Tisbury crossing guard Stephen Nichols
Courtesy Twitter
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Do you want an example of what’s wrong with red flag laws? This is what’s wrong with red flag laws.

Stephen Nichols, an 84-year-old Korean War vet, retired cop and current school crossing guard is having lunch at the local diner with a friend. He talks about work and voices disapproval of his school’s resource officer who’s been ducking out for coffee during school hours.

And his comments are overheard by a waitress . . .

Nichols said he was unimpressed with the Tisbury School resource officer’s alleged trips to Xtra Mart to get coffee when children came to school in the morning. While dining at Linda Jean’s a couple of weeks ago, Nichols said he told a friend about this and suggested somebody could “shoot up the school” in that officer’s absence, which he described as “leaving his post.”

Nichols said the waitress made a complaint to Tisbury Police about what she overheard and on the strength of that, [Tisbury Police Chief Mark] Saloio and another officer relieved Nichols of his crossing guard duties while he was in the midst of performing them and subsequently drove to his home and took away his firearms license and guns.

– Rich Saltzberg in Crossing guard relieved of duty, guns seized

Nichols has since been reinstated after a hearing, but his firearms haven’t been returned yet.

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  1. That just shows how wrong these red flag laws are. I say my boss is a confirmed idiot and should be shot. A fellow worker calls the cops saying I threatened my boss. Away go my guns. Not without a fight on my part. Cops get shot at I get shot. Great laws we have.

    • You’d be surprised if someone intervened if you said your boss “should be shot”?

      Are you hearing yourself, right now?

      • Words aren’t action dude… it wasn’t like he was caught planning to shoot someone.

        That’s the problem with liberal society, if your words hurt me, I’m allowed to physically hurt you back. It like saying I punched him back before he could punch me.

        Yes, you should be allowed to say, I hope he gets shot, exercising your first amendment, without losing your second, or fourth.

        • Anyone who buys coffee at the Xtra Mart should immediately be suspect. People, have some pride. Buy good coffee from those who know how to make it.

        • That’s crazy! You should know by now the first ammendment only applies to the “enlightened” progressive class. Red flag laws, my ass! At least Beatoff came right out and stated what the objective is.

      • Remember the cartoon Garfield from the 90s? Yes, the kids show. Garfield would occasionally use the expression “whoever decided *insert issue here* should be drug out into the street and shot.” Should we round up the creators of Garfield from 30 years ago, because in 2019 the first amendment doesn’t mean what it did in 1992?

        • So… On the Garfield topic, I could never stand the comic strip, since it always seemed pretty repetitive. Lasagna is great, Mondays and spider suck. Nermal is annoying. Kick the dog off the table.

          But, some clever soul removed Garfield from the comic strip panels, and some of them are f-ing hilarious now!


      • You actually sound crazy in my opinion. What Jay said was how lots of people talk. it means nothing but meaning you force on it with your feelings.

      • Jsled,

        There is a big difference between “should be shot” and “could be shot.” Reread the above story, and think before posting nonsense.

      • “You’d be surprised if someone intervened if you said your boss “should be shot”?”

        Ask anyone on the political left that *hates* Trump if he should be shot for treason.

        The *vast* majority will say yes…

        • Maybe I’ve missed where any reputable person on the left has suggested that Trump should be shot for treason, is there a particular incident you’re thinking of?

          I do know that Trump has bragged of the ability to shoot someone on fifth Avenue and suffer no consequences, and his attorneys recently pleaded the same before a judge who laughed at them.

          Is that what you’re thinking of?

          In my world, joking about shooting people is not a good idea, but you may live on a different planet were jokes about killing people are OK.

          • Never heard anyone on the left say something like that??? Aparently you don’t watch SNL or listen to the “squad” and their supporters!

        • Dennis, is there a particular incident where a reputable person on the left has suggested shooting trump for treason?

