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Thread: OC in car without a permit

  1. #1
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    This must have already been discussed but my searches in the VA Forum have been unable to locate the discussions.

    Without a concealed carry permit, is having a gun in an OWB holster, not covered with a clothing, considered concealed when driving a car or as passenger?

    Does deceptive mean there must be an intent to deceive? If a officer cannot see the weapon during a traffic is it "hidden from common observation." This guessing game is a PITA especially with the stakes so high.

    § 18.2-308. Personal protection; carrying concealed weapons; when lawful to carry.

    A. If any person carries about his person, hidden from common observation, (i) any pistol, revolver, ...

    For the purpose of this section, a weapon shall be deemed to be hidden from common observation when it is observable but is of such deceptive appearance as to disguise the weapon's true nature.

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    Campaign Veteran roscoe13's Avatar
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    That's going to depend to a large extent on the car. If you're in deep bucket seats with a large center console, it would probably be considered concealed. If you're in a pickup with a bench seat, you should be fine. Exactly where the line would be probably depends on the LEO/DA/judge you end up with...
    "The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that's good." - George Washington

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Supposedly, the rule is completely visible. I would think in a holster that shows it's indeed a gun and where it could be seen by a cop looking in the window, would qualify. I remember when I lived in VA, Halifax County, a guy was written up for a pistol that the cop could see only part of. The judge tossed it, but advised him to make sure it was fully visible to a cop on a routine stop. If you have one and get stopped, put it on the dash and there would be no questions. I always had a CCW so was never an issue. Here in CO, loaded and concealed is legal, which is the most logical answer to the question.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    I guess I should consider a shoulder rig for my son so that it is in plain view.

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    Just in case you're interested, I am currently open carrying without a CHP and I have a dash carry solution that I've set up. I have a piece of adhesive sitcky leather like stuff (moleskin maybe? IDK, I got it as an ad from some company. It's supposed to make cellphones and stuff stay put on your dash) and on top of that stapled a couple of velcro straps to the dash.

    Here's what it looks like:


    Here's how it holds the gun:


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    That's a nice set up you have there asforme. There's no way that could be considered "hidden from observation."

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    The rule in Virginia is, "hidden from common observation". While that can left up to interpretaton, I do know of one case where a man was arrested and charged with carrying a concealed handgun without a permit because the arresting officer clearly saw his holster. In court, the judge questioned the officer as to whether or not he saw a firearm. Nailed to the wall, the officer had to admit that he had not actually seen a gun but assumed there must have been one on the man since there was a visible holster (in fact, there was a gun present in the holster).

    The case was dismissed and the officer was admonished by the judge for his actions.

    As for carrying open in the car, one LEO wrote that if he comes up to a window and can clearly see and identify a handgun, then it is not concealed. Clearly, if he is approaching the car, he will not see it anyway if it is being carried on the person in a usual fashion until he is in a position where he can see the person's center section.

    Soon after Virginia went "shall issue" in July '95, I once asked a state police officer at a gun show what his take was on citizens carrying concealed. He told me he would rather they carry on the dash or seat and out in the open.

    Bottom line. If it is visible, you are Ok. Just make sure you don't put it on the passenger seat, then through a newpaper, magazine, or something else over it while driving. It will have just gone from open to concealed if you do.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    If the gun goes on the dash in the case of an LEO stop that is one thing, but driving around with it on the dash I think is unwise as it would be a rather dangerous projectile in even a low speed collision.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Regular Member VAopencarry's Avatar
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    If a officer cannot see the weapon during a traffic is it "hidden from common observation."
    Noodle this through." A officer CANNOT SEE the weapon." Well if he can't see it, it's
    safe to to believe it is HIDDEN FROM COMMON OBSERVATION!

    From Merriam-Webster;
    Hidden - 1 :being out of sight or not readily apparent : concealed.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    VAopencarry wrote:
    If a officer cannot see the weapon during a traffic is it "hidden from common observation."
    Noodle this through." A officer CANNOT SEE the weapon." Well if he can't see it, it's
    safe to to believe it is HIDDEN FROM COMMON OBSERVATION!

    From Merriam-Webster;
    Hidden - 1 :being out of sight or not readily apparent : concealed.
    Maybe if this gets posted often enough folks will try looking there for themselves.

    http://www.virginia1774.org/Page1.html#ConcealedWeapon

    www.virginia1774.org can be your bestest friend for finding out how the courts have interpreted the laws. As much as it pains our heads, it is not what the law "says" or what "common sense" suggests what the law "says" ought to be, it is what the courts say that counts. Especially if it happens to be the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court. Like the old Paine-Weber commercials - when they speak, everybody listens.

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    I do not have a CHP, but I carry in my truck the same way I do everywhere else, on my right hip. My philosophy is 1. Don't get pulled over 2. DO NOT inform the officer you have a gun 3. Be polite. I see it like this; if the officer can see the gun on my right side through the driver's side window, then it clearly isn't concealed from common observation. But, if the officer just doesn't "notice" your gun doesn't mean it can't be observed. If you inform the officer you have a gun, and he can't see it, he will likely go on the defensive, and may thentry to have you charged with concealing. If you are polite, you should get your ticket and be on your way without the officer ever needing to know you armed. . . My Springfield M1 from CMP just showed up at the door while I was in the middle of writing this!:celebrate:shock:One word, SWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEET!

