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Thread: station wagon/firearm

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    I have a Taurus station wagon.The question I keep asking myself is.What would be considered a "legal" place to transport firearms in this vehicle?I at this time put my firearms in the very back by the rear door.
    I understand that it has to be "out of reach".Out of reach of who?All occupants in the vehicle?Out of reach of an occupant wearing a seatbelt?Is this another of those ,up to the opinion of an LEO situation?If I have my seatbelt on,I cannot retrieve anything from under the seat,but I can without.
    I have my thoughts on the answers to the questions and am looking for more opinions.I am sure that people elsewhere have scratched their heads trying to figure out what is legal.

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    There's nothing that states it has to be out of reach during transport that I've ever seen. I think it's just a suggestion, and almost all of us do it that way.

    If I'm wrong, somebody please correct me.

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    So I could keep it on the seat?

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    As far as I know, yes you could, but just because I haven't seen any laws otherwise doesn't mean they don't exist.

    My suggestion would always be to stay on the side of caution and keep it out of reach. Hopefully somebody more knowing than me will pipe in.

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    It is also my understanding that "out of reach" is a suggestion.

    Then again, the way I read the statute, as long as the firearm is visible you don't need to lock it up. (On the dashboard or hanging from the rear-view mirror)

    Not a lawyer, so don't take my word on that, just my 2 cents.

    Jason

    Here's the way it reads in the statutes:

    167.31 Safe use and transportation of firearms and
    bows.

    (2) PROHIBITIONS; MOTORBOATS AND VEHICLES; HIGHWAYS AND
    ROADWAYS.

    (b) Except as provided in sub. (4), no person may place, possess
    or transport a firearm, bow or crossbow in or on a vehicle,
    unless the firearm is unloaded and encased or unless the bow or
    crossbow is unstrung or is enclosed in a carrying case.

    Here's the exception it mentions above. I cannot get a description from Dept. of Regulation and Licensing however. The rules link on their website is broken, and trying to speak to them on the phone is like trying to (fill in any ridiculous task here):

    (4) EXCEPTIONS.

    e. His or her firearm is in plain view
    , as defined by rule by the
    department of regulation and licensing.

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    Wisconsin waterfowl regulations says a gun need not be cased in a boat, interesting....


    while pursuing waterfowl it is illegal to:
    Firearm and bow transport (S): Carry in or on a motor-driven boat

    while the motor is running, any firearm or bow unless such firearm is unloaded or such bow is unstrung or enclosed within a carrying case.

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    32HR MAG wrote:
    I have a Taurus station wagon.The question I keep asking myself is.What would be considered a "legal" place to transport firearms in this vehicle?I at this time put my firearms in the very back by the rear door.
    I understand that it has to be "out of reach".Out of reach of who?All occupants in the vehicle?Out of reach of an occupant wearing a seatbelt?Is this another of those ,up to the opinion of an LEO situation?If I have my seatbelt on,I cannot retrieve anything from under the seat,but I can without.
    I have my thoughts on the answers to the questions and am looking for more opinions.I am sure that people elsewhere have scratched their heads trying to figure out what is legal.
    There is some caselaw where the "out of reach" statement was made (Alloy?) but I just ignore it.

    Why?
    I drive an extended-cab truck with no topper, Where could I possibly put a gun so it is out of reach? I can't!! So I travel with my cased guns on the front passenger seat (handguns) and a rifle or shotgun with the butt on the floor, leaning against the passenger seat with the seatbelt holding them in place in case I need to make an abrupt stop. Because I would hate to break a scope fom it hitting the dashboard.

    I have nevr had a problem, but that is not to say some overzealous Barney Fife weeny-head of a cop wouldn't go ballistic and cite you for something like this.