        • Miner… a point of order: you keep saying reputable person on the left… there is no such thing, which makes it hard to find a quote from such an impossible person.

          • Took the mouth right outta my words! Can’t remember by what means, but I recall many of them spouting he needs to die. Didn’t think the method was that germaine, you?

        • Miner, spend anytime around a platoon of any combat arms in any military branch, or spend any time around police, and you’ll hear tons of “inappropriate” jokes about killing people.

        • Miner,
          Do you have any idea what the penalty for treason is?
          U.S. Code § 2381. Treason
          Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

          Notice that “shall suffer death” part? So you haven’t noticed any “reputable” person from the left accusing Trump of treason? Where have you been for the past 3 years??

          To answer your question, All of them.

      • There’s a difference between something said with an aim towards a semi humorous jab at an unpleasant person and a credible threat towards an individual. As much as the left would have you believe that it doesn’t; Contest Matters.

      • Yes I would here. We have all worked together in this shop. With the newest guy 5 years already. So yes Id be more then suprised if the cops ever were called.

      • Saying that someone “should be shot” is far different than saying “I am going to shoot my boss.” People around here say the first thing all the time, that anti-gun legislators should be taken out and shot as traitors–it is not considered a threat of harm in the penal code. The latter is.

        In this particular case, there wasn’t even a threat or implied threat. He did not say that the guard should be shot, he said that someone could shoot up the school because the guard was not at his post, i.e., the school was left unprotected. Maybe the Police Chief should have talked to the old man before doing what he did.

        • Legally, yes, but practically speaking if you go around saying someone should be shot you will end up in court to make that argument. Seems like a losing proposition.

        • Someone was in danger by someone else leaving their post. That should be noted.

          What shouldn’t happen is gun confiscation. Unless a threat was made with some history.

        • “People around here say the first thing all the time, that anti-gun legislators should be taken out and shot as traitors”

          I don’t think anyone is saying it as a joke.

          Talk of shooting people is never funny, those who believe it is have a screw loose.

          “ …legislators should be taken out and shot as traitors”

          Yes, that sounds very American, a real celebration of the rule of law and order.

          Actually, it sounds more like Russia under Stalin.

        • @Whiner — Whatever you think and what reality is are quite clearly very, very different things. You’re not able to discern when someone is writing in jest or not based solely on text, so why you even bother to make any assessments to that end boggles the mind. Or, at least it would, if you didn’t regularly reveal yourself to be woefully — and willfully — lacking in common sense and critical thinking ability.

          Like jslob above you, the old man never talked about shooting people in the first place.

          Supporting the state confiscating the property of an upstanding citizen sans due process, which IS exactly what you’re supporting here, is what actually sounds like Russia under Stalin. Now, hush.

      • Except that’s actually not at all what the old geezer said.

        Are you able to read right now?

        Rhetorical question.

      • That’s why we don’t register our guns, and keep one cheapie available for the cops as a sacrificial lamb. The rest are hidden elsewhere, preferably in an off-site cache. I myself have my collection split up between two addresses.

    • Doesn’t this reek of infringement of the First Amendment? At what point is the line drawn? “Gee, I’d to punch that resource officer in the nose”. This is another one of those slippery slopes we’re heading for. Could this go as far as the Supreme Court?

    • Red flag laws enacted by progressives and Quisling Republicans are a perfect tool for allowing anti-gun people to instantly turn a private citizen gun-owner into a deviant who is “armed and dangerous”. The fact that Nichols is 84 probably speaks loudly because he’s a bit hard-of-hearing didn’t help. In the eyes of a waitress in a restaurant he was an unworthy person. Oh, and good luck getting his guns and license back from the cops.

      • Anyone know the name of the restaurant and waitress?
        I could be inclined to leave a yelp review of why I would be wary of going there while she is working

    • I have to say I don’t see the problem?
      Crossing guard is 100% correct.
      If the school resource officer leaves his post the children could be shot!
      His job is to remain at his post until relieved.
      So what is wrong with what the crossing guard said?

