This Saturday, I had an opportunity to speak with multiple Illinois State Troopers.  It happened at the Faith & Blue event in Decatur (more on that in a future post).  In the morning, the ISP delivered two entry-level presentations for the audience, including one on “Internet Sex Crimes and Children” and another on human trafficking.  Both were good.  In down time before, during and after the presentations, I had opportunities to speak with multiple ISP rank-and-file guys (and a lady), including several from investigations.  After I introduced myself, the conversations turned to guns sooner or later.  It was enlightening to hear their take.

I’ll share here without naming names.

The consensus was that “probably 99%” of Troopers are with those of us fighting Pritzker’s new gun & magazine ban in court (and in the court of public opinion).

It’s personal for them as well:  They don’t want their families disarmed of the most effective self-defense firearms and magazines any more than we want our families’ options curtailed.

Who among ISP supports this?  Leadership and those bucking for promotions seeking to garner favor among those at the top.

They absolutely, positively don’t support taking guns from the law-abiding.  And frankly they don’t feel those evading registration requirements (both of guns and private transfers) are criminals, either.

What’s more, they aren’t that keen that law-abiding gun owner support (regardless of how deep or shallow) of cops is being diminished by worries that some of those same cops will come knocking on gun owner doors and want to take ARs and other banned firearms soon.

“We know who’s gonna stop and help us if we’re on our backs in a fight on the side of the road.”  Hint:  It ain’t bad guys or gun control advocates by and large.

(Remember this story from the summer of 2022 in McLean County, IL?  And GSL’s earlier OP-ED about police concerns about losing support?)

A CCW holder draws down on man attacking and incapacitating trooper on side of road.

That trooper in the above video looks like one of the guys from Saturday, by the way.

Yeah, I’m leaving out a lot of “off the record” stuff, but suffice it to say that while only one or two said it directly, the rest nodded their heads in that they are a lot like us in finding this new law repugnant to the Constitution and therefore pretty much null and void when it comes to enforcement in their daily world unless people do really stupid stuff.  More on that in a moment.

I asked about enforcement teams making home visits for those who don’t register.

“Are you kidding?  We don’t really have enough staffing to do our real work,” one said in so many words.  As an example, the guy who delivered the human trafficking presentation drove three hours to deliver it because the local investigator was tied up with something else.

Another example:  they admitted to triaging human trafficking cases because they don’t have the manpower.  And combating human trafficking is a high priority at ISP now.  The investigators working the electronic sex crimes cases said pretty much the same thing:  they need more help as it’s everywhere and they’ve only got staff to handle the worse of the worst.

So where is the line in the sand where they will do home visits and make arrests over this new law?

There was one bright line they all agreed upon:  “If you go online and post that you’re going to kill any cop that shows up at your house over gun control or anything else, don’t be surprised if we come pay you a visit.  But we aren’t going to your house.  We’ll pull you over on your way to buy groceries or on your way to work.”

They’ll then ask if you were really serious and if you puff up your chest and say “hell yes” then they’re just going to smile after they put the cuffs on your ass.  And you won’t be released without bail before trial.  Really, anything other than “Of course not.  It was a stupid thing to post and I took it down already” will probably serve as a quick ticket to an arrest and conviction and possible (probable?) prison time.

One criticized how the feds handled that disabled guy in Utah.  The FBI raided a guy who repeatedly threatened to shoot politicians (including Biden?) for promoting gun control in a series of social media posts.  Instead of taking the man at the grocery store or coffee shop, they went to his house and ended up killing him.  Mr. ISP seemed to think that could have been handled much better without the loss of life.

“If you want to talk that trash with your buddies over a beer, that’s inadvisable, but I get it.  Post it publicly?  You’re gonna meet us and we’re going to treat you like a threat.”

There you go.  Candidly, I felt better.  At the same time I have no doubt there are some at ISP, especially some new hires and command staff, that don’t share these long-time LEOs pragmatic views on gun enforcement.

At the same time, we should realize this whole gun control schtick from JB Pritzker is largely political theater.  But for those who involuntarily get caught up in it, this theater will have life-changing ramifications.

12 thoughts on “Rank-and-file Illinois State Trooper observations on Illinois Gun & Magazine ban enforcement”
  1. My take, for what it’s worth, the Prikster is/was emboldened, and probably encouraged, by the fact that Ill-Annoy is hard-core democRAT-Marxist because of Chitcago politicians and the “Biteme” administration in the District of Corruption at our nation’s capital; Prikster is the “canary” in the coal mine to ram through gun registration, confiscation, and elimination to advance the anti-firearms agenda.
    Anti-Constitutionalists need to be defeated in the courts, voted out of office and exposed for the treasonous liars they are. If convicted of treason for their rejection of their oath to uphold and enforce Constitutional principles, they should face a firing squad or be hung by the neck until dead as an example for other treasonous scum.

