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Thread: Chesterfield Cops and DA Say Carrying Loaded Gun in Chesterfield County Parks ILLEGAL

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    Regular Member richarcm's Avatar
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    Chesterfield Cops and DA Say Carrying Loaded Gun in Chesterfield County Parks ILLEGAL

    So my brother in law called me Wednesday night to ask me if carrying a gun in a Chesterfield County Park was legal. I told him of course it is. County Parks are preempted by state law.

    He said that he was in his work truck taking care of some paperwork when a cop walked up to him and noticed that on his seat he had a loaded firearm. Officer Wilkinson told him that it was illegal as did Corporal Monahan. Corporal Monahan asked that if his gun was loaded that he leave the park. My brother in law now being confused as to what the law really was and not wanting to get in trouble complied with Corporal Monahan's request.

    Yesterday he called and spoke to one of the Chesterfield County District Attorneys, Colleen (he didn't get her last name), and she agreed that carrying a loaded firearm in a Chesterfield County Park was illegal and referred him to:

    Sec. 14-11. - Same—Hunting or carrying a loaded firearm near public schools or parks.
    (b) No person shall transport, possess or carry a loaded firearm within 100 yards of any property line of any county public school or county park, except as otherwise permitted by state law.


    What befuddles me even more is that my brother in law said that she AND several officers made mention that the park was PRIVATE property. I told him that that is ridiculous. He said the thought it was as well but that that was what they were telling him.

    Anyways I've been feeding this information to PVC. With the Roanoke picnic this weekend and because he lives in Midlothian he is pretty interested in following up with Chesterfield County on this incident. Apparently there is some pretty major misunderstanding of the law and of the ownership of the Chesterfield County Parks.

    PVC pointed to part of the subsection that refers to:

    § 29.1-527. Counties, cities or towns may prohibit hunting near public schools and county, city, town or regional parks.

    The governing body of any county, city or town may prohibit by ordinance, shooting or hunting with a firearm, or prohibit hunters from traversing an area while in possession of a loaded firearm, within 100 yards of any property line of a public school or a county, city, town or regional park. The governing body may, in such ordinance, provide that any violation thereof shall be a Class 4 misdemeanor. Nothing in this section shall give any county, city or town the authority to enforce such an ordinance on lands within a national or state park or forest, or wildlife management area.


    It seems that the various codes/laws need to be clarified. Not even the people who are supposed to be best versed on the laws can quite understand them.

    My brother in law is going to be writing a detaile report of what occurred tomorrow and sending it to Philip. He did not get any recordings of the encounter with Officer Wilkinson, Corporal Monahan or District Attorney Colleen. I asked him that if he has any further coorespondance that he make sure all communications in person or over the phone are documented.

  2. #2
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    29.1-527 is quite clear that the grant of authority to pose a prohibition ONLY applies to those who would be engaged in hunting. Even if the guys in Chesterfield thought he was in violation of a properly constructed code, the fact that he had a firearm is only incidental to the fact that he was hunting illegally. As we know your brother was not hunting.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    In other words - Chesterfield Is Not Allowed


    § 15.2-915. Control of firearms; applicability to authorities and local governmental agencies.


    A. No locality shall adopt or enforce any ordinance, resolution or motion, as permitted by § 15.2-1425, and no agent of such locality shall take any administrative action, governing the purchase, possession, transfer, ownership, carrying, storage or transporting of firearms, ammunition, or components or combination thereof other than those expressly authorized by statute. For purposes of this section, a statute that does not refer to firearms, ammunition, or components or combination thereof, shall not be construed to provide express authorization.


    Nothing in this section shall prohibit a locality from adopting workplace rules relating to terms and conditions of employment of the workforce. However, no locality shall adopt any workplace rule, other than for the purposes of a community services board or behavioral health authority as defined in § 37.2-100, that prevents an employee of that locality from storing at that locality's workplace a lawfully possessed firearm and ammunition in a locked private motor vehicle. Nothing in this section shall prohibit a law-enforcement officer, as defined in § 9.1-101, from acting within the scope of his duties.


    The provisions of this section applicable to a locality shall also apply to any authority or to a local governmental entity, including a department or agency, but not including any local or regional jail, juvenile detention facility, or state-governed entity, department, or agency.


