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Thread: Open Carry in Vehicle

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    Open Carry in Vehicle

    Just picked up a new handgun and have a few questions with regard to *how* it should be transported in a vehicle. The gunshop where I purchased the firearm told me that the laws regarding carrying a pistol in a vehicle are contradictory in WA and there are NO definite answers about what is/isn't legal.

    Here's what I was told: (1) without a CWP, you cannot carry a loaded pistol in a vehicle; (2) the magazines CAN be loaded but must be separate from the gun; and (3) the gun cannot be concealed.

    So... from (1) can I carry an unloaded pistol in my side (open carry) in the vehicle? From (2), can I have the gun unloaded in a holster by my side and the magazines separate (in another holster)? From (3), this (to me) reads that the gun cannot be hidden/concealed at all which would apply to keeping it in a trunk, safe, etc.

    I've also been told that the gun should NOT be accessible by the driver (e.g. ammo in glove box, gun in trunk). Which of these (conflicting) points of view is correct and least likely to get me in trouble?

    Thanks

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    Regular Member Vitaeus's Avatar
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    There are sticky posts above, that should answer your questions, welcome to the forum

    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...out-Open-Carry

    or

    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...ights-Pamphlet

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    Quote Originally Posted by meggers View Post
    Just picked up a new handgun and have a few questions with regard to *how* it should be transported in a vehicle. The gunshop where I purchased the firearm told me that the laws regarding carrying a pistol in a vehicle are contradictory in WA and there are NO definite answers about what is/isn't legal.

    Here's what I was told: (1) without a CWP, you cannot carry a loaded pistol in a vehicle; (2) the magazines CAN be loaded but must be separate from the gun; and (3) the gun cannot be concealed.

    So... from (1) can I carry an unloaded pistol in my side (open carry) in the vehicle? From (2), can I have the gun unloaded in a holster by my side and the magazines separate (in another holster)? From (3), this (to me) reads that the gun cannot be hidden/concealed at all which would apply to keeping it in a trunk, safe, etc.

    I've also been told that the gun should NOT be accessible by the driver (e.g. ammo in glove box, gun in trunk). Which of these (conflicting) points of view is correct and least likely to get me in trouble?

    Thanks
    IANAL But #1 If you wear your weapon inside your car it is considerd concealed because it is inside your vehicle, so if you do not have a cpl do not have it on your person inside yor vehicle empty or loaded that would be carrying concealed without A cpl
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    Man the laws in wa are way different from the laws in fl. Its crazy how much laws differ from state to state.

    IN FLORIDA, if you do not have a cwl, your weapon can only be in one of two places, the glove box or the trunk. It doesnt have to be separated from the ammo so it can be fully loaded. It does however have to be in some case or a holster with a thumb strap(no velcro). If you do have your cwl, you can have it fully loaded anywhere in the car as long as it is not in plain sight(concealed). Regardless of license or no, it cannot be visible. This is FLORIDA'S law. Just thought id add my 2 cent.

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    IANAL But #1 If you wear your weapon inside your car it is considerd concealed because it is inside your vehicle, so if you do not have a cpl do not have it on your person inside yor vehicle empty or loaded that would be carrying concealed without A cpl
    I don't believe this to be true. Washington only prohibits the placing of a loaded weapon in a vehicle unless you have a CPL. Without a CPL you should be able to, as some here say, Duck Tape (original spelling) it to your forehead as long as it isn't loaded. If it is in a holster but not covered by clothing it's not concealed.

    The issue is loaded versus unloaded.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Quote Originally Posted by RCW 9.41.050
    (1)(a) Except in the person's place of abode or fixed place of business, a person shall not carry a pistol concealed on his or her person without a license to carry a concealed pistol.

    (b) Every licensee shall have his or her concealed pistol license in his or her immediate possession at all times that he or she is required by this section to have a concealed pistol license and shall display the same upon demand to any police officer or to any other person when and if required by law to do so. Any violation of this subsection (1)(b) shall be a class 1 civil infraction under chapter 7.80 RCW and shall be punished accordingly pursuant to chapter 7.80 RCW and the infraction rules for courts of limited jurisdiction.

    (2)(a) A person shall not carry or place a loaded pistol in any vehicle unless the person has a license to carry a concealed pistol and: (i) The pistol is on the licensee's person, (ii) the licensee is within the vehicle at all times that the pistol is there, or (iii) the licensee is away from the vehicle and the pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    (b) A violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor.

    (3)(a) A person at least eighteen years of age who is in possession of an unloaded pistol shall not leave the unloaded pistol in a vehicle unless the unloaded pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    (b) A violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor.

