The chief of the Conroe (TX) Police Department was asked to leave the Texas Ear Nose and Throat Specialists office Tuesday afternoon because he was carrying his firearm, reports the Montgomery County Courier.
Chief Philip Dupuis told The Courier he was wearing his badge on his belt in plain view next to his handgun, as well as his Conroe PD identification on a lanyard around his neck when he entered the doctor's office in the 3900 block of Pinecroft Drive around 4 p.m. and started to check in. A receptionist took his driver's license and insurance card before questioning him about the gun on his hip.
Dupuis said she asked him to take his gun out to his car. The 35-year law enforcement veteran, who never has had an accidental discharge, refused to disarm himself, reiterating that he is a police officer.
That's when he was asked to leave, Dupuis said.
"It's just bad," Dupuis said. "My badge is clearly displayed. I have my lanyard on with 'police' on my ID card hanging around my neck. I had handcuffs. The lobby was full of people, and they asked me to leave because of who I am."
Under Texas law, as a licensed police officer, Dupuis can legally open carry anywhere in the state. However, Dupuis acknowledged that despite Texas carry laws, a private business or property owner can create "weapons-free" zones..
"These people have the right to do what they did and refuse my service," he said. "Legally, they can ask me to leave because I'm not there on official business."