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Thread: IWB with exposed grip - Concealed or Open?

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    Regular Member Bobarino's Avatar
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    I searched the RCW's and WAC's and no where in there is a definition of "concealed" nor "open" as far as carrying a gun is concerned. Does anyone have any insight on whether or not carrying IWB with the grip exposed for all to see would be considered concealed? it seems to me that according to the laws, it would be open carry since there is no halfway in between open and concealed and thus a permit wouldn't be required. your thoughts?

    Bobby

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    Regular Member Shy_Panda's Avatar
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    so long as it is visable to any observer and therefore not covered I don't see why this would be considered concealed at all.

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    Bobarino wrote:
    I searched the RCW's and WAC's and no where in there is a definition of "concealed" nor "open" as far as carrying a gun is concerned. Does anyone have any insight on whether or not carrying IWB with the grip exposed for all to see would be considered concealed? it seems to me that according to the laws, it would be open carry since there is no halfway in between open and concealed and thus a permit wouldn't be required. your thoughts?

    Bobby
    Well look at it this way. Even if the holster is on the outside the main portion of the gun is hidden from actual sight. But remember the cops don't know the law anyway and willdo what ever he feels like without either a court ruling or an AG definition. So who knows this is one of those gray areas. Good question though.

    I was once stopped while carrying conceal and told to cover up because the bottom inch of the holster was showing. I figure someone else saw it and pointed it out to the cop, cause most aren't that observant.

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    Another reason I got a CPL, visible, concealed or just kinda hanging out, I'm covered and really don't give a rip. I've got two complaints, a training directive and lawyer that says I can pretty much wear my gun how I feel. Screw it. If you have a CPL don't worry.

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    Regular Member Bobarino's Avatar
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    thanks. i feel the same way as you all. i have my CPL and carry IWB every day. there's been a few occasions when i over dressed and wish i could shed layers but didn't know if i could or not.

    i can see a police encounter going a little like a "who's on first" routine. did i cover my concealed gun, or did i conceal my open carry? either way, with the permit, i'm legal. since there is no definition for either, i can pretty much call it whatever i want i guess.

    this might be my way of easing myself into OC. i've read and virtually memorized all the laws regarding OC and taken notes from the many posts here so i'm prepared to deal with the Officer Olsen's of the world. i'm sure i'll be sweatin' bullets, so to speak, the first time or two though.

    Bobby

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    The main difference between my IWB and OC holsters are the OC one has a retention Level 2 (SHERPA). You might want to consider this factor when you OC.

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    civil_lib wrote:
    The main difference between my IWB and OC holsters are the OC one has a retention Level 2 (SHERPA). You might want to consider this factor when you OC.
    Has anyone ever heard of an OCer having a gun taken from them by anyone other than a cop? IMO, retention is worrying about a none issue for OC. Cops need it because they have to chase down and play games with the bad guys, OCers don't.

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    Regular Member John Hardin's Avatar
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    I asked this of a LEO friend several years back and he said (roughly) "if any part of the pistol is obscured it is considered concealed". As an extreme illustration he said if your arm resting at your side partially covers it up, it is "concealed".

    I don't know whether you'd actually get hassled for that in practice, but that is the standard they can use if they wish.

    IWB with nothing but the grip visible could legally be considered "concealed", regardless of what common sense says. Barring a legislative definition of "concealed," err on the side of caution.

    Like SV said, get your CPL and don't worry about it.

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    Bear 45/70 wrote:
    civil_lib wrote:
    The main difference between my IWB and OC holsters are the OC one has a retention Level 2 (SHERPA). You might want to consider this factor when you OC.
    Has anyone ever heard of an OCer having a gun taken from them by anyone other than a cop? IMO, retention is worrying about a none issue for OC. Cops need it because they have to chase down and play games with the bad guys, OCers don't.
    I have only heard of this once. There was a story posted somewhere on the forums here where a security guard of a store came up behind an OC'r and pulled the gun from his holster.

    If you think about it Bear is very correct. If you think about the criminal element they are going to go somewhere else to commit thier crime. If they are not going to bother trying to rob/assault you they certainly are not going to try and steal your holstered firearm, especially if they know that you are hyper-aware of your surroundings. When I do OC it is with a thumbbreak holster and I don't really worry to much about a gun grab.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Gents. Simply put...concealed means concealed and not clearly visible or recognizable as a firearm.Not only is any part of the gun not allowed to show, even "printing" is a failure to conceal and an offense. That's just one of many reasons I feel thatconcealment is futile. It perpetuates and justifiesunfounded and irrational fear. Fear is ignorance, knowledge is true power and conquers both.

