In most cases, smart gun owners tend to make good choices that enable them to conceal their weapon extremely well. However, some individuals don’t always realize that unhealthy habitscan actually “tell” the world they are carrying concealed.
So what are these folks doing to give away their secret?
For starters, all too often, the ability to carefully wear a concealed carry holster can lead to the misconception that the hidden gun is a secret no one could realize is there.
Unfortunately, this misunderstanding can lead to a false sense of security.
Also, there are additional – sometimes more subtle – red flags that can give your secret away. Many of these signs are behaviors people exhibit without realizing they are even happening.
Common Indications That Someone Is Carrying
- Constantly pulling down on his or her shirt or jacket.
- Wearing odd or inappropriate clothing for the current conditions. For instance, he or she is wearing a vest or jacket in hot weather.
- Sporting a fanny pack even though it is quite obvious that their pants have plenty of pockets.
- Wearing a fanny pack that obviously has something heavy in it.
- Keeping one arm close to where a holster might would be on his or her body. This arm doesn’t swing freely with their walking motions.
- Constantly hiking up their pants. Think about it: there is possibly a very good reason why those pants keep falling down. Could it be that something heavy is on their belt, or that something in their pocket keeps dragging them down?
- Wearing their belt at an angle (possible weight pulling it down).
- Sporting continuously sagging pants or jacket pockets.
- Reluctant to remove his or her jacket when inside a building.
- Unknowingly raising their shoulder before exiting a car as the gun is either reholstered, checked for positioning or adjusting clothing.
- Keeping one side of their body at a slight angle away from the person in front of them.
- Suddenly “ramping up” or exhibiting a heightened awareness level when a stranger gets too close to the gun side of their body.
- Changing positions to keep one side away when approached by a stranger.
- Swinging wider than necessary to get through a door.
- Taking an advantageous position in a room when there are plenty of other places available.
- Constantly scanning the area and exhibiting a high level of awareness and alertness, but without any signs of fear.
- Paying close attention to a shady character yet without any signs of apprehension.
- Placing his or her hand into a pocket and keeping it there when a shady character is spotted.
- Walking “funny.” Heavy weights on one side often cause a slight lean that often goes unnoticed by the person carrying.
- Hugging with arms under another person’s arms, forcing their arms away from bumping a concealed gun.
- Releasing a dull “thud” sound if something (or someone) bumps into them.
For those of you who are interested in additional signs, here is a helpful report to review.
The Bottom Line: Use Common Sense
If you are serious about carrying a concealed firearm, it is important to consider the necessary equipment and clothing. Always choose clothing that hides your gun, helping to avoid a potential “printing,” or where the gun could cause a bulge or visibly reveal the outline of the gun.
It is also crucial to exercise caution when moving, stretching or reaching to avoid having your shirt or jacket pull up and expose your gun. I always suggest being particularly conscious about not bending over at the waist or allowing the butt of your gun to print through the back of your shirt, jacket or vest.
It is important to note that some of the signs mentioned above may not be proof-positive, yet more of an indicator, that a gun is present. Keep in mind that several of these signs occurring at the same time, or within a short period, are strong indications that someone is carrying a gun.
For more resources or information on the topic, the FBI offers a formal training course for law enforcement concerning this issue.
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