This post was originally submitted by Richard Gray, via the Cop Block.org submissions page. The original Facebook post that contained the video from the Bald Knob Police Department interrogation tape can be found here.
Date of Incident: May 24, 2015
Officer(s) Involved: Chief of Police Erek Balentine, at least two other unidentified police officers
Department Involved: Bald Knob (AR) Police Department
Phone Number: (501) 724-5193
Richard Chambless was arrested while open carrying in Bald Knob, Arkansas. Chambless was walking around town with a holstered, openly carried firearm, and a police scanner. He also entered the McDonald’s near his home a couple of times, who apparently (based on statements in the video) told him he was not allowed inside with the gun. Several 911 callers subsequently reported a man with a gun. Over the scanner, Chambless heard that the police were looking for him. He called and reported his location and said he would wait for them. Chambless was arrested. He agreed to a videotaped interrogation conducted by the chief of police.
Chief of Police Erek Balentine incorrectly reads a law that states it is illegal to “unlawfully employ” a handgun, even though Chambless was not doing so by openly carrying his firearm. Toward the end of the video, Chief Balentine becomes very irate and yells at Chambless after he refuses to acknowledge that he has no right to carry a weapon because, according to the chief, there is no law which allows him to carry a firearm. Chambless consistently brings up the Second Amendment and the fact that the absence of a law explicitly stating he has a right to carry a firearm isn’t required, because the 2nd Amendment gives him that right. Another police employee gave Chambless a speech about nobody needing to carry a firearm, because the police would protect them.
Chief Balentine also stole Chambless’ police scanner, claiming that the only reason he has for using it is because he’s engaging in illegal acts and needs to monitor where the police officers are, so he can get away. That is in spite of the fact that Chambless heard on the scanner that they were looking for him over the firearm and called to inform them of his location.
Apparently, Chambless was found guilty on August 25, 2015 by District Judge Mark Derrick, but Chambless plans to appeal.