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Thread: Driving in School Zones, Securing Gun in Vehicle

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    Regular Member grinner's Avatar
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    Driving in School Zones, Securing Gun in Vehicle

    I've read a LOT of the material on this forum and the relevant state statutes. Thanks. I just want some clarification as it relates to my plans.

    From what I understand, I can possess a firearm in a school zone, and even on school grounds, as long as it is encased. But not inside the school building. Is this right?

    I drive a Jeep Wrangler. No doors, no top, no windows, no back seat, certainly no trunk. Just two seats, a glove box, center console, and some open floor space behind the seats. So I plan to buy a small range bag with the gun manufacturer's name on it so it's obviously a case specifically designed for a gun, and bungee it to the floor toward the back of the jeep. I'll follow the dance routine of unloading the gun, encasing it, and then putting the case into the jeep, and reverse on the way out. Seem reasonable?

    What am I supposed to do when I want to enter a government building? Such as pick up my son from school? I can't just leave the range bag in the jeep for anyone to access and I can't take it inside with me. If I were to buy a locking metal "Tuffy" box and put the bag in there, aren't I guilty of concealing the gun, or is it acceptable to conceal a gun inside a vehicle while I'm not inside the vehicle?

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    IMHO, the city owns the school property and can prohibit you from carrying on that property, whether you are inside or outside the building.
    They can not stop you from having your firearm unloaded, encased and locked in your trunk or in your case your "Tuffy" box.

    As I have stated many times, let the challenges begin, just make sure you have your ducks in a row.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grinner View Post
    I've read a LOT of the material on this forum and the relevant state statutes. Thanks. I just want some clarification as it relates to my plans.
    What did you conclude are the elements of the relevant state statutes and how does one make exception for another?

    I believe that the relevant statutes are § 167.31 vehicle transport, § 941.23 carrying concealed and § 948.605.

    § 167.31 unloaded and encased.
    § 941.23 within reach, concealed/hidden and aware.
    § 948.605 not in school zone or unloaded and encased or locked in a rack.

    Case law, that may be stare decisis, expands on each of these statutes but we are not qualified to do other than observe the black letter law.

    You decide. You take your chances. You pay your money. You may get what you pay for. You will pay for what you get.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Huffman View Post
    What did you conclude are the elements of the relevant state statutes and how does one make exception for another?

    I believe that the relevant statutes are § 167.31 vehicle transport, § 941.23 carrying concealed and § 948.605.

    § 167.31 unloaded and encased.
    § 941.23 within reach, concealed/hidden and aware.
    § 948.605 not in school zone or unloaded and encased or locked in a rack.

    Case law, that may be stare decisis, expands on each of these statutes but we are not qualified to do other than observe the black letter law.

    You decide. You take your chances. You pay your money. You may get what you pay for. You will pay for what you get.
    And again your video shows how ridiculous these laws are even out of your vehicle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    IMHO, the city owns the school property and can prohibit you from carrying on that property, whether you are inside or outside the building.
    School districts own public school property, not cities. School districts are separate units of government, distinct from cities, villages, towns or counties, et. al. Geographically, school districts may encompass an area that includes all or parts of multiple municipalities. For example, the Monona Grove School District includes the City of Monona, the Village of Cottage Grove, and probably the Town of Blooming Grove-- all of which are distinct municipalities. Likewise, the Madison School District includes the City of Madison, Town of Madison and a portion of the City of Fitchburg. None of these municipalities own the school property.

    But remember, school districts are not included in the list of units of government that are bound by 66.0409. I am not aware of anything that prohibits a school district from creating a rule that is dissimilar or more stringent than state law.

    Private schools, like any business, are generally owned by corporations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shotgun View Post
    School districts own public school property, not cities. School districts are separate units of government, distinct from cities, villages, towns or counties, et. al. Geographically, school districts may encompass an area that includes all or parts of multiple municipalities. For example, the Monona Grove School District includes the City of Monona, the Village of Cottage Grove, and probably the Town of Blooming Grove-- all of which are distinct municipalities. Likewise, the Madison School District includes the City of Madison, Town of Madison and a portion of the City of Fitchburg. None of these municipalities own the school property.

