AZ CCW Endangering Others?


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Yo Mama
July 11, 2009, 02:59 PM
I live in AZ, and had a legal question in regards to myself having a CCW permit, and others in my family don't.

If I am concealing a firearm, and the person who doesn't have a permit is within arms reach to said weapon, are they in violation of the law?

Was speaking with someone familiar with case law pertaining to vehicles, where CCW holder had it concealed, and passenger had no permit, hence they were close enough to the weapon that the officer made an arrest based on lack of permit for the passenger.

Thanks.

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JCisHe
July 11, 2009, 03:10 PM
That just SOUNDS utterly ridiculous...

almostfree
July 11, 2009, 03:12 PM
I concur. Stranger things have happened in the justice system, but I don't think I would worry too much about that one. I have heard of similar arguments for felon in possession charges, but if the felon does not know of its existence it seems a stretch.

Vern Humphrey
July 11, 2009, 03:13 PM
Got a cite for that incident?

Yo Mama
July 11, 2009, 03:29 PM
It was from the Vice-President from AZCDL who was speaking on this in a We Surround Them group meeting.

The other situation was where driver was open carrying, but on left side, and officer didn't see it, so he was in trouble for concealing even though it was showing.

deadin
July 11, 2009, 03:45 PM
Was it concealed on his person or "concealed" in the glove box or console?
Can make a difference.

Yo Mama
July 11, 2009, 03:50 PM
I believe in the glove box, which in AZ is also legal however. There may be a distinction, which I would appreciate information on. Thanks.

jr_roosa
July 11, 2009, 04:08 PM
The instructor of the AZ CCW class I took told a similar story as well.

The argument was that the weapon was concealed in the vehicle (center console?), the driver had a CCW and the passenger did not. The argument was that the person without the permit had access to the concealed weapon.

He said the charges were dropped, and the case didn't go to court, so I don't think the idea has been tested in court yet.

He suggested that it would be wise to either carry on your person, where you can argue that even though somebody else could reach the gun, you were in direct control of it, or that it would be wise for your spouse to have a CCW too if you want to carry in the glove box and the two of you are in the car all the time.

It certainly seemed like a cautionary tale rather than a hard and fast rule with solid legal precedent.

It's certainly a logical extension of the situation where there's a bag of drugs on the floor of the car. Everybody in the car says "not mine!" Unfortunately if nobody owns up it belongs to everybody in the car, and everybody gets charged.

Cars are funny places in a legal sense. You really have to think about who and what you have in there.

-J.

TexasRifleman
July 11, 2009, 04:34 PM
He said the charges were dropped, and the case didn't go to court, so I don't think the idea has been tested in court yet.

Sounds to me more like it was tested against someone with an actual law degree, the prosecutor, who threw it out as being ridiculous.

Would the same argument apply to driving?

If my passenger has no drivers license can he be ticketed for driving without a license since he could reach over and turn the steering wheel?

Sounds really like a cautionary tale that LE in Arizona may not always be friendly, so be careful.

I'm willing to bet there is a lot that led up to this incident ending like it did.

Art Eatman
July 11, 2009, 10:17 PM
Sounds like folks repeating a bunch of "I heard" stuff. I guess that even a VP of a firearms group or a firearms instructor can fall into that trap. Sounds specious to me.

harrygunner
July 12, 2009, 05:46 PM
A while back, before Arizona recognized all CCW permits, I had an AZ permit. The instructor said the same thing: An unholstered, concealed gun near a passenger places that passenger in legal peril.

But I always maintain control of my weapons, keeping them on my person. So I did not investigate the validity of that statement.

coloradokevin
July 12, 2009, 06:02 PM
Was speaking with someone familiar with case law pertaining to vehicles, where CCW holder had it concealed, and passenger had no permit, hence they were close enough to the weapon that the officer made an arrest based on lack of permit for the passenger.

Sounds like you were talking to another one of the so-called "experts" that seem to be everywhere where guns are concerned!