  2. School resource officers are mostly near-retirement cops who are just “coasting” until their retirement checks start.

    If I had my way, “school resource officers” would not exist.

    I would hire armed veterans as janitors and maintenance personnel. Veterans would go towards the sound of gunfire and “stop the threat”, despite not having immunity and other statutory “protections” that police officers have, the “school resource officers” who are all pussies.

    • The school resource officer at my kids high school was a full active duty officer in his late thirties or forties, and he also acted in the capacity as school counselor.

      • I totally trust our elementary officer. He is a father of 2 children at the school, late 40s, he would run towards.

  3. The issue here is not a red flag law. Massachusetts is a “may issue” state and all it takes is literally almost nothing because licenses are issued (or cancelled) at the chiefs discretion. Then this results in the gross over reaction from law enforcement to take away civil rights like what happened here. This isn’t the first time that a MA police chief over reacted and yanked a license and grabbed guns. I’m pretty much a cop supporter because I know how tough their jobs are but when they go this nuts, my support stops and I question in what universe someone can think something like this type of over reaction is considered a good thing. What makes this story so intriguing is the cast of characters involved. A waitress in a restaurant overhears a conversation from the crossing guard about a school resource officer leaving his post during the day to go buy coffee and run personal errands. The waitress who has a child in the school says nothing for over 30 days, so obviously it wasn’t an emergency. Somehow this criticism gets to the assistant principal of the school who just so happens to be married to the school resource officer who isn’t doing his job. The chief steps in, yanks his license and then fires him from his job. As it stands today, the crossing guard has job back but apparently is still without his guns.

    But in some way this ultimately is about red flag laws since apparently hearsay, non-sequiturs or over heard conversations are enough to determine that someone is guilty for a future potential crime in a court of law without any trial, any crime being committed or even any evidence. I personally didn’t give up all of the rest of my civil rights just for the opportunity to keep a handgun in the house. Courts are going to have to step in here at some point and stop this madness.

    • “The waitress who has a child in the school says nothing for over 30 days, so obviously it wasn’t an emergency. Somehow this criticism gets to the assistant principal of the school who just so happens to be married to the school resource officer who isn’t doing his job.”

      Wellllll, there’s 2 pieces of information that are new to me.

      While MA is a $hitty state for gun owners, this deal could happen anywhere where owning firearms is a privilege. 8~(

    • Please correct me if I am wrong, but aren’t Mass. citizens *required* to register every firearm they own with the *cough*, ‘authorities’, *cough*?

      …because that story there is all the motivation I would need to make sure all of mine couldn’t be taken in one swipe…

      • Geoff,

        Yes, the Peoples’ Republic has a firearm registry for all firearms, purchased from a dealer, a private party, inherited, or gifted.


        • Still shouldn’t register. Put em were they will never be found and if they are, you have plausible deniability.

        • firearms that are “put away where they will never be found’ aren’t particularly useful for self-defense. Also, kinda hard to go to the range with.

        • Well, yeah, but I clean forgot that registry thing when I sold that gun at a gun show in another state. Laws which are so stupid as to be unenforceable should be IGNORED!

    • Yup, this case might be the perfect example of why red flag laws suck, especially in a commie state that requires registration and licensing. In a free-“er” state, how would red flag laws even work? You can’t confiscate what you can’t prove I own!

      This story also proves that even former LEO’s aren’t safe from these laws, even though they’re supposedly “the only ones” qualified to own guns.

    • That’s the way they feel about the Bill of Rights, may honor. What do you expect from a state that gave us Boston, the Celtics, that mangled excuse of the english language.

  4. What a joke it seams the Anti’s hot the tool to Disarm evey gun owners in the USA what do you do take them to court and get back your gun licence

  5. The bill of rights lists individual rights one by one but doesn’t say anything about exercising several rights at the same time.