    1. You are correct. Everyone must remember human behavior will dictate how people behave and in this case the ISP rank and file will throw you under the bus in a second for a paycheck. It appears that Mr. Boch is a little naive in this article. So what if 99% of them leave you alone? That 1% puts you in the same prison or gets that same felony. Just wait until they “just following orders” get the message in January from leadership that they are all ordered to enforced this law. As always, some people in the 2A community will be apologists and adhere to the back the blue cult. These are the same people that will support police qualified immunity to the detriment of their OWN rights. The total lack of self-respect is on display in Illinois. Why the HELL do the police always get automatic unearned respect while The People always get treated like subjects? It’s because of crap like this article, giving preference to cops over people. It’s the same Republican talking point to dance around their cop worship. They blame leadership, the governor, the Dems, ANYONE but who’s actually boots on the ground going to arrest you. It’s disgusting! It’s holding us back. It is wasting the lesson we learned from New Mexico that eliminating qualified immunity is one powerful quick way to put the brakes on gun control. The 2A community would be better off if we didn’t have police apologists speaking for the rest of us that actually care about our rights.

    2. My thoughts as well. It’s easy to say what they’ve said, as their job isn’t currently on the line. But, what if it comes down to “you will do this or you will lose your job?” There may be a lot of them thinking differently then.

  2. I’ve said it time and time again. Politicians are not on our side; the cops working the beats are.

    I read these comments saying the 2A community shouldn’t back or support their local police. Since they believe “1%” of Law Enforcement will enforce and arrest citizens we should damn and condemn the other 99%. Those saying this also scream to the heavens not to condemn the 99% of lawful gun owners for the bad actions of the 1%.

    The whole….
    “I want police to be on our side!! But I’d shoot and kill them if they step on my porch!”
    “I want police to do their job, but remove their qualified immunity! Hang them high if they make a mistake!”


    “Why can’t the police find great applicants? But….They should lose their pensions, we hate the police, they signed up for it so they deserve everything they get!”

    This shit is getting as old as the politicians attempts to take OUR rights away.

    1. Well said. So true.

      I must say that like plenty of other folks, I see those stories about dipshit cops not knowing the law or harassing people. Yeah, there are bad ones. But 99.99% of interactions go well and don’t make the news.

      Nobody’s perfect. While I’m not a fan of qualified immunity as it presently stands, I understand that we must give cops *at least* the same due process rights that we give criminals.

  3. Focusing on human traffiking. Hmmmm, I wonder why the spike ? Perhaps open-border Communists and their sympathizers or fellow Communists in certain states have a hand? I wish these people would be arrested charged with official misconduct, treason, and in the ‘world court’ crimes against humanity. A little dose of their own medicine.

    1. Rhetorical question about the “human trafficking”? Of-fricking-course it’s related to illegals getting trafficked into America over our southern border. It’s not just “Latinos” either, plenty of other nationalities are trafficked by the cartels too. Including underage Asian girls put to work doing sex work in your neighborhood Asian Massage Parlors. Over in Bloomington they’ve got several, including one prominently on Veterans Parkway where the “OPEN” sign is on 24/7 I think. I know a couple of massage therapists and none of them are “open” for servicing (in a professional sense) clients at 3am.

  4. It’s very good news to hear the majority of the rank and file don’t support the bullshit. I’m also glad to hear what I suspected, The ISP doesn’t have the manpower or resources to go after possible violators who quite likely have removed weapons from their property. I am a cautious person though and I do have to worry about that 1% who want to kiss ass for a promotion. We also could run across a local or a deputy depending which county you’re stuck in. Maybe a county that isn’t a sanctuary or one that will prosecute despite promising not to. Hope and pray for the best but prepare for the worst by planning and preparing for AFTER Jan. 1. If anyone shows up at my house with a warrant I’m going to smile and say “Would you gentleman like a cup of coffee while you waste your time looking for everything I keep out of state ?”

    1. I’ve considered how to handle them at my house. After getting their identities nailed down, I’m going to tell them to come back with a warrant and I’ll welcome them inside at that time. Until that happens they should depart the curtilage (sp?) of my property and have a good day. Wife agrees she’ll do the same.

  5. The remarks of the troopers are reasonable I think. They have more important things to do. Don’t say stupids things on stupid websites or to stupid people and ISP will leave you alone. I do not think troopers will choose their dental plans over violating someone’s constitutional rights. Especially when they know the subject has guns and knows how to use them. Just keep your mouth shut and drive responsibly, you will be fine.

    Pritzker is hoping for an incident to justify his lunacy. Don’t give it to him.

  6. One of my favorite quotes is so fitting for this current situation, Hunt for Red October, Fred Thompson as Admiral Josh Painter “This business will get out of control, it will get out of control, and we’ll be lucky to live through it!”

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