Traffic Stop: Will "Are You Armed?" Question Become SOP?


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fiddleharp
March 28, 2011, 08:32 PM
Anyone who's been stopped by an LEO for a routine traffic violation knows that they will be asked to produce a drivers license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance. Pretty routine stuff. Ho-hum.
Will the new "normal" include the LEO asking every driver whether or not there is a gun in the vehicle as standard operating procedure?
If your handgun is stashed in the glove box and you have no intention of shooting the LEO, why not just answer "no"?
Last I heard, in Florida at least, it's perfectly legal to carry a handgun in your car as long as it's in the glove box, a zippered case, or some other way that it takes "two moves" to get to it.
Speaking for myself, I possess a Class A CDL that I would never risk by driving badly. In fact, I drive sorta like a little old lady, so the odds of me getting pulled over for a traffic violation are pretty slim. However, if I'm ever asked by a LEO if there's a gun in my car, I'm gonna lie through my teeth just out of spite.
Just my "standard operating procedure". :neener:

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ColtPythonElite
March 28, 2011, 08:35 PM
I don't see a reason to lie about it if you are legal.

41
March 28, 2011, 08:38 PM
A driver's license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance is required to drive on public roads, there is no law (at least in Al or Fl) that says that you must or must not be armed.

So I don't see this becoming the "norm", however I would not lie to the officer.

wishin
March 28, 2011, 08:41 PM
I don't see a reason to lie about it if you are legal.
That goes for me too. It's not against the law to lie to a non-federal officer to the best of my knowledge, but what's the point if you're on the up-and-up?

ColtPythonElite
March 28, 2011, 08:41 PM
You may very well be asked if you are armed by the LEO if your state lists your CCW status on your registration. The LEO may know you are a holder and ask if you are armed when approaches your car. Once again, I don't see a reason to lie.

Drail
March 28, 2011, 08:55 PM
Don't ask me no questions and I'll tell you no lies. It shouldn't be about whether or not you should lie to an LEO, it should be about whether or not they have any legitmate authority to ask. I never bought into the whole "it's for officer safety" B.S. If you're going to interact with people you don't know anything about on a dark road you better assume that they may have a weapon. They may or may not intend on comitting a crime with it. Even though they may smile and show you a CCW card and let you hold their gun they very well might pull another gun on you. But if we proceed on the assumption that everybody should be detained and searched because they "might" be dangerous that is not a free country. That is a police state. That is what we now have at our airports. If a police state is "necessary for officer safety" then we no longer live in a free society. My forefathers did not fight and bleed and die so that agents of the Govt. might "feel safe" as they perform their duties. If you can't deal with the concept that there are some really bad people walking around among the good people then you have a problem. Stripping us of our rights and privacy is not the solution to that problem.

2WheelsGood
March 28, 2011, 09:07 PM
In Michigan you MUST disclose that you're carrying if you're pulled over. I'm sure they already know when they run your plates, but still you must disclose it whether asked or not.

One-Time
March 28, 2011, 09:11 PM
There is NO X amount of step/moves rule for carrying a gun in a car in Florida, not at ALL...never has been

The rule is it must be securely encased and not immediately accessible for use Securely encased is defined as in a glove box, snap holster or a container that has a lid to that has to be opened to access the gun etc, immediately accessible is defined as in as easy to grab and use as if it were on your person, storing as above it is not immediately ready for use

just keep it in the glove box, or center console w/ a lid or just in a snap holster, if you tell the cop you have it expect them to take it, and unload all mags and then they will drop the empty mags, gun and loose bullets in your trunk and tell you you may go

In Florida there is NO duty to notify

Deanimator
March 28, 2011, 09:12 PM
Do what's REQUIRED by law.

If you're required to notify, notify. If you're not, don't.

If asked respond truthfully.

justin 561
March 28, 2011, 09:13 PM
so the odds of me getting pulled over for a traffic violation are pretty slim

Careful, I got too comfortable saying that and then the next day I got a seat belt ticket.

Drail
March 28, 2011, 09:20 PM
Yeah. I get seat belt tickets a lot too. It's so nice to have the Govt. working so hard to "protect" you ain't it?

justin 561
March 28, 2011, 09:27 PM
I'm sure it will save my butt when/if I ever get into a accident, but why do they make them so damn uncomfortable?

kingpin008
March 28, 2011, 09:28 PM
I don't see a reason to lie about it if you are legal.

I don't see a reason to divulge, either.

That goes for me too. It's not against the law to lie to a non-federal officer to the best of my knowledge, but what's the point if you're on the up-and-up?

If I'm on the up-and-up, who cares what I'm carrying? I'm obviously a good guy, otherwise I wouldn't have a license to carry in the first place.

I reject the outlook that good guys have "nothing to hide" and therefore should automatically cooperate with law enforcement. The fact is that good guy or not, law enforcement is not your friend. That's not said to bash cops, merely to state reality. Good people have been put through the ringer by police "just doing their jobs" many times in the past, and will continue to be. One of the things that will help prevent that sort of thing happening, though, is by asserting your rights, and not playing along when you don't have to.

sig228
March 28, 2011, 10:55 PM
....or some other way that it takes "two moves" to get to it

No such rule in Florida. You really should know the law.

Shoot66
March 28, 2011, 11:08 PM
At routine traffic checks, I automatically hand over my driver’s license, vehicle registration and insurance documents and my concealed carry license. It is not a legal obligation; I see it as a friendly/transparency gesture.

zxcvbob
March 28, 2011, 11:09 PM
"[sigh] Does it look like I'm armed?"

TexasRifleman
March 28, 2011, 11:11 PM
Will the new "normal" include the LEO asking every driver whether or not there is a gun in the vehicle as standard operating procedure?

Are you guys seeing this out in the world? I've never been asked this question before. My lead foot and I have (unfortunately) some pretty regular contact with LE and this has never come up.

Sometimes I hand over the CHL, sometimes I forget, but I've never been flat out asked if there was a gun in the vehicle other than when I had a long gun visible to the LEO.

HorseSoldier
March 28, 2011, 11:50 PM
Why would there be a "new" normal?

The old normal for traffic stops seems to work pretty well. Is there some reason why asking if people were armed is now obligatory for every stop anyone makes?

splithoof
March 29, 2011, 12:27 AM
Don't ever lie to a peace officer if stopped in a public place. They have the upper hand, and can make your life miserable. If you do, and they catch you in a lie, it will only go downhill, FAST. Be polite, cordial, but don't volunteer information that was not specifically asked. You want the encounter to be brief, and over with ASAP. The longer you are the subject of their focus, the more likely you will be riding in the back of their car.

Valkman
March 29, 2011, 12:38 AM
I had a Las Vegas officer tell me he always asks if there are guns in the vehicle, just because it is legal in NV to carry a gun in the vehicle. If there is a gun they have to unload it and run the sn. Now I live in Pahrump in Nye Co. and when stopped by a Sheriff's Deputy he did not ask about guns and I did not volunteer that I had a ccw because I was not carrying - there was a snubbie in the center console but it never came up. I guess having a ccw doesn't come up on their computer because he never mentioned it.

