Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 38

Thread: Gun Free School Zones Act of 1995

  1. #1
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Southwest Virginia
    Posts
    188

    Exclamation Gun Free School Zones Act of 1995

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_Free_School_Zones_Act

    I couldn't find anything on this forum about the federal law specifically, only about state-level school zone bans. This act prohibits carrying a gun within 1000 feet of a school property line, except for limited exceptions (having a license or permit to carry is one of them).

    Notwithstanding its blatant and obvious unconstitutionality, this had been upheld by various courts. My question is, for those of you who open carry without CC permits, does this law affect how and where you carry? And are local police empowered to enforce this?

  2. #2
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    Actually, IIRC, the original form of the GFSZ law was struck down. Congress repassed it, adding language stating why they think the Interstate Commerce Clause justifies their authority to pass it.

    If you carry a gun in a school, expect to be arrested. LEOs will find some State law to use. If the State does not have a GFSZ law, they will simply use DC. So, they don't need the federal law to arrest you. However, if you are in violation of the federal law, you can expect to be also (or only) charged under it.

    I don't know of any charges ever filed using this law from casual carry within the 1000 feet. I suspect that, if any officer is foolish to try to arrest someone for carrying withing a 1000 feet of a school, the SCOTUS will, once again, strike the law down. It is still on the books because no one has been foolishly charged under it--yet.

  3. #3
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Venator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Lansing area, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    6,445
    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    Actually, IIRC, the original form of the GFSZ law was struck down. Congress repassed it, adding language stating why they think the Interstate Commerce Clause justifies their authority to pass it.

    If you carry a gun in a school, expect to be arrested. LEOs will find some State law to use. If the State does not have a GFSZ law, they will simply use DC. So, they don't need the federal law to arrest you. However, if you are in violation of the federal law, you can expect to be also (or only) charged under it.

    I don't know of any charges ever filed using this law from casual carry within the 1000 feet. I suspect that, if any officer is foolish to try to arrest someone for carrying withing a 1000 feet of a school, the SCOTUS will, once again, strike the law down. It is still on the books because no one has been foolishly charged under it--yet.
    Depends on the state of course. People with CPLs OC in schools in Michigan. No arrests so far.
    An Amazon best seller "MY PARENTS OPEN CARRY" http://www.myparentsopencarry.com/

    *The information contained above is not meant to be legal advice, but is solely intended as a starting point for further research. These are my opinions, if you have further questions it is advisable to seek out an attorney that is well versed in firearm law.

  4. #4
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Southwest Virginia
    Posts
    188
    You can see here the changes between the original law and the current one. They are so minor I wonder how the Supreme Court could uphold it: http://www.gunlaws.com/Gun_Free_School_Zones_Act.pdf

    The wikipedia article has links to 7 cases of federal prosecutions under this law. None of them have it as the sole charge, but the defendants were also charged with other felonies (drug crimes, other gun crimes). The only one that seems to challenge the law's constitutionality is United States v Nieves-Castaño (2007), where the defendant said the law was a denial of "due process" because it failed to specify how the 1000 feet distance was to be measured, but the court (5th Circuit Court of Appeals) rejected that argument and upheld the convection.

    Regarding carrying in Michigan; yes carrying with a license would be legal under the federal law (and assuming there is no state law). I'm talking about people who OC and have no license (whether an OC or CC license), and there are a lot of those people on this forum. Under the current federal law it appears to me these people are committing felonies.

  5. #5
    Regular Member usmcbess's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Labadie, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    195
    my state law allows for cary into a school if you are delivering a student to or from school.I'm in Missouri. I'm not brave enough to test the water on this one just yet. I am most concerned with federal law overshadowing the allowance of my state.

  6. #6
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,605
    ***Deleted***
    Last edited by aadvark; 05-31-2011 at 11:24 AM.

  7. #7
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Fort Collins, Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    186

  8. #8
    Activist Member swinokur's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, MD
    Posts
    984
    Quote Originally Posted by Virginian683 View Post
    You can see here the changes between the original law and the current one. They are so minor I wonder how the Supreme Court could uphold it: http://www.gunlaws.com/Gun_Free_School_Zones_Act.pdf

    It probably would not stand a constitutional challenge. No one has brought into the courts AFAIK

  9. #9
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Richmond, Tx
    Posts
    326
    Here in Texas, we don't have OC (yet!!). But the Texas CHL law prohibits carry on 'school property' then defines that as the interior of buildings, so carriage of a parent dropping off/picking up outside is legal.
    Lower the crime rate by lowering the criminal survival rate!
    When people say 'God Bless America' I'm sure He says, "I gave you Texas!"