  6. Follow the link to the article, read it and the comments about it and you’ll see that there is more to this than just red flag bullshit. This is one of those Keystone Kops kinda towns according to the comments by locals.

    The lack of common sense investigation and constitution rights before the reaction of the local police should be mind boggling…but it’s not.

  7. This BS is a clear violation of the First Amendment.
    We are protected from action by the government for what we say.
    MA is not merely a $hitty state for gun owners, it’s a $hitty state.

    • Please don’t criticize massatoots’s gun laws.
      It’s nice having another state, like NJ, where some gun laws are crazier than caifornia..

    • Lifelong Masshole, can confirm.

      Actually, this a level of elitist Masshole-ishness normally reserved for politicians and Boston meter-maids. Definitely getting worse though.

  8. The way I heard it, the waitress told the Vice Principal what the crossing guard said about the resource officer, the Vice Principal told her husband (the off-post SRO), the SRO told the chief, and the chief and SRO performed an armed robbery upon the crossing guard without a court order.

    • BTW, he wasn’t red flagged, the Chief Law Enforcement Officer revoked his government permission to own and carry firearms, and informed him of the revocation by stealing his guns in person. That’s actually legal in MA, where you have no rights under the @nd Amendment, just permission granted or refused by local politicians.

      And, if the aggrieved party, the SRO who likes to clock in and then go out for coffee, is indeed married to a school administrator, it’s not hard to guess how he got fired.

        • Dennis, you believe nepotism is a core liberal value?

          Which of Barack Obama’s children had jobs in the White House?

          Which of bill Clinton’s children had jobs in the White House?

          Are you familiar with a couple named Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump? Senior advisers to the president? Are you suggesting Donald Trump is not their father and it’s not a case of nepotism to give them official positions and security clearances within the White House?

          It seems that the reality is that despotism is a core Trump value, wouldn’t you say?

          • Got a question, how many Obummers and Clintons were actually qualified to hold jobs in the white house?! Waiting…..

        • Dennis, you had stated that nepotism is a core of liberal value but neither Clinton or Obama had their children as senior advisers in the White House.

          But Donald Trump has both Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump as senior advisers with security clearances, even though Jared Kushner lied repeatedly on his clearance documents.

          Why the double standard? Why do you think nepotism is a core liberal value when clearly it’s Donald Trump who is hiring his unqualified kids with zero experience in governance.

          You made the claim, the burden of proof is on you. Waiting. Oh that’s right, you have nothing but empty speech to justify your empty assertion.

          • Proof is in the performance, but I did notice you’re not touting the previous occupants of the White House as an example. Good move!

        • Dennis, you said the proof is in the performance, are you talking about Jared Kushner’s peace in the Middle East success?

          A whole lot of our Kurdish allies would beg to differ about the peace part, with Erdogan’s troops in a massive invasion of northern Syria I don’t think we can call that peace, right?

          Or perhaps you’re discussing a Vanco success in securing 14 different trademarks in China during US government trade negotiations?

          Maybe you’re right, IVanka is achieving good performance for her personal business, but isn’t it a conflict of interest with her role as senior adviser to the President of the United States?

          I think we can agree, if Ivanka’s last name wasn’t Trump, she would have zero success in the business world. Just like her daddy, she’s riding on the coattails of a father who made millions from US government housing contracts.

          Dennis, how does it feel to be snookered by slick New York City billionaire?

          • Wasted enough phone time, we understand you hate Trump, ok? And you and CNN hate him even more every time he does things your heros couldnt do. You lost, get over it and move on, we had to. Good bye!

        • Dennis, I don’t hate Donald Trump, I can just see clearly that he is a sociopathic, corrupt businessman who has conned literally hundreds of thousands of slow thinking Americans.

          Your posts are full of angry assertions, with zero facts or evidence to back them up.