As for not informing if you don't have to, every CCW class I've had here in NV has advised to show the officer the CCW right away even though we do not have to inform. I had the opportunity to do this once back around '06 when I was stopped by NHP for doing 85 - I handed it over with the license and registration and he asked if I was carrying. I said "Yes, right hip", and he had me get out and he disarmed me from behind. He unloaded it, ran it and gave it back by laying it on the floor of the back seat along with the mag and spare round. I got a $60 ticket but could have gotten a $350 ticket. I did not like being disarmed but I would hate to not tell the officer and have him find out.

pikid89
March 29, 2011, 12:55 AM
(in the state of Florida)......it takes "two moves" to get to it.

^ this is wrong


i dont know the statutes in Florida (leave that to THR Member NavyLT...hes the expert on finding statutes)
but the law basically states that either

a) If you DO NOT have a Concealed Weapon or Firearm License = Handgun in vehicle may be loaded but not "immediately accessible" ie glove box, center console, zipper pouch, snapped holster, box with lid, or any where else "not immediately accessible"

b) If you DO have a Concealed Weapon or Firearm License = You can keep a handgun, where you want, how you want, in whatever condition you want...even on the dashboard in plain view (not recommended)

the above does not apply to long guns....those can be stored wherever however as well, CWL or No

cassandrasdaddy
March 29, 2011, 12:59 AM
willie nelson set my rules for lying in the movie thief with james cann

splithoof
March 29, 2011, 01:00 AM
I have avoided being stopped for any reason sinse 1984; some due to luck, but mostly the way I drive. Saves ga$. Watch those limit lines, crosswalks, pedestrians, and signals VERY closely. NO ROLLING STOPS!!! Let them focus on someone else. Don't draw attention, and likely you will AVOID CONTACT OF ANY KIND.
But for me the biggest reason is that by not getting citations, I deny revenue to the state. If 90% of my fellow California indentured servants did this, we could likely bankrupt this political diaper and start over!

armsmaster270
March 29, 2011, 01:01 AM
I just give them licence, insurance and CCW & get it over with wherever I am..

Gromky
March 29, 2011, 01:22 AM
I have avoided being stopped for any reason sinse 1984; some due to luck, but mostly the way I drive. Saves ga$. Watch those limit lines, crosswalks, pedestrians, and signals VERY closely. NO ROLLING STOPS!!! Let them focus on someone else. Don't draw attention, and likely you will AVOID CONTACT OF ANY KIND.

Watch out for trailer lights out, or expired tags. There are a ton of ways to get pulled over, even if you drive very safely.

Of course, the cops around here have been very nice, they've cut me breaks when they didn't have to. The trailer incident happened opening day last year...we were headed out, they pulled me over to let me know the lights weren't working. I went to work figuring it out (tracked down a bad ground later that day) and they moved on. Hunting partner realized she had an unloaded Browning in the bag at her feet, with magazine, after we drove off.

For a standard stop, I probably wouldn't disclose, but I'm only carrying when obviously hunting (unloaded in the car) or if I'm going to shoot. If I'm going to be reaching anywhere near a firearm, or if there's any chance the officer will see a firearm or shooting equipment, yes I would say something first. I would agree that it comes down to not drawing attention to yourself. For a handgun in the console, I'd ignore it unless pulled out of the vehicle (if no duty to inform)...if they're going to search, say something. If you have something in the glove box, and have to reach into there for the registration you'd damn well better say something before opening it. Handing over the CCW license seems like a good middle ground, you're showing you're legal and implying that you're carrying. If they're concerned or want to know, the LEO will ask.

HorseSoldier
March 29, 2011, 02:55 AM
There are a ton of ways to get pulled over, even if you drive very safely.

An instructor in my police academy was of the opinion that if you really know your traffic code, if you follow a vehicle for a half mile in city traffic you will invariably observe some violation that is valid PC for a stop. On the street -- while I was not in the habit of just randomly following citizens to test the hypothesis -- I generally found this to be true. Partly because most citizens don't know the traffic code, and partly because as written you can violate various statutes routinely while safely and responsibly operating your vehicle.

Bubba613
March 29, 2011, 07:45 AM
If asked respond truthfully.

But you aren't required to be helpful.
"I really couldn't say" would be my response. That's true in a number of ways. I couldn't say because it is against my convictions to volunteer information to an LEO.
I couldn't say because I don't know what defines "weapon". In the right circumstances a marshmallow is a weapon.
No is required to answer that question, to my knowledge. Even states with shall inform laws only require informing about the permit. Just having a permit doesn't mean you have a gun on you. Just ask my wife.

bhk
March 29, 2011, 09:57 AM
Yeah. I get seat belt tickets a lot too. It's so nice to have the Govt. working so hard to "protect" you ain't it?
Lets see, you carry a gun in your vehicle because it might save your life but don't wear a seat belt! Those belts save thousands more lives each year than vehicular guns do. That is kind of like the guys who keep guns in the bedroom for defense but won't lock the house doors at night. I don't get it!!! Or maybe you don't wear your seat belt just because the gov't told you to? Would you wear it if there was not seatbelt law?

As for the original question, in my state we don't have a duty to inform but I certainly would if asked (and possibly before). My wife got stopped and informed the deputy that she had her permit but no gun at the time. His only answer was 'Why not?'

2WheelsGood
March 29, 2011, 10:18 AM
Lets see, you carry a gun in your vehicle because it might save your life but don't wear a seat belt!That surprised me too, and I'm old enough to remember when not all cars had seat belts. In fact, I often use the seatbelt analogy when explaining why I carry a gun. You may never need it, but you sure as heck better hope it's there if you do. And the comfort argument is also lost on me. Wearing a seatbelt is no more uncomfortable than wearing a holstered gun on your hip.

Having said that, I also agree that it shouldn't be required by law.

janedoedad
March 29, 2011, 10:20 AM
Georgia does not have a "Duty to Inform" law. There is no central database for weapons license holders. If a LEO asks if I am armed or if there is a gun in the car, I will answer truthfully. Lying or misleading a LEO in Georgia can get you arrested.

In 33+ years of driving and several roadside reminders about my driving behavior the issue has never come up.

ny32182
March 29, 2011, 10:21 AM
I have a long commute, am not a big fan of speed limits, and drive through several small towns every day that seem to get a lot of their revenue from tickets. So basically I get to speak with the friendly local police and/or highway patrol on the side of the road a lot more often than I would like. Most recently, this morning actually.

I can remember five times being pulled over with a pistol, and per SC law, have notified the officer. Four times it has been a complete non-issue as it should be. During the "exception" stop, the officer was nice and "professional", but took possession of the gun, unloaded it behind my back, and ran the s/n through some database to see if it was stolen I assume, which I consider an unconstitutional search, and a potentially dangerous situation especially if the officer is not familiar with the gun in question. If I did not have to inform I would not. It makes no one "safer", and only invites unneccessary things of all sorts.

In the times I've been pulled over without a pistol, I've NEVER been asked if I am armed.

I know to some extent it depends on the individual cop, and maybe the general culture in the area, but if I was constantly being asked by the local constabulary if I was armed I would evaluate what sort of "vibes" I am projecting to those around me.

Also, a seatbelt saved me serious injury or worse when I was 16 y/o in a wreck... I'd take one over a gun if the choice was either/or, 100% of the time.

