Transporting handgun with ammo in CA?


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nocones
August 19, 2006, 11:04 PM
I've read posts here where it is said that when transporting a handgun in California, you cannot have ammunition or magazines filled with ammo in the same case. Where is this stated in the law? I cannot find anything, it only says that guns cannot be loaded and defines a loaded gun as

"A firearm is deemed loaded when there is a live cartridge or shell in, or attached in any
manner to, the firearm, including, but not limited to, the firing chamber, magazine, or clip
thereof attached to the firearm."

If my magazines are full of ammo but no magazines are attached to the gun, only located in the same locked case, how is this illegal?

Second question: If I am driving a vehicle with a trunk, does the gun have to be in the trunk or can it be within the cabin of the vehicle if it is in a locked case?

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Yosemite**Sam
August 20, 2006, 01:40 AM
The penal code that covers carrying a loaded firearm is 12031 of the California Penal Code. I read it briefly. Didn't see anything about ammo in proximity. I believe that it is California case law that prevents you from carrying ammo with gun.

PinnedAndRecessed
August 20, 2006, 02:31 AM
If my magazines are full of ammo but no magazines are attached to the gun, only located in the same locked case, how is this illegal?

Second question: If I am driving a vehicle with a trunk, does the gun have to be in the trunk or can it be within the cabin of the vehicle if it is in a locked case?

I don't remember anything about not being able to have magazines loaded. You just can't have loaded magazines in the gun. The ammo, IIRC, had to be transported in a separate case from the gun.

And yes, the gun can be in the car with the driver as long as the gun is in a locked case. My vehicle was a truck and I didn't like my guns in the bed. So I bought a special handgun case with dual locks.

This was not necessary for long guns, though. (Transporting them in a locked case, that is. You still couldn't have loaded long guns in the vehicle.)

BTW, if I were you, I'd call your local law enforcement. Kal likes to change the laws without telling anybody.

AJAX22
August 20, 2006, 03:50 AM
I think there's a thread where we went over this recently,

As I recall, it boils down to, it's up to the officer and the local DA to determine if your firearm is stored properly.

The DOJ CA will not give a definite answer on the subject.

To play it safe, keep your magazines unloaded, and keep all ammunition stored in a seperate locked container.

I have an e-mail that they sent me on the subject somewhere I can dig out if you need it, but thats the gist of it.

rustymaggot
August 20, 2006, 04:31 AM
locked case within the cab is fine, however they will ask you why its not in the trunk. a locking glovebox is not a locked container. a magazine is considered part of the firearm when it is in the same container thus loaded magazines must be in a seperate container or seperate area of the car(like gun in trunk, and magazines in cab. speedloaders count as magazines, so dont transport with a loaded speedloader in the same case.

no real point of a loaded mag when the guns all locked up anyway.

nunoste
August 20, 2006, 04:48 AM
nocones...
I just purchased a handgun, so I've been trying to get a good answer to this question as well. I'm no legal expert, but from what I understand, the magazine is considered by law to be a part of the firearm. So a loaded magazine equals a loaded firearm.

The best advice has already been given above. Lock up the gun and the ammo in seperate containers and don't have a loaded magazine.

Thats why I think the levergun is the best gun for the car in California. It doesnt need to be locked up and you can feed the gun on the go without taking the gun out of the game.


read up on the codes to make sure (penal codes 12020 through 12031), but I'm pretty sure I am correct.

As others say, if a cop pulls you over, and you are walking the line on how you are transporting your firearms, its entirely up to the officer to go by the letter of the law or the spirit of the law as s/he sees it. Bottom line, you may be right, but you'll end up spending a whole lot of time and money proving you are right. Best to take that option away from the officer and be as safe as possible.

good luck

nunoste
August 20, 2006, 04:54 AM
rustymaggot...
where does it say speedloaders are like magazines? MAgazines are part of the firearm, so a loaded magazine is a loaded firearm. A speedloader isn't part of the firearm in any way.

I may be wrong, but nothing in the law even remotely insinuates that a magazine and a speedloader are the same. Maybe I'm missing something.

PinnedAndRecessed
August 20, 2006, 10:35 AM
Maybe I'm missing something.

