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MrManQ

Freeze... put your hands up.....step away from the gun, err i mean scope?

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not a chance of it happening in the uk, our coppers have a much higher IQ there not para-militerys like in the states .clear skys charl.

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it does make one wonder though;

a couple of years ago a photographer (son of an iconic Australian photographer) was strolling on Bondi beach when he was approached by a couple of police officers.  They demanded that they show them the images he had been taking (a reasonable enough request given privacy concerns etc).  The problem was that he was using film backs and this was a technology they didn't understand! :disgust:   Apparently they continued their demands, finally grabbing the camera from him whereupon he advised them to take especial care with the camera as his set up there was worth in excess of $60,000 - a little more than their yearly salary.

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Had a similar experience in Cyprus when bird watching. We did not realise there was a military installation nearby. Got back to the hotel for dinner when our rooms were raided by umpteen policemen. Took away all our cameras and confined us to the hotel until they checked out our story. Can laugh about it now, but not funny at the time

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A couple of friends and I had the police roll into the car park where we were observing because they thought we might be 'launching fireworks' :eek: I suppose a 10" Dob does look sort of canon-like but seriously...???

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I have had the police turn up at several different places I have set up in in the countryside around Alton. They have always been very friendly from the start and have been interested to see what I am looking at. To be honest, it has been the same when groups of drunk youths have turned up (although the I have felt a little more on edge). Ask them to turn off all their car lights, show them what you are doing, and everything has always been very friendly :).

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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From the same article:

Universe Today’s Bob King told me that just two weeks ago he was out observing in the countryside, when a very similar event happened to him

Unfortunately there are so many TV crime / terror programmes that people (esp. the security forces) have been brainwashed into interpreting these sorts of fictional episodes in real life. We see what we are programmed to see. :sad:

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I'd understand it if the cops mistook the scope for some kind of rocket launcher, but a rifle!!!!!!!!!!!!!. On the flip side, i recently saw a picture of a rocket launcher which looked more like a cheap store bought telescope.

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not a chance of it happening in the uk, our coppers have a much higher IQ there not para-militerys like in the states .clear skys charl.

I'm afraid you are wrong.

Tragically people have been killed by our UK police for wrongly mistaking objects for firearms in the past. 

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Consider my simple solution for when you may be in the presence of those who can read, but are possibly mentally challenged.

Rainy days are great for inventions, please feel free to use this one as a patent has not yet been applied for.   :grin:

post-21902-0-22167000-1440948504.jpg

post-21902-0-35593400-1440948515.jpg

Edited by L8-Nite
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I'm afraid you are wrong.

Tragically people have been killed by our UK police for wrongly mistaking objects for firearms in the past. 

You'd have to be extremely unlucky. A policeman on patrol, at night, in the UK, a very rare sight indeed.

The last time I called them to a buglary (in progess!) at a farm they showed up the following afternoon.

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I have been bothered by the local copper chopper when  trying to do simple AP from the back garden

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I have only had a passing visit at a remote site once from the fuzz , they had just finished re- clothing / advising Mr Gough -  the infamous naked rambler on a freezing December night nearby and wondered what we were doing , they did say poaching deer was common at the forest nearby .

Dave.

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I've often wonder when the police helicopter is flying around if they mistake my 250px for a SAM launcher lol.

Edited by Vega

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Was a bit worried when the Olympics were on and I had Apache gunships circling overhead as I was setting up what could easily be mistaken for rocket launcher by nervous airmen  :grin:

Dave

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I'm afraid you are wrong.

Tragically people have been killed by our UK police for wrongly mistaking objects for firearms in the past. 

Like chair legs in carrier bags.

That said many years ago my brother bought a double-handed war axe and was carrying it home through Cardiff with the head in a paper bag when he realised it was match day and the crowds were out...

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Here is a story that happened to me several years ago...


 


Jupiter & Saturn were at conjunction. I thought I would observe it at a dark site away from home which I did. Got the 'scope, (a small Konus Maksutov), setup on my photo tripod and mount. Within 30-40 minutes I was asked what I was looking at. I turned away from the 'scope and there were two Thames Valley policemen with a torch. Bang! went my dark adapted eyes and vision.


 


Apparently the neighbours, about 3/4 mile down the road, reported a peeping-tom 'spying' on them. Obviously the reflection of the primary mirror alerted them and they phoned the police. Once I told them what I was looking at and was satisfied with my story, (thank goodness I had taken a 286 or 386 laptop, DOS & SkyGlobe with me to back-up what I told them), they wanted to have a look too. One of the police officers went back to the house and told them the story. He returned several minutes later with the owners of the house and they too wanted have a look as they had never looked through an 'astronomical' telescope before. The husband brought his 10x50 binoculars along too. BTW... Jupiter & Saturn were about 20o above the roof of their house.


 


When the police left, 'we' spent another two hours chatting about astronomy, telescopes and looking at the nightsky.


 


The wife's reaction when she saw M45 through the binoculars was: "Wow! I can only six of them without binoculars. This is amazing!"


 


We said our "good-byes" and "goodnights" then departed the evening/night for our homes.


 


 


 


 


Thank you for reading. 


 


Edited by Philip R
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Probably one of the areas where going out skywatching alone may not be a good idea; down the years while on a public right of way I've had farmers turn up with a shotgun demanding to know what I was doing - invariably they have suspected I was part of a rustling gang...

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I took wife and daughter to a huge deserted reservoir car park - just one car in a far corner.

Got set up and then the car cam over to alert me to the pending [removed word]... :-(

Time for a # exit.

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True story - I know of one group of astronomers who use a public car park which is near the Brecon Beacons and somewhat remote. Unfortunately, the car park has a reputation for being used for 'other recreational purposes' other than astronomy on occasion.

 One night the police turned up and asked the astro observers  'what are you doing' , the reply to which was 'Dobbing'   :smiley:

Edited by reddoss

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While going off on a tangent slightly, back in 1998 I was part of a skywatch at Avebury (OK UFO skywatch...)

Around 2300 an idiot motorist coming up from Devizes failed to notice or negotiate the sharp left-hand bend, and consequently used the road verge as a ramp to leap the fence and land/park in amongst  the trees - though managing to miss them.  We got the guy out, and made sure he was OK, then took him off to the Red Lion to sit quietly while waiting for his friends to arrive.

During the night we lost count of the number of police cars that pulled up to look at the unusual scene and then demand to know "is this your car?"

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Hmmm..... Wonder what sort of recoil you'd get with a gun that big!

It's just gone through my mind that one of my club's dark site is about 1/2 mile from a military air base and we often get coptors overhead, thankful now we haven't had heat seeking missiles coming our way

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Assuming it's OK to mention real firearms, a packet of .177 pellets for my teenage air pistol arrived today.

The first one didn't make it all the way through they barrel... after some cleaning and a new o-ring, it's capable of putting a pellet through two layers of corrugated cardboard sometimes and I can mostly get pellets inside a 4" circle at a range of about ten feet.

I remembered it was pretty crummy, but ... I would be better off throwing a telescope at the target.

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