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Thread: OC in Vehicle? "In plain view"

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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    Just coming back to VA and had a couple of questions...

    I was stopped on 419 around Christmas while OCing in a car. When the LEO came up to the window I informed him out of courtisy that I was OCing. He asked me for my licence and registration then asked me to step out of the car. I complied with his orders to place my hands on the car so that he may take out the pistol. (His orders were calm and professional) Before he took it out I informed the officer that it was cocked and locked with one in the chamber.

    He told me that I could go back in the vehicle and wait while he ran the serial number. On the 1911 that I was carrying that night there are three numbers. One on the barrel, one on the slide, and one on the frame. The drawing number on the barrel always comes back as a stolen firearm, so it takes a while. He called his supervisor and figured out that he had to use the number off of the frame.

    After the handgun came back clean, he called me back to his squad car and handed me back my unloaded pistol. I cleared it and stuck it back into my holster with the mag and extra bullet in my pocket.

    He said while in a vehicle the weapon has to be in plain view. I asked him politely that since I'm open carrying wouldn't it be considered in plain view? He said no, and that I should lay it in the seat where it could be seen. My question is can I legally OC in a vehicle without a CHP? If not can I take it out of the holster loaded and leave it within reach?

    Thanks for your help,

    ainfantry7


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    I know Mike took some grief because of his opinions expressed in this article, but I wholeheartedly agree with most of it...

    http://www.examiner.com/x-2782-DC-Gu...-traffic-stops

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Just coming back to VA and had a couple of questions...

    I was stopped on 419 around Christmas while OCing in a car. When the LEO came up to the window I informed him out of courtisy that I was OCing. He asked me for my licence and registration then asked me to step out of the car. I complied with his orders to place my hands on the car so that he may take out the pistol. (His orders were calm and professional) Before he took it out I informed the officer that it was cocked and locked with one in the chamber.(No problems here - some officers due that depending on their comfort level. Some gun owners balk at this. I always tell my students to just comply with the officer so as to not escalate things, but to each his own.)

    He told me that I could go back in the vehicle and wait while he ran the serial number. (Red Flag - no reason to run a SN unless he hascause to believe that the gun is stolen)On the 1911 that I was carrying that night there are three numbers. One on the barrel, one on the slide, and one on the frame. The drawing number on the barrel always comes back as a stolen firearm, so it takes a while. He called his supervisor and figured out that he had to use the number off of the frame.

    After the handgun came back clean, he called me back to his squad car and handed me back my unloaded pistol. I cleared it and stuck it back into my holster with the mag and extra bullet (cartridge - sorry, couldn't let that one go ) in my pocket.

    He said while in a vehicle the weapon has to be in plain view. I asked him politely that since I'm open carrying wouldn't it be considered in plain view? He said no, and that I should lay it in the seat where it could be seen. My question is can I legally OC in a vehicle without a CHP? If not can I take it out of the holster loaded and leave it within reach?(He was wrong. If the gun is in plain view on your hip while seated normally in a vehicle, then that is fine for OC, as is laying the gun on the seat next to you.)

    Thanks for your help,

    ainfantry7
    James Reynolds

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator ed's Avatar
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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    he may take out the pistol. (His orders were calm and professional)
    "He may?" (did you give permission?) or were you complying with an ORDER?

    The standard response should be somethign like : "Officer, I am not going to fight you on this but I do not AUTHORIZE any SEARCH OR SEIZURE of my person or property"

    and + 1 to everything else Pro said.
    Carry On.

    Ed

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    For VA Open Carry Cards send a S.A.2S.E. to: Ed's OC cards, Box 16143, Wash DC 20041-6143 (they are free but some folks enclose a couple bucks too)

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    "courtisy"

    cour·te·sy (kûrt-s)

    n. pl. cour·te·sies


    1.
    a. Polite behavior.
    b. A polite gesture or remark.
    2.
    a. Consent or agreement in spite of fact; indulgence: They call this pond a lake by courtesy only.


    [/i]
    [Middle English courtesie, from Old French, from corteis, courtly; see courteous.]


    1. In what way were you being polite? Pardon the gun on my hip being openly carried, but would you like to dance?

    2. Why did you feel you needed to provide him consent? Consent to roust you out of your car? Consent to frisk you? Consent to disarm you? Consent to take a good long look inside your car just in case there may be some evidence of unlawful activity in plain view?