Here's the deal. I lived in ********** until late last year. They changed the law on transporting handguns something like three times in a fairly short period.

I'd call the sheriff's dept and the police dept and neither could give a definite answer re any given law. Both depts would ultimately transfer me to somebody who knew.

Point being is that if they were so vague on the issue, what's the street cop know? And if the street cop isn't up on the latest laws, he can hassle you for no reason.

So I always chose to follow the absolute safest path possible. Nothing loaded. Guns and ammo in separate locked cases.

nocones
August 20, 2006, 01:47 PM
Thanks for all the insight. I'm still not sure how they make the connection that since the magazine is part of the firearm, a loaded magazine equals a loaded firearm. It CLEARLY states that it has to be attached. I guess that's ********** for you.

A firearm is deemed loaded when there is a live cartridge or shell in, or attached in any
manner to, the firearm, including, but not limited to, the firing chamber, magazine, or clip
thereof attached to the firearm.

As already suggested, I'll just have to keep everything separated to avoid being hassled even though, technically, its probably overkill.

crazed_ss
August 20, 2006, 06:23 PM
So I always chose to follow the absolute safest path possible. Nothing loaded. Guns and ammo in separate locked cases.

I see no reason to lock up the ammo too. When I go to the range, I locked the pistol alone in a case. Ammo, targets, eyes/ears, etc all go in my range bag.

Librarian
August 21, 2006, 02:28 AM
I'm still not sure how they make the connection that since the magazine is part of the firearm, a loaded magazine equals a loaded firearm. It CLEARLY states that it has to be attached.Or, in a position from which the cartridge can be fired. But no, a loaded magazine by itself is not a firearm - a firearm is defined as something designed to fire a projectile:
12001. (a) (1) As used in this title, the terms "pistol,"
"revolver," and "firearm capable of being concealed upon the person"
shall apply to and include any device designed to be used as a
weapon, from which is expelled a projectile by the force of any
explosion, or other form of combustion, and that has a barrel less
than 16 inches in length. These terms also include any device that
has a barrel 16 inches or more in length which is designed to be
interchanged with a barrel less than 16 inches in length.
(2) As used in this title, the term "handgun" means any "pistol,"
"revolver," or "firearm capable of being concealed upon the person."
(b) As used in this title, "firearm" means any device, designed to
be used as a weapon, from which is expelled through a barrel a
projectile by the force of any explosion or other form of combustion.and a magazine clearly does not meet that; further, generally firearms have serial numbers - magazines generally don't.

Possession of a magazine with cartridges in it AND the firearm for the magazine, or the cartridges and firearm, exclusive of where they are located in your possession, can in some circumstances get you charged with 'loaded gun'.

Since it's really not that much trouble to load your magazines at the range, and since some uninformed LEO and uneducated DA may cause you expensive problems, it's prudent to unload your mags for transport. I do - I'm very averse to risk.

EOD Guy
August 21, 2006, 11:52 AM
Possession of a magazine with cartridges in it AND the firearm for the magazine, or the cartridges and firearm, exclusive of where they are located in your possession, can in some circumstances get you charged with 'loaded gun'.

Only if you are engaged in the commission of a criminal act. You can also be charged with possession of a loaded firearm if you have a loaded magazine while engaged in criminal street gang activity.

Creeping Incrementalism
August 21, 2006, 12:42 PM
nocones, you pretty much have it figured out. Basically, you can throw the handgun in the trunk, or keep it in the cab in a locked box. [trunk = no locked box needed, cab = locked box needed] Just throw your ammo wherever, as long as it isn't attached in any way to the firearm. Long guns you don't need to lock up, but put them someplace where they aren't accessible from the driver's seat.

Make a point to not break traffic laws. If a cop pulls you over, try not to mention that you are carrying any firearms, because if he wants, the cop can examine your arms to verify that they are unloaded. If he asks, "Are you carrying anything I should know about," or, "are you carrying any firearms," I would recommend say, "Nothing illegal.". If he keeps asking about guns, eventually you'll have to say yes, but try to avoid the subject if possible.

ArmedBear
August 21, 2006, 03:41 PM
"Are you carrying anything I should know about,"

That's a silly question, if you think about it.:rolleyes:

But they do ask.

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