Illinois to require FOID Card to Possess a Taser or Stun Gun


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Jeff White
January 1, 2006, 05:48 PM
I am confused. They amended the FOID card law to require one and a waiting period to buy a Taser or stun gun, yet in the criminal code, it's illegal to carry a taser or stun gun anywhere except on your own property.



http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/metroeast/story/CEF34B38DB32C296862570E800717EED?OpenDocument
Taser, stun gun buyers get jolt
By Leah Thorsen
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
12/01/2005

Steven King is confident that customers who come to his Belleville gun shop to buy stun guns and Tasers have nothing but personal safety on their minds.

And he doesn't think many people would use these weapons, which fire powerful jolts of electricity, for criminal purposes.

But a new law aims to make sure that these weapons don't end up in the hands of those who may misuse them.

Beginning Sunday, the start of the new year, a person must have a state firearm owner's identification card, commonly known as a FOID card, to own stun guns and Tasers.

Those who are banned from possessing these cards include people who have been convicted of a felony or a crime involving domestic violence.

A criminal background check also will be required as of Sunday, as will a 24-hour waiting period, which is also required for long guns, shotguns and rifles.

Missouri does not have any laws regulating civilians' use of Tasers or stun guns, according to the Missouri attorney general's office.

Illinois is believed to be the first state in the country to require that an owner of stun guns and Tasers have a firearm license, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

State law already prohibits people from carrying concealed stun guns and Tasers, which are considered by many to be an alternative to more lethal forms of weaponry.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich in June signed the legislation to regulate the sale of these types of weapons.

That same day, his office issued a news release in which the governor was quoted as saying: "Tasers and other stun guns can be very dangerous in the wrong hands - the amount of voltage they exert alone can be lethal. By treating these weapons just as seriously as we treat firearms, we can make our streets and neighborhoods safer."

Richard Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, supports the new law, too.

"We don't want them to fall into the hands of bad people either," Pearson said.

The law also has the support of Illinois State Police, a spokesman said.

Stun guns and Tasers are used by roughly 5,000 police departments around the country, and Illinois law enforcement officers are not affected by the law that takes effect Sunday.

Late last year, Taser began selling the weapons to civilians. The weapons have been criticized by several groups, who say they pose a serious safety risk to those who sustain the shock from as much as 50,000 jolts.

"This is a defensive item, and it should be taken seriously," said King, who owns the Belleville Indoor Shooting Range & Gun Shop.

King said the price of Tasers and stun guns, not the new legislation, probably will continue to make many people think twice about buying the weapons.

He sells two models of Tasers - one for $599 and the other for $999.

And firing a Taser just once depletes its $30 cartridge, King said.

Stun guns aren't cheap. King said prices range between $50 and $200.

lthorsen@post-dispatch.com 618-659-3640

__________________________

What’s the difference between Tasers and a stun guns?

Tasers, which look like guns, fire barbed darts up to 15 feet. The darts remain attached to the weapon by wires.

Stun guns are hand-held devices that deliver an electric current when placed against another person or thing. An electric current is delivered through prongs at the end of the device.

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=072000050HArt%2E+24&ActID=1876&ChapAct=720%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B5%2F&ChapterID=53&ChapterName=CRIMINAL+OFFENSES&SectionID=60752&SeqStart=50300000&SeqEnd=53000000&ActName=Criminal+Code+of+1961%2E
720 ILCS 5/Art. 24 heading)
ARTICLE 24. DEADLY WEAPONS

(720 ILCS 5/24‑1) (from Ch. 38, par. 24‑1)
(Text of Section from P.A. 94‑72)
Sec. 24‑1. Unlawful Use of Weapons.
(a) A person commits the offense of unlawful use of weapons when he knowingly:
(1) Sells, manufactures, purchases, possesses or carries any bludgeon, black‑jack, slung‑shot, sand‑club, sand‑bag, metal knuckles, throwing star, or any knife, commonly referred to as a switchblade knife, which has a blade that opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or other device in the handle of the knife, or a ballistic knife, which is a device that propels a knifelike blade as a projectile by means of a coil spring, elastic material or compressed gas; or
(2) Carries or possesses with intent to use the same

unlawfully against another, a dagger, dirk, billy, dangerous knife, razor, stiletto, broken bottle or other piece of glass, stun gun or taser or any other dangerous or deadly weapon or instrument of like character; or
(3) Carries on or about his person or in any

