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Thread: Vacation travel itinerary includes DC - Avoid possession?

  1. #1
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    My initial, gut response and answer to my own question is that I should not risk taking my legally owned firearm on a trip which includes a few days stay, downtown DC.

    I am going on a roadtrip this summer and part of the itinerary includes a few nights in DC. My big question is if I possess a firearm, even if disassembled and no ammo at the ready, can anyone advise if this is stillbreaking some obscure DC (anti-gun) law?

    I live in Michigan and am a legal CPL license holder but I know that doens't work well in many locations. I am readily understanding the reciprocity laws of other states but am concerned about DC primarily.

    From what I understand if the Interstate Firearms Trasportation laws, if I was merely passing through an "anti-gun state" and the firearm was not in my immediate possession (i.e. locked up in the trunk) I would have nothing to worry about.

    Can anyone please offer any advice?

    Thanks

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    You could end up breaking laws in every State between Michigan and DC. The federal law designed to allow you to transport a firearm through States where your permit is invalid cannot be used. It only applies if you are allowed to possess and carry at your point of origin, your destination, and all stops in between. Since you are not allowed to possess and carry in DC, you could be violating the laws of any State you pass through along the way in which your permit is not reciprocated.

    IANAL, but watch out!

    [I just thought of this: VA has fairly relaxed gun laws. Maybe you could make your trip to northern VA (check your permit situation), making that your destination. Leave your handgun in VA when you make your trip(s) into DC.]

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    eye95 wrote:
    [I just thought of this:* VA has fairly relaxed gun laws.* Maybe you could make your trip to northern VA (check your permit situation), making that your destination.* Leave your handgun in VA when you make your trip(s) into DC.]
    Traffic will make you want to kill yourself.
    I'd hold it if you want. There are other members inside the beltway more North-West than I am too.
    Sic Semper Tyrannis

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    If you don't absolutely have to stay in DC, don't. Pick someplace in Virginia for your layover. Very gun-friendly and legal. DC is a disaster.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    eye95 wrote:
    You could end up breaking laws in every State between Michigan and DC. The federal law designed to allow you to transport a firearm through States where your permit is invalid cannot be used. It only applies if you are allowed to possess and carry at your point of origin, your destination, and all stops in between. Since you are not allowed to possess and carry in DC, you could be violating the laws of any State you pass through along the way in which your permit is not reciprocated.

    IANAL, but watch out!

    [I just thought of this: VA has fairly relaxed gun laws. Maybe you could make your trip to northern VA (check your permit situation), making that your destination. Leave your handgun in VA when you make your trip(s) into DC.]
    I don't think that's the correct reading of the law. If it was, the law would be absolutely meaningless. It is meant to protect you while transporting firearms through places where you would otherwise not be allowed to be in posession. Forex, driving through Illinois if you are not a resident with a FOID.

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    Regular Member 45acpForMe's Avatar
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    The answer is NO.

    States like Maryland and the District of Columbia interpret things "the way they want to" and can make your life miserable.

    If your endpoint is DC then you aren't allowed to transport it period (in DC or other states where you normally couldn't). The transport parts of the law can be interpreted as if you are passing through, but what does that say about stopping for gas or lunch?

    Stay in wonderful VA and take the metro into town.


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    PavePusher wrote:
    eye95 wrote:
    You could end up breaking laws in every State between Michigan and DC. The federal law designed to allow you to transport a firearm through States where your permit is invalid cannot be used. It only applies if you are allowed to possess and carry at your point of origin, your destination, and all stops in between. Since you are not allowed to possess and carry in DC, you could be violating the laws of any State you pass through along the way in which your permit is not reciprocated.

    IANAL, but watch out!

    [I just thought of this: VA has fairly relaxed gun laws. Maybe you could make your trip to northern VA (check your permit situation), making that your destination. Leave your handgun in VA when you make your trip(s) into DC.]
    I don't think that's the correct reading of the law. If it was, the law would be absolutely meaningless. It is meant to protect you while transporting firearms through places where you would otherwise not be allowed to be in posession. Forex, driving through Illinois if you are not a resident with a FOID.
    How is that different from what I said? His problem is that his destination does not allow him to possess or carry. The law requires that you be able to possess and carry at your origin, your destination, and any place where you stop along the way. So, if you pass through Illinois, not making stops (except for things like food and gas), you are protected by federal law, if you meet the origin and destination requirements.