  10. #10
    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    6,787
    Quote Originally Posted by mark-in-texas View Post
    Here in Texas, we don't have OC (yet!!). But the Texas CHL law prohibits carry on 'school property' then defines that as the interior of buildings, so carriage of a parent dropping off/picking up outside is legal.
    Interesting!

    Adding to the quagmire of OC/CC laws throughout our collective union.

    I swear, if our Founding Fathers had the slightest idea the prooblems CC might cause, or any carry, for that matter, they would have clearly enumerated carry-all rights, along with "in any and all mannner possibly conceivable" lingo simply to avoid this ridiculous line of crap.

    PS: I spent one summer back in 1982 at the Library of Congress reading through hundreds of the 50,000+ documents written by our Founding Fathers, so I *think* I have a clue when it comes to their thoughts on an armed republic. With only about three exceptions, the other dozens were for it, unequivocably.

    The next time you're near Washington D.C., make it a point to visit their heriitage reading room. Call ahead. It"s through the main doors, through the massive main area, and through a double-doorway about a third of the way down the back hall on the left.

    Bring your white gloves, but what you'll read there will pop your eyes out of your sockets! These folks were WITH IT, Lol!
    Last edited by since9; 10-09-2010 at 12:32 PM.
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

  11. #11
    kittyhawk63
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by since9 View Post
    Interesting!

    Adding to the quagmire of OC/CC laws throughout our collective union.

    I swear, if our Founding Fathers had the slightest idea the prooblems CC might cause, or any carry, for that matter, they would have clearly enumerated carry-all rights, along with "in any and all mannner possibly conceivable" lingo simply to avoid this ridiculous line of crap.

    PS: I spent one summer back in 1982 at the Library of Congress reading through hundreds of the 50,000+ documents written by our Founding Fathers, so I *think* I have a clue when it comes to their thoughts on an armed republic. With only about three exceptions, the other dozens were for it, unequivocably.

    The next time you're near Washington D.C., make it a point to visit their heriitage reading room. Call ahead. It"s through the main doors, through the massive main area, and through a double-doorway about a third of the way down the back hall on the left.

    Bring your white gloves, but what you'll read there will pop your eyes out of your sockets! These folks were WITH IT, Lol!
    Yes, our Founding Fathers were highly educated men...far better educated than the PhD's we have running around today. I believe if they had had the foresight to see how our corrupt politicians and courts would "reinterpret" the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and treat the Constitution as a "living document" they would have inserted the Bill of Rights "into" the Constitution and would have been explicitly clear about what they meant in their writings to avoid any confusion or manipulation of its contents. They would also have made it a "sealed" document where it could not have been amended. Lastly, they would have written a manual explaining what they had written and how it should be applied to the American society and made it a part of one's education. BTW, if I am not in error, the original Constitution did not state Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. It stated Life, Liberty, and Property. Property was vital to their security. Today, we have lost the right to truly "own" our property. We merely purchase the "privilege" to live on it. The thieving government can come in and take it from us any time they want.
    Last edited by kittyhawk63; 10-18-2010 at 01:15 AM.

  12. #12
    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Western Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    5,849
    Quote Originally Posted by kittyhawk63 View Post
    Yes, our Founding Fathers were highly educated men...far better educated than the PhD's we have running around today. I believe if they had had the foresight to see how our corrupt politicians and courts would "reinterpret" the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and treat the Constitution as a "living document" they would have inserted the Bill of Rights "into" the Constitution and would have been explicitly clear about what they meant in their writings to avoid any confusion or manipulation of its contents. They would also have made it a "sealed" document where it could not have been amended. Lastly, they would have written a manual explaining what they had written and how it should be applied to the American society and made it a part of one's education. BTW, if I am not in error, the original Constitution did not state Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. It stated Life, Liberty, and Property. Property was vital to their security. Today, we have lost the right to truly "own" our property. We merely purchase the "privilege" to live on it. The thieving government can come in and take it from us any time they want.
    Couple of things.