vehicle, a tear gas gun projector or bomb or any object containing noxious liquid gas or substance, other than an object containing a non‑lethal noxious liquid gas or substance designed solely for personal defense carried by a person 18 years of age or older; or
(4) Carries or possesses in any vehicle or concealed on or about his person except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (4) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:
(i) are broken down in a non‑functioning state; or
(ii) are not immediately accessible; or
(iii) are unloaded and enclosed in a case, firearm carrying box, shipping box, or other container by a person who has been issued a currently valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card; or
(5) Sets a spring gun; or
(6) Possesses any device or attachment of any kind designed, used or intended for use in silencing the report of any firearm; or
(7) Sells, manufactures, purchases, possesses or carries:
(i) a machine gun, which shall be defined for the purposes of this subsection as any weapon, which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manually reloading by a single function of the trigger, including the frame or receiver of any such weapon, or sells, manufactures, purchases, possesses, or carries any combination of parts designed or intended for use in converting any weapon into a machine gun, or any combination or parts from which a machine gun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person;
(ii) any rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length or a shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length or any weapon made from a rifle or shotgun, whether by alteration, modification, or otherwise, if such a weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches; or
(iii) any bomb, bomb‑shell, grenade, bottle or other container containing an explosive substance of over one‑quarter ounce for like purposes, such as, but not limited to, black powder bombs and Molotov cocktails or artillery projectiles; or
(8) Carries or possesses any firearm, stun gun or taser or other deadly weapon in any place which is licensed to sell intoxicating beverages, or at any public gathering held pursuant to a license issued by any governmental body or any public gathering at which an admission is charged, excluding a place where a showing, demonstration or lecture involving the exhibition of unloaded firearms is conducted.
This subsection (a)(8) does not apply to any auction or raffle of a firearm held pursuant to a license or permit issued by a governmental body, nor does it apply to persons engaged in firearm safety training courses; or
(9) Carries or possesses in a vehicle or on or about his person any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or firearm or ballistic knife, when he is hooded, robed or masked in such manner as to conceal his identity; or
(10) Carries or possesses on or about his person, upon any public street, alley, or other public lands within the corporate limits of a city, village or incorporated town, except when an invitee thereon or therein, for the purpose of the display of such weapon or the lawful commerce in weapons, or except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business, any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (10) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:
(i) are broken down in a non‑functioning state; or
(ii) are not immediately accessible; or
(iii) are unloaded and enclosed in a case, firearm carrying box, shipping box, or other container by a person who has been issued a currently valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card.
A "stun gun or taser", as used in this paragraph (a) means (i) any device which is powered by electrical charging units, such as, batteries, and which fires one or several barbs attached to a length of wire and which, upon hitting a human, can send out a current capable of disrupting the person's nervous system in such a manner as to render him incapable of normal functioning or (ii) any device which is powered by electrical charging units, such as batteries, and which, upon contact with a human or clothing worn by a human, can send out current capable of disrupting the person's nervous system in such a manner as to render him incapable of normal functioning; or

So I guess you have to have a FOID card to keep a Taser in your home for defensive purposes and maybe open carry would be legal. I don't see how this law makes anyone safer. It's already illegal to carry a taser off your own property. Someone who may not want a firearm to keep in their home is now required to jump through the same hoops that a firearm owner would be.

I see little tactical application for use of a taser by a private citizen anyway, but that's another subject for a different forum.

Jeff

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jamz
January 1, 2006, 05:58 PM
IL seems to be following MA "logic". Too bad for them. :(

-James

TallPine
January 1, 2006, 05:59 PM
That same day, his office issued a news release in which the governor was quoted as saying: "Tasers and other stun guns can be very dangerous in the wrong hands - the amount of voltage they exert alone can be lethal.
Um .... uh .... oh, never mind :uhoh:

Jeff White
January 1, 2006, 06:25 PM
Tallpine,
Blagojevich would know anything about what's lethal and what's not. He's a total antigun blissninny who many credit with coining the term pocket rocket when he was a US Congressman and pushing legislation to ban small automatics in 9mm and .45 after they became popular because of the now expired magazine capacity ban.

Jeff

Matthew748
January 1, 2006, 07:42 PM
I should write a letter to the governor of Illinois suggesting that the possession of a pair of wire strippers and an extension cord at the same time be subject to regulation by the state. He would probably offer me a cushy job on some advisory council.

TallPine
January 1, 2006, 08:18 PM
Blagojevich would know anything about what's lethal and what's not.
Yeah, I know that ... but still I wonder if some lawyer wouldn't use that statement by the guv'nor as evidence in a wrongful death suit against some LE agency ...?

Does he change feet everytime he opens his mouth? :D

carebear
January 1, 2006, 08:39 PM
It only says "concealed" if I'm reading it right.

Get one of them cool thigh rigs and Taser-pack away.