CajunBass
March 29, 2011, 10:24 AM
I always thought the question was pretty much routine. At least from what I've seen on "COPs" and other such shows. It's been a long time since I've been stopped, and to tell you the truth, I don't remember if they did or not.

ny32182
March 29, 2011, 10:31 AM
The people on "COPS" give off the kind of vibes I referenced.:)

mljdeckard
March 29, 2011, 10:41 AM
I am not required to disclose. But I do anyway because it gets me out of tickets. Understand, every time a cop pulls you over, he is HOPING for more than a routine traffic stop. Smell of booze on you, outstanding warrant, etc. As soon as he knows you are a permit holder, those odds are very small, you become a fish to throw back quickly so that he can move on to the next one.

I think I've been pulled over about three times in the last ten years, no tickets. I have become a lot safer since I've been married. It doesn't seem so critical to get everywhere so dang fast anymore.

Carl N. Brown
March 29, 2011, 10:53 AM
In Tennessee the Handgun Carry Permit is given the same number as your Drivers License, and a routine traffic stop check of the TDL# will show that you have a THCP, so there is no point in you lying or the officer even asking.

Anymore, they don't ask or they don't care. THCP holders know not to make furtive moves, to keep both hands in the open, etc. The last traffic stop I had (my fault too), the officer made no mention of it.

David904
March 29, 2011, 11:34 AM
You know... By and large, the Police truly are there to try and perform a public good under what can occasionally be really crappy circumstances at significant personal risk. Rest assured that I have met some real pieces of excrement wearing a badge; but I feel that these are the exception rather than the norm.

If I ever come to feel that the police have travelled down Gestapo Lane as an institution, I will alter my conduct in dealing with them accordingly. However... As things stand, I consider it a basic courtesy to inform them that I am carrying. These are folks with families who want to feel as safe as they can, do their jobs well, and go home to their families at the end of the shift. I see no need to place anyone under unnecessary stress and strain, nor create a potentially antagonistic interaction.

ny32182
March 29, 2011, 11:41 AM
The gun on your hip won't have the opportunity to cause any stress/strain/antagonistic interaction if you don't tell them about it. It only will if you DO tell them about it.

Midwest Doc
March 29, 2011, 11:59 AM
Good read

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=42167&s=rcmp

Grey_Mana
March 29, 2011, 12:01 PM
The moderators generally like the initial post to have a little more meat than just a link.

For anyone that didn't click through, the article is about the importance of (a) telling a cop immediately that you have a gun, if you are required to do so by law because otherwise you go to jail and (b) not surprising a copy by saying "I have a gun!" because you don't want to get shot by a nervous cop.

The answer will vary by county, state, and municipality.

longdayjake
March 29, 2011, 12:05 PM
you need more. This thread will get locked as it stands. Maybe add a story about getting stopped.

Magoo
March 29, 2011, 12:11 PM
SC does have a duty to inform law. I actually got pulled over recently for the first time in 15+ years (expired tag-oops :o). I handed over my CWP with my driver's liscense. He asked "Do you have your pistol with you?" and as I didn't, responded "no". He handed back my CWP and didn't seem at all concerned. Really nice guy and I never sensed any increased tension on his part.

The tag is now current, but I've got to appear in court to get the ticket fine to go away. Check your tags folks, mine had apparently been expired for quite some time (again :o).

LemmyCaution
March 29, 2011, 12:14 PM
I open carry on the same side as my wallet. I always inform the police that I am armed and ask how they would like me to proceed, in order to prevent any misunderstanding when I reach for my wallet.

But I've also only been pulled over once in my driving career. The officer told me to go ahead and get my wallet, but do it slowly. She kept her hand on the grip of her sidearm throughout the stop.

I was never disarmed and was sent on my way with the advice to fix the bum headlight I had. I was on the way to the auto parts store at the time. Done.

ScottM
March 29, 2011, 12:14 PM
My state, Ohio, requires the permit holder to inform the police he/she is armed as soon as practically possible when interacting with police. I think this is common sense, and I would do so even if the law did not require it. I was a street cop for twelve years...I have been in similar circumstances as the officer in the article. Just need to remember that the cop is just a person doing a job that he/she wants to go home from in one piece. And most importantly he/she does not know what a swell person you are. The more you put the officer at ease, the better the experience will be for you.

Just common sense.

Guns&Religion
March 29, 2011, 12:16 PM
I've been stopped by a police officer, and I prefer to say, "Sir, I do need to let you know that I have a CPL and I am armed".

kingpin008
March 29, 2011, 12:17 PM
I see no need to place anyone under unnecessary stress and strain, nor create a potentially antagonistic interaction.

Once again, how is a (most likely) concealed pistol in it's holster on the hip of a verified-lawful individual going to cause any sort of strain, stress, or antagonism?

And it's not about the police being the Gestapo - it's about not playing along when you have no need to. If an officer asks, I would truthfully answer, whether the law says I have to or not. However, I will NOT volunteer information that has no bearing on our interaction simply because it may make me a "good citizen" in the eyes of the officer.

NavyLCDR
March 29, 2011, 12:21 PM
You may very well be asked if you are armed by the LEO if your state lists your CCW status on your registration. The LEO may know you are a holder and ask if you are armed when approaches your car. Once again, I don't see a reason to lie.

To me, this is completely backward reasoning. First of all, in Washington, in most jurisdictions CPL is tied to driver's license and in the others they do not tie the two together automatically, and in no jurisdictions in Washington is CPL tied to vehicle registration.

However, let's say for whatever reason the police officer becomes informed of the CPL (or CCW or CHL or whatever in your state.) Why would that give the officer MORE reason to ask about a gun? It would seem to me the officer would have more reason to ask about a gun with a person that does NOT have the CPL. Why does the officer have any reason at all to ask about a gun when they find out the subject has a CPL? They know the person has passed background checks. They know a gun is going to be carried lawfully. So what good could it possibly do to ask about a gun then?

The only reason an officer would have to ask about a gun after finding out about a CPL is so they can exercise their power to take it from you, unload it (if they know how) and fondle it unnecessarily, and violate your rights by calling in the serial number to see if it is stolen, an act which they have no reasonable suspicion to justify.

General Geoff
March 29, 2011, 12:22 PM
"Duty to inform" laws are completely ridiculous. By definition they are only enforceable on those who legally carry (and statistically are the least likely people to pose a physical threat to law enforcement), because those carrying illegally can exercise their fifth amendment right against self incrimination, invalidating the duty to inform.


So I must ask, "Why does this law exist? What purpose does it serve?"

NavyLCDR
March 29, 2011, 12:29 PM
"Duty to inform" laws are completely ridiculous. By definition they are only enforceable on those who legally carry (and statistically are the least likely people to pose a physical threat to law enforcement), because those carrying illegally can exercise their fifth amendment right against self incrimination, invalidating the duty to inform.


So I must ask, "Why does this law exist? What purpose does it serve?"

Those laws cause some people to feel safer. That's it. No real purpose, only an emotional purpose.

I might add.... oh gawd... I see yet another should I tell the officer or not thread starting here.

ATBackPackin
March 29, 2011, 12:36 PM
I was recently pulled over for speeding. He never asked if I was armed and I never volunteered. It was very cordial, as cordial as getting a ticket can be, event and we both were extremely professional to each other. Why would I want to ruin that by telling him I have a gun and put him/her on edge? I am certain that he wouldn't want me to pull it out to show him and I am more than certain that I do not want him going IWB to disarm me, especially with a Kahr. So I too do not see where this helps and am glad that PA does not require it.

