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Tennessee Gun Case

Remember the idiot who painted his AK pistol’s barrel orange so it looked like an airsoft gun then went wandering through the local park carrying it openly? Cops were called and no charges filed because he didn’t break the law. Being stupid isn’t a crime. But he lost his handgun carry permit because he was deemed to be a material risk to public safety. Turns out, he doesn’t agree with that assessment and is suing the state:

Leonard Embody filed the lawsuit in Williamson County Chancery Court in May, and it was transferred to Davidson County Chancery Court last week.

According to the suit, Embody lawfully carried handguns with permit since 2001 and renewed the permit every four years. It was suspended this year because he presented a “material likelihood risk of harm to the public.”

Embody has never been arrested, charged with a crime or appeared before a judge concerning his handgun carry permit suspension, the suit says.

43 Responses to “Tennessee Gun Case”

  1. Tango Says:

    *sigh* He’s as much a troll IRL as he is on the forums. However, I think he’s right.

  2. SPQR Says:

    I have no problem with his permit being revoked given his actions. The prancing around the park with a gun deceptively marked may not be a crime per se, but it is suspicious behavior.

  3. Fred Says:

    He’s also talked about pushing certain laws on forums before (I don’t remember the specifics, but it involved a cap & ball revolver and OCing it somewhere you can’t OC because it’s not a “firearm” per ATF…) The guy’s a Class I Asshat.

  4. The Packetman Says:

    @ Fred – it involved a cap & ball revolver and OCing it somewhere you can’t OC because it’s not a “firearm” per ATF

    That actually doesn’t sound like a bad thing to me (perhaps even a goodness thing), but then I’m a 2A absolutist.

    Such a case would surely be interesting; unlikely to succeed, but interesting none the less.

  5. aeronathan Says:

    The guys an idiot and a first class PITA but legally he may have a case….

  6. chris Says:

    A good bit of Constitutional case law involves extreme behavior.

    The people whose activities make for 1A decisions aren’t Time, the NYT, US News and World Report.

    It is people like Larry Flint and people who post animal cruelty videos on the Internet.

    Thus far, we have the Draconian DC and Chicago guns bans giving us the basis for our most recent 2A jurisprudence.

    This guy is seeking attention and has poor (actually pathetic) judgment.

    When I see people who act wierd or foolishly at gun ranges, I leave.

    This is that type of person.

  7. Robert Says:

    I’m sad to say that he regularly trolls the open carry forum. I’ve got him on my ignore list but unfortunately his post titles still show up.

  8. dusty Says:

    If they couldn’t get him on disturbing the peace, failure to comply with an officer’s lawful orders, or any county code violation, he wasn’t doing anything wrong. “May issue” permitting is unconstitutional, as Alan Gura’s Maryland lawsuit will soon show.

    Imagine a prankster driving an ice cream truck to playgrounds, and then zooming off so that all the kids cry. It would be outrageous to suspend somebody’s driver’s license for a legal joke like that.

  9. Fred Says:

    Oh I don’t disagree with the principle of the matter, but pushing things for the sake of pushing it is just stupid. He’s not helping anything and just giving us sane OCers a bad name. The fact that he had an AK, pistol or not, with an orange barrel nut, is the key point of stupidity. In the case in point, had he simply carried any holstered handgun (AK and AR style pistols don’t count in my mind for the title) he would have gotten the same effect of exercising his rights, despite the unlawful sign at the park.
    But walking through the park in camo with an AK is simply asking for it. He would have looked like an absolute nutbag, and when I hear hoof-beats I expect horses.

  10. beatbox Says:

    And the problem is that he can “ruin it for everyone” by possibly getting a bad ruling that can be used as precedent in future cases that matter.

    One of Alan Gura’s strategies has been to ignore these nutjobs and look for sympathetic plaintiffs.

  11. wizardpc Says:

    He’s also talked about pushing certain laws on forums before (I don’t remember the specifics, but it involved a cap & ball revolver and OCing it somewhere you can’t OC because it’s not a “firearm” per ATF…)

    He actually did that, and that’s what ultimately got his permit revoked. He was near Al Gore’s mansion with a Colt Navy revolver in his hand. He had thoroughly researched the law, and in that particular city the law specifically exempted “army or navy revolver(s) carried openly in the hand.”

