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I got shot, my guns got taken

Discussion in 'Legal' started by bkjeffrey, Feb 24, 2010.

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  1. bkjeffrey

    bkjeffrey Member

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    Ill keep this short. Last Monday there was an accidental discharge in my home, I was shot through the knee with a Smith and Wesson M&P 9mm. No charges were pressed against the shooter. He is still a friend of mine. My wife called 911. The police came as well as the medics. We made it clear to the police at the scene that it was an accidental discharge and no charges were to be filed. I spent 8 days in the hospital and got out today and am recovering well.

    I keep a Mossberg 12ga next to my couch and a Glock 21 .45 pistol under the loveseat cushion for home protection. This is were the problem is. The shooting happened in the living room. When the police arrived they confiscated my buddies Smith 9mm AND my 12ga and Glock. Upon returning home from the hospital I find out that the local PD has sent our weapons off for ballistics testing. After up to 8 weeks we can “apply” to get them back. We have to wait until the “investigation” is done. What investigation. They questioned me, my wife, and my buddy the shooter. There was no foul play. They also asked to search the rest of the house for any other weapons but my wife told them no, there weren’t anymore and they couldn’t search. They also took a “fake silencer” from an air soft gun because the cops said it “looked real”….whatever.

    What are they doing and are they doing it legally? Were they within their responsibility to take my weapons after my friend willingly turned over his gun that shot me? Why the investigation? What’s going on here?
     
  2. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Glad you're OK, and thanks for posting this.

    I think the best place to stow your arms is either on you or locked up. When the police are called, it's a good idea to lock up any firearms or cash that weren't involved in the shooting. It's more legally problematic for them to get into a locked safe. Leaving them unsecured leaves them open to this kind of "clearing the scene for the officer's safety" business.

    You should absolutely get a lawyer to help you pursue your firearms and much more importantly because they may be contemplating charges.
     
  3. bkjeffrey

    bkjeffrey Member

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    Please explain?
     
  4. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

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    You need an attorney, really expect to pay if you don't know somebody, main problem is making sure you can get your guns back, might be as simple as showing up and asking, could be more, like prove ownership and pass a background check.

    If you know somebody, they can call and make some head way, just don't get to pissed and cuss out the cops yet, that is one sure way to get them to drag their feet. It makes alot of difference, call the investigating officer and get as much detail as possible.
     
  5. Zip7

    Zip7 Member

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    I guess if I accidentally shoot myself, 911 will not be an option for me.

    Seems like a bogus deal to me. I would press on them to get your guns back. This was not an issue for police to be involved with in the first place if what you said is accurate.
     
  6. Almond27

    Almond27 Member

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    Uh, you do realize if he wouldn't have called 911 and just drove to the hospital that they still call police at the hospital to come out and question you.
     
  7. bkjeffrey

    bkjeffrey Member

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    I didnt shoot myself. My buddy accidentally shot me with his gun. My wife called 911. The police invited themselves, they were there before the ambulance. The police at the scene were really nice and professional, I just didnt expect them to take MY guns.

    Why would I need an attourney??????
     
  8. bkjeffrey

    bkjeffrey Member

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    Could have hurt a little more.........glad I keep a 45 for HD.
     
  9. memphisjim

    memphisjim Member

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    way to keep it tough
     
  10. rainbowbob

    rainbowbob Member

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    I can't help you with your question regarding the police confiscation, although I agree you probably need a lawyer.

    So...for the sake of instruction (i.e., what NOT to do with a 9mm) - can you tell us how/why it happened?
     
  11. HeliumHigh

    HeliumHigh Member

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    In reply to bkjeffrey's question "Why would I need an attourney??????":

    Understand that in most states it is illegal to discharge a firearm within any city limits, and since this happened at your house, I'm assuming it happened within city limits. That is just one angle to think about.

    Since this is about something that has already happened, I would suggest talking to a lawyer at the minimum. Most attorneys will give you a free consultation, and you should take one up on that offer. Do yourself a favor and get competent, relevant, and educated legal advice before listening to a bunch of dudes on the internet!

    Understand that when anyone calls in a shooting, accidental or otherwise, the cops have to show up. When the cops show up they are required to write up some form of report. In the case of a accident (or negligent) shooting, I'm betting a lot more paperwork will be necessary.

    As far as getting your guns back: "The squeaky wheel gets the grease". Respectfully request, and then bug, the police about getting them back. Try and get confirmation of everything that they tell you in writing if possible, even if it is just taking your own notes while talking to a detective.

    Good luck!
     
  12. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    bkjeffery:

    There are at least two reasons you hould talk to an attorney:

    1. You may need one to get your guns back. Police Departments with an anti-attitude toward private citizens owning guns often stonewall when it comes to returning firearms. A lawyer will know the "who and where" to put pressure on.