Shawn

TNboy
March 29, 2011, 12:37 PM
Very good point Geoff. I had an aquaintence that is probably a person who should not be carrying a gun anyway, he was pulled over one night a just said "I have a gun" the officer had his service weapon on his head in a split second, and rightfully so.

Sam1911
March 29, 2011, 12:52 PM
Holy Thread Merge, Batman!

MD_Willington
March 29, 2011, 01:11 PM
In WA I do not have to inform, but since I have a CPL and it is tied to my DL, if I'm pulled over the LEO will know I have a CPL, and may be CCing at that time.

Thlax
March 29, 2011, 01:57 PM
I just give them licence, insurance and CCW & get it over with wherever I am..


Same.

texas bulldog
March 29, 2011, 02:04 PM
Are you guys seeing this out in the world? I've never been asked this question before. My lead foot and I have (unfortunately) some pretty regular contact with LE and this has never come up.

Sometimes I hand over the CHL, sometimes I forget, but I've never been flat out asked if there was a gun in the vehicle other than when I had a long gun visible to the LEO.

Really, TexasRifleman? That surprises me, because I feel like I get asked every time. Fortunately (and surprisingly?) I haven't been pulled over much in the past few years, but I feel like I've been asked several times if there are any weapons in the vehicle, especially on the I-35 corridor, where most of my vehicle stops have happened (I went back and forth from Dallas to Austin a lot during college).

So I guess, yes, I do think it has become standard, at least for some officers in some areas.

At the time, I did not own any weapons, so I said no, truthfully. Now, I would simply hand over my CHL along with the license. If they had further questions, they could ask away, and I'll decide based on the totality of circumstances whether I want to answer. It's been a good 5 years since I've had to deal with this, though.

kingpin008
March 29, 2011, 02:08 PM
I've been driving since I was 17 (I'm 29 now) hand have been pulled over probably fifteen or twenty times for various reasons. Never once been asked for anything other than my license, registration and insurance.

The only time I was ever questioned about guns in my car was after a traffic accident in highschool, where I was traveling with a bunch of my friends in my dad's car. One of the responding officers was a bit overzealous, and in (illegally, mind you) searching the car found an ancient shell casing left over from a day of target shooting. Besides that one incident, no other inquiries have ever been made of me regarding my armed status.

waldonbuddy
March 29, 2011, 02:25 PM
The best way to handle this is to say, "Officer, I have NOTHING to say".

I did that to a cop a few weeks ago, the guy was literally speechless, his mouth was moving, but no words were comming out.

It was raining, I had my headlights on, I had my windshield wipers on, I was under the speed limit.

He pulled me over for not having a seat belt on, which pissed me off insanely as I DID have my %#%$ seat belt on!

Took him a while to get turned around and drive as fast as possible to get to me while I was stopped at a stop sign.

He came to the window, and said " do you know why you were pulled over, you didn't have your seat belt on when I passed you, but now I see that you MUST have put it on".

I said, "I'm sorry officer, I have nothing to say". His expression made my day.

rugerman
March 29, 2011, 03:01 PM
When they first started giving out picture carry permits in Lee Co. Ala. the first year I did the paper work and sent it in and when I got my permit it had my drivers lic. picture on it. I usually get mine in person but my wife mails her's in and each time it has her drivers lic. picture on it. So at least in my county I'm pretty sure that my permit and drivers lic. are linked. The last leo that pulled me over (a friend) asked my if I had a weapon in the truck and I told him NO I have 5 or 7, according to how you classify the 2 pocket knives that I carry. Got a bit of a funny look and I've known him for 20 years.

HOOfan_1
March 29, 2011, 03:56 PM
So I must ask, "Why does this law exist? What purpose does it serve?"

Same reason the AWB law existed and banned bayonet lugs and barrel shrouds etc. etc. The law makers are ignorant and they are receiving one sided information from people more ignorant than they are who have an agenda.

THE DARK KNIGHT
March 29, 2011, 04:27 PM
We don't even have legal carry here and "Do you have any weapons in the car" is a standard question from Cops for everyone but old ladies and soccer moms. I'm honestly surprised it's not SOP in the places that do have CCW or gun in car laws or whatever.

HorseSoldier
March 29, 2011, 04:43 PM
"Duty to inform" laws are completely ridiculous. By definition they are only enforceable on those who legally carry (and statistically are the least likely people to pose a physical threat to law enforcement), because those carrying illegally can exercise their fifth amendment right against self incrimination, invalidating the duty to inform.

So I must ask, "Why does this law exist? What purpose does it serve?"

As I've discussed in a previous thread, your understanding of how duty to inform laws work doesn't gel with my experience in actually enforcing them. Since I outlined purposes the Alaska version thereof serves I won't reiterate them here in detail but, broadly, in terms of purpose -- they reduce risk to law abiding citizens during police contact, and provide an enforcement tool against those who do not comply with the law due to whatever motives.

MarkDido
March 29, 2011, 05:16 PM
One-Time said:
There is NO X amount of step/moves rule for carrying a gun in a car in Florida, not at ALL...never has been

The rule is it must be securely encased and not immediately accessible for use Securely encased is defined as in a glove box, snap holster or a container that has a lid to that has to be opened to access the gun etc, immediately accessible is defined as in as easy to grab and use as if it were on your person, storing as above it is not immediately ready for use

just keep it in the glove box, or center console w/ a lid or just in a snap holster, if you tell the cop you have it expect them to take it, and unload all mags and then they will drop the empty mags, gun and loose bullets in your trunk and tell you you may go

In Florida there is NO duty to notify


You would be surprised at the number of people who keep telling me that there is a two or three step rule in Florida.

Including my boss

Who is a civilian and works for the local S. O.

Who has also been a reserve Deputy for 30 years.

I keep a copy of the State Statutes in my truck.

NavyLCDR
March 29, 2011, 05:29 PM
We don't even have legal carry here and "Do you have any weapons in the car" is a standard question from Cops for everyone but old ladies and soccer moms. I'm honestly surprised it's not SOP in the places that do have CCW or gun in car laws or whatever.

Again, this to me just seems to be completely backwards thinking. Why does it seem to be so common for people to say that the MORE indication that a police officer has that a firearm will be LEGALLY carried, they should be MORE concerned about asking?

Maybe I am missing the big picture here, but it would seem to me that the greater chance there is an ILLEGAL gun present, would be MORE reason to ask, not the other way around.

As I've discussed in a previous thread, your understanding of how duty to inform laws work doesn't gel with my experience in actually enforcing them. Since I outlined purposes the Alaska version thereof serves I won't reiterate them here in detail but, broadly, in terms of purpose -- they reduce risk to law abiding citizens during police contact, and provide an enforcement tool against those who do not comply with the law due to whatever motives.

How about we compromise? How about we make it a law that IF I am carrying a concealed firearm, once I am detained by LEO I am required to inform them of the concealed firearm and present my license; upon doing so, by law, the LEO would then be prohibited from disarming me unless they were going to take me into actual physical custody?

In states like Alaska, Vermont, Arizona and soon to be Wyoming, the person carrying a concealed firearm must simply inform the officer of the concealed firearm, and then by law, the LEO would be prohibited from disarming me except for being taken into actual physical custody?

Everybody wins - I can then inform the officer with no danger of him taking my gun, trying to unload it, and calling in the serial number to see if it is stolen, even though he has no reasonable suspicion that it is.

Then both parties would be "protected", right?

