Gun Tattoo Gets Maine Man a Visit From Armed Cops



Talk about a bad morning: First, a tree removal crew was working outside Michael Smith's Norridgewock, Maine, home while he tried to sleep. Then, cops armed with assault rifles were showing up at Smith's door. 

It seems the police had been tipped off to Smith's potential dangerousness by the tree removal crew. Earlier that morning, a shirtless Smith had gone outside and yelled at them to leave. Some of them noticed that Smith had a handgun tucked into the waist of his pants. Or thought they noticed a handgun. 

What the crew had really seen was Smith's life-size gun tattoo

"Obviously it was a misunderstanding and he didn't have a weapon, but we had to respond to the initial report as if he did," Maine State Police Trooper Scott Duff told the Maine Morning Sentinel. "We take all precautions when we don't have the details."

The Associated Press notes that "police didn't charge him." Charge him with what? What charge could they have possibly drummed up here? (Don't answer that.) Let's just be glad Smith put a shirt on before opening the door to the cops, or things could have played out much more tragically. "I got plans today. I didn't want to get shot," Smith said. 

NEXT: A New York Jail Let A Homeless Man 'Bake To Death'

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. hm… wish I heard this story earlier


    1. Nobody reads the AM links.

      1. Being from ENB I bet they instructed her to never give h/t as it causes the wild animals in the AM links to go apeshit.

        1. I just never read the a.m. link comments …

  2. I Purchased a Cheech and Chong t-shirt from Walmart that I only wear when I’m not high.

  3. What laws would the guy have been breaking, even if the gun had been real?

    1. Well, I mean, he yelled at someone while tattooed with something that a nearsighted imbecile might mistake for a deadly weapon! That’s clearly, uh…

      *Shakes magic 8-ball*

      Making terroristic threats! I mean, duh!

    2. By letting the crew see the real gun while yelling at them, he could be charged with “menacing”. Stupid, I know.

      1. I’m somewhat surprise he wasn’t charged with menacing anyways.

    3. Good question. You don’t need a permit to carry on your own property in Maine, do you?

      Had it been a real gun, I wonder if gun stuffed in your wist band and no shirt on counts as badly concealed or open carry?

  4. The Associated Press notes that “police didn’t charge him.” Charge him with what? What charge could they have possibly drummed up here?

    Accidental shootings soar, yet laws remain unchanged.

    Helicopter crashes in Seattle soar, yet laws remain unchanged.

    1. WHEN will our lawmakers finally have the COURAGE to pass COMMON-SENSE laws banning extraordinarily rare freak accidents?

  5. Even if he had a pistol tucked into his waistband, so what? I bet every cop that showed up at his door to “talk” to him had a pistol at their side along with those rifles. Goose, meet gander.


    1. Do not taunt the squirrels, now that things seem mostly back to normal.

      1. I just want to take this moment to publicly declare that I find Cdr Lytton’s comments abhorrent. I believe man and squirrels can live side by side peacefully. Why, I don’t even know this man! Please don’t confuse the rest of us with hatemongers like CL!

        looks around nervously, fills feeder in the backyard to the brim

      2. Not back to normal for me, though it seems to be working in Firefox (not in Chrome, and not in IE on my work computer)

        1. No wait, scratch that, it’s not working for me at all, except in limited circumstances. We’ll see if this posts.

    2. Allowing citizens to possess guns will all but guarantee a highly miliarized police during apprehensions.

      1. This is sarcasm right?

        1. It has a point. If you’re being raped, fighting back just escalates the violence.

      2. So how do you explain the 150+ years of U.S. history during which citizens possessed guns, and which predates the trend towards police militarization in recent decades?

        Sounds like someone just wants to make an excuse for tyranny against people he/she doesn’t like.

        1. Now don’t go confusing Alice with facts.

        2. Americans didn’t own guns back then. An Emory University professor proved it in his book, but the dog ate his notes.

          1. Wow…no wonder the water line broke:

            According to Chuck Norris, director of Emory’s facilities management…

      3. Yep.

        I remember what it was like back before the over-militarization of the cops, back when citizens had no guns.

      4. Im a little fuzzy on who is allowing what. Are our overlords allowing we their subjects to have weapons? Please enlighten us. Im sure we’d all love to hear your thoughts………NOT.