    The Constitution and the Bill of Rights are quite clear in their verbiage, meaning, and intent. The problems arise under the guise of contemporary interpretation (contemporary meaning any time after the inception of these documents). It is through interpretation where the devils have entered the folds.

    The other thing is " if I am not in error, the original Constitution did not state Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. It stated Life, Liberty, and Property". While you are correct in the meat of this statement, you have the wrong document. This does not appear in the Constitution, but rather in the Declaration of Independence.
    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!

  13. #13
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    North Chesterfield, Va.
    Posts
    34,616
    Quote Originally Posted by Virginian683 View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_Free_School_Zones_Act

    I couldn't find anything on this forum about the federal law specifically, only about state-level school zone bans. This act prohibits carrying a gun within 1000 feet of a school property line, except for limited exceptions (having a license or permit to carry is one of them).

    Notwithstanding its blatant and obvious unconstitutionality, this had been upheld by various courts. My question is, for those of you who open carry without CC permits, does this law affect how and where you carry? And are local police empowered to enforce this?
    Virginia does not have a state level GFSZ (1000') law.

    There are exceptions to our state law found in 18.2-308.1
    http://leg1.state.va.us/000/cod/18.2-308.HTM

    According to council, local LEOs may enforce federal law, but it his been our experience that is rare.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  14. #14
    Regular Member KansasMustang's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Herington, Kansas, USA
    Posts
    1,005
    The Declaration of Independence did indeed state, Life, Liberty, and Property. They changed the property to the pursuit of happiness because of the slave states. They did not want to give them any power to keep slavery indefinitely. A good many of our founders were slave owners and considered slaves property. Hence also the 3/5ths person rule. The slave states were larger in population due to the slave population, and the abolitionists were bound and determined not to have a non-voting population hold sway over the congress. This and of course the Civil War, also known as the "War of Northern Aggression" Was the eventual ending of slavery in this country. Also take note that while it is kept a big secret, slavery still exists. Mostly in the Arab nations. The Saudis for example "Hire" many foreign workers to do the menial tasks, but...
    Having said that. I truly hope the School zone law gets repealed, overturned or whatever. In the Armor corps we had a saying,, Personnel Carriers were just canned people, all bunched together to save machine gun ammo. And the school zone laws only allow the crazies to have a "target rich environment."
    Last edited by KansasMustang; 05-05-2011 at 05:19 AM. Reason: in order to more clearly respond to the posts intent
    ‘‘Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.’’ Thomas Jefferson

  15. #15
    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    6,787
    Quote Originally Posted by Virginian683 View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_Free_School_Zones_Act

    I couldn't find anything on this forum about the federal law specifically, only about state-level school zone bans.
    The link to the federal law is at the bottom of the wiki article you linked, under "References."

    Notwithstanding its blatant and obvious unconstitutionality, this had been upheld by various courts. My question is, for those of you who open carry without CC permits, does this law affect how and where you carry? And are local police empowered to enforce this?
    CC permits have nothing to do with OC. I'm aware that in some states, a CC permit is a prerequisite for OCing, but that's a bastardized application of the law, not an appropriate employment of it. The fact that any state has any law on the books (other than Constitutional Carry) requiring a "permit" to exercise a Constitutional RIGHT is ludicrous.

    Fortunately, at least four states have been courageous enough to recognize and respect our Constitutional rights.
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

  16. #16
    Regular Member SgtC's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Wheeling, WV
    Posts
    10
    The way the federal law reads, you have to have a permit issued by the state the school is located in. Therefore, if I am OCing, but I have a CC Permit (which is what I do in WV) I can be within 1000 of a school. However, in WV you do not need a permit to just OC. Those doing that, however, ARE in violation of the federal law when they walk or drive within 1000 ft of a school. There is no exemption for LEO's not on duty. That means that a cop going from his house, to his car and driving to work prior to "going on duty" violates the federal law every time he drives within 1000 ft of a school if he does not have a CC permit. ALSO, there is no allowance for reciprocity (There is a letter on Wiki from the BATF to someone that explains that they do not honor reciprocity if you want to Google it). That is why although WV and PA are reciprocal, I obtained a PA non-resident permit. I live in WV but my office is in PA and I drive past 3 PA schools on my way to work. The lady at the counter informed me that I am reciprocal and I replied, "yes, I know but..." and explained the federal law. She agreed it was a very stupid law. It, in effect, nullifies the reciprocity that many states now have. Fortuneately, It seems to be only used against the "bad guys" as an additional charge.
    some things to consider. you can be on an interstate that passes OVER a school and be within the 1000 ft.
    Also - what if you are standing at the border of one state and there is a school less than 1000 ft away ion the other state - per this law, you would be in violation if you did not have a permit issued by the second state even though you were completely legal in the state you were standing in.
    Open or Concealed... CARRY ON!