    (4) Nothing in this section permits the possession of firearms illegal to possess under state or federal law.
    First off, welcome to the forum!

    (1)(a) makes it illegal to conceal on your person without a CPL. If the gun is not concealed on your person, you're fine in my opinion. I've heard people claim that because the seatbelt conceals it, it's considered concealed. My belief is that it's not a violation of the law since your clothing/attire is not concealing the pistol, the seatbelt is simply blocking some of the view.

    To expand on (2)(a), the three underlined points are a list of conditions, only one of which must be met, due to the "or" in the sentence:


    • (i) The pistol is on the licensee's person,


    • (ii) the licensee is within the vehicle at all times that the pistol is there,

    OR
    • (iii) the licensee is away from the vehicle and the pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    Only one of those three conditions must be met when carrying a loaded pistol. It makes no mention of an unloaded pistol in (2)(a). Just as long as the pistol is not concealed on your person, you're fine. On your hip, in the glove box, in the center console, velcroed to your ceiling, duct taped to your head, magnetically levitated over your dashboard, etc. are all fine.

    Carry on and don't worry! Come to one of the coffee meets, things are sometimes explained better in person, and it really raises the comfort level of OC when you get together with others who do so!
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    Thank you all for your reply. Prior to this thread, I've gotten different answers from everybody that I've asked.

    From what I understand, it IS legal to open carry (plainly visible firearm in OWB holster) in a vehicle without a CPL provided that the gun is unloaded. Is that correct?

    If the above is legal, can you then have a loaded magazine in a separate holster but on your person in a vehicle without a CPL? Note: In this scenario, the gun is unloaded and being open carried (OWB holster).

    Thank you all for helping me out with this, I just want to make sure I'm current on the laws. Also, thanks for the coffee invite -- I'll see you there!

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    Regular Member 1911er's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by RCW 9.41.050
    (1)(a) Except in the person's place of abode or fixed place of business, a person shall not carry a pistol concealed on his or her person without a license to carry a concealed pistol.

    Now I may be wrong but isn't the reason most OCers Have A cpl so that we do not have to remove our weapons when we get in a vehicle. Thats the way I understood this RCW code 9.41.050. Or is carrying an unloaded weapon concealed legal.
    I truly Love my Country, But the government scares the he!! out of me.

    DEMAND IT
    Congress SHALL NOT receive A salary greater than any service member and will be given EQUIVELANT insurance as any service member

    I came into this world kicking and screaming covered in someone else's blood. And if necessary to protect the Constitution of The United States of AMERICA. I will go out the same way

    All hail the Domain of Neptunus Rex

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    Originally Posted by RCW 9.41.050
    (1)(a) Except in the person's place of abode or fixed place of business, a person shall not carry a pistol concealed on his or her person without a license to carry a concealed pistol.

    Now I may be wrong but isn't the reason most OCers Have A cpl so that we do not have to remove our weapons when we get in a vehicle. Thats the way I understood this RCW code 9.41.050. Or is carrying an unloaded weapon concealed legal.
    Carrying an unloaded and concealed pistol without a CPL is unlawful. The loaded/unloaded portion or applies to inside a vehicle.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

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    Quote Originally Posted by meggers View Post
    Thank you all for your reply. Prior to this thread, I've gotten different answers from everybody that I've asked.

    From what I understand, it IS legal to open carry (plainly visible firearm in OWB holster) in a vehicle without a CPL provided that the gun is unloaded. Is that correct?

    If the above is legal, can you then have a loaded magazine in a separate holster but on your person in a vehicle without a CPL? Note: In this scenario, the gun is unloaded and being open carried (OWB holster).

    Thank you all for helping me out with this, I just want to make sure I'm current on the laws. Also, thanks for the coffee invite -- I'll see you there!
    Yes, carrying an unloaded pistol openly in a vehicle is legal without a CPL.

    It does not matter where the magazine is located. Simply that it is not in the firearm and there is no round in the chamber.
    Last edited by joeroket; 03-17-2011 at 07:11 PM.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Quote Originally Posted by joeroket View Post
    Carrying an unloaded and concealed pistol without a CPL is unlawful. The loaded/unloaded portion or applies to inside a vehicle.
    Once you get in your vehicle wearing a gun is it not considerd concealed
    I truly Love my Country, But the government scares the he!! out of me.