Sam1911
March 29, 2011, 06:24 PM
How about we compromise? How about we make it a law that IF I am carrying a concealed firearm, once I am detained by LEO I am required to inform them of the concealed firearm and present my license; upon doing so, by law, the LEO would then be prohibited from disarming me unless they were going to take me into actual physical custody?I'll go along with that one! Especially if we remove the "require to inform part." :neener:

henschman
March 29, 2011, 06:25 PM
Yes, I've been asked that a lot. I will never tell them I have a gun in the car. The reason being that if you say yes, at least around here, they usually handcuff you, perform a consent-less, warrantless search of your car, seize your gun, write down the serial numbers, and radio them back to base. No thanks. I will just lie and tell them I don't have a gun, and skip all the violations of my liberty.

Anybody who is so terrified of armed citizens needs to find a different line of work... or go be a cop in some less-free country.

Depending on my mood, and whether I am being pulled over for some minor violation that I don't care about getting a ticket for, I might just tell them that's nobody's GD business. Which it isn't.

General Geoff
March 29, 2011, 06:41 PM
As I've discussed in a previous thread, your understanding of how duty to inform laws work doesn't gel with my experience in actually enforcing them. Since I outlined purposes the Alaska version thereof serves I won't reiterate them here in detail but, broadly, in terms of purpose -- they reduce risk to law abiding citizens during police contact, and provide an enforcement tool against those who do not comply with the law due to whatever motives.
IIRC, you feel it reduces risk to law abiding citizens because it supposedly reduces the chances of a cop shooting them unnecessarily given specific circumstances. This concept completely misrepresents burden of guilt and responsibility. It is entirely the officer's responsibility to not shoot those who don't need to be shot, when interacting with them. You could just as easily say that a law abiding citizen would be much safer during a police encounter if all police officers were banned from carrying firearms, and it would be just as valid a point.

As for my understanding of the law not gelling with your experience in enforcing them, that's because most criminals have little to no idea what their legal rights really are; and just like with jury nullification, the judge and prosecutor aren't about to point out all the rights and powers of laypersons in a court of law.

As for an enforcement tool, it serves none. A criminal is not going to tell you he's carrying either way, and the existence of a "duty to inform" law does not magically conjure reasonable suspicion to do a frisk for weapons. Any illegal weapon you discover, could just as legally have been discovered without the duty to inform law.

22-rimfire
March 29, 2011, 06:52 PM
I have never been asked that I recall. The only time I have heard of law enforcement asking if you have a gun or knife is when they have a suspicion of other illegal activity. Admittedly, that gives police very wide latitude in enforcing laws or investigating a potential illegal act such as poessession of illegal substances (drugs etc.) A friend had his car searched for drugs after a traffic stop. That required waiting for the drug dog car to show up. So at this point, there are probably three police cars involved which if you are a law abiding preson is pretty embarrassing. The line between harassment and prudent enforcement is sometimes pretty thin.

gym
March 29, 2011, 06:56 PM
I have been stopped maybe 3 times in 15 years got 1 ticket in 35 years, and no one ever asked me for my license in either NY or FL, and I never offered. I don't even know what the laws were in NYC, pre 94, but somehow pre internet, this stuff wasn't an issue.
I think it has become a bigger deal the past few years only because people have been able to carry easier than ever before in many states. Where before if you carried a gun, you really didn't talk to the average joe about it. It's more acceptable now, when my doctor and his nurse talk openly about what guns they want next and what I think about this or that weapon. Kind of funny really.

Dulvarian
March 29, 2011, 07:02 PM
Whip out that old cell phone and start recording. Ok, maybe it has to be a new cell phone to start recording.

To be funny, I've taught my kids that if they are ever in the car with me and I get pulled over they are to put their hands on their heads. Ridiculous irony on a cop trying to be a jerk with three cute kids making you feel like a jerk, mocking you.

And interstingly, I am pretty sure that if you have don't have a CCW permit in SC, you have no duty inform, though you can legally carry one in your car with no permit.

NavyLCDR
March 29, 2011, 07:33 PM
To be funny, I've taught my kids that if they are ever in the car with me and I get pulled over they are to put their hands on their heads. Ridiculous irony on a cop trying to be a jerk with three cute kids making you feel like a jerk, mocking you.

It's better to teach them to sing the "COPS" theme song anytime they see a badge! (And, if it's a 'CCW' badge, it's even better!)

Deanimator
March 29, 2011, 07:44 PM
But I do anyway because it gets me out of tickets.
The way to avoid speeding tickets is not to speed.

Deanimator
March 29, 2011, 07:52 PM
As I've discussed in a previous thread, your understanding of how duty to inform laws work doesn't gel with my experience in actually enforcing them. Since I outlined purposes the Alaska version thereof serves I won't reiterate them here in detail but, broadly, in terms of purpose -- they reduce risk to law abiding citizens during police contact, and provide an enforcement tool against those who do not comply with the law due to whatever motives.
They don't do that in Ohio. In fact, they do precisely the opposite. Beachwood PD ORDERED a driver to remain silent during a felony stop. After ***51*** seconds, he managed to inform... and was charged and TRIED for OBEYING THEIR ORDERS. He was of course acquitted.

The police proved that they cannot be trusted with mandatory notification. Given the opportunity, they shamefully abused it. That opportunity for abuse needs to be taken away from them. It needs to be eliminated YESTERDAY.

Deanimator
March 29, 2011, 08:00 PM
Just need to remember that the cop is just a person doing a job that he/she wants to go home from in one piece.
And informing him that you're LEGALLY armed does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING toward that end.

It's just part of the harassment of lawful concealed carriers pushed by the Ohio Highway Patrol to try to kill concealed carry in Ohio, exactly like the now defunct "plain sight" requirement in automobiles.

The Highway Patrol absolutely HATED the idea of lawful concealed carry in Ohio and did EVERYTHING they could to kill it for years. When that failed, they did EVERYTHING they could to make it as onerous as possible.

Their record of opposition to my right to self-defense outside of my home makes me completely unreceptive to what they want. Given the despicable abuse of mandatory notification committed by Beachwood police, they don't deserve to have it anymore.

henschman
March 29, 2011, 08:09 PM
The rationale that it increases the safety of individuals to force them to tell cops that they are armed is incredibly paternalistic and insulting to the intelligence of free people.

It is my own life. It is up to me to decide what course of action best protects it.

The rationale that it is one more charge to tack onto somebody who the cops think are guilty but can't prove is also totally bogus. We need less laws to give cops opportunities to do things like that, not more.

The only things that should be against the law are those things which actually threaten the rightful liberty of your fellow man. Simply staying silent about the fact that you are in possession of a weapon could never fit that criterion. It is an outrage to force someone to speak about something of that nature, and I refuse to submit to such violations of my liberty.

The fact that a cop has the authority to disarm a citizen for the duration of his contact with him is also completely outrageous. If the cop has some reason to believe the person is dangerous or is a threat to him, I can see where it might be OK... but just a random guy with a busted taillight, who for all the cop knows is just another armed citizen? Where is the threat there? Where is the danger?

These are the types of laws that belong in a fascist or totalitarian police state, not a country founded on the ideals of individual liberty.