          You coming to liberals are all about nepotism, but neither Clinton nor Obama gave their children senior advisor status as Donald Trump has done.

          You are the one who was full of unreasoning anger, ignoring reality even as your orange Messiah snickers you.

          Have you seen where Donald Trump photo shopped a medal of honor winner out of the picture and replaced him with a dog?

          Once again Don the con is pulling the wool over America’s eyes, why didn’t he just award the dog a medal rather than cutting a real hero from Vietnam out of the picture?

          Your mindless reverence for a five time draft dodger who has stated that the Iraq war was the biggest mistake in the history of the world is just weird.

        • Clinton’s gave Chelsea a position in their charity (remember when she was gonna go to med school? Snicker).

          Biden helped his kid get a job on a board that paid millions for which he was eminently unqualified.

          Obama’s kids got into top tier colleges and internships… how do you think that happened?

          Clinton had a private conference on a tarmac with the people investigating his wife and suddenly she was cleared. Not sure if that counts as nepotism or cronyism.

          But yes, you are right… trump gave his children jobs in the White House.

        • LilyJo, an important distinction is that trumps kids are involved in governing America, without any training, experience or ability.

          They have the positions they have only because they are the spawn of one of trumps three wives, interesting how Trump honors the sanctity of marriage.

          Trump is a very definition of nepotism, a rich kid who’s daddy bought him everything, and now he has rich kids of his own, who have no more ability than Donald, yes they are responsible for the safety and security of the United States of America.

          And again I ask you, did Jared Kushner’s peace in the Middle East plan work out so well, given the abandonment of our Kurdish allies, our allies that provided crucial intelligence for our assassination of Al-Baghdadi?

          Trump doesn’t live rent free in my head, he lives rent-free in the White House, while he violates the Constitution by enriching himself with payments from foreign governments to influence American policy.

        • Yes, the proof is in the performance.

          And trumps bro crash, Kim Jong Un, just engaged in his 12th missile launch since May.

          Donald and his senior advisor children have done such a great job of stabilizing the North Korea situation, more missile testing and continued development of nuclear weapons.

          Sleep well America, Eric Trump and Donald Trump Junior are here to help.

          “ TOKYO — North Korea launched two missiles Thursday, marking its 12th test since May, in an apparent effort to pressure the United States to return to denuclearization talks with a better offer.
          The missile test comes four days after North Korea warned that it was losing patience with the United States and its “hostile policy” and restated its end-of-year deadline for Washington to change its approach.”

  9. Professional photographers are in trouble now, because photographers talk about “shooting people” when they mean photographing people. I’ve personally heard pro photographers talk about “shooting kids” when they mean taking pictures of kids for their job. I used to be a professional photographer, and one of my colleagues used that expression publicly, saying he was “going to go shoot some kids,” causing some surprise among listeners, but this was before “red flag laws.”
    A professional SCHOOL photographer would say he’s “going to shoot some kids in school today,” and these days if anybody (other than another photographer) overheard him, he’d get “red flagged”, SWATTED, lose his job, and be banned from ever doing business in schools for life.

    • What a professional photographer talks about shooting, it is recognize he speaking of what we would call taking a picture.

      When multiple posters on this forum talk about shooting legislators or liberals or Democrats, we know they are talking about violently murdering people with a firearm.

      I find it difficult to believe that all on this forum think this will somehow promote private firearms ownership or help anti-gunners see the light.

      When you speak of shooting legislators, it just adds fuel to the fire and justifies reasonable citizens‘ desire to ban firearms.

      • Hop on over to any left wing forum and read the thousands of comments about how conservatives aught to suffer the same fate. The only real difference is liberals typically want agents of the government to go do their murdering for them, like the typical lazy liberals they are.

  10. well, obviously that sheriff is a communist traitor and should be voted out of office.. if he had any moral character he would of let it be but he wanted t o show off to the badge bunnies and holster hookers.

