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Thread: CT laws for shooting outdoors?

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    CT laws for shooting outdoors?

    I've been searching, including the CGS statutes website, and can't seem to find the laws in CT for shooting outdoors. can someone point me in the right direction please for an official site that lists that information?

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    Regular Member Tim77's Avatar
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    Based on my research, CT has no such laws. You will need to consult your town/city ordinances. (The state statute about discharge of a firearm within a specific distance to a residence applies to hunters.) My town, Manchester has an ordinance prohibiting discharge of a firearm however the town of Ellington does not.

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    There are no state statues directly prohibiting shooting "in your backyard" .. if you do so in a manner that would endanger others then other laws kick in.

    Some local towns, like Tim said, pass there own ordinances.

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    Regular Member brk913's Avatar
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    As stated above there is no CT statute that prohibits shooting on your private property. Cities and Towns do have their own ordinances. The only statute you need to make sure you are not violating if your town allows the discharge of firearms is:

    Sec. 53a-63. Reckless endangerment in the first degree: Class A misdemeanor. (a) A person is guilty of reckless endangerment in the first degree when, with extreme indifference to human life, he recklessly engages in conduct which creates a risk of serious physical injury to another person.

    (b) Reckless endangerment in the first degree is a class A misdemeanor.

    Make sure you have a good backstop (not pointed at your neighbors house) and make sure no bullets will leave your property and you will be good to go...off the top of my head Newington has a no discharge ordinance while Colchester does not.

    I do seem to remember someone else here stating they got a noise ticket because a neighbor complained, maybe they will see this and post what happened to them.

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    ok, thanks guys, I guess that explains why I couldnt find anything. I live in Middletown, but my property is not large enough to shoot on. I've been trying to find a place nearby I could go shooting, and have a few friends who have properties large enough, but wanted to make sure I comply with the laws. also was curious about shooting on non-residential properties. I'm aware that you cannot carry handguns in state forrests and state parks, but I know of plenty of areas that are desolate state land that would be ideal shooting spots that are not designated as state forrests or state parts. I'll have to inquire town by town

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    Regular Member Rich B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motoxmann View Post
    ok, thanks guys, I guess that explains why I couldnt find anything. I live in Middletown, but my property is not large enough to shoot on. I've been trying to find a place nearby I could go shooting, and have a few friends who have properties large enough, but wanted to make sure I comply with the laws. also was curious about shooting on non-residential properties. I'm aware that you cannot carry handguns in state forrests and state parks, but I know of plenty of areas that are desolate state land that would be ideal shooting spots that are not designated as state forrests or state parts. I'll have to inquire town by town
    This information is almost always publicly available.


    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.ecode360.com/MI1935#MI1935
    Firing of weapons prohibited in certain areas.
    No person shall fire any air pistol, air gun and/or firearms upon and/or in any highway, public park or playground in the City of Middletown

    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.ecode360.com/MI1935#MI1935
    [Amended 1-6-2003 by Ord. No. 01-03; 2-1-2010 by Ord. No. 08-10]
    A.
    Hunting and/or carrying of any firearms is prohibited in any City park or recreational area. "Firearm" is defined in accord with Connecticut State Statute 53a-3 and any mechanism which is capable of discharging a projectile of any type.
    B.
    Exceptions for the carrying of a firearm will be provided for current police officers and retired police officers.
    C.
    Any person violating any provisions of this section shall be prosecuted and fined in an amount as provided in 214-36.
    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.ecode360.com/MI1935#MI1935
    No person shall possess or discharge any firearms, fireworks or other weapons on a multi-use trail
    Connecticut Carry is dedicated to advancing and protecting the fundamental civil rights of the men and women of Connecticut to keep and bear arms for self defense of themselves and the state as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Constitution of Connecticut.