    Based on what I know about him, he went looking for trouble specifically so he could sue. That’s why he did the AK pistol carry and didnt carry like a sane person.

    The bulk of my problem with Mr. Embody is that now I have to spend my limited time and energy convincing state lawmakers–who are on our side–that we don’t need to add something to the carry permit law to prevent carrying pistol variants of rifles. My time is better spent convincing them that permitless carry, school carry, and closing the database are acheivable goals.

  12. Tango Says:

    His original incident involved a black powder pistol. There was a specific exception to his state’s laws about carrying one around town, so he bought a black powder pistol specifically for that purpose. Carried it in-hand, not holstered, and was 100% within the bounds of the law. He’s an idiot, but he was legal.

  13. Tango Says:

    Awww, crap! Wizardpc beat me to it.

  14. Pol Mordreth Says:

    Also, the AK was almost entirely done in blaze orange DuraCoat, not just the barrel tip or lug. Ugly, but grounds for revoking his permit? The incident with the cap and ball pistol was stupid, but entirely within the law. In TN all prohibitions on handgun carry by towns was grandfathered in when we got permits to carry. In the town he was in, all carry was illegal, except for the Army or Navy pistol carried openly in hand. Yes, he was looking for a reaction. Yes, he got one. But he has never been arrested, much less convicted, so I believe that his permit suspension is both wrong and troubling.


  15. SayUncle Says:

    No. only the tip was painted orange so as to resemble an airsoft gun. Pic.

  16. Lyle Says:

    A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of The People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, unless said arms have orange muzzles.

  17. divemedic Says:

    Those who have a problem with him pushing the limits need to remember that people who push the limits get more done than the appeasement and rear guard tactics that the NRA has been using for the last 20 years.

    Where would civil rights laws be if Rosa Parks had given up her seat, and simply written her congressman? Where would they be if Oliver Brown had simply told his daughter to keep walking to Monroe Elementary?

    Where would we be if George Washington and his fellow rabble rousers had just put up with King George’s antics?

  18. SPQR Says:

    You are missing the point, Lyle. The paint job was to specifically make the thing resemble a toy. He’s not exercising a constitutional right at that point, he’s engaging in deception.

    Pushing the boundaries by means of fraud is not laudable.

  19. Tango Says:

    SPQR, so what about duracoat and the Bloomberg Collection? Are they wrong for creating and marketing their product line or does Mayor Bloomberg just need to get off of his high horse?

    I think Kwikrnu is a turd, but he’s putting his money where his mouth is and standing up for what he believes is right.

  20. John Smith. Says:

    This guy kind of amuses me. He is one of those people who can see the holes in the laws and does something about it. I suspect he will get his license back simply by the fact that the officers approaching him did not think the pistol was a toy even though it had an orange tip. Therefore the orange tip means nothing. The hikers who saw him on the trail did not think it was a toy either. No one did. How can you suspend the license of person whom you accuse of trying to make a firearm look like a toy when nobody thought it was a toy. He merely is pointing out the holes in the law with and with an in your face to law enforcement. The cops do not like him because he does things that seem extreme but are well within the boundaries of the law. His actions may appear reckless but reckless implies that you have somehow broken the law to the detriment of others. I do not see them charging him with reckless endangerment. The reason they took away his permit is that they know they cannot beat him outright. Of course they should have known better. He will fight. This is what he wanted in the first place. He is going to drag them through the mud too.

  21. The Packetman Says:

    @ SPQR “The paint job was to specifically make the thing resemble a toy. He’s not exercising a constitutional right at that point, he’s engaging in deception.”

    Not relevant. Lots of kids have been shot because they had toys that looked like the real thing.

    When confronted with a man (or woman) who is carrying what appears to be a weapon, police will assume that it is a real weapon, no matter how it’s painted, and act accordingly. When they find that it is a real weapon (which they assumed in the first place) they will then figure out if the carrier is authorized to have said weapon. When they find that the carrier is authorized, that should be the end of the story.

    Now, if you’re hoplophobic, the sight of even a toy gun will send chills up your leg, and you will probably shriek like a little girl.