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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Just coming back to VA and had a couple of questions...

    I was stopped on 419 around Christmas while OCing in a car. When the LEO came up to the window I informed him out of courtisy that I was OCing.
    And why did you do this? Did you not expect that this would result in weapons seizure?

    as for open carry in vehicles, it is not banned - just like standing in a restaurant or sitting in a booth, the weapon will obviously be concealed from ordinary observation from some vantage points - o avod charges of unlawful concealing, i always recommend open carriers have the conceal permit too - its just insurance.

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    If you didnt consent to this seizure of your firearm, I would file a formal complaint and maybe even consult a lawyer.

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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    First off...Thanks for answering my question ProShooter. Oh, yes you're right. I put the clip and extra cartridge in my pocket...

    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:

    Open Car Carry
    You may open carry in a vehicle but must notify a LEO during a stop.

    Like I said, I did inform him...So guilty of "gun dork" there...But he gave me the order to get out of the car, and place my hands on the vehicle.

    Thanks a bunch, oh and has anyone heard more about the Walmart carry issue? All the threads I can find are from 2007...


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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    cbackous wrote:
    If you didnt consent to this seizure of your firearm, I would file a formal complaint and maybe even consult a lawyer.
    The guy wasn't trying to be overzealous by any means. He was a younger noob that didn't quite know how to handle the situation. I would not file a complaint, but I will contact him to inform him on OCing in a vehicle.

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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    He was a younger noob that didn't quite know how to handle the situation. I would not file a complaint, but I will contact him to inform him on OCing in a vehicle.
    A "younger n00b" who violated your civil rights.

    Notify his department and his superior. Copy Philip Van Cleeve.
    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
    And the newest slavery is to keep the people poor, and stupid
    Novos ordo seclorum ~ Mustaine

    Never argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    cbackous wrote:
    If you didnt consent to this seizure of your firearm, I would file a formal complaint and maybe even consult a lawyer.
    The guy wasn't trying to be overzealous by any means. He was a younger noob that didn't quite know how to handle the situation. I would not file a complaint, but I will contact him to inform him on OCing in a vehicle.
    The point is that he most definitely exceeded his authority to run the SN on your gun. Unless he had a specific reason to suspect that your gun was stolen or otherwise involved in a crime, your Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure was trampled all over.

    No different than a deputy coming to your door to issue a summons to jury duty coming in to your house and running all the guns in your safe "just because he wants to".

    He's allowed to ensure his safety, but not allowed to fish for a crime-connected gun.

    It's a very touchy subject with many around these parts.

    IANAL, YMMV.

    TFred

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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    First off...Thanks for answering my question ProShooter. Oh, yes you're right. I put the clip and extra cartridge in my pocket...

    Magazine.....gotcha again!
    James Reynolds

    NRA Certified Firearms Instructor - Pistol, Shotgun, Home Firearms Safety, Refuse To Be A Victim
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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:

    Open Car Carry
    You may open carry in a vehicle but must notify a LEO during a stop.
    That Alaska rule appears to follow from the "Alaska carry" statute generally allowing both concealed and open carry without permit if you notify - a one of a kind rule for open carry as far as we can tell - and very few states require notification that you are even conceal carrying - Va. is like most states - you have to produce your permit if asked for it by police WHILE you are conceal crrying - you do not have to say anything else or answer questions about where you r gun might be, if any.

    I have open caried in a traffic stop in henrico - it was a long one while the officer triedto explain to me some left turn arrow I missed and he tried to understand how military people and college students can live in and drive around Va. with out of state plates an no state inspection sticker - in the end, his head hurt I think over the "Va. resident who is comiciled in another state thing" and just let me off with a warning - but he and I talked a long time - he either never saw my openly carried holstered handgun, or did not care, or maybe he normally did not feel like disarming a retired Army Lt. Col. going to law school.

    And as for running serial numbers, yes it violates the fourth amendment if the officer manipulates your personal proeprty without cause to see serial numbers, see Arizona v. Hicks - but Terry stop doctrine generally allows officers to pat down and seize weapons from suspects seized upon mere reasonable suspicion of crime - in a traffic stop, you are a seized suspect (at least the driver) - yes, there is a second issue the officer must be able to articulate - i.., that the seized suspect was also "armed and presently dangerous" - but shucks, if you tell the opfficer you are armed, he's half there! Now he just needs to have a good articulation that you were nervous, seemed figity, scared him etc. and what court is going to award you damages for being delayed a bit while the serial numbers are run? Suppression of evidence if you are a bad guy, maybe, but damages against a police officer just trying to protect himself and the community? Less likley.