    B. Any local ordinance, resolution or motion adopted prior to the effective date of this act governing the purchase, possession, transfer, ownership, carrying or transporting of firearms, ammunition, or components or combination thereof, other than those expressly authorized by statute, is invalid.


    C. In addition to any other relief provided, the court may award reasonable attorney fees, expenses, and court costs to any person, group, or entity that prevails in an action challenging (i) an ordinance, resolution, or motion as being in conflict with this section or (ii) an administrative action taken in bad faith as being in conflict with this section.

    D. For purposes of this section, "workplace" means "workplace of the locality."


    (1987, c. 629, § 15.1-29.15; 1988, c. 392; 1997, cc. 550, 587; 2002, c. 484; 2003, c. 943; 2004, cc. 837, 923; 2009, cc. 735, 772; 2012, c. 757.)
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 07-13-2012 at 08:48 AM. Reason: added highlight
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    I expect hope that PVC's contact will bring a quick resolution.

    The problem that I see is a continuation of such bumps in the road in Chesterfield County wherein some officers just simply do not know the law - they have not been properly trained. That is IMHO a failure of leadership to prioritize this aspect clearly to all officers.

    The buck stops at the top - Col. Thierry G. Dupuis, chief of police for the Chesterfield County Police Department
    http://www.chesterfield.gov/police.aspx?id=2218

    And with William W. Davenport, Chesterfield's Commonwealth's Attorney who represents Chesterfield County residents, the Chesterfield County Police Department.
    http://www.chesterfield.gov/content.aspx?id=3071

    Gentlemen, if you please!
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 07-13-2012 at 09:13 AM. Reason: added
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  5. #5
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    sending from my phone so will be shorter than it deserves
    what we seem to have is pd and ca glomming on to a code section that seems to fit what they want to have happen - which in this case was to chase a lac out of the park

    the code section cited relates to hunting it was an heroic try but just not enough to win the kewpie doll

    this shows the value of ocdo and the members here in virginia - we pretty
    uch know the law and how the powers to be like to try to abuse it

    a side ote - how come everybody else gets rousted by the cops and not me?

    stay safe
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Philip is aware of it. Let;s see what VCDL does before stirring up the mud.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Really Chesterfield?

    Subscribing to watch this one. I so love a good ending.

    TFred

  8. #8
    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Philip is aware of it. Let;s see what VCDL does before stirring up the mud.


    I have 8/4 available, a late afternoon/early evening event would work best for me.
    Isn't there a OC neutral/friendly Zoo in the area? I could plan a whole day in the area for the family.
    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Philip is aware of it. Let;s see what VCDL does before stirring up the mud.
    It sure does not smell like mud , but I agree PVC is great purveyor of fact and truth. He can be very persuasive too.

    Too soon to sound Boots_and_Saddles or hear Boots And Saddles
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 07-13-2012 at 10:27 AM. Reason: added
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    I have 8/4 available, a late afternoon/early evening event would work best for me.
    Isn't there a OC neutral/friendly Zoo in the area? I could plan a whole day in the area for the family.
    Yep, a right nice little zoo just down the road.
    8/4 looks like a good mud stirring day

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    8/4

    Party in the park on 8/4 would be nice and close to home for me

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Docgmt View Post
    Party in the park on 8/4 would be nice and close to home for me
    If we're going to do this, let's keep the details quiet. PM me....Marco can use Comleaders.

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    Regular Member papa bear's Avatar
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    where is this park i have been trying to find it in google and not having much luck?
    Luke 22:36 ; 36Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

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    i you call a CHP a CCW then you are really stupid. period.

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    Regular Member stickslinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by papa bear View Post
    where is this park i have been trying to find it in google and not having much luck?
    Since it wasn't mentioned, can only assume it was one of the parks listed here:

    http://www.chesterfield.gov/Parks.aspx?id=6442484364
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NRA Certified Range Safety Officer

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by papa bear View Post
    where is this park i have been trying to find it in google and not having much luck?
    Huguenot Park
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Can you say "Oh yes we can type picnic", boys and girls?