    2. You didn't bring any charges, but that doesn't mean they can't. After the so-called investigation a report will go to the Parish or County Attorney. If they want, they can bring charges - of any kind against anyone who was there. You need to discuss the possibility with an attorney first, if that's possible.
     
  13. thorn-

    thorn- Member

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    The part that's especially odd to me: why exactly are they doing ballistic testing on a 12ga, when it was a pistol wound?

    thorn
     
  14. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    At least schedule a consult with an attorney. It doesn't hurt to be on the safe side.
     
  15. mrokern

    mrokern Member

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    Lawyer up, and make it a lawyer who understands gun law. The right lawyer may charge a few more bucks up front, but do the math...

    Good lawyer, well known by the police, intimately familiar with the gun laws....maybe you can get your guns back with one blunt letter from him.

    Other lawyer, not familiar with gun laws, maybe not so well known...police may respond with "see you in court for a hearing".

    You'll spend more up front for the first one, but it'll cost you less in the long run.

    My wife is under instructions that if anything EVER happens, nobody goes anywhere in our place without a search warrant and even then it'll be under protest.

    -Mark
     
  16. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    With out a doubt your friend is subject to negligence charges and somebody is going to pay for all these doctor and hospital costs. If I were guessing who needed a lawyer I would say him. Your insurance will probably go after him to recover the losses.
    In hind site I'm sure you wish you would have taken those other 2 guns and stuck them in a bedroom closet but since the PD has them there will be much red tape to get them back and of course they do have the proof that they are a danger to you in your home.(you haven't told us the story yet)
    If you are only out those two guns you are looking at maybe $800 dollars, a lawyer will burn through that in short order. If it were me I would go buy another pair of guns and have 2 extra when the smoke clears and the cops give them back which they will eventually. On the other hand and there is anything shady I would look at some legal council but only you know that.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2010
  17. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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    As previously stated, while there may not have been "intent" on your friends part to shoot you, there is always the possibility of him being charged with criminal negligence.

    As far as your guns, certain depts. and DA's seem to have a habit of once confiscating a gun for any reason, not returning it without a fight.

    There was a post here a few months ago about someone going through this to get his gun back and having to sue.
     
  18. NOLAEMT

    NOLAEMT Member

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    I can't say why the Police took your guns, But can shed some light on why they showed up.

    When I'm working and we respond to any sort of possibly violent scene, we always wait for a code 4 from the police before we go on scene. While I'm sure you told the dispatcher that it was accidental, but unfortunately many people lie to dispatch to try to avoid getting in trouble, so we are forced to expect the worst. The ambulance was probably stopped down the street, waiting for the police to tell them its OK.

    So if you call EMS for anything that sounds possibly violent, or if you don't give a chief complaint, expect the police to show up. (sorry :eek:)
     
  19. edSky

    edSky Member

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    Silly question, but funny answer, bkjeffrey. Glad you have a sense of humor and I wish you a speedy recovery. It's too bad they took your guns and I hope you get them returned.
     
  20. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    My guess is the cops took your guns because they wanted to see if they might have been used in other crimes in the area and the investigation of your accident and the proximity of the guns gave them the legal basis to scratch that itch.

    Unless the cops are slow returning the firearms (or you've been using them in crimes), it is probably a bit early to be spending cash on an attorney yet. I would just stick to polite and persistent inquiries while documenting EVERYTHING about each conversation (email is great if you can do that); otherwise keep a notebook and log every contact (who, what, when, where, how).
     
  21. smoking357

    smoking357 member

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    We all know what's going on. We're just too cowardly to admit it or do anything about it.
     
  22. Quoheleth

    Quoheleth Member

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    I would say that unless you are charged with something (and if your buddy was the shooter, why would you be charged???), and you know an attorney who will do the case pro-bono, you will be better off, dollar-wise, not paying attorney's fees but just go buy couple of new guns. I figure if an attorney spends three hours on this, that's the cost of the firearms.

    If you really want to stir the pot, call the police and file a stolen guns report with your insurance agency. :evil:

    Q
     
  23. LickitySplit

    LickitySplit Member

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    Just wondering... did they provide your wife with a receipt for the seized firearms?
     
  24. StarDust1

    StarDust1 Member

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    Why do they run a bureau on every single person that they pull over on the road? It's what they do, they look for crime, everywhere, your home is no refuge!
     
  25. StarDust1

    StarDust1 Member

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    Because THEY CAN FILE charges whether you wish them to or not! I would advise you to SHUT-UP now, and seek out the services of an attorney, ditto for your STUPID friend....
     
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