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    32HR MAG wrote:
    I have a Taurus station wagon.The question I keep asking myself is.What would be considered a "legal" place to transport firearms in this vehicle?I at this time put my firearms in the very back by the rear door.
    I understand that it has to be "out of reach".Out of reach of who?All occupants in the vehicle?Out of reach of an occupant wearing a seatbelt?Is this another of those ,up to the opinion of an LEO situation?If I have my seatbelt on,I cannot retrieve anything from under the seat,but I can without.
    I have my thoughts on the answers to the questions and am looking for more opinions.I am sure that people elsewhere have scratched their heads trying to figure out what is legal.
    You have to remember that there are 2majorStatutes we are forced to deal with when transporting firearms in a vehicle. The first is theSafe Transportation 167.31 and the second is ConcealedCarry 941.23.

    According to case law, if a firearm is hidden, it must be out of reach. This means for all occupants, not just the driver. In a locked box or under your seat is not out of reach. Lunge reach with your seatbelt off is within your reach. http://www.legis.state.wi.us/statutes/Stat0941.pdf

    To “go armed” does not require going anywhere. The elements for a violation of s. 941.23 are: 1) a dangerous weapon is on the defendant’s person or within reach; 2) the defendant is aware of the weapon’s presence; and 3) the weapon is hidden. State v. Keith, 175 Wis. 2d 75, 498 N.W.2d 865 (Ct. App. 1993). A handgun on the seat of a car that was indiscernible from ordinary observation by a person outside, and within the immediate vicinity, of the vehicle was hidden from view for purposes of determining whether the gun was a concealed weapon under this section. State v. Walls, 190 Wis. 2d 65, 526 N.W.2d 765 (Ct. App. 1994).


    The DNR or even your local small town country cop is likely going to be more concerned with 167 and not so concerned with 941 if your gun case is visible on your seat next to you. A big city cop looking for a reason to look for drugs is going totreat it different. Don't confuse common practice and local administrative policy with the letter of the law.

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    I just stick to the main wording of the law. Unloaded and in a case. That's really all it says. Unloaded and in a case.

    I often travel with my unloaded pistol in its plastic snapcase on the passenger seat of my car, with a loaded magazine in the case right next to the pistol.

    The gun is still unloaded and in a case, in accordance with the letter of the law, which says nothing of where ammunition must be, other than NOT IN the gun. And there are no cartridges IN my gun when I travel. They're next to it.

    For that matter I could leave 2 full mags out on the seat next to my encased and unloaded firearm. That is still perfectly within the law. The day you have to get to your gun and get to it fast is not the day you want it in the trunk, or the spare tire well, etc.

    "Oh, excuse me Mr. Carjacker. I'll just need to get out here and mosy over here to the trunk where I keep my gun, and lets see, oh yeah, I keep the ammo back up front 'cause ya know, I didn't want to let anyone think I'm some kind of gun toting lunatic, and There! Presto! Now you can't steal my car with my wife in it. Crime Thwarted!

    Yeah right. If the SHTF you're going to have only seconds to react. Keep that heater close at all times.
    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is often difficult to verify their authenticity." - Abraham Lincoln

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    bluehighways wrote:
    I just stick to the main wording of the law. Unloaded and in a case. That's really all it says. Unloaded and in a case.
    You are sticking to the letter of only 1 law (statute). You are deliberately ignoring the other law (statute) which applies to vehicle transportation (Concealed Carry). This is a personal choice and a risk vs benefit decision we all must choose to make.

    When discussing it in this forum, we must make the distinction between the letter of the law and case law which dictates that in a case next to you can get you a fine and the firearm taken away and practical application which clearly requires the firearm to be withing reach if you intend to use if for self defense. A very personal risk vs benefit decision.

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    bluehighways wrote:
    I just stick to the main wording of the law. Unloaded and in a case. That's really all it says. Unloaded and in a case.
    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/view_topic.php?id=30060&forum_id=57

    http://www.vimeo.com/6115265

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    Thanks for the video link Doug. It was quite informative on the catch-22 transport laws here in good 'ol Wisconsin.