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    SouthernBoy wrote:
    If you don't absolutely have to stay in DC, don't. Pick someplace in Virginia for your layover. Very gun-friendly and legal. DC is a disaster.
    This is a pleasure trip. My step-daughter is getting married in VA about an hour outside of DC. I am taking her mom (my wife), her brother and her sister down for the wedding. I am extending the trip to include some sight-seeing time. None of us have been to the nation's capitol.

    I actually chose to stay downtown DC (DuPont Circle area) so we could get in more of the sites, etc. Yes, I am a glutton for punishment. I could leave my sidearm with my soon to be step-son-in-law when I go into DC.

    From www.handgunlaw.us I found the attached reciprocity map. It looks like my carry permit is recognized everyone between home (Michigan) and Virginia with the obvious exception of DC.

    So from the advice (thank you very much to all who have contributed) I should leave my gun with family in Virginia when going into DC and pick it back up when I leave the cesspool....err...our capitol? It looks like other than that spot (red on the attached map, representing socialism?)I can drive and carry concealed through Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

    Please correct my assumptions if you think I am off base.

    Thanks again for everyone's time and assistance.

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    Regular Member 45acpForMe's Avatar
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    Looking at that map yes you can CC in those states.

    1) look out for Maryland. Try to avoid it.
    2) each state can have differing CC laws/requirements.

    For example in VA (until July 1, 2010) you have to OC in a restaurant that serves alcohol and CC isn't allowed. In NC I believe that you are not allowed to CC to any "ticketed" event like a hockey game or movie theater. So read up on each states rules. If you are only sitting in the car it shouldn't be too much of an issue but stopping for dinner at a restaurant that served alcohol would disallow CC.

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    45acpForMe wrote:
    Looking at that map yes you can CC in those states.

    1) look out for Maryland. Try to avoid it.
    2) each state can have differing CC laws/requirements.

    For example in VA (until July 1, 2010) you have to OC in a restaurant that serves alcohol and CC isn't allowed. In NC I believe that you are not allowed to CC to any "ticketed" event like a hockey game or movie theater. So read up on each states rules. If you are only sitting in the car it shouldn't be too much of an issue but stopping for dinner at a restaurant that served alcohol would disallow CC.
    +1 on the Maryland advice. Your GPS could easily route you through the western sliver of MD. You could either route yourself around it or use the federal interstate transportation exception, moving the gun (in an appropriate condition) to your trunk before crossing into MD, and returning it to the passenger compartment after leaving the People's Republic.

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    45acpForMe wrote:
    The answer is NO.

    States like Maryland and the District of Columbia interpret things "the way they want to" and can make your life miserable.

    If your endpoint is DC then you aren't allowed to transport it period (in DC or other states where you normally couldn't). The transport parts of the law can be interpreted as if you are passing through, but what does that say about stopping for gas or lunch?

    Stay in wonderful VA and take the metro into town.
    If your source and destination states allow you to legally possess a firearm, then no place in between can arrest you for carrying your firearm in your vehicle provided it is secured as required by the FOPA. Doesn't make any difference if it is Maryland or DC or New York or Chicago or anywhere else. And yes, you may stop and dine and purchase fuel.

    Should they try to do this, or actually do it, you could reap your retirement pool from their illegal actions.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Springfield45ACP wrote:
    SouthernBoy wrote:
    If you don't absolutely have to stay in DC, don't. Pick someplace in Virginia for your layover. Very gun-friendly and legal. DC is a disaster.
    This is a pleasure trip. My step-daughter is getting married in VA about an hour outside of DC. I am taking her mom (my wife), her brother and her sister down for the wedding. I am extending the trip to include some sight-seeing time. None of us have been to the nation's capitol.

    I actually chose to stay downtown DC (DuPont Circle area) so we could get in more of the sites, etc. Yes, I am a glutton for punishment. I could leave my sidearm with my soon to be step-son-in-law when I go into DC.

    From http://www.handgunlaw.us I found the attached reciprocity map. It looks like my carry permit is recognized everyone between home (Michigan) and Virginia with the obvious exception of DC.

    So from the advice (thank you very much to all who have contributed) I should leave my gun with family in Virginia when going into DC and pick it back up when I leave the cesspool....err...our capitol? It looks like other than that spot (red on the attached map, representing socialism?)I can drive and carry concealed through Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

    Please correct my assumptions if you think I am off base.

    Thanks again for everyone's time and assistance.
    Careful around DuPont circle. There are some unsavory characters out and about that area. Yes, it's upscale, but you'll see what I mean if you do decide to stay there.

    Also, watch out for parking scams. It's not uncommon for some creep to guide you to what might look like a parking lot, but is actually an alley or empty and unused lot, take your money, then while you're gone, break into your vehicle and have their way with it.

