You’re pulled over for a traffic stop and you have a concealed carry weapon permit. What’s the best and safest way to let the officer know you have a permit, and possibly a weapon in your vehicle?

A Sacramento, California man was shot to death by police this week when they thought he had a weapon in his hand that turned out to be a cell phone.

Missoula County Undersheriff Rich Maricelli said there are common sense rules to follow in any traffic stop.

“Just think back to your days in driver’s education,” said Maricelli. “As soon as you’ve been pulled over and the officer is walking towards you, just hold your hands at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel. The hands of the individual are the key thing. Your demeanor is also important. Be completely forthright and compliant. Let him see your hands clearly, then be respectful and tell him, ‘Officer, you may know this from the dispatch information, but I just wanted you to know that I do have a concealed carry permit and I do have either one on my person or in the vehicle.’ But in the meantime, the placement of the hands is the key during the stop.”

Maricelli said the driver can hand the concealed carry permit to the officer along with the license and proof of insurance, but the officer needs to see where the driver’s hands are at all times.

“You can certainly do that, but my best recommendation is that you not do that, because I can envision the driver rummaging through the glove compartment looking for something, and in that situation he’s not going to know what you have in there, and he can’t clearly see your hands.”

Missoula Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh confirmed Maricelli’s recommendations.

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