    However, if you have any sense, you would realize that only an idiot (or a terminal optimist) would bring an airsoft gun to a state park for self-defense. You would also assume that the weapon was real (not knowing any differently), defensively assess the situation, and act accordingly.

    I am personally not afraid of folks openly carrying firearms. While taking my daughter to swim lessons this summer, there was a gentleman openly carrying a pistol. He was dressed in casual shorts, a polo shirt, and well-groomed. But that’s all he had.

    So I walked up to him and asked him if he was law enforcement, which he was. And even though I saw him everyday, openly carrying, I never saw his badge.

    And it was no big deal.

  22. Matthew Carberry Says:

    Hell, I’ll grant pushing the boundaries is laudable. But when you do it, if you are risking the future court case going the other way, you owe every other gun owner the respect of doing it in as narrowly tailored and responsible way possible.

    If he wanted to make a point about pistol AK carry (for God knows what reason), why confuse the issue with the idiotic orange tip? Use a stock gun, dress in a non-threatening “professional” manner, like khakis and a polo, and act casually and personably to passerby. Look and act like a choir boy who just happened to have the pistol AK on him that day.

    Then, if people take pictures or the cops respond, and it ends up in court or the press, there is little that the other side can use to cloud the issue by painting you as a dangerous camo-clad stereotypical idiot.

    That is if the idea really is making and winning test cases versus gaining personal notariety.

  23. Tango Says:

    So you’re saying he should be good to go for wearing Dockers Pants, but not cammie clothing?

  24. ZK Says:

    At the risk of being painted as a not-a-real-2nd-amendment-supporter, I’ve seen enough movies to feel quite threatened if I come across a camouflaged, AK47-toting dude in a park. This could have ended badly for all involved, and, while I’m not saying open carry of stock-less long guns *should* be illegal, I could certainly find something else to care about if it were.

  25. ZK Says:

    Or more relevant to the discussion, I don’t see me being threatened as being a good constitutional test. But I’d certainly like better facts.

  26. ATLien Says:

    ZK, you know movies aren’t real-life, right?

  27. Joe Says:

    Sadly, even idiots and asshats have equal protection under the law.

  28. ZK Says:


    In my part of the country, carrying an AK47 through a park is not normal behavior, even for staunch gun-rights advocates. If you show up with one, I’m quickly going to wonder why, and “because you’re making a clever statement on Open Carry” is probably not going to be thought #1.

    Frankly, here in the northeast, you’d get risk getting shot to pieces unless you’re really careful to make it obvious you’re respectable (which is what Free-Staters in NH have done, successfully).

    But the whole discussion on the wisdom of the original incident is a digression.

  29. John Smith. Says:

    If I saw a guy carrying a ak pistol wearing a polo and dockers shorts I would immediately know that he is and undercover federal agent trying to appear inconspicuous.

  30. Tango Says:


    In my part of the country, being black and at the front of the bus is not normal behavior, even for staunch civil rights advocates. If you’re seated there, I’m quickly going to wonder why, and “because you’re making a clever statement equal rights” is probably not going to be thought #1.

    Frankly, here in the south, you’d get risk getting lynched to pieces unless you’re really careful to make it obvious you’re respectable (which is not done by ignoring white people).

    But the whole discussion on the wisdom of the original incident is a digression.

  31. ZK Says:


    Substituting a different set of words in sentences is not an argument unless you can show equivalence, no matter how popular such an analogy has become in our community.

    In this case, you’d have to take the position that you have a natural right to carry a long-gun in such a park to substitute those words like that. Is this your position?

  32. ZK Says:

    Whatever. I’m not going to argue a gun-control position.

    Open carrying a long-gun, or something likely to be confused with a long-gun, is a bad idea.

  33. Tango Says:

    But it’s a right. It’s an enumerated right as of late, just as that silly right to equality without regard to social factors (race, religion, creed). If you do not set borders around your right, those against that right will encroach. As much of a turd this guy is, it’s his right and just because it’s not socially acceptable and frowned upon, it’s his right.

    “When they came for me, there was no one left to stand up for me.”

  34. SPQR Says:

    Tango, duracoat is the irrelevancy. The gun was specifically painted to resemble a toy, not a gun.

