Mr. Heinze would have to have been aware that reaching into his bag would alarm the officer, potentially putting his life in danger. Which you knew, or do now.
For example, if you’re pulled over and the officer asks you to show your insurance document — usually stashed in the glove box — tell the cop that’s where it is and ask permission to retrieve it.
Whether or not we should live in a country where this isn’t the case is a matter for debate. The wisdom of dealing with police in a polite and cautious manner, however, is not.