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Thread: Spouse of convicted felon

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    Spouse of convicted felon

    A woman whose husband is a convicted felon (robbery, I think) asked if it's legal for HER to own and keep a firearm in the house even though he lives there.

    Does anyone know where to find the official legal answer on this? I'm certain I've seen this topic before but I can't remember if it was on this particular board and my google-fu is weak.

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    well,,,

    a felon in bremerton was jailed last year, because the cops found, he had access to
    his wifes guns in their house!
    the charges were dropped, eventually...
    it was discussed on this forum
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3/325 View Post
    A woman whose husband is a convicted felon (robbery, I think) asked if it's legal for HER to own and keep a firearm in the house even though he lives there.

    Does anyone know where to find the official legal answer on this? I'm certain I've seen this topic before but I can't remember if it was on this particular board and my google-fu is weak.
    The important thing to keep in mind is "constructive possession" - that person's best bet is to start with an appeal to regain firearms rights. Second is to ensure the woman has a means to prevent constructive possession of the firearm by the husband. Third is for the woman to start a lawsuit citing arbitrary denial of her right to keep arms due to her husband's conviction and the ephemeral nature of constructive possession.
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    One of the accomplices in the lakewood cops shooting was only convicted of "being in possession" of a firearm because he was in a room at the same time as the shooter, after the actual shooting. He was a felon, and was prevented from having a firearm. The prosecutions case was that he knew about the weapon and could have gained voluntary control of the weapon, and won a conviction. The criminal is of course appealing the conviction.

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    If the guns are kept in a safe, and he doesn't know the combination, then wouldn't that keep the husband from being in possession?

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    I would think that if she's keeping the firearm in the nightstand drawer or under her pillow there could be a problem. If she kept it in a safe and could show that she was the only person that had the combination (better yet, one of those biometric locks that uses her fingerprint) then an argument could be made that he didn't have possession, actual or constructive.

    In the end it doesn't matter what might be logical, it's what the Prosecutor wants to make a case against it. FWIW, why would the Police even be coming into her house and have the ability to discover the firearm? If there is continuing criminal activity that brings them there then shame on her too.
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    Not sure if there's an equivalent to the "straw" purchase law, something like "straw" owner? In other words, is there good evidence to suggest it's really his gun and she's claiming it's her's since he's a prohibited person.

    Certainly if the gun is registered, and it's registered to him because he obtained it legally pre-felony, I think it would be in her best interest to transfer the registration. There's a Washington State form that can be voluntarily submitted to accomplish that: http://www.dol.wa.gov/forms/652004.pdf. At least then she can safely say it's her's, not his.

    I agree with the others, she needs to go the next step to make sure he can't "borrow" it.

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    There are all kinds of "felons." Should all felons be denied the right to use a firearm at home for self and family protection? Are the "felons" mentioned below too dangerous to have firearms?

    From:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lacey_Act_of_1900

    ... in 2000 four Americans were charged with importing lobster tails in plastic bags rather than cardboard boxes, in violation of a Honduran regulation that Honduras no longer enforces. They were convicted and three of them were sentenced to 8 years of imprisonment each.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcp View Post
    There are all kinds of "felons." Should all felons be denied the right to use a firearm at home for self and family protection? Are the "felons" mentioned below too dangerous to have firearms?

    From:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lacey_Act_of_1900

    ... in 2000 four Americans were charged with importing lobster tails in plastic bags rather than cardboard boxes, in violation of a Honduran regulation that Honduras no longer enforces. They were convicted and three of them were sentenced to 8 years of imprisonment each.
    It is what it is; felony = prohibited from possessing firearms.

    Many states (maybe all?) have legal procedures for felons to regain firearm rights. In some it's not even up to a judge's discretion, if the criteria is met, the right shall be restored.

    Then again, get a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction and say goodbye to 2A rights forever, AFAIK. It is what it is.

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    Regular Member j2l3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikemutt View Post
    Then again, get a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction and say goodbye to 2A rights forever, AFAIK. It is what it is.
    This is not "necessarily" true. Paul Ferris, an attorney in Washington State specializes in reviewing this type of case, and in many instances can get rights restored. If anyone is interested, his email is ptferris@washrecord.com . He is in Ellensburg, WA.
    Last edited by j2l3; 01-30-2011 at 11:59 PM. Reason: spelling
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    I stand corrected j2l3, it does appear possible to recover a lost 2A right for a DV conviction. Not sure were I'd read it was impossible.

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    Thanks for the input everybody.

    “I did not become a felon by marrying him,” she said.

    Well... apparently you have to choose between your spouse and your rights. That's some hardcore bs right there.

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    Regular Member TechnoWeenie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcp View Post
    There are all kinds of "felons." Should all felons be denied the right to use a firearm at home for self and family protection? Are the "felons" mentioned below too dangerous to have firearms?

    From:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lacey_Act_of_1900

    ... in 2000 four Americans were charged with importing lobster tails in plastic bags rather than cardboard boxes, in violation of a Honduran regulation that Honduras no longer enforces. They were convicted and three of them were sentenced to 8 years of imprisonment each.
    You're kidding right?

    ....And they wonder why they have an issue with 'homegrown terrorists'... I'd start blowing &%# up too if I lost 8 years of my life because I put something in a bag instead of a box.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TechnoWeenie View Post
    You're kidding right?

    ....And they wonder why they have an issue with 'homegrown terrorists'... I'd start blowing &%# up too if I lost 8 years of my life because I put something in a bag instead of a box.
    YNS. The gov creates its own enemies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dadada View Post
    One of the accomplices in the lakewood cops shooting was only convicted of "being in possession" of a firearm because he was in a room at the same time as the shooter, after the actual shooting. He was a felon, and was prevented from having a firearm. The prosecutions case was that he knew about the weapon and could have gained voluntary control of the weapon, and won a conviction. The criminal is of course appealing the conviction.
    I really hate it when other prosecutors push the envelope like this. I seriously doubt this will stand up on appeal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    I would think that if she's keeping the firearm in the nightstand drawer or under her pillow there could be a problem. If she kept it in a safe and could show that she was the only person that had the combination (better yet, one of those biometric locks that uses her fingerprint) then an argument could be made that he didn't have possession, actual or constructive.

    In the end it doesn't matter what might be logical, it's what the Prosecutor wants to make a case against it. FWIW, why would the Police even be coming into her house and have the ability to discover the firearm? If there is continuing criminal activity that brings them there then shame on her too.
    Depending on when the husband was convicted and what the offense was he could be on active community custody (aka probation). If so, his home would be subject to search without a warrant at any time. I had a situation years ago where I needed to advise a relative's PO about my firearms. Fortunately I had known this particular PO for many years and my word that the relative would not have access was sufficient. With a different PO or a closer relation I might have had to shell out for a seriously expensive safe.
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  18. #18
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    As long as the felon does not have access to ANY firearm or amunition he should not have problems.
    That means the weapon is either on her (the none felon) person or under lock and key/combination ok. He, the felon cannont have access to the keys OR KNOW THE COMBINATION!

    Now, if some JackBootedThug wants to cite and the prosecutor wants to pushi it--- there may be a battle but IF I were to have a felon relative in my home or car or with me whereever I would be is how I WILL handle it.

    G. Gordon Liddy, a convicted felon from the NIXON administration used to say on his radio show that his wife has a beautiful gun collection!
    Last edited by JoeSparky; 01-31-2011 at 12:57 AM.

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