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    Sec. 14-11. - Same—Hunting or carrying a loaded firearm near public schools or parks.
    (b) No person shall transport, possess or carry a loaded firearm within 100 yards of any property line of any county public school or county park, except as otherwise permitted by state law


    doesn't this(see bolded above) mean CC and OC are legal as they are permitted by state law? CC through permits and OC by no prohibition on it.
    Last edited by 67GT390FB; 07-13-2012 at 04:14 PM.

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    Regular Member riverrat10k's Avatar
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    That would be my take on the statute. Defensive carry is "otherwise permitted by state law."

    Appears to be another "piling on" or political statute. Something extra to charge someone with when doing misdeeds, or passed so a politician could say "see, I am protecting the children."

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    Regular Member scouser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    ...
    Isn't there a OC neutral/friendly Zoo in the area? I could plan a whole day in the area for the family.
    Here's a link for the zoo home page. If you look under the "Zoo Information" tab you'll find a map and directions. I was going to take my son there last Wednesday, but the OC dinner the night before wore him out so we'll go there another week instead

  20. #20
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67GT390FB View Post
    Sec. 14-11. - Same—Hunting or carrying a loaded firearm near public schools or parks.
    (b) No person shall transport, possess or carry a loaded firearm within 100 yards of any property line of any county public school or county park, except as otherwise permitted by state law


    doesn't this(see bolded above) mean CC and OC are legal as they are permitted by state law? CC through permits and OC by no prohibition on it.

    This is the very self-same wording that has brought about tomorrow's picnic in the park in Roanoke County.

    We shall see if Chesterfield County is willing to admit the wording it confusing and they decide to clean it up.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
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  21. #21
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Might be good to keep this near the top until we see which way the wind is blowing....so here is a look at the Zoo )Rhino's anyway} Marco:

    Last edited by peter nap; 07-13-2012 at 10:20 PM.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67GT390FB View Post
    Sec. 14-11. - Same—Hunting or carrying a loaded firearm near public schools or parks.
    (b) No person shall transport, possess or carry a loaded firearm within 100 yards of any property line of any county public school or county park, except as otherwise permitted by state law


    doesn't this(see bolded above) mean CC and OC are legal as they are permitted by state law? CC through permits and OC by no prohibition on it.
    If I recall correctly, titles are not a part of the statute. And since this statute does not specifically address hunting, it is in clear violation of 15.2-915, as there is no correlating section anywhere in the Code of Virgina that expressly authorizes this ordinance.

    TFred

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    VCDL on it

    As most know from Friday's alert, I am working the Chesterfield park issue. Actually there are two issues - the other is that the agreement for using the park pavilions says "no guns." This is further along (I started this ball rolling quietly a couple of weeks ago by coincidence) and is already in front of the County Attorney. Parks were very responsive on this.

    My suggestion is let me work on the ordinance for now. I might call for a turnout when it comes before the Board of Supervisors. I would like to have a picnic in a Chesterfield park as soon as we have this resolved to celebrate it. In the extremely unlikely event that Chesterfield digs in its heals, we'll have a protest picnic instead.

    We'll know soon if this is going to be a smooth or bumpy ride.
    Last edited by VCDL President; 07-13-2012 at 10:33 PM.

  24. #24
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VCDL President View Post
    As most know from Friday's alert, I am working the Chesterfield park issue. Actually there are two issues - the other is that the agreement for using the park pavilions says "no guns." This is further along (I started this ball rolling quietly a couple of weeks ago by coincidence) and is already in front of the County Attorney. Parks were very responsive on this.

    My suggestion is let me work on the ordinance for now. I might call for a turnout when it comes before the Board of Supervisors. I would like to have a picnic in a Chesterfield park as soon as we have this resolved to celebrate it. In the extremely unlikely event that Chesterfield digs in its heals, we'll have a protest picnic instead.

    We'll know soon if this is going to be a smooth or bumpy ride.
    Thanks Philip!

    Please keep us informed of the progress.

    It's still a good idea to keep 8/4 penciled in...
    Last edited by peter nap; 07-13-2012 at 10:54 PM.

  25. #25
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    Police OC interactions in Chesterfield Parks

    I've had interactions with police in Chesterfield parks on occasion over the years. All have been positive, although I had to explain single action 1911s to one who nervously warned my trigger was back. Guess it depends on the cop and his knowledge of the law.

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