    DEMAND IT
    Congress SHALL NOT receive A salary greater than any service member and will be given EQUIVELANT insurance as any service member

    I came into this world kicking and screaming covered in someone else's blood. And if necessary to protect the Constitution of The United States of AMERICA. I will go out the same way

    All hail the Domain of Neptunus Rex

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    Once you get in your vehicle wearing a gun is it not considerd concealed
    I think to be concealed refers more to clothing (e.g. jacket covering gun) and an intent to hide the weapon from plain view. I'm not trying to conceal it. From what I've heard, open carrying in plain view in a car (someone outside could see it on your waist) is legal.

    What are your thoughts?
    Last edited by meggers; 03-17-2011 at 07:16 PM.

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    well,,,

    1st,, a gun in a bag, a trunk, under the seat, etc. is not concealed!
    the term "concealed gun" only applies to hiding it from view in your clothes or pockets on your person!
    the important thing is,,, do not put a loaded gun in your car, unless you have a CPL!







    He could have LOADED his gun the Legal way!!! out side of the car!!!
    this would be the best reason for non CPL holders to carry, empty pipe!!
    just pop in a mag after you get out,,, then pop out the mag before you get back in!

    their have been stories of guys getting a MWAG called on him,
    because they hold the gun up in FULL view when they load and rack!!!
    i feel that these FULL view guys damn well deserve the unwanted attention they get!

    it is quite possible to get out of a car, and while standing behind the door,
    turned strong side in. to load and rack, without anyone noticing, anything spooky!
    EMNofSeattle wrote: Your idea of freedom terrifies me. So you are actually right. I am perfectly happy with what you call tyranny.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by joeroket View Post
    Carrying an unloaded and concealed pistol without a CPL is unlawful. The loaded/unloaded portion or applies to inside a vehicle.
    If carrying an unloaded conceald weapon is unlawful without a CPL!! isn't carrying in yor vehicle considerd conceald? or is it not concealed in your vehicle if your carrying it unloaded?
    I truly Love my Country, But the government scares the he!! out of me.

    DEMAND IT
    Congress SHALL NOT receive A salary greater than any service member and will be given EQUIVELANT insurance as any service member

    I came into this world kicking and screaming covered in someone else's blood. And if necessary to protect the Constitution of The United States of AMERICA. I will go out the same way

    All hail the Domain of Neptunus Rex

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    If carrying an unloaded conceald weapon is unlawful without a CPL!! isn't carrying in yor vehicle considerd conceald? or is it not concealed in your vehicle if your carrying it unloaded?
    It is not considered concealed if it is worn in the open in your car. The term concealed applies when the firearm is covered up. If it is not covered then it is not concealed.

    Unloaded/loaded has nothing to do with concealment. Unloaded simply means no round in the chamber and no magazine inserted. It is simply unlawful to have a loaded firearm in a vehicle unless you have a CPL and it is unlawful to conceal a pistol on your person unless you have a CPL.
    Last edited by joeroket; 03-17-2011 at 08:43 PM.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    If carrying an unloaded conceald weapon is unlawful without a CPL!! isn't carrying in yor vehicle considerd conceald? or is it not concealed in your vehicle if your carrying it unloaded?
    The law does not state that a gun has to be "loaded" and on your person to be considered concealed. It just says "weapon" which would imply that even if it were not loaded, it is still against the law.

    Basically it is not legal to carry concealed an unloaded weapon.
    Guns don't kill people, bullets do!

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    Regular Member 1911er's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLT View Post
    It is only unlawful if it is concealed ON YOUR PERSON.



    The unloaded gun can be concealed anywhere else in the vehicle and still be legal without a CPL. It is only illegal to conceal a gun ON THE PERSON without a CPL. If I put the unloaded gun in the glove box, I have concealed the gun within the vehicle, but I have broken no laws because I have not concealed the gun ON MY PERSON.
    But if you are carrying a holsterd weapon on your person uncoverd inside your car is that not considerd concealed because its inside your vehicle
    I truly Love my Country, But the government scares the he!! out of me.

    DEMAND IT
    Congress SHALL NOT receive A salary greater than any service member and will be given EQUIVELANT insurance as any service member

    I came into this world kicking and screaming covered in someone else's blood. And if necessary to protect the Constitution of The United States of AMERICA. I will go out the same way

    All hail the Domain of Neptunus Rex

  18. #18
    Regular Member Vitaeus's Avatar
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    RCW 9.41.050
    1)(a) Except in the person's place of abode or fixed place of business, a person shall not carry a pistol concealed on his or her person without a license to carry a concealed pistol.

    So, you don't cover the weapon(loaded or unloaded) with your coat or other clothes, without a CPL.