    Don't ask, don't tell is the best police when carying, whether concealed, or openly.

    And if you do tell, expect to be disarmed.

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    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:
    So this took place in Alaska??? Why are you posting it in the Virginia forum?

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    jegoodin wrote:
    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:
    So this took place in Alaska??? Why are you posting it in the Virginia forum?
    No, he just said he has been in Alaska, where notification is required, so that was what he was used to.

    TFred

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    TFred wrote:
    jegoodin wrote:
    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:
    So this took place in Alaska??? Why are you posting it in the Virginia forum?
    No, he just said he has been in Alaska, where notification is required, so that was what he was used to.

    TFred
    Then why is he quoting Alaska law? He obviously knows about the data base on OCDO where the laws for all the states can be referenced. I'd have thought he'd have looked up the Virginia law prior to coming back.



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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    jegoodin wrote:
    TFred wrote:
    jegoodin wrote:
    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:
    So this took place in Alaska??? Why are you posting it in the Virginia forum?
    No, he just said he has been in Alaska, where notification is required, so that was what he was used to.

    TFred
    Then why is he quoting Alaska law? He obviously knows about the data base on OCDO where the laws for all the states can be referenced. I'd have thought he'd have looked up the Virginia law prior to coming back.
    Well, I can't speak for him, but I would imagine it was because someone referenced Mike's article saying that he had been a dork, so he wanted to explain why his instinctive reaction was to inform the officer.

    TFred

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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    jegoodin wrote:
    TFred wrote:
    jegoodin wrote:
    ainfantry7 wrote:
    Read where I come from, it's been a while since I've been back, so I just use the common sence rule while OCing. In AK as taken from opencarry.org itself:
    So this took place in Alaska??? Why are you posting it in the Virginia forum?
    No, he just said he has been in Alaska, where notification is required, so that was what he was used to.

    TFred
    Then why is he quoting Alaska law? He obviously knows about the data base on OCDO where the laws for all the states can be referenced. I'd have thought he'd have looked up the Virginia law prior to coming back.


    It didn't say on the VA Map.

    Open Car Carry
    You may open carry in a vehicle. It must be clearly visible.

    I'm not sure why this has turned into a bashing thread by some, but thanks to those of you who provided an answer to my questions.

    Proshooter, just messing with you on the last one...haha.

    So has anyone heard anything new on the Walmart firearms policy? I still haven't been able to see anything posted on the front doors yet.

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    I OC in several different Wal-Marts fairly regularly...I would assume (maybe wrongly; but, I haven't seen any posts...at least not in the VA forum...recently, where anyone was harassed for OC'ing in Wal-Mart) that maybe, at least on a regional or a district level, Wal-Mart has addressed the issue with their managers.

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    ainfantry, good to see you back for a bit. You down in the Roanoke area again this time? Perhaps we could arrange a dinner between some of the Roanokers and Lynchburgers to get us all to meet if you're going to be around for a couple weeks.

    Sorry to hear about your bad interaction with the police. Take it under consideration to at least file a complaint about this officers actions.

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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    Hey there! Good to hear from you again. I'd love to get another dinner together sometime. Right now I'm in Fayetteville, NC recovering from an IED blast, but I frequent Roanoke quite a bit now. Just let me know when a good date would be for you and any others who would be interested. Since you came down last time I wouldn't mind coming up there...

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    Hope you heal up quick man! I'll see what I can do arranging some shin-dig or other. I think we'll scrounge up a few more than last time.

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    Regular Member ainfantry7's Avatar
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    jmelvin wrote:
    Hope you heal up quick man! I'll see what I can do arranging some shin-dig or other. I think we'll scrounge up a few more than last time.
    Sounds great! I'll keep checking for PM's or a dinner coming up...

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    jmelvin wrote:
    ainfantry, good to see you back for a bit. You down in the Roanoke area again this time?
    Make sure you visit Dan Casey's 'blog at the Times every once and a while and give him a piece of your mind.

    I'd give him more of mine, but I'm running out.
    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
    And the newest slavery is to keep the people poor, and stupid
    Novos ordo seclorum ~ Mustaine

    Never argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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