    But remember, school districts are not included in the list of units of government that are bound by 66.0409. I am not aware of anything that prohibits a school district from creating a rule that is dissimilar or more stringent than state law.

    Private schools, like any business, are generally owned by corporations.
    So then you will have no issue with being the person to challenge this issue by wearing or carrying your firearm into the school. I am sure any attorney will agree that a school and school property is technically government owned since tax money funds the schools. The property would be owned by the city or municipality in which the property is located and partially funded by the other municipalities.

    By the way where is this list of units that are bound by 66.0409?
    Last edited by J.Gleason; 07-05-2010 at 12:51 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    So then you will have no issue with being the person to challenge this issue by wearing or carrying your firearm into the school. I am sure any attorney will agree that a school and school property is technically government owned since tax money funds the schools. The property would be owned by the city or municipality in which the property is located and partially funded by the other municipalities.

    By the way where is this list of units that are bound by 66.0409?
    I didn't say public schools weren't government-owned. They are, just by a different unit of government, i.e., the school district. And it doesn't matter if they're government-owned or not, because the law regulates firearms in ALL schools, public and private alike.

    Where is the list of units that are bound by 66.0409? Not surprisingly it is in 66.0409:

    "(b) “Political subdivision” means a city, village, town or county."

    It does not include other units of government, such as school districts, sewage districts, baseball districts...

    Additionally, I'm not a lawyer, but I'm not sure one could be charged under 941.235 "carrying a firearm in a public building" for taking a firearm into a public school. 941.235 doesn't say it prohibits firearms "in all government buildings" even though that's how we summarize it for the sake of convenience. 941.235 says "any building owned or leased by the state or any political subdivision of the state." I don't believe school districts are among the "political subdivisions of the state." They are special purpose districts. "Political subdivisions" are counties, cities, villages and towns only.
    Last edited by Shotgun; 07-05-2010 at 01:31 PM. Reason: Addendum

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    Regular Member grinner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Huffman View Post
    What did you conclude are the elements of the relevant state statutes and how does one make exception for another?

    I believe that the relevant statutes are § 167.31 vehicle transport, § 941.23 carrying concealed and § 948.605.

    § 167.31 unloaded and encased.
    § 941.23 within reach, concealed/hidden and aware.
    § 948.605 not in school zone or unloaded and encased or locked in a rack.
    Precisely. I think I'm good with 167.31 and 948.605. The gun will be unloaded and encased the entire time.

    So what I'm concerned about is 941.23 concealed weapon while the gun case is in a Tuffy box.

    Concealed: yes. Aware: yes. Within reach: I don't know. The Tuffy box would be within reach while I'm standing next to it. Is the gun case within reach? No. It's inside the Tuffy and I can't reach the gun case with the Tuffy box closed.

    I think if I put a gun case inside of a locked Tuffy box in the back of my Jeep, there's no way someone would say I'm carrying a concealed weapon. Or if they do, I guess I'll see them in court.

    Maybe I answered my own question, but thanks for the help.

    EDIT: Whoops, there seems to have been a discussion going on while I was pondering and typing
    Last edited by grinner; 07-05-2010 at 01:21 PM. Reason: Other posts since I posted this one...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shotgun View Post
    I didn't say public schools weren't government-owned. They are, just by a different unit of government, i.e., the school district. And it doesn't matter if they're government-owned or not, because the law regulates firearms in ALL schools, public and private alike.

    Where is the list of units that are bound by 66.0409? Not surprisingly it is in 66.0409:

    "(b) “Political subdivision” means a city, village, town or county."

