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With Pistols and a Rifle, Group Gathers Again to Support Troy Teen

Nearly a dozen open carry advocates met at Shain Park in Birmingham again Friday to support 18-year-old Sean Combs, who was arrested in Birmingham in April for carrying a loaded M1 Garand rifle.

Despite the triple-digit heat, a small group of open carry advocates gathered Friday evening at Birmingham's to support Sean Combs, the 18-year-old Troy resident who was arrested in April after he was found .

A similar group of open carry advocates also , later attending the Monday night meeting of the Birmingham City Commission.

Combs, who is following on June 20 at the , was present at Friday's gathering along with his mother, brothers and several other open carry advocates.

"I really appreciate it," Combs said. "It shows people support me."

after an . Combs was arrested around 10 p.m. after refusing to show police officers identification after they asked about the M1 Garande rifle strapped to his back, police reports state.

Ferndale resident Mike Stanley, who arrived at the park carrying a Springfield XD .45 in a holster on his hip, said he showed up to support open carry rights after seeing a post on opencarry.org.

"The goal is to educate people in their right to self defense and get rid of the taboo," Stanley said. "People have a built-in taboo when it comes to firearms, and that's the point of this."

"I feel everyone should be comfortable with open carry," Clawson resident Stephanie Locke said. "When you conceal, there's more of a threat because you don't know what they're carrying."

Locke said she believes the best way to have people become more accepting and comfortable with open carry is by educating them.

"The less you know about it, the more scared you are," she said. "The more understanding you have, the less you'll have to worry about."

Combs agreed, saying, "Whether people like it or not, it's educating people on the issue."

Combs is scheduled for a jury pre-trial for 1:30 p.m. July 9, with the jury trial set to begin at 8:30 a.m. July 11.

Mitch July 12, 2012 at 04:02 PM
NOT Guilty on all counts! Very good!
Rick McCallum July 12, 2012 at 09:19 PM
Perhaps everyone that wanted to go had umm jobs.. and couldn't. I do not think they are exploiting the kid as much as the issue at hand, and the fact they ARRESTED THIS KID JUST FOR WALKING AROUND WITH A RIFLE. COPS DOING THAT REALLY PISSES SOME FOLKS OFF
Rick McCallum July 12, 2012 at 09:27 PM
Lets not sugar coat this Jennifer . If a black kid did this he would have been shot by the cops seriously he probably would have. Now before anyone starts calling me a racist because I mentioned the word black and I myself am white try to keep this in mind. "I'm not prejudice or a racist at all, In fact I hate every one equally"
Rick McCallum July 12, 2012 at 09:40 PM
How come when a person accidently kills some one in a car ..no one blames the car ...but if some one kills some one with a gun everyone says we need to ban guns. Well I think we should ban all cars they kill more people every year than guns heart attacks cigarettes l and war combines yet no one wants to get rid of them One more thing I dont see Japan not invading us because almost every house hold had a car in 1942 .they didnt invade us with 2 million foot soldiers because "as the commander of the .aircraft carrier that launched the attack on Pearl harbor said .. Americans have more guns than they have blades of grass" Now take away those guns and see what happens Jennifer. As much as I'd like to live in your fun loving fancy free flower flying world , It isn't like that over here in Real World USA lady.. "Not to be offensive or anything"
Erin December 18, 2012 at 01:37 AM
Don't you think most Birmingham residents were relieved the officer arrested this lone, clearly confrontational young male carrying a loaded rifle walking down a Birmingham street?

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