Heated emotions between Open Carry Tarrant County and Marine vet - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Heated emotions between Open Carry Tarrant County and Marine veteran

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FORT WORTH, Texas - A confrontation caught on camera at an Open Carry Tarrant County event on Memorial Day has prompted harassing phone calls and even death threats for a marine veteran.

"I was immediately grilled by armed strangers on a public street," said James Henry.

Henry, a Marine veteran, now owns a production company. After hearing about the group's Fort Worth demonstration, he grabbed his camera and went there to film it. That's when Henry says a few demonstrators there started following and questioning him. A few started recording the exchange with their cell phones.

Despite giving his name and company he worked for, Henry claims it didn't satisfy them.

"I got aggravated and I did get a bit snarky," said Henry.

Kory Watkins, spokesman for Open Carry Tarrant County, declined an interview but did say Henry was swearing. With women and children taking part in the event, Watkins says the group felt threatened by Henry and started following him for their safety.

"We're out here demonstrating our rights and you're out here calling us all sorts of nasty names," said a demonstrator in the cell phone video.

The video shows members of the gun rights group follow Henry to his car, and film his license plate number and his company's information displayed on his window. The video was uploaded to YouTube and went viral, prompting harassing phone calls and even death threats.

"One said you're going to wish you had a gun boy when I fill you with holes," said Henry.

Henry, a gun owner, was forced to change his phone number and is now arming himself at all times for protection. According to the marine veteran, the incident has turned him into a political puppet.

"I'm being used on this one side as a proponent for gun control which I don't agree with and also being used as a proponent that I'm some crazy left wing guy, which I'm not," he said.

In Henry's opinion, the group's behavior is off target.

"That is not being ambassadors for responsible gun owners to support gun rights," he said.

According to Watkins, his group had nothing to do with the harassment or death threats. While Henry can't prove they were involved, he does say a few members were the catalyst that caused the situation.

After seeing how he was being harassed, some members of the group defended Henry.

He hopes the incident can open up a dialogue about the effectiveness of public demonstrations and whether there's a better way to get their message out.
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