    It does not include other units of government, such as school districts, sewage districts, baseball districts...
    I would think the city school district falls under the cities responsibility as a political subdivision. I seen that list in the statute I thought you were referring to a different list.

    The school district overlooked by the school board or local board of education is governed on a local level and funded by local taxes as well as other government grants. The property itself is owned by the city which hosts the property and governed by the school district. Maybe I was misreading what you had typed because it seems to me we are saying the same thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grinner View Post
    Precisely. I think I'm good with 167.31 and 948.605. The gun will be unloaded and encased the entire time.

    So what I'm concerned about is 941.23 concealed weapon while the gun case is in a Tuffy box.

    Concealed: yes. Aware: yes. Within reach: I don't know. The Tuffy box would be within reach while I'm standing next to it. Is the gun case within reach? No. It's inside the Tuffy and I can't reach the gun case with the Tuffy box closed.

    I think if I put a gun case inside of a locked Tuffy box in the back of my Jeep, there's no way someone would say I'm carrying a concealed weapon. Or if they do, I guess I'll see them in court.

    Maybe I answered my own question, but thanks for the help.
    So when you are standing outside your vehicle, with your firearm inside the case, you are in possession of a concealed weapon, it is also within reach or lunging distance and you know it is there.

    The point is you can not obey one statute and not be in violation of the other. Pointless, blatant infringements. Nothing more.

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    Regular Member grinner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j.gleason View Post
    so when you are standing outside your vehicle, with your firearm inside the case, you are in possession of a concealed weapon, it is also within reach or lunging distance and you know it is there.

    The point is you can not obey one statute and not be in violation of the other. Pointless, blatant infringements. Nothing more.
    right! Exactly!

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    I would think the city school district falls under the cities responsibility as a political subdivision. I seen that list in the statute I thought you were referring to a different list.

    The school district overlooked by the school board or local board of education is governed on a local level and funded by local taxes as well as other government grants. The property itself is owned by the city which hosts the property and governed by the school district. Maybe I was misreading what you had typed because it seems to me we are saying the same thing.
    No. I'm saying the school property is not owned by the city. It's owned by the school district, which, as I explained above is separate and distinct from the city. If you look, for example, on the City of Madison Assessor's website you will see that La Follette High School's owner is "Madison Metropolitan School District" whereas the City-County Building is 60.9% owned by Dane County and 39.1% owned by the City of Madison and the Madison Police Department east precinct building is owned by the city.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shotgun View Post
    But remember, school districts are not included in the list of units of government that are bound by 66.0409. I am not aware of anything that prohibits a school district from creating a rule that is dissimilar or more stringent than state law.

    Private schools, like any business, are generally owned by corporations.
    School Districts do not have the authority to enact Code, Statutes, Ordinances or any other type of "law". That is why there is no reason to be included in 66.0409.
    A "rule" is not a law. You may be cited with disorderly conduct or tresspassing in you are on the school grounds with a legally encased firearm and do not leave, but there is no penalty for the specific violation of a rule. The sidewalk is not the property of the school district. Nobody at the school has the authority to stop you from walking down the sidewalk past the school with a legally encased firearm.
    A "rule" does not give them the authority to search your trunk for legally encased firearms.

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    Regular Member Interceptor_Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grinner View Post
    If I were to buy a locking metal "Tuffy" box and put the bag in there, aren't I guilty of concealing the gun, or is it acceptable to conceal a gun inside a vehicle while I'm not inside the vehicle?
    Bolt your box to the floor of your truck in the rear and place your legally encasd firearm in there for transportation. There are far more important things to have anxiety about than getting a CCW citation because you properly stored your firearm in this scenerio. Since your vehicle has no trunk you do not have the option of placing your firearm in a trunk. You are creating a trunk with the locked box.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shotgun View Post
    No. I'm saying the school property is not owned by the city. It's owned by the school district, which, as I explained above is separate and distinct from the city. If you look, for example, on the City of Madison Assessor's website you will see that La Follette High School's owner is "Madison Metropolitan School District" whereas the City-County Building is 60.9% owned by Dane County and 39.1% owned by the City of Madison and the Madison Police Department east precinct building is owned by the city.
    The school district and the school board are all subdivisions of the city government. The school district and the school board are city government entities. The schools are funded by local tax moneys through tax levys imposed by the school district in each city. Your property tax reflects such levys. They are payable to the city or county in which you live and divided among the districts in that city as appropriate. No matter how you look at it, if you are caught carrying a firearm on school property you will be arrested and charged with a felony at this point in time. The court will consider the property to be owned by the city or county depending on where the school is and the court will claim that the city nor the county have given you permission to possess the firearm on the property. Either way your screwed unless your judge is from Sheboygan falls!