    It was interesting for me to note that any time I carry any of my firearms in their cases to or from my vehicle I am in violation of a concealed weapon law. Quite interesting. I had never considered that before.

    I drive a small car, and I can reach a cased firearm anywhere in the interior. the only place for me to store it legally is locked in the trunk. Legal, but not the best self defense tactic!
    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is often difficult to verify their authenticity." - Abraham Lincoln

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    Interceptor_Knight wrote:
    bluehighways wrote:
    I just stick to the main wording of the law. Unloaded and in a case. That's really all it says. Unloaded and in a case.
    You are sticking to the letter of only 1 law (statute). You are deliberately ignoring the other law (statute) which applies to vehicle transportation (Concealed Carry). This is a personal choice and a risk vs benefit decision we all must choose to make.

    When discussing it in this forum, we must make the distinction between the letter of the law and case law which dictates that in a case next to you can get you a fine and the firearm taken away and practical application which clearly requires the firearm to be withing reach if you intend to use if for self defense. A very personal risk vs benefit decision.
    bnhcomputing wrote:
    The reason we recommend out-of-reach is the Wisconsin Supreme Court held that there is a three prong test as to IF you are in possession of a concealed weapon.

    1. Hidden from ordinary view.
    2. You know it is there.
    3. It is within reach.


    Read up, Load up, Holster up, and CARRY ON.
    According to 941.23 and relevant case law, all three elements must be present, not just one of them, nor tow out of there, but all three to be convictied of 941.23.

    bluehighways is not violaitng a state statue. One the seat nest to you in a discernable gun case that is not covered or even partly covered is in 'ordidenary view' which eliminates a 941.23 conviction. Now mind you, center conosoles and glove boxes ARE NOT gun cases, which falls under 'hidden from ordinary view'.

    I keep my hand gun case on the rear passenger seat direclty behind me. I cannot see making others ride in the back while my handgun rides shotgun. That is out of reach for me and in ordinary view. I can exit my vehicle, open the rear passenger door, pop open the gun case, two hand grab mag in one, gunin the other, insert the mag and holster in a matter of seconds. Some advocate keeping your guncase in the farthest out of reach location. Sorry, but I will not expoase myself tothe rear of my vehicle until I am armed. When I park, my first criteria is safety, niot convenience. I will walk across and empty parking lot before I put myselif in close quarters with others arond me.

    I am considering placing my guncase on the seat next ot me when I am alone. When my son is with me, he can reach back and grab the guncase for me if he had to for me. With it on the front passneger, I would either have to round my vehicle before I can be armed, which I will not do, or exit my vehicle, reach across and place the gun case on the driver seat, then proceed with the usual routine.

    I challenge anyone to cite case law that would put me in violation of 941.23.

    Master Doug Hoffman, a gun unloaded and encased, in a case designed, marketed and sold for gun storage that is in ordinary view and is not concealed and does not violate 941.23 nomatter what you try to point out in your video.

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    Most all responses seem to concern one occupant in the vehicle,the driver.I most always have at least one other person with when going somewhere.If it is one or more of the kids they are always in the backseat.If the wife she of course,the passenger front seat.Out of reach is impossible for back seat occupants with no seatbelt.
    At this time I will keep doing the transporting of the firearms in the cargo area and hope for the best.This will also concern anyone who operates a pickup, van or SUV.

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    BROKENSPROKET wrote:


    According to 941.23 and relevant case law, all three elements must be present, not just one of them, nor tow out of there, but all three to be convictied of 941.23.

    bluehighways is not violaitng a state statue. One the seat nest to you in a discernable gun case that is not covered or even partly covered is in 'ordidenary view' which eliminates a 941.23 conviction.
    Absolutely incorrect.

    You are basing your statement purely on your uninformed personal opinion and not on relevent case law.


    Read the case law again. Then read the State Supreme Court Appeals decisions...

