February 12, 2010

EAST PALO ALTO, Calif. — A controversy was brewing in East Palo Alto Tuesday night after a police detective made apparently joking comments through his Facebook account saying “open carry” advocates who visibly carry guns in public should be shot.

Now East Palo Alto has become a reluctant testing ground for a battle of constitutional amendments: one police officer’s ‘freedom of speech’ versus a group’s ‘right to bear arms.’

Area resident Adnan Shahab is an “open carry” advocate who frequently goes out in public displaying an unloaded gun on his belt. Such activity is legal in California with certain restrictions, such as staying clear of schools.

Shahab said he was offended by Facebook remarks posted by East Palo Alto detective Rod Tuason. Tuason published a comment that said he agreed with a friend that open carry advocates should come to Oakland, Richmond and East Palo Alto and — in an apparent joke — said officers should shoot the advocates.

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