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Thread: Is it concealed if nobody is around to not see it?

  1. #1
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    Question Is it concealed if nobody is around to not see it?

    The impetus for this question came from my first handgun training course and something the instructor said to me about carrying to the range. I asked him about carrying in my vehicle since I have a small suv I lock the gun in it's case put it in the back of the vehicle and use the privacy cover to prevent "easy access". After I explained all that to him he simply said "carry it in your holster and if you get pulled over take it out and put it on the seat".

    Aside from the downside of fiddling with something as an leo approaches your vehicle to make him more nervous, would holstering during regular driving and removing to make it clearly visible when necessary be acceptable.

    Seems to me it's not concealed if he can see it straight away. However, I was hoping to hear if anybody had any experience with doing this.

    Also this is my first post here and I am very appreciative of all the information I have read so far. There is a wealth of information and even some entertainment around here.

    Thanks,
    NCDan
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    I carry in my holster 50% of the time when I drive the other 50% I have it between the seats with the butt poking up. if I am carrying in a car in my holster as soon as I see leo behind me I automatically put it in between the seats to be safe in case I do get pulled over. I don’t see it as a issue because I believe the main reason behind ccw laws is for officer safety. I bet as long as he can see the gun now he won’t care where it was 5mins ago. on the other hand you know what they say ...what someone doesn’t know can’t hurt them

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    btw welcome to the forum

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    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy002 View Post
    SNIP
    I bet as long as he can see the gun now he won’t care where it was 5mins ago.
    I've had LEOs tell me this very explicitly in the past.
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    Ever heard of Schroedinger's Cat?

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    If moving the gun around makes you a bit nervous, just mount a holster in the car. I used to lock the passenger seatbelt, then clip a cheap nylon holster to it. I could move the gun from my hip to the seat holster and back. I've also carried as you are mentioning, with the intention of just placing the gun on the seat or dash. I had to do that once as a passenger and the LEO passed us through the DL check so fast he did not see the firearm and I did not have enough time to mention it. I've since gotten my CCP so carrying in the car is even simpler now. I'm sure some of the folks will chime in that keep it holstered 100% of the time and just inform the officer.

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    Regular Member Northerner's Avatar
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    NCDan, if able and not too hung up on providing the County (and mosy likely the State) personal information, apply for a CCW in your County; not to stop OCing, but to make it easier keeping it holstered and still legal inside your car.

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    Regular Member jerz_subbie's Avatar
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    I very rarely OC but when on longer drives with no passengers I sometimes put my gun on the passenger seat. If I saw an officer behind me I wouldn't think twice about touching the gun! I don't want to be the next "I saw him going for something under the seat" story.
    If my gun is holstered, CC or OC, and I have an officer behind me It's staying right where it is and I'll inform him of the fact if I'm pulled over.

    Why not just
    Quote Originally Posted by chiefjason View Post
    keep it holstered 100% of the time and just inform the officer.
    Last edited by jerz_subbie; 12-02-2010 at 01:52 PM.

  9. #9
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Fiddling with a holstered firearm at the beginning of a traffic stop is genrally NOT a good idea. I'd suggest getting an inexpensive holster and clipping it to the passenger seat lap belt (so it won't slide around to much) and putting you rfirearm in that holster while in your vehicle...

    Or better still, get your CHP. That way, if you are OCing, when you get in your car, you are still legal, even though your handgun is technically "concealed"...

    I have a NC CHP for this very reason. The main reason I got my permit was NOT so I could carry concealed, but for travel. It makes wearing a holstered firearm a lot easier legally, and also makes things smoother when I'm carrying in other states that recognize my NC permit.

    Most of the NC folks I know who are big OCers also have CHPs, but rarely CC. They have the permit for vehicular travel, and for "winter carry" when they have to wear big coats because of the weather.
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    Great suggestions. Thanks for all the advice. I opted for the holster 15 bucks and it is strapped in next to me. Today is just the second day I've carried bit I'm already feeling naked without it.

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    Regular Member smlawrence's Avatar
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    I read the topic and the first thing that comes to mind is "If a tree falls in the woods with noone around to hear it, does it really fall"?... lol.