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    The school district and the school board are all subdivisions of the city government. The school district and the school board are city government entities.
    Nope. School boards are separate. For example, Elkhorn Area School District serves more area than just the City of Elkhorn and the City has no control over the district.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul@paul-fisher.com View Post
    Nope. School boards are separate. For example, Elkhorn Area School District serves more area than just the City of Elkhorn and the City has no control over the district.
    I agree separate but still a political subdivision of the city or county government

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    I agree separate but still a political subdivision of the city or county government
    Absolutely not! There are inter county school districts, for example.

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    Well, all I can say is bring your argument to the judge and see where it gets you.
    If you are right, then there should be no problem. You will walk away unscathed.
    No fine, No record, No infringement. Some one has to be the first, go for it.

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    Regular Member paul@paul-fisher.com's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    Well, all I can say is bring your argument to the judge and see where it gets you.
    If you are right, then there should be no problem. You will walk away unscathed.
    No fine, No record, No infringement. Some one has to be the first, go for it.
    Charged because I think that the school isn't owned by the city?

    Obviously the locality that has the physical school property present has the right to charge you if you violate the GFSZ law.

    I guess I don't follow your point. I wasn't disagreeing with most of your statement, only about who 'runs' the school district.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul@paul-fisher.com View Post
    Charged because I think that the school isn't owned by the city?

    Obviously the locality that has the physical school property present has the right to charge you if you violate the GFSZ law.

    I guess I don't follow your point. I wasn't disagreeing with most of your statement, only about who 'runs' the school district.
    The point I am trying to make is that the school property is technically owned by the city or county in which it is located. therefore it is government owned and can legally have a prohibition of firearms. The law states government owned buildings and this could apply to the property as well.
    Not that carrying in a school is legal anyway at this point.

    The OP was asking if he could remove his firearm from his open jeep and carry it encased and unloaded into the school. My advice, and this is not legal advice as IANAL, is "NO."

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    Regular Member paul@paul-fisher.com's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    The point I am trying to make is that the school property is technically owned by the city or county in which it is located. therefore it is government owned and can legally have a prohibition of firearms. The law states government owned buildings and this could apply to the property as well.
    Not that carrying in a school is legal anyway at this point.

    The OP was asking if he could remove his firearm from his open jeep and carry it encased and unloaded into the school. My advice, and this is not legal advice as IANAL, is "NO."
    I guess we agree as to the school buildings are government owned but I argue that they are owned by the school board which is a government entity in itself and has no legal ties to any other entity.

    I've been reading the state laws on schools and haven't specifically found a cite but I hope to soon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J.Gleason View Post
    My advice, and this is not legal advice as IANAL, is "NO."
    Aww, you're just being mean! As though correctness was the mean and common.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul@paul-fisher.com View Post
    I guess we agree as to the school buildings are government owned but I argue that they are owned by the school board which is a government entity in itself and has no legal ties to any other entity.

    I've been reading the state laws on schools and haven't specifically found a cite but I hope to soon.
    No shotgun stated that the schools are owned by the school district. which would still be a government entity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by doug huffman View Post
    aww, you're just being mean! As though correctness was the mean and common.
    lol!

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