    It is interpreted as View from someone in the immediate area outside of the vehicle. Laying on the seat is not in view. The State Supreme Court even went so far to say that it needs to be viewable by someone walking or even driving by.

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    Sproket may believe that he has found a way to read an exclusive-or between §941.23 and §167.31

    The elements for a violation of s. 941.23 are: 1) a dangerous weapon is on the defendant’s person or within reach; 2) the defendant is aware of the weapon’s presence; and 3) the weapon is hidden. State v. Keith, 175 Wis. 2d 75, 498 N.W.2d 865 (Ct. App. 1993).
    no person may place, possess or transport a firearm, bow or crossbow in or on a vehicle, unless the firearm is unloaded and encased or unless the bow or crossbow is unstrung or is enclosed in a carrying case.
    In my vast experience reading rules, I read an 'and.

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    BROKENSPROKET wrote:

    I keep my hand gun case on the rear passenger seat direclty behind me. I cannot see making others ride in the back while my handgun rides shotgun. That is out of reach for me and in ordinary view. I can exit my vehicle, open the rear passenger door, pop open the gun case, two hand grab mag in one, gunin the other, insert the mag and holster in a matter of seconds. Some advocate keeping your guncase in the farthest out of reach location. Sorry, but I will not expoase myself tothe rear of my vehicle until I am armed. When I park, my first criteria is safety, niot convenience. I will walk across and empty parking lot before I put myselif in close quarters with others arond me.

    I am considering placing my guncase on the seat next ot me when I am alone. When my son is with me, he can reach back and grab the guncase for me if he had to for me. With it on the front passneger, I would either have to round my vehicle before I can be armed, which I will not do, or exit my vehicle, reach across and place the gun case on the driver seat, then proceed with the usual routine.

    I challenge anyone to cite case law that would put me in violation of 941.23.

    Master Doug Hoffman, a gun unloaded and encased, in a case designed, marketed and sold for gun storage that is in ordinary view and is not concealed and does not violate 941.23 nomatter what you try to point out in your video.
    Behind you on the seat is both within your reach (lunge) and out of plain view for someone walking by in the immediate area. Here is your relevant case law if you are not willing to look for it yourself.....

    190 Wis.2d 65, 526 N.W.2d 765


    State v. WallsWis.App.,1994.

    Court of Appeals of Wisconsin


    The court determined that regardless of whether the police could see the black handgun lying on the red front seat upon inspecting the vehicle, the handgun was concealed to “ordinary observation” as the automobile traveled down the street prior to being stopped.......


    ,...., with the automobile traveling down a city street at night, the handgun was indiscernible from the ordinary observation of a person located outside and within the immediate vicinity of the vehicle. Thus, a person “approaching” the vehicle, or “passing” it “on the streets or highways” could not see the handgun.




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    Regular Member Interceptor_Knight's Avatar
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    Master Doug Huffman wrote:
    Sproket may believe that he has found a way to read an exclusive-or between §941.23 and §167.31
    His mistake is assuming that in plain view means someone with their face against the glass looking into the vehicle. He is also assuming that "encased" can not be considered concealed.

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    Interceptor_Knight wrote:
    Master Doug Huffman wrote:
    Sproket may believe that he has found a way to read an exclusive-or between §941.23 and §167.31
    His mistake is assuming that in plain view means someone with their face against the glass looking into the vehicle. He is also assuming that "encased" can not be considered concealed.
    I understand that full compliance with 167.23 can still violate 941.23. If I throw a hunting jacket over my properly unlaoded and encased rifle can make it a concealded weapon under 941.23, given that I know it is there and it is within reach.

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    I drive a rusty POS car and cant put my pistol in the trunk due to it being rusted out. I usually keep it behind the drivers seat although the only place I cant reach is the far corner of the passenger side dash. not really sure what to do to stay legal.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks."
    Thomas Jefferson

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    Regular Member Interceptor_Knight's Avatar
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    The OP asked what is considered legal. You are confusing what is technically legal with what you personally "get away with"...