I will say that during vehicle stops the "owner" of the gun sometimes has to be determined by what the subjects tell you. I was recently involved in a felony stop on a vehicle that matched the description of a car seen fleeing from the scene of an incident where a few shots were fired into an occupied house (I was one of the cover officers). Anyway, a search of the vehicle revealed a gun in the center console. The driver (owner of the car) claimed he had no knowledge of the weapon, and the front seat passenger claimed the weapon was his own. The rear seat passenger also stated that the driver wasn't the one in possession of the firearm. Interestingly, the driver was still legally allowed to own firearms, despite an extensive misdemeanor history and a few NCIC gang hits. The passenger who claimed ownership of the weapon was a 2-time felon, and went with us on POWPO charges.

I can't guarantee that the gun belonged to the passenger and not the driver, but everyone in the car wanted it to be that way, and it worked out just fine from our perspective. I wish I could say more about the remainder of the investigation, but as I said, I was merely providing cover on that incident.

XDMfan40
July 13, 2009, 03:08 PM
I would think that you should keep the weapon on your person as much as possible or the driver side door panel. Or you could get a lockbox for your center console, for those times you are going some place you can't carry into

Corey
July 13, 2009, 03:25 PM
When I lived in AZ (and was a ccw instructor for about 10 years) the law was that a loaded firearm in your vehicle was legal even without permit if it was either in plain view or in a holster, case, or container. Glove box and center console counted as a container as well. Unless the law has been changed (I have left AZ about 4 years ago) then I cannot understand how a police officer can arrest or cite a passenger in a car for a handgun if it is being carried by someone with a ccw :scrutiny:. I guess if the gun is under the passenger seat and not in a case or holser, or in the door tray uncased or unholstered, but who does that on a regular basis :confused:.

bigalexe
July 13, 2009, 03:27 PM
If my passenger has no drivers license can he be ticketed for driving without a license since he could reach over and turn the steering wheel?

The people we let drive cars is ridiculous compared to what it takes to get ahold of a firearm. Personally i think if we regulated cars like we regulated guns everyone that owns a car capable of exceeding the speed limit would need a background check and a $200 tax fee payable to USDOT.

tunnug
July 13, 2009, 03:33 PM
Sounds like you were talking to another one of the so-called "experts" that seem to be everywhere where guns are concerned!

I will say that during vehicle stops the "owner" of the gun sometimes has to be determined by what the subjects tell you. I was recently involved in a felony stop on a vehicle that matched the description of a car seen fleeing from the scene of an incident where a few shots were fired into an occupied house (I was one of the cover officers). Anyway, a search of the vehicle revealed a gun in the center console. The driver (owner of the car) claimed he had no knowledge of the weapon, and the front seat passenger claimed the weapon was his own. The rear seat passenger also stated that the driver wasn't the one in possession of the firearm. Interestingly, the driver was still legally allowed to own firearms, despite an extensive misdemeanor history and a few NCIC gang hits. The passenger who claimed ownership of the weapon was a 2-time felon, and went with us on POWPO charges.

I can't guarantee that the gun belonged to the passenger and not the driver, but everyone in the car wanted it to be that way, and it worked out just fine from our perspective. I wish I could say more about the remainder of the investigation, but as I said, I was merely providing cover on that incident.

One of the founding members of AZCDL teaches AZ gunlaw so I would say "yeah, He's an expert" and the situation stated on the OP occurs when the gun is concealed near the CCW holder and not on his person.

If it's between the license holder and a non-CCW within reach of the non, then some overzealos cop could arrest the non.

In AZ you can carry in the glovebox without a CCW if the gun is holstered, if it's unholstered in the glovebox it is considered concealed (go figure).

The open carry situation is a bad interpretation of the current law, as the law reads, the gun is considered concealed if the officer cannot see it while he's talking to you, like if he's on your left and the gun is on the right hip on a belt holster uncovered.

Most of these situations happen when you end up interacting with a cop that has been transplanted from one of the more restrictive states and they bring along the no one should have a gun mentality.

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