    The mall area, with all of the museums and government buildings, the Capital, the White House, the Washington Monument (us locals call it the pencil), the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorials - all of these are quite beautiful and impressive.

    Where in Virginia is the marriage taking place?

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    SouthernBoy wrote:
    Where in Virginia is the marriage taking place?
    About an hour outside of DC so the trip into the city was pretty convenient.

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    Springfield45ACP wrote:
    SouthernBoy wrote:
    Where in Virginia is the marriage taking place?
    About an hour outside of DC so the trip into the city was pretty convenient.
    Avoid staying in DC and take the metro, as another stated...

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    Springfield45ACP wrote:
    SouthernBoy wrote:
    Where in Virginia is the marriage taking place?
    About an hour outside of DC so the trip into the city was pretty convenient.
    Basically we want you to be safe and enjoy your stay in the area. Of course, we would prefer you stay in Virginia and spend your money in our state. But mostly, we want you to be safe and feel welcome.

    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    SouthernBoy wrote:
    Basically we want you to be safe and enjoy your stay in the area. Of course, we would prefer you stay in Virginia and spend your money in our state. But mostly, we want you to be safe and feel welcome.
    OK, call me easy. I had booked my DuPont Circle hotel through Hotels.com and it said it was non-refundable. I called them and told them that I read their Ts&Cs on their website and it clearly states they waive cancellation fees or other charges. They claimed it would be up to the hotel. It was a Hilton and I've been part of their HHonors program for years. Hilton waived any fees so I can stay elsewhere.

    So (more) money will be put into the economy of the great state of Virginia. I am booking for Alexandria. Now I have to figure how to get into DC for my sightseeing.It looks like the Blue Line runs to/from Alexandria.

    You folks have been great for recommendations so far. Any additional advice is helpful. Thanks!

  17. #17
    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Springfield45ACP wrote:
    SouthernBoy wrote:
    Basically we want you to be safe and enjoy your stay in the area. Of course, we would prefer you stay in Virginia and spend your money in our state. But mostly, we want you to be safe and feel welcome.
    OK, call me easy. I had booked my DuPont Circle hotel through Hotels.com and it said it was non-refundable. I called them and told them that I read their Ts&Cs on their website and it clearly states they waive cancellation fees or other charges. They claimed it would be up to the hotel. It was a Hilton and I've been part of their HHonors program for years. Hilton waived any fees so I can stay elsewhere.

    So (more) money will be put into the economy of the great state of Virginia. I am booking for Alexandria. Now I have to figure how to get into DC for my sightseeing.It looks like the Blue Line runs to/from Alexandria.

    You folks have been great for recommendations so far. Any additional advice is helpful. Thanks!
    Yes, the Metro subway would be your friend. I haven't ridden it in many years, but it is a decent system and well laid out for both residents and tourists. You will be able to open carry in Virginia without any sort of permit.

    Virginia and Michigan have what's called "mutual recognition" for their concealed permit holders. Here is the quote on the Virginia State Police website about this.


    "Virginia extends reciprocity or recognition to citizens holding both resident and non-resident permits/licenses from the following jurisdictions..

    Listing of states with which Virginia has mutual recognition (Jurisdictions have informally agreed to honor permits issued by the other)"


    So as I read this, your permit is good to go here.




    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Thanks to everyone for your help and advice.

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    Guns? I'll tell you this as a veteran cab driver: DON"T take a vehicle you are driving into Washington. D.C.!! The potholes will batter your car worse than a trailer-park wife, for starters. If you have bumper stickers that proclaim an espousal of anything objectionable to the Left, you could find it vandalized. And traffic?? Don't get me started.

    Hotel rates are also much less expensive in Virginia due to the fact that we don't tax the crap out of businesses here.

    The Metro stop furthest West of D.C. is Vienna. There are budget motels in the vicinity. If you wind up missing a train, taxicab rates average a bit more than two bucks per mile, $2.75 for the fist 1/6th mile, $1.25 for additional passengers (not per mile, a surcharge.) Vienna from Alexandria is between 45-65 bucks, base fare. Don't trust the D.C. cabbies, they know a tourist when they see one.

    And be sure to see the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington Cemetery. It is a very simple, straightforward proceeding, yet packed with symbolism and will not fail to stir your emotions. Have a great time.

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    This is a highly personal decision. You will need to weigh many different risks. I personally am a conscious objector, and have carried in the lower 48 plus The District on a regular basis.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
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