    There are already MANY state AG opinions (already discussed here on OCDO) that OC in a holster is NOT concealment at all, however, I was no table to find one from Wash State.A gun openly carried in a holster is clearly recognizable as a gun and is NOTconcealed asthere is no "intent". Granted that just as you can "accidentally reveal that which should be concealed, it is possible to accidentally conceal that which should be revealed and that is just as much of a crime, so many OC'ers like me only have Conceal Permits "just in case".

    Holsters MUST hold the gun secure and cover the trigger and to do that, of course, some part of it has to be covered bythe holster. But anyone can plainlyplainly see it's a gun!

    I also noticed thereis no clear definition of the term "concealed" in Washigton State law: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9.41.010

    A few cites from other states that have ruled on holstered open carry NOT being concealed for your reading pleasure, the first being a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED compilation of Washington State LEO Training Bulletins:

    http://www.impsec.org/~jhardin/open_...washington.pdf

    http://www.tba.org/tba_files/AG/2005/op154.pdf

    http://www.michigan-sportsman.com/fo...d.php?t=224583



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    BobCav wrote:
    ...even "printing" is a failure to conceal and an offense.
    I'd like to see the statutes that make printing an offense. Obviously, it is not in WA, but I have not heard of any other states that make printing a crime, either. Many states have requirements to coneal, but they only prohibit intentional displays, i.e. purposefully uncovering the firearm, as in OC, and brandishing, which is a separate issue entirely.

    As far as the original topic, There was a case from Ellensberg (Kittitas County) that Lonnie worked on with the defendant/appelant who was carrying IWB toward the front of his pants with the grip of his pistol exposed. He was detained but released and later filed a complaint. Soon after filing the complaint, he was charged and convicted under a preempted version of .270, but the decision was reversed on appeal (citing preemption, not how he was carrying). However, he was not charged as carrying a concealed weapon without a license.

    The last caveat is, he appeared to be in violation of .270, according to the court's opinon, so had he been charged under the state law, it would have been affirmed. The court noted that the gun was carried in his waistband with the hammer back. So it seems that "Mexican carry" with a cocked gun would violate .270.

    I couldn't find the actual case, but here is a link to the defendant's blog: http://fishorman.blogspot.com/2005/1...-decision.html.

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    BobCav wrote:
    Gents. Simply put...concealed means concealed and not clearly visible or recognizable as a firearm.Not only is any part of the gun not allowed to show, even "printing" is a failure to conceal and an offense. That's just one of many reasons I feel thatconcealment is futile. It perpetuates and justifiesunfounded and irrational fear. Fear is ignorance, knowledge is true power and conquers both.
    This is the WA forum. "Failure to conceal" is not an offense in WA. Open carry is completely legal, so the only arguement is whether you need a permit to partially conceal. Why are you saying that "not only is any part of the gun not allowed to show"? WA is an established open carry state that requires no permit to do so. In fact, a visible firearm is more likely legal than a concealed firearm, since you need a permit for the latter. Printing is not an offense. Period.

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    Sorry Sean,I misspoke and used the word offense in a different context, that of failure to comply with intent,and not in a criminal intent.Bad choice of words.

    However,"printing" does defeats the entire purpose of concealment and therefore is a failure to conceal. Criminals don't Open Carry. Since criminals DO conceal, a citizen that notices a printed concealed weapon has no way of knowing if that person is a law abiding citizen or a criminal. (They don't understand thatcriminals don't useuse holsters, as reported by the FBI)

    I know there's nothing in the Washington laws as I just spent thelast hour reading them as we're moving to the Spokane Area next month for a while. It does seem that "printing" leaves a lot open to interpretation to anyone that notices, and that is itself a problem.

    Here's another discussion I found from 3 years ago that basically states the same thing: (with some familiar names too!)

    http://packing4life.com/showthread.php?t=847

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    The purpose of an IWB holser is concealment. If you do not have a CPL, I think you are asking for trouble carrying inside the pants. If you have to shed a layer, perhaps moving the holser out of the pants but inside the belt would help.

    If you are going to carry open and have no CPL, I think you should carry OPENLY, no half measures. If you end up with a weapons related record, getting the CPL may become more complicated.

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    I think it's obvious to anyone that's been here for more than a week that I OC all the way and HATE to conceal! I used my VA CHP only in the car and to CMA just in case, and it's not valid here in Nevada or in Washington State and I'm frankly not that worried about it.