    As soon as I get into my truck I have to remove my XDm40 from the paddle holster that I carry it in as it tends to either stick my leg or my side once in my truck. I have the fold down console in my front seat so it rides very well with a small bit of the barrel tucked right under the tip of the console with the rest of the gun sticking out, and so far, the couple of LEO's that have pulled me over have been satisfied thats its location wasn't concealed, especially after I inform them of its location just as soon as they are at my window. But that is just my story and as you know, everyone has different experiences.
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    Again thanks for all the advice. I noticed a lot of responses suggested getting my chp. The CHP won't help me a lot as my work day brings me to many places that do not allow firearms at all. Such as many lunch meetings where they serve alcohol though I don't often consume I apparently am a danger in that facility with a loaded firearm, further I have an office on a state campus so that negates even bringing it to the office. This is a hassle if I want to hit the range before during or after work.

    Open carry suits me just fine as I do not go to the terror of the public and honestly nobody even looks at me twice. I'm 6'3" reasonably fit with a military style haircut. I assume when people see it on me they figure I'm "supposed" to have it.

    Most often I am carrying to the range or the gun shop which oc works just fine for. If my lifestyle changes to be more cc friendly I will certainly get the chp.

  13. #13
    Regular Member smlawrence's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ncdan View Post
    Again thanks for all the advice. I noticed a lot of responses suggested getting my chp. The CHP won't help me a lot as my work day brings me to many places that do not allow firearms at all. Such as many lunch meetings where they serve alcohol though I don't often consume I apparently am a danger in that facility with a loaded firearm, further I have an office on a state campus so that negates even bringing it to the office. This is a hassle if I want to hit the range before during or after work.

    Open carry suits me just fine as I do not go to the terror of the public and honestly nobody even looks at me twice. I'm 6'3" reasonably fit with a military style haircut. I assume when people see it on me they figure I'm "supposed" to have it.

    Most often I am carrying to the range or the gun shop which oc works just fine for. If my lifestyle changes to be more cc friendly I will certainly get the chp.
    I'm not directing this at you in particular, it just happen to be the last one I read like this before commenting on it. I love these descriptions that describe how someone looks if they are "supposed" to have a firearm. Most descriptions are similar and thats what I find comical. Tall, In Shape, Military Haircut, Polo Shirts tucked in. I chuckle everytime I read this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by smlawrence View Post
    I'm not directing this at you in particular, it just happen to be the last one I read like this before commenting on it. I love these descriptions that describe how someone looks if they are "supposed" to have a firearm. Most descriptions are similar and thats what I find comical. Tall, In Shape, Military Haircut, Polo Shirts tucked in. I chuckle everytime I read this.
    Your point is well taken. I guess I am just taking the positive approach. I think more to the point I was trying to make is I don't look like I'm NOT supposed to have a gun. Which when thinking about it is probably more important than looking like you should have one.

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    Its only concealed to a LEO... They are the only ones who can charge you with anything... Think about speeding down a hwy... its not illegal till a cop sees you..Who cares about anyone else...its concealed...
    If it is in your suv...carry it fully loaded +1 in the pipe and within easy reach... its for protection... just dont reach for it with the cop walking up to you... move it as soon as your hit with the blue lights... put it on the seat/dash or console... dont mention it to cop... he will see it...

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    Quote Originally Posted by ncdan View Post
    Your point is well taken. I guess I am just taking the positive approach. I think more to the point I was trying to make is I don't look like I'm NOT supposed to have a gun. Which when thinking about it is probably more important than looking like you should have one.
    If you are an American than you "look" like you should have a firearm... It is the second reason we became a country

  17. #17
    Regular Member jlamb's Avatar
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    Is the general consensus here that a properly holstered handgun, outside of clothing, is illegally concealed while in a vehicle because the LEO cannot see it when they approach? Or is more of a legal gray area that you (the generalized "you") prefer to steer clear from?

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    I guess I'll take the Copenhagen interpretation on the Shrodingers cat puzzle. Observation is what makes it so...

    Another follow up I wanted to make about looking like you should or shouldn't have a firearm.

    Fundamentally I agree that if you are an American you should look like you should have a firearm, heck I have one and carry it for that very reason. However, you can not just overlook the reality that not everyone has this view. For people who do not carry this same open minded approach to open carry I assure you they certainly have a concept of who looks like they should or should not be carrying a loaded weapon.

    So when I described myself I was suggesting that people who don't understand these laws or freedoms assume that I must be "ok". I can guarantee that my personal appearance makes a difference to those people. I'm not saying it's right I'm just saying it is. When you have gattotp as a possibility at all times it certainly goes a long way to look like a respectable citizen. It's the same reason we dress nicely for a job interview you might be completely qualified and the best person for the position but if you look like you just rolled out of bed and smell like bourbon and cow manure you are likely not going to get that job, unless of course it is a bourbon plant that runs on cow manure.

    Also please don't flame me on bourbon or cow manure I have nothing against either.

    Cheers
    NCDan

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