  35. ZK Says:


    I don’t disagree that it’s totally legal, and a right. But it’s still a bad idea.

  36. Tango Says:

    You believe it’s a bad idea and I believe it’s probably a bad idea. If his actions result in progress that all of us are looking for, he’s going to be the one laughing. History is written by the victors.

    As far as the duracoat irrelevency, it was made illegal in NYC because it supposedly caused officers to believe the gun was a toy, and this is the exact response that Kwikrnu was seeking to achieve.

  37. John Smith. Says:

    SPQR None of the forest rangers, police , or bystanders thought it was a toy regardless of the orange tip. They thought it was an illegal short rifle. They even tried to get the guy to sign a paper stating that he had been caught in possession of an illegal short barreled rifle.
    When he asked to see the magistrate they changed their tune and let him go.

  38. John Smith. Says:

    Kwidrnu is merely pointing out the holes in the legal system in a flamboyant way. They took his license because they thought him a threat. Problem is they did not charge him for reckless endangerment. You cannot be a threat and have done nothing illegal. Simply following the letter of the law is not a reason to take suspend his rights.

  39. Jerry Says:

    The dumb ‘sumbitch is trying to intimidate people by carrying a weapon. That’s why they call it a CCW permit. I am not against open carry, I do it all the time. If I think it might scare someone, I cover it. Trotting around a public park to SHOW THE PEOPLE your new gizmo is a bad idea. It makes YOU look like an idiot, because there is a really good chance, that someone else may be better armed. Open carry is not a bad idea, but we should grow into it, and not force the opinion. Despite what Ms. Madonna would try to teach us, we do not live in a material world. We live in a world, made up, of different materials.

  40. Mayor Joel Stoner Says:

    I see a huge double standard here. You can not support second amendment rights and say that you can’t exercise them. The right of the people to keep and BEAR arms, shall not be infringed. No one can seriously argue that any current gun control law, is not an infringement on the second amendment, especially laws against bearing arms. Would you say that Rosa Parks was an idiot for refusing to sit at the back of the bus? She could have been beaten, or killed for what she did. But she knew it was right. No one has changed the world following the rules, or taking the easy route.

  41. kwikrnu Says:

    Tennessee defined a handgun and an ak type pistol is a handgun. It is legal to custom paint any handgun in Tennessee. Armor piercing ammo is legal in Tennessee to possess. It is legal to carry a handgun openly. It is legal to carry a handgun in a State Park.It is legal to carry a slung pistol in Tennessee. Tennessee issued me a handgun carry permit. I have no criminal history. So, what is the problem with Radnor Lake?
    The cops stopped me with no RAS or PC. The audio is on youtube under kwikrnu.
    My problem is that the government says one thing and acts in another. I also have a problem with those who say that my rights shall be infringed.

  42. kwikrnu Says:

    Regarding Belle Meade this is an affluent area. Al Gore lives there. They have what some would call a “whites only” country club. They have a silly law on the books from 1871 which requires the carry of a handgun be done openly in the hand. It is more restricted that it allows only the carry of the army or navy pistol. The ordinance is 11-602.
    The police conspired with TNDPS to suspend my permit. I did nothing wrong. TNDPS has never, to my knowledge, used this statute to suspend a permit in this manner. Belle Meade police have went out of their way ti investigate me. It is a case of oppression, retalliation, malfeasance, and civil rights violations.
    The stop is all on video on my youtube page including calls to 911 and dispatch.

  43. John Smith. Says:

    kwikrnu I enjoy watching the tennessee cops squirm. Especially the nashville metro boys.(Had a clerk of mine get shook down by a pair of tactical response officers) I like how they discriminated against you for the clothing you wore too. I guess camouflage and a large pistol are just too much for them. As for belle meade I tend to avoid going to such places. The cops there are less than professional. When they give you your permit back and you want to have some fun go over to greene military supply in donelson. It is a police and trooper hangout since there are no criminals to bust in nashville they spend hours there yapping away. They all freak out when a non cop walks in. Is hilarious. Especially a long haired Roma who does not look particularly friendly strolls in. Good luck knocking the state off its high horse and dragging them through the sewage canal.