I don't know how anyone feels OK about making a living enforcing such horrible and tyrannical laws, along with the myriad of other such laws police are required to enforce.

waldonbuddy
March 29, 2011, 08:11 PM
Here is a link to a hot and heavy debate on a very similar topic.

http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=1&f=5&t=1166687

HorseSoldier
March 29, 2011, 08:57 PM
How about we compromise? How about we make it a law that IF I am carrying a concealed firearm, once I am detained by LEO I am required to inform them of the concealed firearm and present my license; upon doing so, by law, the LEO would then be prohibited from disarming me unless they were going to take me into actual physical custody?

While the Alaska law does require citizens to surrender weapons to officers during contact if so directed by the officer -- for the most part that doesn't happen. (As well as having a number of exceptions when the law does not apply -- for anyone who is interested look up Alaska's Misconduct Involving a Weapon 5th Degree law.)

So what you're proposing is the normal de facto reality, even if it's not the law.

LemmyCaution
March 29, 2011, 09:37 PM
So what you're proposing is the normal de facto reality, even if it's not the law.

Not really.

The situation you describe leaves the sort of discretion to the officer that invariably throughout history winds up being abused.

We already give too much leeway and discretion to the bigotry of the police in this country, and rarely hold them accountable for their abuses of authority.

It started long before the event, but 9/11 really accelerated the over reach of the executive branch.

It's long past time to rein them in.

22-rimfire
March 30, 2011, 12:31 AM
We already give too much leeway and discretion to the bigotry of the police in this country, and rarely hold them accountable for their abuses of authority.

The abuses get noticed. It gets serious when a citizen takes the department to court. I know of a police chief that "retired" due to this exact thing and he clearly was becoming more abusive as his career progressed. He will likely cost his department (and ultimately the taxpayer) many thousands of dollars in a judgement against the department. It just doesn't need to happen this way. By the same token, he has had friends who did routine traffic stops and were shot as they walked up to the car. So, I am a little understanding of his situation.

HorseSoldier
March 30, 2011, 12:36 AM
The situation you describe leaves the sort of discretion to the officer that invariably throughout history winds up being abused.

Since motorists during traffic stops who inform are left in possession of their firearms for the duration of the stop in the vast majority of cases, and if they are seized by officers it's for the duration of the stop and then they're returned with no drama, I have a hard time seeing where the histrionic assertion that this law, at least here in Alaska is "invariably . . . being abused."

So at least from my experience (doing a lot of stops, interacting with the public, rarely taking possession of weapons and never having anyone get bent out of shape about complying with our MIW 5 statute up here) I have the sense your declaration is just hyperbole and drama.

Your mileage may vary. Localities tend to get the sort of law enforcement they demand (and are willing to pay for), and so if you're living somewhere where local government goes out of its way to not attract the best and brightest to the career, your mileage likely does vary.

We already give too much leeway and discretion to the bigotry of the police in this country, and rarely hold them accountable for their abuses of authority.

Additional rhetoric with no substance to support your assertion. So police are now not only invariably bound to abuse their authority but they're bigots as well?

It started long before the event, but 9/11 really accelerated the over reach of the executive branch.

Ah, so the real issue is that the darn old guvmint is just bad? I see. :rolleyes:

It's long past time to rein them in.

Rein in what? Abuse of authority by law enforcement is not only subject to internal review by departments, external review by the courts and other government agencies, but also subject to a media establishment that will jump all over itself for bad cops run amok stories as the finest sort of it bleeds it leads journalism. As an LEO I operated in a fish bowl with magnifying glasses pointed at it all the time. I'm not sure how much more "reined in" a profession can be.

Gouranga
March 30, 2011, 07:53 AM
Seems to my that lying to the officer on the street is not the way to go about this. He is going to follow what his supervisor tells him to do. If you start off lying to him and he finds out, you are going to have a bad day. IF you want to do something out of spite, get a citizens group together and go to the city/county council meeting and bring it up there. THAT is what endangers the chief, and that is how you can be spiteful and effective.

IMO, in the past we have been too standoffish with our gov. That has led us to not participate and his has handed our gov to the anti's. They need to see ACTIVE participation from us if we want to restore our 2A rights.

MEHavey
March 30, 2011, 08:07 AM
Since the CCW will come up on the computer as soon a they run the license, I have on two occasions handed over by license/registration/insurance/Mil-ID/CWpermit along with the statement "...I have no weapons at this time."

Both cases brought the response "thank you sir," and eventually no ticket.
(Treat others as you would have them treat you.)

Another classmate offerred the above along w/ the statement "I am armed at this time, in a left shoulder holster." He was given a "thank you, sir..." asked to keep his hands on the steering wheel... and then also let go w/ a warning.

The sense that you are (a) responsible and (b) not trying to hide something that may later be revealed as an unknown threat is 9-times-out-of-10 appreciated.

ATBackPackin
March 30, 2011, 09:31 AM
I think a lot of the attitude you will receive is dependent on your geography. While somewhere in the south you may get a "thank you sir" for telling the patrol officer you are armed, I seriously doubt that would be the same demeanor where I am. If I did that, I would expect to be asked at gunpoint to exit the vehicle and have the officer disarm me for nothing more than telling him/her that I have a gun.

Is there any cases where an officer has been shot at during a traffic stop from someone with a conceal carry permit? I'm not asking to be sarcastic, but I am honestly curious.

Again I think geography and local politics has a lot to do with this.

Shawn

Onmilo
March 30, 2011, 09:34 AM
Cops in my area are fond of asking "Any guns, knives, blowpipes,drugs, grenades, in the car?"
God I hate hearing that tired old line.

Right now I'm tempted to say "No, but remember that Cobra snake they lost over in New York?":D

Sam1911
March 30, 2011, 09:37 AM
While somewhere in the south you may get a "thank you sir" for telling the patrol officer you are armed, I seriously doubt that would be the same demeanor where I am. Really? You're still in PA, right? My last traffic stop in PA (St. Patrick's Day) ended in a 15-minute chat about gun shops and cool guns in which the officer didn't bother to ask for my LCTF, didn't check my vehicle registration, and forgot to give me the fix-it ticket he'd promised for my dead headlight. And that was a cop who grew up in Philly!

(I love it here...! :D)

MEHavey
March 30, 2011, 09:44 AM
Just so.... circumstances always temper judgement. Virginia-no problem. Arizona-no problem. Ohio-you gotta be kidding.

Sign of the times: While returning along I-80 to Sacramento from a hunting trip in the northern Sierras, we had a blowout on the trailer tire. I was carrying (openly) a 1911 on my right hip as we pulled off the shredded tire/wheel along the side of the road.

Up drives a state trooper. He gets out/comes over and looks over my shoulder at the problem. He then asks if he can give me/the wheel a ride to the nearest gas station.

Into the trunk goes the tire.
Into the passenger side go I -- still cocked/locked and carrying.

He never batted an eyelash, ...and I thanked him for the ride when we got to the tire place.

It was, of course, 1973.

ATBackPackin
March 30, 2011, 10:30 AM
Sam, my only official interaction with any LE in the nine years that I have lived in this area was a recent speeding ticket. In that case, as I think I stated on here before, he didn't ask if I had a gun and I didn't offer, was extremely cordial and professional. I will admit that some of my feeling on this is based on heresy, however over the years I have struck up conversations about this with half a dozen officers in a non official capacity and five of the six said flat out that they were not really comfortable with people carrying. They said that they have no problem with people defending their home, but that they didn't feel it was necessary for people to carry outside of their home, "that is what we are here for". Is this an accurate assessment of all the LE on the area? God I hope not, but that has been my experience. None were rude, but some did feel stronger than others on subject.