    If there's no definitive rule of law,courts may refer to other states' rulings or opinions. I'm no lawyer nor expert on WA or VA law, but I do know thatin VA, OC even in an IWB holster is considered Open Carry, as long as the grip remains visible, there is no doubt it's a gun.

    YMMV.

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    BobCav wrote:
    Sorry Sean,I misspoke and used the word offense in a different context, that of failure to comply with intent,and not in a criminal intent.Bad choice of words.

    However,"printing" does defeats the entire purpose of concealment and therefore is a failure to conceal. Criminals don't Open Carry. Since criminals DO conceal, a citizen that notices a printed concealed weapon has no way of knowing if that person is a law abiding citizen or a criminal. (They don't understand thatcriminals don't useuse holsters, as reported by the FBI)

    I know there's nothing in the Washington laws as I just spent thelast hour reading them as we're moving to the Spokane Area next month for a while. It does seem that "printing" leaves a lot open to interpretation to anyone that notices, and that is itself a problem.

    Here's another discussion I found from 3 years ago that basically states the same thing: (with some familiar names too!)

    http://packing4life.com/showthread.php?t=847
    Not all citizens worry about whether someone is a criminal when they notice printing. I was out having lunch with my fiancee's family and I noticed her and her sister wispering and laughing. I asked her what was so funny and she told me that the guy at the table behind us was doing a pretty poor job of concealing his gun, since you could practically tell what model it was from the printing.

    So they weren't worried about whether or not he was a criminal, because he wasn't acting like a criminal. Carrying a gun does not make a criminal, and not all citizens jump to this conclusion. They both assumed he had a permit, and just thought it was funny that he thought he was concealed but the whole world could see this gun printing on his side.


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    Weagree it shouldn't be a problem, but people have been hassledfor a lot less. Your fiancee and her sis are obviously familiar and confortable around guns, but unfortunately not everyone is. We've all heard of too many people having the police calledon them for really benign and childish things.

    Hey, I did just find these! Interesting reading:

    http://www.gunatics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3111

    http://www.gunatics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2157
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Regular Member Bobarino's Avatar
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    one more time, i DO have my CPL and have for about 8 years or so. i carry all, day every day and everywhere its legal to do so. if i am not wearing something that covers the gun in my IWB holster, its still blatantly obvious that its a gun. its an HK USP Compact .40 so its not a tiny little thing that could be mistaken for an insulin pump or cell phone on a belt. everything from the front strap rearward is exposed.

    barring any real defintion of open or concealed, i'd definately rule it open. again, i do have the permit anyway should a cop determine that its concealed so i'm covered.

    its good to hear a few different viewpoints on it. i'm pretty sure my original interpretation is still correct.

    Bobby

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    Bobarino wrote:
    one more time, i DO have my CPL and have for about 8 years or so. i carry all, day every day and everywhere its legal to do so. if i am not wearing something that covers the gun in my IWB holster, its still blatantly obvious that its a gun. its an HK USP Compact .40 so its not a tiny little thing that could be mistaken for an insulin pump or cell phone on a belt. everything from the front strap rearward is exposed.

    barring any real defintion of open or concealed, i'd definately rule it open. again, i do have the permit anyway should a cop determine that its concealed so i'm covered.

    its good to hear a few different viewpoints on it. i'm pretty sure my original interpretation is still correct.

    Bobby
    I agree! Open Carry On!

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    I agree that you are likely right given that you have a CPL. Keep in mind, however, that the fact there is no established definition of concealed means that someone may well get to be the test case if he or she does not have a CPL. That would be an expensive pain in the ass vindication at best and a conviction at worst. Remember, it does not cost the state much to try the case, but it will cost you.

    At the end of the day, if one prefers IWB carry, go grab a CPL. It is a hell of a lot cheaper than an attorney.

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    BobCav wrote: Way to go Michigan. Now to get people confortable with the idea of open carry up there. That one section of the law that as long as you have a CPL you may enter a "Gun Free Zone" while open carrying is just awesome !!

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    SpokaneIrish wrote:
    I agree that you are likely right given that you have a CPL. Keep in mind, however, that the fact there is no established definition of concealed means that someone may well get to be the test case if he or she does not have a CPL. That would be an expensive pain in the ass vindication at best and a conviction at worst. Remember, it does not cost the state much to try the case, but it will cost you.

    At the end of the day, if one prefers IWB carry, go grab a CPL. It is a hell of a lot cheaper than an attorney.
    Quit nay saying and giving the antis ideas.

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