    3. Except only one of the people with a pistol at their side is actually held accountable for his actions.

  6. It’s a good thing Obama can take time out of his busy schedule to fill out an NCAA bracket

    1. Please let him spend the rest of the week filling out more brackets and then watching every minute of March Madness.

      The less time he spends doing his job the better off we all are

  7. Earlier that morning, a shirtless Smith had gone outside and yelled at them to leave. Some of them noticed that Smith had a handgun tucked into the waist of his pants. Or thought they noticed a handgun.

    You really have to wonder if they really knew they were tattoos and trolled/tipped off the cops because they knew they’d be a bunch of overbearing pricks. “Yell at us? Tell me how to do my job? Well you know what? Fuck that guy and his gun tats!”

      1. Huh?

        You kinda hope some assholes sicced the cops on a guy on purpose?

        Am I misreadng you here, because that’s stupid and disgusting.

  8. He was probably just as irritated as we are with the squirrels most recent comment posting snafu.

  9. So an idiot acted like an asshole, then nothing else happened?

    The only reason to yell at the tree removal guys in Maine is to make sure they leave the wood.

    The fact that this idiot is walking outside shirtless on a balmy 30 degree day brought back memories of the endless Maine winters. By March you just say “fuck it” and act like winter is over and ignore all evidence to the contrary like the 6-foot snowbanks in the photos.

    1. Jesus Christ you’re fucking stupid.

      1. Ladies and gentlemen, I believe we have a new concern troll at Hit and Run. License and registration, sir.

    2. As I recall from my seven year stint up in God’s country, by the time March rolls around, it’s not just saying “fuck it”, but rather thinking that 30 is pretty miserably hot after having experienced most of a solid month where the temperature never reached zero (Farenheit) *from the bottom*.

      Seriously, it’s his land, and unless he has given a written easement to CMP or whoever, what *were* they doing there in the first place?

      1. Power companies generally have blanket easement to keep trees out of their lines.

        I work for a power company for a couple years. The assholes who complained the loudest about having their tress cut back were the same ones who complained the loudest when they lost power.

  10. He doesn’t look exactly like I thought he would but near enough.

  11. So, in browsing the linked news site I discovered that Border Patrol agents respond to local crimes. Because why and under what authority? Are iceback Canucks prone to breaking into stores or jay walking?

    1. Everything within a hundred miles of the border is within their jurisdiction, which includes the entire state of Maine.

      1. Jurisdiction =/= authority.

        So, thanks for the observation, but it’s not relevant.

        1. You better write your local Border Patrol office, because, and I quote:

          “We have and will continue to work diligently with law enforcement partners at all levels in securing our borders, reducing crime and improving the quality of life in our communities on both sides of the border.

          Not only does the BP think they have authority, they think they have a mission to improve quality of life in foreign countries.

          So the obvious question isn’t whether or not they have the authority, but who’s going to tell them they don’t?

          1. “we the people”

            … if we the sheeple ever turn off American Cardasians or whatever.

            1. Interesting term. Our state apparatus is acting remarkably Cardassian lately.

  12. I once saw a woman with a life-size, photographically-real image of an M1911 tattooed on the top of one of her breasts.

    My male gaze was a bit confounded by that.

  13. The guy didn’t even draw his gun… oh, wait.

    1. Nice.

  14. Trying to find out more about that FLEOA. Fuckity fuck look at all the agencies they represent:

    Just a sample:
    Agriculture – OIG
    Army – CID
    Border Patrol
    Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives
    Bureau of Indian Affairs
    Bureau of Land Management
    Bureau of Reclamation
    Coast Guard Investigative Service
    Commerce – Bureau of Industry and Security
    Customs and Border Protection
    Defense Criminal Investigative Service
    Diplomatic Security Service
    Drug Enforcement Administration
    Energy – OIG

    1. Yes, that means at least a portion of all these agencies considered themselves law enforcement operations.

    2. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration


  15. Well, at least we now know what sarcasmic looks like.

  16. Where can I join the reason NCAA bracket?

  17. Looks like the Comments aren’t the only things the Squirrelz screwed up
    It’s 4:30 and no PM links

  18. 1. Mr. Smith has the right to have a gun tattooed on his belly.
    2. There are way too many ways that could go wrong.

    “Legal” doesn’t always equal “smart.”

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.