In my opinion duty to inform only give the LEO a reason to be on edge. Now whether or not they will treat you differently is completely dependent on that particular officer.

Shawn

Sam1911
March 30, 2011, 10:32 AM
In my opinion duty to inform only give the LEO a reason to be on edge. And I agree. If I'm going to shoot them, I'm not going to alert them to the gun. If I'm not going to shoot them, they don't need to know about the gun.

ATBackPackin
March 30, 2011, 10:35 AM
And by the way I love it here too. Especially considering that I moved here from just south of Baltimore and I do not miss it any little bit.

Stevie-Ray
March 30, 2011, 12:19 PM
But if we proceed on the assumption that everybody should be detained and searched because they "might" be dangerous that is not a free country. That is a police state.I agree, and it's law in my state to inform the police of carry. I don't like it one bit, but I'll comply until my state gets it's head out of it's rear like it generally does.

Gouranga
March 30, 2011, 12:46 PM
I agree, and it's law in my state to inform the police of carry. I don't like it one bit, but I'll comply until my state gets it's head out of it's rear like it generally does.

Mine does too. If anything, I try to keep it in a positive light. The least it does is keep surprises (particularly for inexperienced jumpy cops) if a gun is suddenly seen and it let's the cop know, that I am not a raving lunatic as they would tend to not tell a cop where the gun was.

In a perfect world though, the cop ran my plates, he know who owns the car, he comes up a car with lights on, hands on wheel, that should be enough to put him at ease a bit. On the other hand I once saw a video where an officer saw just that scene and as soon as he started to talk to the guy ("the reason I pulled you over sir is..."), he pulled out a gun and shot him point blank 2 or 3 times (in the vest thankfully). Rare...absolutely. Would it be something on my mind if I was a cop doing a traffic stop? Yeah.

2WheelsGood
March 30, 2011, 12:57 PM
Since I outlined purposes the Alaska version thereof serves I won't reiterate them here in detail but, broadly, in terms of purpose -- they reduce risk to law abiding citizens during police contact, and provide an enforcement tool against those who do not comply with the law due to whatever motives.I can understand your reasoning (at least more so) why Alaska has a "duty to inform" law, since you don't need to be licensed to carry. But in Michigan, CPL holders throw up a flag when a cop runs your plates anyway, so before they even get to the window they know who you are. It's more like a test just to see if you'll follow the rules (as silly as they are). And they are silly rules. The chances of a cop being shot by a CPL holder are probably 10,000 times less than getting hit by a car while having said CPL holder pulled over.

Rail Driver
March 30, 2011, 01:05 PM
However, if I'm ever asked by a LEO if there's a gun in my car, I'm gonna lie through my teeth just out of spite.
Just my "standard operating procedure".

It might not be illegal to lie to a non-federal LEO, but it's monumentally stupid and sets precedent for the future when it's documented that you've lied to the police before (especially where a firearm is concerned, regardless of the overall situation).

DO NOT lie to the cops. I'm not saying that you should exhibit diarrhea of the mouth around the police, but do NOT lie to them because it can come back to bite you in the tail later.

Guns and more
March 30, 2011, 07:01 PM
Think about it.
I'm a LEO (let's say). I pull you over. I ask if you are armed.
Now that is really stupid because the freak who would shoot a cop would have no problem lying also.
So, as a LEO it's a stupid question. The guys who say yes won't shoot you, and the one's you need to fear won't tell the truth, so don't waste my time.

What do you think? Old Billy Bob is gonna' say, "I wuz' gonna' shoot that cop, but he asked if I had a gun and I hada' say yes."

RimfireChris
March 30, 2011, 10:20 PM
I'm definitely of two minds here. I'd probably just hand over my CPL and DL at the same time, as the cop's gonna know once he runs my license anyway. At the same time though, I feel it's unreasonable, provided that up to that point I've been courteous and not exibiting any weird behavior, that the LEO can then decide that for no other reason than he can, I'm to be disarmed.

gym
March 31, 2011, 11:45 AM
Just do what you are required to do, no more no less. Trying to figure out the mindset of the officer who stopped you is a wast of time and effort. You don't know how he or she is going to react, so just follow the procedures.

joed
March 31, 2011, 12:02 PM
I think a lot of the attitude you will receive is dependent on your geography. While somewhere in the south you may get a "thank you sir" for telling the patrol officer you are armed, I seriously doubt that would be the same demeanor where I am. If I did that, I would expect to be asked at gunpoint to exit the vehicle and have the officer disarm me for nothing more than telling him/her that I have a gun.



Having lived in FL and OH I couldn't agree more with the above. FL was the most friendly gun state I've ever had the pleasure to be in. OH on the other hand is horrible.

I've had one incident here in OH already that has soured me. While traveling on Lake Erie we were stopped by the CG under the pretense of "Homeland Security" and asked for ID's. Along with producing ID's the CG did a vessel safety check, which in my opinion is illegal under the pretense of "Homeland Security".

At this point a Sheriff accompaniying the CG chastised me in front of a whole boat load of people because I handed him a drivers license and did not include my CCW. Number one, I don't think everyone needs to know who has a carry license. Number two, I was asked for an ID and had no weapon on me. Welcome to the northern geographical region.

henschman
March 31, 2011, 01:16 PM
I don't understand why some of you think that negative consequences will befall you if you lie to a cop about this. The only way that lying about this will get you in any kind of trouble, official or otherwise, is if they actually find out that you're lying... which is unlikely. If they ask you if you're armed and you answer "no," like 99% of people they stop, they won't treat you any different than any other traffic stop. They may ask you to let them search the car, but you can always refuse.

CZguy
March 31, 2011, 02:03 PM
I don't understand why some of you think that negative consequences will befall you if you lie to a cop about this. The only way that lying about this will get you in any kind of trouble, official or otherwise, is if they actually find out that you're lying... which is unlikely. If they ask you if you're armed and you answer "no," like 99% of people they stop, they won't treat you any different than any other traffic stop. They may ask you to let them search the car, but you can always refuse.

On the other hand, I don't understand why any law abiding person would feel the need to lie to the police. To my way of thinking, if you are a good citizen you wouldn't have any reason to hide anything from the police. Especially a firearm that you are legally carrying. I really have to question the way someone is presenting themselves if the police feels the need to disarm them.

When I come into contact with a LEO, it's just like at the range, everone is exceedingly polite. I think that's a good thing.

kyletx1911
March 31, 2011, 02:10 PM
tx it is a must if you are a chl holder you must disclose if no chl you dont have to tell
unless they ask

TexasRifleman
March 31, 2011, 02:19 PM
tx it is a must if you are a chl holder you must disclose if no chl you dont have to tell
unless they ask

Well technically that's true but be aware of the legislative intent here. The legislature removed any civil or criminal penalty for NOT informing if you are carrying with a CHL. Previously your CHL could be suspended, that is no longer the case.

So it's illegal to not inform but there are no consequences if you don't. That was just easier than removing the law entirely for a number of reasons.