  17. #17
    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    6,787
    Quote Originally Posted by SgtC View Post
    Those doing that, however, ARE in violation of the federal law when they walk or drive within 1000 ft of a school.
    "Drive?" Isn't that a state-specific thing? From what I understand, CO considers vehicles to be an extension of one's home, so OCing in a vehicle (aka "driving") within 1000' of a school is fine.

    Is this incorrect? If it is, half the city is off-limits!
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

  18. #18
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    Quote Originally Posted by SgtC View Post
    The way the federal law reads, you have to have a permit issued by the state the school is located in...
    Actually, it doesn't:

    "(ii) if the individual possessing the firearm is licensed to do so by the State in which the school zone is located or a political subdivision of the State, and the law of the State or political subdivision requires that, before an individual obtains such a license, the law enforcement authorities of the State or political subdivision verify that the individual is qualified under law to receive the license;"

    "Is licensed" does not necessarily mean "has a licensed issued by." It literally means "has permission to." Through reciprocity, we can be licensed to carry in another State, even though that State has not issued the license.

    I know that this is not the way that BATFE interprets the law. However, their interpretation should be considered by any court, just as the one I am presenting should be. Courts, not the BATFE, are charged with clarifying unclear law.

    I am not advocating that someone should test the BATFE interpretation, just that, if someone gets arrested and can argue this, they should.
    Last edited by eye95; 05-27-2011 at 10:16 AM.

  19. #19
    Activist Member swinokur's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, MD
    Posts
    984
    That's exactly how I interpret it. License can be interpreted as permission as well as a legal document. If you are carrying on reciprocity and your permit involved a background check, I think you have met the conditions of the law IMO. The person at the BATFE who issued the opinion is neither a DOJ attorney or a judge nor even a top level BATFE official. He is the chief of some section of BATFE. I think his opinion is no more valid than yours or mine and since no court has ruled on it. I don't worry about it.

    If BATFE wants to issue a stronger policy, it should be more than the opinion of some mid level paper pusher who has no enforcement authority whatsoever as far as I can tell.

  20. #20
    Regular Member MKEgal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    in front of my computer, WI
    Posts
    4,426
    Quote Originally Posted by Virginian683
    denial of "due process" because it failed to specify how the 1000 feet distance was to be measured
    ...I'm talking about people who OC and have no license... Under the current federal law it appears to me these people are committing felonies.
    I think it's a violation of due process when the State doesn't clearly mark the "school zones". Big orange signs, paint the curbs, etc. Make it clear that no legal firearms are allowed.

    And yes, carry within 1000' of a school w/o a state permission slip & you could be charged under federal law.
    I was amused when a LEO friend of mine seemed indignant that even with the fancy federal LEOSA allowing him to carry wherever, whenever, he couldn't carry in a school zone.

    Quote Originally Posted by since9
    I swear, if our Founding Fathers had the slightest idea the prooblems CC might cause, or any carry, for that matter, they would have clearly enumerated carry-all rights, along with "in any and all mannner possibly conceivable" lingo simply to avoid this ridiculous line of crap.
    +1000

    PS: I spent one summer back in 1982 at the Library of Congress
    :drool: you lucky dog, you.

  21. #21
    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Western Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    5,849
    The federal law makes no mention of having a permit to carry a fiream. Rather it states that,

    "... the individual possessing the firearm is licensed to do so by the State in which the school zone is located or a political subdivision of the State, and the law of the State or political subdivision requires that, before an individual obtains such a license, the law enforcement authorities of the State or political subdivision verify that the individual is qualified under law to receive the license"

    In Virginia, as in many (most?) states, there is no requirement to obtain a license as a prerequisite of firearm's possession, so that is a bit of a conflict. Next, you'll notice that nothing is stated that you must have said "license" on your person should you be carrying a firearm within a school zone, only that you must have said license to possess that firearm. And then, what about states like Vermont, Alaska, and Arizona which have no requirement at all for their citizens to obtain a concealed carry permit (which, once again, is NOT mentioned in the federal statute) should they venture within the magic perimeter?

