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Thread: OK so the school zone thing has been bothering me...

  1. #1
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    § 18.2-308.1. Possession of firearm, stun weapon, or other weapon on school property prohibited.

    A. If any person possesses any (i) stun weapon as defined in this section; (ii) knife, except a pocket knife having a folding metal blade of less than three inches; or (iii) weapon, including a weapon of like kind, designated in subsection A of § 18.2-308, other than a firearm; upon (a) the property of any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (b) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (c) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

    B. If any person possesses any firearm designed or intended to expel a projectile by action of an explosion of a combustible material while such person is upon (i) any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (ii) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (iii) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony; however, if the person possesses any firearm within a public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school building and intends to use, or attempts to use, such firearm, or displays such weapon in a threatening manner, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years to be served consecutively with any other sentence.

    The exemptions set out in § 18.2-308 shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to the provisions of this section. The provisions of this section shall not apply to (i) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of the school's curriculum or activities; (ii) a person possessing a knife customarily used for food preparation or service and using it for such purpose; (iii) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of any program sponsored or facilitated by either the school or any organization authorized by the school to conduct its programs either on or off the school premises; (iv) any law-enforcement officer; (v) any person who possesses a knife or blade which he uses customarily in his trade; (vi) a person who possesses an unloaded firearm that is in a closed container, or a knife having a metal blade, in or upon a motor vehicle, or an unloaded shotgun or rifle in a firearms rack in or upon a motor vehicle; or (vii) a person who has a valid concealed handgun permit and possesses a concealed handgun while in a motor vehicle in a parking lot, traffic circle, or other means of vehicular ingress or egress to the school. For the purposes of this paragraph, "weapon" includes a knife having a metal blade of three inches or longer and "closed container" includes a locked vehicle trunk.

    As used in this section:

    "Stun weapon" means any device that emits a momentary or pulsed output, which is electrical, audible, optical or electromagnetic in nature and which is designed to temporarily incapacitate a person.

    (1979, c. 467; 1988, c. 493; 1990, cc. 635, 744; 1991, c. 579; 1992, cc. 727, 735; 1995, c. 511; 1999, cc. 587, 829, 846; 2001, c. 403; 2003, cc. 619, 976; 2004, cc. 128, 461; 2005, cc. 830, 928; 2007, c. 519.)

    So according to paragraph B only the property NOT open to the public is ABSOLUTELY forbidden, and the rest of the grounds and property, it is restricted unless there are no school functions or activities in progress. SO then If school is not in progress and there are no school functions or activities going on, legally under the state law a person should be able to open or conceal carry let's say at the local school playground while there with his/her kids.

    But there is NO mention of any kind of 1000' from a school zone law under Virginia law. SO if I go to a gas station across the street from a school, I should not have to worry about being arrested. Does the state law supercede the federal law? If not then why even bother having a state law?:?



  2. #2
    Regular Member vt357's Avatar
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    Pagan wrote:
    B. If any person possesses any firearm designed or intended to expel a projectile by action of an explosion of a combustible material while such person is upon (i) any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (ii) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (iii) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony; however, if the person possesses any firearm within a public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school building and intends to use, or attempts to use, such firearm, or displays such weapon in a threatening manner, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years to be served consecutively with any other sentence.

    ...

    So according to paragraph B only the property NOT open to the public is ABSOLUTELY forbidden, and the rest of the grounds and property, it is restricted unless there are no school functions or activities in progress. SO then If school is not in progress and there are no school functions or activities going on, legally under the state law a person should be able to open or conceal carry let's say at the local school playground while there with his/her kids.
    I am not a lawyer, but I will try to address your first question. Generally you cannot bring a firearm on school property (both building and grounds - which includes the playground), unless it is unloaded in an enclosed container or concealed in a vehicle.

    If I remember right a couple of years ago the word "eclusively" was added to B(ii) was to address situations off of school property. For example, before "exclusively" was added, if you were carrying while eating at a restaurant and a school bus pulls up with kids on a field trip to eat lunch, you would then be committing a felony by carrying on a piece of property being used for a school sponsored function. By adding the words exclusively, the school would have had to rent out the restaurant so that the only people who should be there are the workers and people from the school. You could not carry there in that situation.

  3. #3
    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    Pagan,

    IANAL.

    When I read B I see three prohibitions


    1) Schools including school grounds

    2) Places other than schools where an exclusive school function is taking place and

    3) a school bus.



    The one to look at is 2). IANAL, but the way I rad this is for places that are not schools you can still be in trouble if it is being used exclusively for a school event. My example, a field trip to the zoo.

    If you went to the school and got out of your car with a firearm #1 violation. If you got on the school bus with your kid as a chaperon, # 3 violation. If you met your kid at the zoo, no violation. If there was a room at the zoo, which was closed to the public, a sort of school room where students were getting a special lecture and you went in armed a #2 violation.

    Again IANAL.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

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  4. #4
    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Pagan wrote:
    § 18.2-308.1. Possession of firearm, stun weapon, or other weapon on school property prohibited.

    A. If any person possesses any (i) stun weapon as defined in this section; (ii) knife, except a pocket knife having a folding metal blade of less than three inches; or (iii) weapon, including a weapon of like kind, designated in subsection A of § 18.2-308, other than a firearm; upon (a) the property of any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (b) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (c) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

    B. If any person possesses any firearm designed or intended to expel a projectile by action of an explosion of a combustible material while such person is upon (i) any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (ii) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (iii) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony; however, if the person possesses any firearm within a public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school building and intends to use, or attempts to use, such firearm, or displays such weapon in a threatening manner, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years to be served consecutively with any other sentence.

    The exemptions set out in § 18.2-308 shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to the provisions of this section. The provisions of this section shall not apply to (i) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of the school's curriculum or activities; (ii) a person possessing a knife customarily used for food preparation or service and using it for such purpose; (iii) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of any program sponsored or facilitated by either the school or any organization authorized by the school to conduct its programs either on or off the school premises; (iv) any law-enforcement officer; (v) any person who possesses a knife or blade which he uses customarily in his trade; (vi) a person who possesses an unloaded firearm that is in a closed container, or a knife having a metal blade, in or upon a motor vehicle, or an unloaded shotgun or rifle in a firearms rack in or upon a motor vehicle; or (vii) a person who has a valid concealed handgun permit and possesses a concealed handgun while in a motor vehicle in a parking lot, traffic circle, or other means of vehicular ingress or egress to the school. For the purposes of this paragraph, "weapon" includes a knife having a metal blade of three inches or longer and "closed container" includes a locked vehicle trunk.

    As used in this section:

    "Stun weapon" means any device that emits a momentary or pulsed output, which is electrical, audible, optical or electromagnetic in nature and which is designed to temporarily incapacitate a person.

    (1979, c. 467; 1988, c. 493; 1990, cc. 635, 744; 1991, c. 579; 1992, cc. 727, 735; 1995, c. 511; 1999, cc. 587, 829, 846; 2001, c. 403; 2003, cc. 619, 976; 2004, cc. 128, 461; 2005, cc. 830, 928; 2007, c. 519.)

    So according to paragraph B only the property NOT open to the public is ABSOLUTELY forbidden, and the rest of the grounds and property, it is restricted unless there are no school functions or activities in progress. SO then If school is not in progress and there are no school functions or activities going on, legally under the state law a person should be able to open or conceal carry let's say at the local school playground while there with his/her kids.

    But there is NO mention of any kind of 1000' from a school zone law under Virginia law. SO if I go to a gas station across the street from a school, I should not have to worry about being arrested. Does the state law supercede the federal law? If not then why even bother having a state law?:?

    Technically you would be breaking a federal law if you are within 1000' of a school and are armed, open or concealed, unless you are on your own property or if you have been issued a "license" by the state to carry said firearm in accordance with state law. This brings up an interesting side note.

    In Virginia, there is no such thing as a license or permit to carry open so one might wonder if the federal law applies under those conditions. Anyway, see U.S Code 18,922 (http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/922.html) for further details.


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