Sam1911
March 31, 2011, 02:20 PM
To my way of thinking, if you are a good citizen you wouldn't have any reason to hide anything from the police. Especially a firearm that you are legally carrying. I really have to question the way someone is presenting themselves if the police feels the need to disarm them.
Aside from the repeated admonitions here and many other places that police officers are not just being good pals when they make official contact with you and that you owe it to yourself to limit that contact to the legal minimum as a general matter of course ... here's a very direct example for you:

Here in PA, the PA State Police maintains a database of handgun sales. All handgun sales must go through a dealer and all sales must be reported. (But this isn't a firearms registry ... oh NO ... that would be against PA state law!)

It has been common practice in some areas for troopers to disarm anyone they find to be carrying a weapon and for them to run that weapon's serial numbers through their database (which, remember, isn't a registry!). If that serial number isn't present in the database (and there are several perfectly legal reasons why the gun might not be: owned before moving to the state, inherited, owned before the non-registration scheme was started, etc.), the gun is confiscated until the owner manages to successfully petition the agency that his gun was lawfully owned. Much hassle, much time/expense wasted on what should be a totally illegal confiscation of property without cause.

kyletx1911
March 31, 2011, 02:39 PM
Well technically that's true but be aware of the legislative intent here. The legislature removed any civil or criminal penalty for NOT informing if you are carrying with a CHL. Previously your CHL could be suspended, that is no longer the case.

So it's illegal to not inform but there are no consequences if you don't. That was just easier than removing the law entirely for a number of reasons.
thanks for the heads up but i think it is better to let them know.
but thats just me

TexasRifleman
March 31, 2011, 02:40 PM
thanks for the heads up but i think it is better to let them know.
but thats just me

Oh yeah, not arguing either way, just a lot of people are not aware that the penalty was removed. In Texas my experience has been that showing the CHL increases your chances of getting a warning instead of a real ticket, especially with the State Troopers :)

HorseSoldier
March 31, 2011, 02:50 PM
I don't understand why some of you think that negative consequences will befall you if you lie to a cop about this. The only way that lying about this will get you in any kind of trouble, official or otherwise, is if they actually find out that you're lying... which is unlikely. If they ask you if you're armed and you answer "no," like 99% of people they stop, they won't treat you any different than any other traffic stop. They may ask you to let them search the car, but you can always refuse.

Depending on location it can get you charged with a crime you've clearly committed, such as here in Alaska. Besides a criminal charge this means you've just lost your pistol for the duration of your trip through the court systems (as it is evidence of the crime you've committed) plus, even if found not guilty or just tossed by the DA, however many months it takes an under-staffed evidence section to get your property processed and ready to return to you. (Not to mention whatever $$$ you're out for a lawyer, unless you're trusting your situation to a Public Defender . . .).

Big moral win there, I guess. :rolleyes:

Plus "it's only a big deal if you're caught" . . . if you're driving late at night and make any sort of traffic violation because you were on your phone, messing with the radio, not paying attention, whatever . . . you're likely to find yourself doing field sobriety tests, which will definitely involve a search of your person and possibly a safety search looking for weapons in the lunge zone of your vehicle. You may not be drunk and may be completely free to go on your way after that . . . except your "I always lie to the police about weapons" brilliant policy means you're going on your way with a Cite & Release court date for a misdemeanor crime and your pistol is going into evidence like I mentioned.

In a jurisdiction where no crime is involved and you just got caught in a lie . . . I can't imagine you're getting the benefit of the doubt from thereon out in the contact. People seem to endlessly go on about "the police are bad, mmmkay?" stuff, but as an officer on the street I always approached everyone (even people I knew I was going to be putting in cuffs for some really messed up stuff) with a give respect/get respect sort of equation. Provided someone didn't want to fight and have to be basically pummeled into cuffs, even people getting arrested deserve professionalism and decency from law enforcement (and that helps as an investigatory tool, but I digress). People who obeyed Alaska's duty to inform law -- my basic notion was almost always "good for you for exercising your right to carry". The vast majority of people on the street are law abiding, good folks, even if in LE you tend to deal mostly with the 1-10% of scum bags who account for 90% of police contacts.

People who don't inform, and actually lie to avoid compliance with our law up here -- you have now immediately stepped out of the "good folks" category. You're a liar, which I don't have a lot of patience for in any case (since everyone in that 1-10% scumbag population lies to me every day in my dealings with them). You've knowingly and willfully broken a law (another hallmark of those 1-10% scumbag types). And you've done all that to conceal the fact you're armed which, in a profession where people do occasionally offer armed resistance only after it's determined they have a warrant or are going into cuffs for whatever other reason, etc . . . no benefit of the doubt coming your way when I already know you're a liar and a criminal. Because however much you style yourself a law abiding citizen, you're now comporting yourself like the frequent flying scumbags that make up most of my work load.

"But I don't agree with that law" -- wow, and the guy who beat his wife to a pulp only did it because she cheated on him etc etc etc blah blah blah. Never mind then, I didn't realize there was an excuse. Since no one I've ever arrested for anything ever offered me an excuse before to explain whatever stupidity they involved themselves in, we'll just give you a pass on this one because your amateur internet fueled Constitutional scholarship obviously trumps local/state/federal law.

You're right that if you actively lie to an officer when asked about weapons during a traffic stop it's unlikely to be discovered. Having been on the other half of that equation, however, if you are discovered I would argue that the full weight of whatever penalties are available need to be dropped on you like a cartoon piano at the top of a ten story pulley line. Because you're acting exactly like any number of scumbags and (depending on location) breaking a law -- in short, you're not acting like someone society as a whole probably has a real vested interest in allowing to carry a concealed weapon. And you're embarrassing and discrediting those of us who think that is a vitally significant right.

armoredman
March 31, 2011, 04:03 PM
Arizona law is a bit different, as we have this...http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/13/03102.htm&Title=13&DocType=ARS
A. A person commits misconduct involving weapons by knowingly:
1. Carrying a deadly weapon except a pocket knife concealed on his person or within his immediate control in or on a means of transportation:
(a) In the furtherance of a serious offense as defined in section 13-706, a violent crime as defined in section 13-901.03 or any other felony offense; or
(b) When contacted by a law enforcement officer and failing to accurately answer the officer if the officer asks whether the person is carrying a concealed deadly weapon; or
...


J. If a law enforcement officer contacts a person who is in possession of a firearm, the law enforcement officer may take temporary custody of the firearm for the duration of that contact....

L. For the purposes of this section:
1. "Contacted by a law enforcement officer" means a lawful traffic or criminal investigation, arrest or detention or an investigatory stop by a law enforcement officer that is based on reasonable suspicion that an offense has been or is about to be committed.



That last bit we tried to get removed, but it was thrown in as a sop. OK. It also means that the officer must ask, then we must not lie, or additional charges may be brought. And he may retain temporary custody of the weapons during the lawful contact.
I have no idea how well it works - my last traffic violation was 20 years ago.

As for good guys have no reason to hide anything, my answer always is, "the mere fact that I have nothing to hide gives nobody the right to ask."

mgmorden
March 31, 2011, 04:33 PM
Even if not required by law, it's generally a stupid action to outright lie to a LEO. Realistically, if you piss them off, there is a TON of infractions they are often able to write you up for but normally overlook unless provoked.

Only time I've ever been asked if I had a gun in the car was when I was pulled over on the way home from the range - I had a target sitting on the seat. I answered completely truthfully. At the end of the stop the officer even asked what type of gun it was I told him it was a SIG and he complimented me on my taste in firearms.

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