  11. So they red flagged him on nothing more than what the waitress overhead? Pretty flimsy and just goes to show the police state we are in.

  12. This would make a nice sympathetic case to be elevated to the Supreme Court. As someone mentioned, it doesn’t pertain to red flags per se, but the authority of state sanctioned gun licensing and “may issue” regulations.

  13. Where are the GOA and 2nd Amendment Foundation law suits? This is a great test case. Sympathetic victim, clear violation of the 4th Amendment. Let’s go! File suit and I’ll send money.

  14. “He came up and told me what I said was a felony but he wasn’t going to charge me,” Nichols said of Saloio.

    Really??!! How nice of him! See…all cops are actually nice deep down.

    /sarc (in case you didn’t get it).

  15. Now sue the School, the Police and the Café he was at and do it for a LOT of money. The ONLY thing Leftist understand is losing and taking their stolen money away from them.

  16. The left thinks a waitress is enough of a mental health professional to be qualified to decide whether you lose your gun rights or not.

  17. Leftists love to use the courts to stifle the 1A and 2A. In our New England seacoast town (read hot bed of leftism) one of our city counselors actually sued an octogenarian woman for “threatening violence.” Her offense? It turns out he cut in front of her on his bicycle while she was driving. The next time she saw him, she said (jokingly) oh – that was you. Had I known I would have run you over! A few weeks later, he saw her attend a public city council meeting and chased her down the hallway afterwards demanding she retract her statement. She declined, and laid on a heavy dose of sarcasm (God bless her soul!). He then sued her.

    Fortunately, the judge dismissed the case as trivial after one day of trial.

    Our state does not have Red Flag laws – although they were passed by the recently elected democratic legislature, they were vetoed by the governor (R). Had they been in place, I’m sure that she’d still be fighting to regain her 2A rights, not just her 1A.

    As an interesting topper, said city councilor recently made a proud public display of tearing down campaign signs put up by citizens in opposition to his actions on the counsel. So much for the 1A.

  18. From where I stand, having a gun is already a HUGE RED flag. But let’s ignore the elephant in the room.

    • How about the bastard, Doc. as that would fit your opinion of the 2nd Amendment better. The donkey “in the room” would be more appropriate as Republicans are less likely to object to guns. You, sir (small s) are an arse.

      • And a lot of us consider having more mouth than brain a huge red flag! We’ll control our guns, you control your big mouth!

  19. Meanwhile, this guy makes the paper, and every crook knows he’s unarmed / defenseless. Maybe the waitress wanted to make sure her boyfriend could rob this guy with no resistance. At least thats the way people will use these laws to disarm their victims.

  20. Guy criticizes police, waitress overhears and tells the police, police get mad, throw a temper tantrum and then use their jack boot authority to punish the man. Glad this story happened in an authoritarian communist sh*t hole country and not the USA…oh, wait, never mind.

  21. The only way a red flag law should ever be considered is if a person makes an improper allegation against a person, it be considered a civil rights violation and that person suffer both criminal, with minimum sentence, and a civil violation with a good, 100,000 plus all legal expenses, both current and as a result of their illegal allegation, to be paid by the criminal.


    and I still think its a bad idea.

  22. Mr Nichols need to use the law to his advantage. Report the cop for leaving his post EVERY time he does it. Squeeky wheel gets the grease.

  23. RF was a fucking genius. Facebook has got nothing on this site. Never seen so many busy bodies and experts on every subject gathered in one spot.

  24. These False Flag Gun Laws are just like your
    local bank regulations – know your firearm owners
    so you can and will snitch on them.

    More and more folks are becoming unpaid governmental
    unit informants. That’s the way they like it ! :>((

    These incidents are going to become commonplace. Lastly,
    the Chef of Police is a buffoon, whom belongs in a zoo.

  25. I agree that this was an outrageous result, but his comment was stupid.

    It INVITED an anti-gunner to screw him over.

    Keep that in mind.

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