(I'd use mine if I got in a fight over a parking space.) :evil:

Don Gwinn
January 1, 2006, 09:39 PM
Sorry, you missed Section 10 of that same act:

(10) Carries or possesses on or about his person, upon any public street, alley, or other public lands within the corporate limits of a city, village or incorporated town, except when an invitee thereon or therein, for the purpose of the display of such weapon or the lawful commerce in weapons, or except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business, any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (10) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:


If open carry were legal in Illinois, I'd be doing it! Basically, this seems to mean that theoretically, if you're outside incorporated areas and towns, but NOT in your vehicle, then you can carry concealed. That doesn't leave much. . . .

carebear
January 1, 2006, 09:51 PM
It wasn't in bold.

What, am I supposed to read the parts that aren't in bold? :D

Well, so much for that option.

GoRon
January 1, 2006, 10:19 PM
Richard Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, supports the new law, too.

Someone should muzzle him. Why are there always quotes from him supporting the wrong side of the issue?

Jeff White
January 2, 2006, 03:25 AM
Matthew748 said;
I should write a letter to the governor of Illinois suggesting that the possession of a pair of wire strippers and an extension cord at the same time be subject to regulation by the state. He would probably offer me a cushy job on some advisory council.

You don't understand how things work in Illinois. No one is appointed to cushy jobs on merit or even because they might share the same political agenda as the governor. If you want a job with the state of Illinois, you have to pay for it. Either a big political favor or plain old cash does the trick. The same thing applies if you want to do business with the state. Democrat, republican, it doesn't matter which party is in the governor's mansion. That's just the way things are done here. :mad:

Jeff

Matthew748
January 2, 2006, 07:58 AM
You don't understand how things work in Illinois.

Actually, I was born and raised in Illinois. I still work in Illinois, file an Illinois non-resident tax return (IN and IL are non-reciprocal for tax purposes), and belong to the ISRA. I have also informally met with one of the ISRA directors on a few occasions. I have never met with Mr. Pearson though. I know that they walk a fine line, but his recent comments are a little over the top.

Regardless, my comment was made in good humor. Kind of a “they are crazy, but if I can present myself as even crazier maybe they will place me among the higher ups of the asylum” kind of comment. It seems like every year the IL government classifies something new and unusual as an item that can be regulated under the Firearm Owner's Identification Act. Last year, or maybe it was the year before that, the powers that be decided that pellet guns and other air rifles require a FOID card and background check. This year it is tasers and stun guns.

Blue Line
January 2, 2006, 08:16 AM
I can't figure that FOID card out issue out up there. If I come up to IL to shoot with my brothers in law or hunt and run down to buy some shells, I can't without a FOID card. I don't live in IL and so don't have one. How do out of staters hunt up there, bring thier own?

Anyway my BiL's end up buying with thier FOID so seems like eyewash to me. Good luck with the taser but I haven't got by the ammo issue yet!

sacp81170a
January 2, 2006, 08:17 AM
The weapons have been criticized by several groups, who say they pose a serious safety risk to those who sustain the shock from as much as 50,000 jolts.

Jolts????? Is that a new unit in physics that I've somehow missed out on? Is it a cross between a joule and a volt? BTW, 50,000 *volts* at a miniscule amperage (I forget, I think it's something like 0.00075 amps) is what I remember from the Taser class. Not enough to do actual harm, but, man does it hurt.

I guess the normal laws of physics don't apply in Illinois, just like the laws of common sense. :D

(Of course, at 19 cycles per second, a 5 second "ride" on the Taser may *seem* like "50,000 jolts".) :evil:

lee n. field
January 2, 2006, 10:24 AM
I can't figure that FOID card out issue out up there. If I come up to IL to shoot with my brothers in law or hunt and run down to buy some shells, I can't without a FOID card. I don't live in IL and so don't have one. How do out of staters hunt up there, bring thier own?


No, you just buy ammo. It's us opressed Illinois residents that need the FOID.:banghead: :banghead:

scout26
January 3, 2006, 04:24 PM
Blue Line,

Yes, only us prison......errr, happy workers of the Democratic Republic of Blago are required to have FOID card to purchase guns/ammo.

Yes, it's stupid.

Blue Line
January 5, 2006, 09:04 PM
No - Gander Mtn and some other gun store(near the Worm Ranch) in Peoria won't sell it to me unless I had a FOID card even when I show them my FL DL? The funny part is my BiL shows his FOID and then I pay - go figure. :uhoh:

Jeff White
January 6, 2006, 01:56 AM
Blue Line,
The gun stores are wrong. Here are the exemptions to the FOID law:
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1657&ChapAct=430%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B65%2F&ChapterID=39&ChapterName=PUBLIC+SAFETY&ActName=Firearm+Owners+Identification+Card+Act%2E
(430 ILCS 65/2) (from Ch. 38, par. 83‑2)
Sec. 2. Firearm Owner's Identification Card required; exceptions.
(a) (1) No person may acquire or possess any firearm,
stun gun, or taser within this State without having in his or her possession a Firearm Owner's Identification Card previously issued in his or her name by the Department of State Police under the provisions of this Act.
(2) No person may acquire or possess firearm
ammunition within this State without having in his or her possession a Firearm Owner's Identification Card previously issued in his or her name by the Department of State Police under the provisions of this Act.
(b) The provisions of this Section regarding the possession of firearms, firearm ammunition, stun guns, and tasers do not apply to:
(1) United States Marshals, while engaged in the operation of their official duties;
(2) Members of the Armed Forces of the United States or the National Guard, while engaged in the operation of their official duties;
(3) Federal officials required to carry firearms, while engaged in the operation of their official duties;
(4) Members of bona fide veterans organizations which receive firearms directly from the armed forces of the United States, while using the firearms for ceremonial purposes with blank ammunition;
(5) Nonresident hunters during hunting season, with valid nonresident hunting licenses and while in an area where hunting is permitted; however, at all other times and in all other places these persons must have their firearms unloaded and enclosed in a case;
(6) Those hunters exempt from obtaining a hunting license who are required to submit their Firearm Owner's Identification Card when hunting on Department of Natural Resources owned or managed sites;
(7) Nonresidents while on a firing or shooting range recognized by the Department of State Police; however, these persons must at all other times and in all other places have their firearms unloaded and enclosed in a case;
(8) Nonresidents while at a firearm showing or display recognized by the Department of State Police; however, at all other times and in all other places these persons must have their firearms unloaded and enclosed in a case;
(9) Nonresidents whose firearms are unloaded and enclosed in a case;
(10) Nonresidents who are currently licensed or registered to possess a firearm in their resident state;
(11) Unemancipated minors while in the custody and immediate control of their parent or legal guardian or other person in loco parentis to the minor if the parent or legal guardian or other person in loco parentis to the minor has a currently valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card;
(12) Color guards of bona fide veterans organizations or members of bona fide American Legion bands while using firearms for ceremonial purposes with blank ammunition;
(13) Nonresident hunters whose state of residence does not require them to be licensed or registered to possess a firearm and only during hunting season, with valid hunting licenses, while accompanied by, and using a firearm owned by, a person who possesses a valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card and while in an area within a commercial club licensed under the Wildlife Code where hunting is permitted and controlled, but in no instance upon sites owned or managed by the Department of Natural Resources;
(14) Resident hunters who are properly authorized to hunt and, while accompanied by a person who possesses a valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card, hunt in an area within a commercial club licensed under the Wildlife Code where hunting is permitted and controlled; and
(15) A person who is otherwise eligible to obtain a Firearm Owner's Identification Card under this Act and is under the direct supervision of a holder of a Firearm Owner's Identification Card who is 21 years of age or older while the person is on a firing or shooting range or is a participant in a firearms safety and training course recognized by a law enforcement agency or a national, statewide shooting sports organization.
(c) The provisions of this Section regarding the acquisition and possession of firearms, firearm ammunition, stun guns, and tasers do not apply to law enforcement officials of this or any other jurisdiction, while engaged in the operation of their official duties.
(Source: P.A. 94‑6, eff. 1‑1‑06.)

The transfer of firearms and ammunition is covered in this section:

(Text of Section from P.A. 94‑353)
Sec. 3. (a) Except as provided in Section 3a, no person may knowingly transfer, or cause to be transferred, any firearm or any firearm ammunition to any person within this State unless the transferee with whom he deals displays a currently valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card which has previously been issued in his name by the Department of State Police under the provisions of this Act. In addition, all firearm transfers by federally licensed firearm dealers are subject to Section 3.1.
(a‑5) Any person who is not a federally licensed firearm dealer and who desires to transfer or sell a firearm while that person is on the grounds of a gun show must, before selling or transferring the firearm, request the Department of State Police to conduct a background check on the prospective recipient of the firearm in accordance with Section 3.1.
(b) Any person within this State who transfers or causes to be transferred any firearm shall keep a record of such transfer for a period of 10 years from the date of transfer. Such record shall contain the date of the transfer; the description, serial number or other information identifying the firearm if no serial number is available; and, if the transfer was completed within this State, the transferee's Firearm Owner's Identification Card number. On demand of a peace officer such transferor shall produce for inspection such record of transfer. If the transfer or sale took place at a gun show, the record shall include the unique identification number. Failure to record the unique identification number is a petty offense.
(c) The provisions of this Section regarding the transfer of firearm ammunition shall not apply to those persons specified in paragraph (b) of Section 2 of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 94‑353, eff. 7‑29‑05.)

Now it may be store policy not to sell to a non resident without a FOID, but state law specifically permits it.

Jeff

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