    So here we have this scenario. A man is out for his morning walk, a portion of which happens to occur across the street from an elementary school, and a police officer takes notice of his openly carried sidearm. The officer approaches the man, utters a few words, then asks for an ID to which the man declines to offer.... because he doesn't have to show one and because his wallet is back at his house. No ID, openly carried sidearm, and a school across the street. And no "license to possess" a firearm because that is not a requirement in his state.

    Interesting.
    Last edited by SouthernBoy; 05-29-2011 at 11:08 AM.
    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!

  22. #22
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    66
    Even if a federal judge agrees that you are "licensed" by a State as a result of reciprocity agreements or constitutional carry, etc, you still do not meet the requirements for the exception in the federal law. If you read the GFSZA95 permit exception very carefully, there are three separate requirements that must all be individually met before the exception applies:

    1: Licensed to do so by the state in which the school is in.

    2: The law of the state in which the school is located requires that their law enforcement conduct a background check before an individual receives a license.

    3. The law-enforcement authorities in the state in which the school is located actually conducted the required background check before the license was issued.


    So, if you convince a federal judge you are "licensed" in another state as a result of reciprocity, that only satisfies the first criteria in the law. Criteria #2 and #3 are not met by reciprocity agreements or constitutional carry.


    Also, if the judge rules during pre-trial that you do not qualify for the permit exception, it is highly unlikely the federal jury would ever know about your permit, as this "extraneous information" would be suppressed by the prosecution.
    Last edited by Eagle2009; 05-30-2011 at 07:52 PM.

  23. #23
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    Quote Originally Posted by Eagle2009 View Post
    Even if a federal judge agrees that you are "licensed" by a State as a result of reciprocity agreements or constitutional carry, etc, you still do not meet the requirements for the exception in the federal law. If you read the GFSZA95 permit exception very carefully, there are three separate requirements that must all be individually met before the exception applies:

    1: Licensed to do so by the state in which the school is in.

    2: The law of the state in which the school is located requires that their law enforcement conduct a background check before an individual receives a license.

    3. The law-enforcement authorities in the state in which the school is located actually conducted the required background check before the license was issued.


    So, if you convince a federal judge you are "licensed" in another state as a result of reciprocity, that only satisfies the first criteria in the law. Criteria #2 and #3 are not met by reciprocity agreements or constitutional carry.


    Also, if the judge rules during pre-trial that you do not qualify for the permit exception, it is highly unlikely the federal jury would ever know about your permit, as this "extraneous information" would be suppressed by the prosecution.
    I see #1 and #2 in the law. I don't see #3.

    if the individual possessing the firearm is licensed to do
    so by the State in which the school zone is located or a
    political subdivision of the State, and the law of the State or
    political subdivision requires that, before an individual obtains
    such a license, the law enforcement authorities of the State or
    political subdivision verify that the individual is qualified
    under law to receive the license;

  24. #24
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    66
    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I see #1 and #2 in the law. I don't see #3.


    1: Licensed to do so by the state in which the school is in.

    2: The law of the state in which the school is located requires that their law enforcement conduct a background check before an individual receives a license.

    3. The law-enforcement authorities in the state in which the school is located actually conducted the required background check before the license was issued.

    I think #3 is understood, as any license issued contrary to law (the federally mandated state law requiring a background check before issuance) is not valid. Regardless, #2 is not met by anything other than a license physically issued by the state in which the school is located, therefore the definition of "licensed" doesn't matter, as it only pertains to satisfying part #1 of the permit exception in GFSZA95.
    Last edited by Eagle2009; 05-30-2011 at 11:10 PM.

  25. #25
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairborn, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    13,063
    If the law requires a background check, that is sufficient to meet the condition in the law.

    A person is given a physical license in State A.

    That person is licensed by State B through reciprocity (not referring to the physical license).

    The law in State B requires LE to verify that persons who obtain a license are qualified under the law to receive it (referring to the physical licenses issued within that State).

    All the requirements of the law are met.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •