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Thread: Open Carry

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    I am really considering open carry. I have a lot of instances recently that force me to carry a pistol. I have no sort of record and i want to keep it that way. About a month ago I was shot, and I decided that I am gonna have to catch a felony before I become someone else's victim. I have a registered pistol so I am ok on that aspect. Primarily i'm looking to carry in the morning and night time when I am going to work and to school. I understand that open carry isn't prohibited in California. I know that I will have to explain myself to a LEO with in a weeks time so I want to be well prepared. I need some insight and some good legal references to forward and to keep handy. Also how does the open carry apply in the car. To the best of my knowledge we can't have a gun in the car unless we are on our way hunting or to a range and it has to be locked and the ammo has to be stored else where, but i have read different accounts please clarify.

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    Administrator John Pierce's Avatar
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    I understand that open carry isn't prohibited in California.
    Whoa ... Whoa ... Whoa!!!

    It is NOT that clear cut where California is concerned! Please proceed cautiously!

    Our summary from the main site for California says:

    California is not a traditional open carry state. Open carry is generally prohibited except in unincorporated areas where the county has not made open carry illegal, or, pursuant to a CA open carry permit issued and valid only in a county with a population of less than 200,000 persons.

    Are you talking about unloaded open carry or do you live in an unincorporated area?

    Given that you are talking about California, you WILL attract LEO attention almost immediately. This is not a bad thing in and of itself, but rest assured that CA will use any excuse to prosecute you so be certain that you are 100% within the law of the locality in which you are carrying.

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    Iwill carry unloaded and I live in an incorporated city. The city of Richmond

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    Regular Member Decoligny's Avatar
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    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum12/8457.html



    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum12/4842.html



    Print out and study the two refernces above, and then go to http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/calaw.htmlandstudy the actual penal codes that are referenced and then study them again until youfeel that you have a good understanding of what they mean.









  5. #5
    Regular Member Decoligny's Avatar
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    jpierce wrote:
    I understand that open carry isn't prohibited in California.
    Whoa ... Whoa ... Whoa!!!

    It is NOT that clear cut where California is concerned! Please proceed cautiously!

    Our summary from the main site for California says:


    California is not a traditional open carry state. Open carry is generally prohibited except in unincorporated areas where the county has not made open carry illegal, or, pursuant to a CA open carry permit issued and valid only in a county with a population of less than 200,000 persons.

    Are you talking about unloaded open carry or do you live in an unincorporated area?

    Given that you are talking about California, you WILL attract LEO attention almost immediately. This is not a bad thing in and of itself, but rest assured that CA will use any excuse to prosecute you so be certain that you are 100% within the law of the locality in which you are carrying.
    Can we maybe get the two references noted above posted as a "STICKY" in the California Forum?

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    popjohnson wrote:
    I am really considering open carry. I have a lot of instances recently that force me to carry a pistol. I have no sort of record and i want to keep it that way. About a month ago I was shot, and I decided that I am gonna have to catch a felony before I become someone else's victim. I have a registered pistol so I am ok on that aspect. Primarily i'm looking to carry in the morning and night time when I am going to work and to school. I understand that open carry isn't prohibited in California. I know that I will have to explain myself to a LEO with in a weeks time so I want to be well prepared. I need some insight and some good legal references to forward and to keep handy. Also how does the open carry apply in the car. To the best of my knowledge we can't have a gun in the car unless we are on our way hunting or to a range and it has to be locked and the ammo has to be stored else where, but i have read different accounts please clarify.
    You won't be able to legally carry at school, and having a firearm and ammunition in your possession may be a felony that will result in being stripped of your RKBA. This is probably the most frustrating gun law we have on the books, as 'school zones' are all over the place.

    I assume that since you work you are likely a college/university student. If this is the case, here is a viable 'legal' solution: Open carry in your car and drive to the college/university, but do not enter school grounds, as this would violate PC 626.9. Park on the street or down the block, lock your firearm/ammo in the trunk, and then go to class. Then just hope you don't need to defend yourself while you're in the 'gun free' zone... and hope nobody sees you put the firearm in the trunk of your car and decides to steal it. Also, depending on local statutes and school policies it may be legal to carry a pocket knife. During my time on campus I was never completely unarmed - I always had the biggest pocket knife I could legally and comfortably carry.

    As for carrying in your car: same rules apply as if you were walking down the street. The only statutes we have about guns in cars apply to the discharge of weapons from vehicles. So, open carry in cars is OK. Just mind the school zones, etc.

    Definitely check out the flyers Decoligny posted. You may also want to consult an attorney, but most likely they will just tell you they don't advise OC, and will suggest applying for a LTC (aka beg a bureaucrat for a permission slip to exercise a right).
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    What is an LTC???

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    popjohnson wrote:
    What is an LTC???
    License To Conceal, also called CHP (Concealed Handgun Permit), CWP (Concealed Weapons Permit, CCW (Concealed Carry Weapons) and others in different states.

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    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    As for carrying in your car: same rules apply as if you were walking down the street.* The only statutes we have about guns in cars apply to the discharge of weapons from vehicles.* So, open carry in cars is OK.* Just mind the school zones, etc.
    Somehow I totally misunderstood this. Is there a thread where open carry in cars is discussed further?

    I was under the impression that a gun had to be unloaded and locked in the trunk. Does that only apply for concealed car carry? Is it legal to drive around with an empty gun on my seat and a mag on my belt?

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    marshaul wrote:
    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    As for carrying in your car: same rules apply as if you were walking down the street. The only statutes we have about guns in cars apply to the discharge of weapons from vehicles. So, open carry in cars is OK. Just mind the school zones, etc.
    Somehow I totally misunderstood this. Is there a thread where open carry in cars is discussed further?

    I was under the impression that a gun had to be unloaded and locked in the trunk. Does that only apply for concealed car carry? Is it legal to drive around with an empty gun on my seat and a mag on my belt?
    The People v. Knight decision clarifying that the open carry of loaded handguns is lawful in unincorporated areas where not prohibited by County ordiance is posted to the CA state page - click on CA on the map. read this decision - it discusses the key issue of where a gun may be openly carried while loaded - generally in CA, there is no ban on carrying unloaded handguns openly, though some posters on this board have stated that magazines must also be open carried bases upon case law.

    Additionally, some posters continue to refer to OC in Calif. without clarifying that they mean OC of an unloaded handgun - see discussions in CA threads.

    Further, some posters have said that it is not unlawful to carry unloaded handguns in locked cases - like brief cases - in vehicles or otherwise - again, dive into the statutes and discussions and see what you come up with - we don't really track concealed, unloaded, or encased carry on this web sites databases.

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    Mike wrote:
    marshaul wrote:
    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    As for carrying in your car: same rules apply as if you were walking down the street.* The only statutes we have about guns in cars apply to the discharge of weapons from vehicles.* So, open carry in cars is OK.* Just mind the school zones, etc.
    Somehow I totally misunderstood this. Is there a thread where open carry in cars is discussed further?

    I was under the impression that a gun had to be unloaded and locked in the trunk. Does that only apply for concealed car carry? Is it legal to drive around with an empty gun on my seat and a mag on my belt?
    The People v. Knight decision clarifying that the open carry of loaded handguns is lawful in unincorporated areas where not prohibited by County ordiance is posted to the CA state page - click on CA on the map.* read this decision - it discusses the key issue of where a gun may be openly carried while loaded - generally in CA, there is no ban on carrying unloaded handguns openly, though some posters on this board have stated that magazines must also be open carried bases upon case law.

    Additionally, some posters continue to refer to OC in Calif. without clarifying that they mean OC of an unloaded handgun - see discussions in CA threads.

    Further, some posters have said that it is not unlawful to carry unloaded handguns in locked cases - like brief cases - in vehicles or otherwise - again, dive into the statutes and discussions and see what you come up with - we don't really track concealed, unloaded, or encased carry on this web sites databases.
    I'm not sure that really answers my question. I have been paying attention to the CA forum for some time now, so I am aware of the distinctions between incorporated and unincorporated areas, and loaded and unloaded carry.

    What I am asking, quite specifically, is whether in-car OC of an unloaded, uncased gun is legal in an incorporated area. This is the only point I feel unclear on, however, if CA_Libertarian is correct, I guess I'm not unclear at all.

    Basically, I can OC anywhere as long as it's A: not loaded and B: locked in a case while I'm in a school zone. This is my current understanding.

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    I'm not sure that really answers my question. I have been paying attention to the CA forum for some time now, so I am aware of the distinctions between incorporated and unincorporated areas, and loaded and unloaded carry.

    What I am asking, quite specifically, is whether in-car OC of an unloaded, uncased gun is legal in an incorporated area.
    Yes, generally, as explained in People v. Knight. Some carry bans in certain areas in CA may apply - like K-12 school parking lots, so you have to pay attention to these areas.

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    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
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    Thanks, Mike.

    It's so hard to get used to all these rules after living in VA for so long.

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    Regular Member Decoligny's Avatar
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    Mike wrote:
    I'm not sure that really answers my question. I have been paying attention to the CA forum for some time now, so I am aware of the distinctions between incorporated and unincorporated areas, and loaded and unloaded carry.

    What I am asking, quite specifically, is whether in-car OC of an unloaded, uncased gun is legal in an incorporated area.
    Yes, generally, as explained in People v. Knight. Some carry bans in certain areas in CA may apply - like K-12 school parking lots, so you have to pay attention to these areas.
    Open Carry of a firearm in a vehicle, either in unincorportated or incorporated is still subject to Ca Penal Code 626.9which makes it illegal to open carry within 1000 feet of a K-12 School. You either have to have a LTC or have it unloaded and locked in a secure case or in your trunk to legally be within 1000 feet of a K-12 School.

    For open carry of any sort (excluding the almost non-exisistant open carry permit in counties with pop under 200,000), the parking lot is no different that 999 feet from the school property, illegal.

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    marshaul wrote:
    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    As for carrying in your car: same rules apply as if you were walking down the street. The only statutes we have about guns in cars apply to the discharge of weapons from vehicles. So, open carry in cars is OK. Just mind the school zones, etc.
    Somehow I totally misunderstood this. Is there a thread where open carry in cars is discussed further?

    I was under the impression that a gun had to be unloaded and locked in the trunk. Does that only apply for concealed car carry? Is it legal to drive around with an empty gun on my seat and a mag on my belt?
    The requirement to have your firearm in a locked container is a misnomer. It is in fact an exception to the concealed weapon statute. So, if you carry concealed you have to either (1) have a permission slip or (2) meet one of the exception criteria (such as having the firearm in a locked container). This locked container could be a gun case sitting under your front seat or it could be your trunk - really any locked enclosure besides your glove compartment or console will do.

    As for driving around with an unloaded firearm on your seat: sure you could. I wouldn't just because I don't want my gun falling off the seat and accidentally ending up under it (concealed weapon). Probably the best option is to keep it in a belt holster. Especially since 12025 specifically lists this method of carry as legal.
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    Mike wrote:
    The People v. Knight decision clarifying that the open carry of loaded handguns is lawful in unincorporated areas where not prohibited by County ordinance

    I know what your saying, but those of us who deal with the CA penal code generally have a different understanding of how 12031's prohibited areas are defined. The law states that a prohibited area is any unincorporatedterritory where discharge is prohibited by law (not just county ord.) People v Knight only said in absence of evidence that the loaded firearm was in a prohibited area the case was overturned. All the DA or deputies had to introducewas 374C and the prosecution would have won IMO.

    I'd really like to embrace your opinion of the courts opinion (as I like it) buthonestly we have torealize that the state's prohibitionagainst discharge of a firearmon a road (PC 374C)triggers 12031's prohibition against a loaded firearm on that road.





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    jpierce wrote:
    Our summary from the main site for California says:


    California is not a traditional open carry state. Open carry is generally prohibited except in unincorporated areas where the county has not made open carry illegal, or, pursuant to a CA open carry permit issued and valid only in a county with a population of less than 200,000 persons.

    Are you talking about unloaded open carry or do you live in an unincorporated area?
    The information on the California summary page is misleading at best. Open Carry permits are NEVER issued. Anywhere there is a pro-gun sheriff, only concealed carry permits are issued.

    As for unincorperated areas, 374c (no shooting near roads) triggers 12031(f) (can't load), plus all counties have shooting restrictions near residences which also triggers 12031(f). Therefore, for all practical purposes, loaded opencarry is illegal, certainly at 99.99 percent of the places most people will be, unless they are hiking in remote rural lands. Unloaded open carry (with ammo on your person)is the only legal option in California.



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    Just got around to reading People v Knight. The thing that amazes me is that the prosecution does not know of the existance of 374c. Had they known this, their conviction would have held. Despite the incompetence of both the prosecution and the judges in this particular case, the rest of us cannot assume that we will be so lucky, and that our local DA won't know the law. 12031(f) and 374c make carrying loaded illegal on any public road. People v Knight won't help you or prevent your prosecution or conviction.





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    Hello all! This is my first post. California is not a traditional open carry state. You're going to run into all kinds of LE confrontations. Carrying a gun to school or in your car is illegal too.

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    calmp9 wrote:
    Hello all! This is my first post. California is not a traditional open carry state. You're going to run into all kinds of LE confrontations. Carrying a gun to school or in your car is illegal too.


    Welcome and keep reading. LEO stops are the exception not the rule so far.

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    calmp9 wrote:
    Hello all! This is my first post. California is not a traditional open carry state. You're going to run into all kinds of LE confrontations. Carrying a gun to school or in your car is illegal too.
    Hello. Welcome. Your are correct that CA is not a traditional OC state. You're incorrect that we run into all kinds of LE confrontations (I've been carrying about once a week for almost a year with no such confrontation). You're correct that carrying a gun to school is illegal (unless you have a license to conceal). You're incorrect that carrying in your car is illegal.

    Kudos. Being 50% right when you first arrive here is a good start! (No sarcasm intended here; it truly is better than most start off.) Hang around a while and enjoy the wealth of information we have available. Soon enough you'll be over the myths you've been duped into believing.
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    CA_Libertarian wrote:
    As for driving around with an unloaded firearm on your seat: sure you could.* I wouldn't just because I don't want my gun falling off the seat and accidentally ending up under it (concealed weapon).* Probably the best option is to keep it in a belt holster.* Especially since 12025 specifically lists this method of carry as legal.
    Don't forget, I've been OCing in Virginia for months now.

    Obviously I wear a holster, but the reason I brought up the seat (specifically) is because in VA it is common practice to place your firearm on the passenger seat or dash in the event of a traffic stop, especially if you aren't driving a pickup with a bench seat. So I figured I would do the same here.

    I forgot about 12025. Thanks.

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    popjohnson wrote:
    I am really considering open carry. I have a lot of instances recently that force me to carry a pistol. I have no sort of record and i want to keep it that way. About a month ago I was shot, and I decided that I am gonna have to catch a felony before I become someone else's victim. I have a registered pistol so I am ok on that aspect. Primarily i'm looking to carry in the morning and night time when I am going to work and to school. I understand that open carry isn't prohibited in California. I know that I will have to explain myself to a LEO with in a weeks time so I want to be well prepared. I need some insight and some good legal references to forward and to keep handy. Also how does the open carry apply in the car. To the best of my knowledge we can't have a gun in the car unless we are on our way hunting or to a range and it has to be locked and the ammo has to be stored else where, but i have read different accounts please clarify.
    Best advice for you? Get out of Richmond if you can.

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    marshaul wrote:
    Basically, I can OC anywhere as long as it's A: not loaded and B: locked in a case while I'm in a school zone. This is my current understanding.
    Can we get a clarification/confirmation with this statement? I am also of the understanding that I can open carry my Glock 19, unloaded, with an openly carried loaded magazine anywhere, anytime (including a restaurant or bar)either in a vehicle or on foot as long as I am not in a post office, city hall, police station, library (etc etc govt public buildings) or within 1000 feet of a K-12 school.

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    LOW2000 wrote:
    ...I am also of the understanding that I can open carry my Glock 19, unloaded, with an openly carried loaded magazine anywhere, anytime (including a restaurant or bar)either in a vehicle or on foot as long as I am not in a post office, city hall, police station, library (etc etc govt public buildings) or within 1000 feet of a K-12 school.
    Pretty much. Of course there's some other stuff you gotta worry about. Public and private college/university campuses are covered by the 'gun free school zone act' (but the 1,000' rule only applies to K-12). Also, localities can prohibit firearm possession on publicly owned land. While state law makes it a crime to carry in the building, it is possible your city/county could charge you for carrying on premises outside a building (on county fair grounds, for example).
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