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    awesome! thank you rich!
    I went through and read each statute in its entirety to determine their legal definitions of recreational areas and multi-use trails and such.

    now for the dumb question: I've discovered a few areas that could be decent locations for shooting, but they are below and around high voltage power lines. there are no signs of any kind saying private property or no trespassing or anything of the sort. neighboring houses are over 1/4 mile away in each direction to the side, and these areas are very hilly and provide more than sufficient backdrops, with no aim of fire directed towards any of the power line poles. I'm assuming this property would be owned by the electric company? or would it be town property? or possibly private property owned by one of the neighbors? If it is not owned by a neighbor, do you think an officer could use some form of trespassing charge against me if I were to shoot at one of these locations?

    the area seems like an area where noone nearby would care, or wouldnt even know because they probably wouldnt even hear it it be able to tell where the sound was coming from. but just in case someone were to call the police over suspiscious activity or something, I dont want something bad to come of it

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    Regular Member Rich B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motoxmann View Post
    I dont want something bad to come of it
    Then I strongly recommend just renting a lane at a shooting range.
    Connecticut Carry is dedicated to advancing and protecting the fundamental civil rights of the men and women of Connecticut to keep and bear arms for self defense of themselves and the state as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Constitution of Connecticut.

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich B View Post
    Then I strongly recommend just renting a lane at a shooting range.
    haha, I was wondering how quickly someone would say that. and while I definitely will be on occasion, I just want to keep costs down, and be able to shoot my own ammo including JHP's, and be able to practice quickdraw-fire and quickdraw-fire-accuracy. of course I'll be practicing a lot at home with the dummy bullets, I think called spring caps, just so nothing stupid goes wrong until I have it comfortably down pat. I'll be carrying for work, and want to make sure I'm prepared, just in case

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    Regular Member Rich B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motoxmann View Post
    haha, I was wondering how quickly someone would say that. and while I definitely will be on occasion, I just want to keep costs down, and be able to shoot my own ammo including JHP's, and be able to practice quickdraw-fire and quickdraw-fire-accuracy. of course I'll be practicing a lot at home with the dummy bullets, I think called spring caps, just so nothing stupid goes wrong until I have it comfortably down pat. I'll be carrying for work, and want to make sure I'm prepared, just in case
    If you can't shoot on your own property or at least someone else's who is friendly to you, you are taking unnecessary risks IMO.

    Not specifically illegal, but you have to ask yourself:

    - Is it ok to just walk onto someone else's land and start shooting?
    - Would you be ok with someone else doing it on your land?
    - How might you respond if you heard gun shots on your property, went to check it out (not recommended) and found yourself facing someone who was shooting at you (by accident of course)?
    Connecticut Carry is dedicated to advancing and protecting the fundamental civil rights of the men and women of Connecticut to keep and bear arms for self defense of themselves and the state as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Constitution of Connecticut.

    Join us and discuss the issues: http://ctcarry.com/Forum

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    Totally understandable. I'm more referring to public or state/town property that isnt designated as prohibited in the statutes, or what may be owned by the electric company with no signs posted to limit access. I do appreciate the advice though, thank you

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    Quote Originally Posted by motoxmann View Post
    Totally understandable. I'm more referring to public or state/town property that isnt designated as prohibited in the statutes, or what may be owned by the electric company with no signs posted to limit access. I do appreciate the advice though, thank you
    You must like prison food if you want to entertain shooting on someone else's property w/o permission.

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    Tresspassing would only apply if there were posted signs and you ignored them or if you were told to leave a private property and refused. Although after reading thease forums for some time I should also say that just because it wont hold up in court doesnt mean you could not be arrested for it. I was arrested for simple tresspass when i was a minor and because i left when i was told to leave the charges didnt hold up in court. Court however is never cheap.

  14. #14
    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    thank you for your input as well

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    Quote Originally Posted by smokeyburnout View Post
    Tresspassing would only apply if there were posted signs and you ignored them or if you were told to leave a private property and refused. Although after reading thease forums for some time I should also say that just because it wont hold up in court doesnt mean you could not be arrested for it. I was arrested for simple tresspass when i was a minor and because i left when i was told to leave the charges didnt hold up in court. Court however is never cheap.
    shooting on an electric company property will run afoul of anti-terrorism laws ... trespassing will look like a good citizen certificate compared to terrorism charges

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