    (2)(a) A person shall not carry or place a loaded pistol in any vehicle unless the person has a license to carry a concealed pistol and: (i) The pistol is on the licensee's person, (ii) the licensee is within the vehicle at all times that the pistol is there, or (iii) the licensee is away from the vehicle and the pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle. (b) A violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor.

    Unloaded, is fine anywhere in the car that does not violate 1)(a), if it is loaded you are breaking the law, unless you have a CPL.

    The car is not concealment, it is an additional condition to whether a CPL is required, due the loaded status.
    Last edited by Vitaeus; 03-18-2011 at 01:19 AM.

  19. #19
    Regular Member 1245A Defender's Avatar
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    well,,,

    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    But if you are carrying a holsterd weapon on your person uncoverd inside your car is that not considerd concealed because its inside your vehicle
    NO!

    you can ONLY "conceal" a gun "on your person"!
    you can hide a gun, you can cover a gun, you can cloak a gun, you can put it in your car.
    the gun is NOT "concealed", unless it is "on your person", hidden from view in your clothing or pockets.
    EMNofSeattle wrote: Your idea of freedom terrifies me. So you are actually right. I am perfectly happy with what you call tyranny.....

    “If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911er View Post
    But if you are carrying a holsterd weapon on your person uncoverd inside your car is that not considerd concealed because its inside your vehicle
    How many times do you have to be told that NO?!?!?! A pistol openly carried inside a car is not considered concealed!

    You do not conceal your pistol by getting into a car. You conceal your pistol by covering it with a piece of clothing or putting it in your pocket.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Well... I think I have my answer -- thanks

    On a side note, I keep hearing many gunshop owners telling me of some statute that says that a gun cannot be accessible by the driver. I've never read anything of that nature, however, in the laws. I think they mean that it's good practice if you want to be on the safe(r) side, but I've never seen a law to support this.

    Thoughts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by meggers View Post
    Well... I think I have my answer -- thanks

    On a side note, I keep hearing many gunshop owners telling me of some statute that says that a gun cannot be accessible by the driver. I've never read anything of that nature, however, in the laws. I think they mean that it's good practice if you want to be on the safe(r) side, but I've never seen a law to support this.

    Thoughts?
    No such law in Washington state. Can't give you a cite, because, well, you can't cite something that doesn't exist.
    No right is held more sacred, or is more carefully guarded, by the common law than the right of every individual to the possession and control of his own person, free from all restraint or interference of others, unless by clear and unquestionable authority of law. Union Pacific Rail Co. vs Botsford as quoted in Terry v Ohio.


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    Quote Originally Posted by meggers View Post
    Well... I think I have my answer -- thanks

    On a side note, I keep hearing many gunshop owners telling me of some statute that says that a gun cannot be accessible by the driver. I've never read anything of that nature, however, in the laws. I think they mean that it's good practice if you want to be on the safe(r) side, but I've never seen a law to support this.

    Thoughts?
    I've heard so much garbage passed on by other gun "enthusiasts" and gun shop workers. A lot of the times I've just got to put on the "in one ear, out the other" mode because it's not worth arguing with the guy. But if nothing else, remember this: do not trust anything anyone else tells you about laws, until you check it out yourself...and that includes cops and gun store owners/gun instructors.

    That said, it does help to get pointed in the right direction.

    As for the driving while having access to a gun...haven't heard anything about it and I don't see it as being on the safe side either. In fact, I remember reading about a guy who got into a gunfight and didn't have his spare mag on him or his cell phone (had it in the console)...couldn't get to it when he jumped out of his car. And couldn't get them after because of the investigation. If anything, you SHOULD have it on you so it's in your control.

    Edit to add: The guy also ran out of ammo. And just beat the perp to tackle him before he reloaded. Which also reminds me of another story about a wheelgun guy...who had to plead for his life as he got shot in the head. Survived though...lucky bastard.
    Last edited by skiingislife725; 03-18-2011 at 12:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skiingislife725 View Post
    I remember reading about a guy who got into a gunfight and didn't have his spare mag on him or his cell phone (had it in the console)...couldn't get to it when he jumped out of his car. And couldn't get them after because of the investigation. If anything, you SHOULD have it on you so it's in your control.

    Edit to add: The guy also ran out of ammo. And just beat the perp to tackle him before he reloaded. Which also reminds me of another story about a wheelgun guy...who had to plead for his life as he got shot in the head. Survived though...lucky bastard.
    Sounds like a couple of people who needed some training in marksmanship. Running our of ammo either means you were outnumbered by a whole bunch or you can't hit $h!t and knock them out of the fight.
    Last edited by amlevin; 03-18-2011 at 06:34 PM.
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