    BROKENSPROKET wrote:
    Interceptor_Knight wrote:
    Master Doug Huffman wrote:
    Sproket may believe that he has found a way to read an exclusive-or between §941.23 and §167.31
    His mistake is assuming that in plain view means someone with their face against the glass looking into the vehicle. He is also assuming that "encased" can not be considered concealed.
    I understand that full compliance with 167.23 can still violate 941.23. If I throw a hunting jacket over my properly unlaoded and encased rifle can make it a concealded weapon under 941.23, given that I know it is there and it is within reach.
    You are missing the point that your properly unloaded and encased rifle does not need a hunting jacket over it to be concealed if it is in your reach. The simple fact that the rifle is "hidden" inside a case and that the case is "hidden" simply because it is inside of your passenger compartment and someone casually driving or walking by can not easily see it. This is how the WI Supreme court has interpreted hidden as was quoted in the post above in actual case law.

    Your local country cop or DNR warden may not be concerned about your hunting rifle but another cop under the letter of the law could justify giving you a citation.

    As has been mentioned multiple times, do not confuse arbitrary enforcement or administrative policy and common practice with the letter of the law and case law.

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    In Walls, the pistol was not in a case! That is something totally different than what is being discussed

    So usingWalls as an example is not even the same subject of transporting a cased gun. in a vehicle without a trunk, such as a van, SUV,Corvette, pick-up truck, Etc Ect Etc.

    Now lets get back on track!
    190 Wis.2d 65, 526 N.W.2d 765

    State v. WallsWis.App.,1994.

    Court of Appeals of Wisconsin

    The court determined that regardless of whether the police could see the black handgun lying on the red front seat upon inspecting the vehicle, the handgun was concealed to “ordinary observation” as the automobile traveled down the street prior to being stopped.......


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    I think I brought up a very good conversation.I am happy that it has involved others and can see it is not a black and white answer.Which of course is how I felt when asking.

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    icepik wrote:

    (4) EXCEPTIONS.

    e. His or her firearm is in plain view
    , as defined by rule by the
    department of regulation and licensing.
    The defined rule can be found here. Dept of Regulation and Licensing Chapter RL34, http://www.legis.state.wi.us/rsb/code/rl/rl034.pdf

    RL 34.011 Conditions relating to transporting a
    loaded firearm in a vehicle. No owner or employee of an
    agency may transport a loaded firearm in a vehicle, unless all of
    the following apply:
    (1) The firearm is in plain view. In this section “in plain view”
    means it is visible from ordinary observation to a person outside
    the vehicle.

    Note: A firearm located in a glove compartment, in a briefcase, under a seat of a
    vehicle, or covered by the clothing of an occupant, is not “in plain view.”
    (2) If the firearm is a handgun, the owner or employee transports
    the firearm in a holster which is in plain view.
    (3) If the firearm is other than a handgun, the owner or
    employee transports the firearm in a device inside the vehicle
    which locks the firearm in position and prevents an unauthorized
    person from removing the firearm from the locking device and
    which is in plain view.
    (4) The owner or employee complies with the requirements in
    s. RL 34.01.

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    Nutczak wrote:
    In Walls, the pistol was not in a case! That is something totally different than what is being discussed

    So usingWalls as an example is not even the same subject of transporting a cased gun. in a vehicle without a trunk, such as a van, SUV,Corvette, pick-up truck, Etc Ect Etc.
    Walls was not charged with violating the safe transportation statute, he was charged with concealed carry.


    If it is "hidden" even though it is not encased, it is certainly "hidden" if it is encased...

    Hidden and within reach are the 2 factors which are relevant to the subject at hand and your chances of being cited and your chances of success in fighting charges.....

    Relity is that someone like you in the great white north is much less likely to be charged with CCW for an encased firearm than someonea big city is. Selective enforcement and administrative policy does not make it "legal"...

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