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    Unfortunately I could not find anything applicable to "intent to deceive" while holstered. It looks like the court just ignores that part and focuses on ability to view the weapon.It does appear thatin Main v. Commonwealth, having the weapon in a back pocket with only thebutt showing was not the problem. It was a duffle bag covering the butt of the gun.Could this be the 'intent to deceive'?

    "...the only part extending outside of his pocket, was covered by the duffle bag, the weapon was hidden from common observation."

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    VApatriot wrote:
    I do not have a CHP, but I carry in my truck the same way I do everywhere else, on my right hip. My philosophy is 1. Don't get pulled over 2. DO NOT inform the officer you have a gun 3. Be polite. I see it like this; if the officer can see the gun on my right side through the driver's side window, then it clearly isn't concealed from common observation. But, if the officer just doesn't "notice" your gun doesn't mean it can't be observed. If you inform the officer you have a gun, and he can't see it, he will likely go on the defensive, and may thentry to have you charged with concealing. If you are polite, you should get your ticket and be on your way without the officer ever needing to know you armed. . . My Springfield M1 from CMP just showed up at the door while I was in the middle of writing this!:shock:One word, SWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEET!
    OK.. in part I agree with youhowever....

    If the back up officer does spot it and then tells the cop at your window.... he just might freak out since you never told him.

    All the cop at your window is going to hear is "Gun!!!" from the other officer. It would actually be better to hear it from you and said more casually.

    One thing we have to remember is this....

    You have the right to be armed and it is visible in the vehicle. No arguments there...

    But there have been times where people armed with gun during a traffic stopthat have shot and and even kills officers for whatever reason. This is something cops think about. They do not like being surprised about hearing you have a gun.

    Now all officers should assume your armed but when a gun is actually observed... this takes it to another threat level.

    I can assume alldrivers are armed but I am not going to walk up with my gun drawn, right? I am not going to require them to make slow movements either.

    But if they are armed... I would like to know so I can be a little extracautious ata possible threat.

    Keeping in mind..... the officer has no idea you are a law abiding person. He deals mostly with bad people who also have guns.


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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    I'm getting confused here. If you are pulled over in a normal traffic stop and the officer sees the gun then it is obviously not concealed. If he doesn't see the gun then he doesn't know you have it and still no problem. What am I missing. Are the police requiring everyone to get out of their cars and then seeing the firearm?
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    In the one case the officer did not see the pellet gun until the driver was out of the car because the pellet gun was down along the side of the seat. In the other case, the officer could see the gun in the guys pocket after he exited the car. When the driver was in the car a duffel bag was covering the gun.

    It looks like having an OWB holstered gun while driving could be considered concealed because it is on the side the officer cannot see and the seatbeltcovers the gun.

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    VAopencarry wrote:
    If a officer cannot see the weapon during a traffic is it "hidden from common observation."
    Noodle this through." A officer CANNOT SEE the weapon." Well if he can't see it, it's
    safe to to believe it is HIDDEN FROM COMMON OBSERVATION!

    From Merriam-Webster;
    Hidden - 1 :being out of sight or not readily apparent : concealed.
    What about the part of § 18.2-308that defines "hidden from common observation" as:

    For the purpose of this section, a weapon shall be deemed to be hidden from common observation when it is observable but is of such deceptive appearance as to disguise the weapon's true nature.

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    deepdiver wrote:
    I'm getting confused here. If you are pulled over in a normal traffic stop and the officer sees the gun then it is obviously not concealed. If he doesn't see the gun then he doesn't know you have it and still no problem. What am I missing. Are the police requiring everyone to get out of their cars and then seeing the firearm?
    That is exactly the point I was trying to make. I think thatit is fine (and safer) to keep your firearm in your holster where you regularly openly carry it.

    Alsothink of this example:Someone is OCing a full-framed pistol in an OWB holster.They walk into a ABC restaurant and sit down with their sidearm all the way to the inside of a booth table.Do you thinka charge of carrying aconcealedweapon in an establishment that serves alcohol would thenstand just because the firearm can't be seen from all (or even most) angles?

    Justkeep in mindthat I am not a lawyer, a cop or a judge.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    VApatriot wrote:
    deepdiver wrote:
    I'm getting confused here. If you are pulled over in a normal traffic stop and the officer sees the gun then it is obviously not concealed. If he doesn't see the gun then he doesn't know you have it and still no problem. What am I missing. Are the police requiring everyone to get out of their cars and then seeing the firearm?
    That is exactly the point I was trying to make. I think thatit is fine (and safer) to keep your firearm in your holster where you regularly openly carry it.

    Alsothink of this example:Someone is OCing a full-framed pistol in an OWB holster.They walk into a ABC restaurant and sit down with their sidearm all the way to the inside of a booth table.Do you thinka charge of carrying aconcealedweapon in an establishment that serves alcohol would thenstand just because the firearm can't be seen from all (or even most) angles?

    Justkeep in mindthat I am not a lawyer, a cop or a judge.
    Absolutely the kind of thing I was considering. Sitting at a table or desk, standing weak side to someone, etc all temporarily conceal the firearm from the perspective of others. There is no way to carry a pistol in a manner where it would always be visible to everyone. I guess this is a case law matter more than anything else.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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