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Texas Castle Doctrine as it applies to automobiles?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Tex62, Aug 29, 2009.

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  1. Tex62

    Tex62 Member

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    Hi,

    Does anyone have any information on this? What I have found online seems extremely vague.

    I probably just need to go get my CHL so I don't have to worry about it...

    Thanks!
     
  2. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    What are you looking for exactly?

    The term "castle doctrine" really doesn't describe what this does. And the Texas Castle Doctrine has absolutely nothing to do with CHLs.

    The main piece of the law is Texas Penal Code 9.31, Self Defense

    The whole thing is posted below. There is also a section in the civil code that says if a shooting is found to be justified under 9.31 that it's a defense to a civil suit. Note that doesn't mean you can't be sued, it means if you can prove it was justified the suit is no good. That can still cost a lot of money and time.

    In Texas, also, if you kill someone you will go before the Grand Jury, even if it's justified and the cops don't think you did anything wrong.

    As for it's applicability to cars, that part is in bold below.

    What exactly were you wondering?

    The actual bill that was passed, Texas SB 378, is here. http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/80R/billtext/html/SB00378I.htm





    Now, if you are asking about the carry of concealed handguns in an automobile without a CHL, that's an entirely different law from the "Castle Doctrine".

    That is under Penal Code section 46. Weapons.

    The important piece of that related to cars is:

    That means you can carry a concealed handgun in a car that you own or control. You can't be carrying concealed while riding in the back seat of your friends car.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2009
  3. Tex62

    Tex62 Member

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    Hi. Thanks for providing the details on the current law(s). I did not realize that there were two seperate laws for this.

    I have had some problems with harassment gas stations. This has happened twice with family in the car and fortunately I was fortunately able to diffuse it verbally. I was looking for information dealing with carry in the car now that it is legal and came across the verbage in Section 9.31 1A regarding "occupied" habitation or vehicle. So I was wondering about a scenirio where you are filling gas and are outside of the car with a weapon inside the car and needed to retrieve it. It does not sound like this is within the bounds of the law as written. The reference to getting the CHL would cause this issue to be mute.

    Thanks.
     
  4. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    Well, if you are in a self defense situation that calls for a firearm there is no longer a requirement to keep the handgun concealed. Once it's a self defense situation covered under the Penal Code the gun may be visible for all to see. In fact there is one piece of the Penal Code that specifically allows for the display of a firearm as just a threat of deadly force.

     
  5. DHJenkins

    DHJenkins Member

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    Not for nuthin', but it sounds like you're looking for legal justification to pull a gun to end an argument, not for self defense. Such a course of action could seriously escalate an otherwise 'all mouth' situation and the law may not come down on your side if you shoot someone.

    Don't get me wrong, If you're being threatened, robbed or are in fear for your life that's one thing, but being harrassed carries a certain non-violent connotation to it, especially since you've been able to verbally defuse the situations in the past; a past which could bite you in the behind and paint you as a person who was 'out for blood' instead of just protecting himself.

    Could you elaborate on what exactly this harrassment entails?
     
  6. Tex62

    Tex62 Member

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    Hi DHJenkins,

    "Not for nuthin', but it sounds like you're looking for legal justification to pull a gun to end an argument".

    Not at all, but a few characters have had me wonder "what if"..., so I am wondering what the legalities are around car carry without the CHL.

    "Could you elaborate on what exactly this harrassment entails? "

    Nothing too bad. We stopped late at night for gas north of San Antonio for gas on I-35. An individual came along that insisted he needed a ride into Austin for some "emergency". Wouldn't leave and would not take no for an answer. He made a move to the car, so I locked it with the remote. I pulled a cell phone out and told him we would let the police give the ride. He proceeded to leave...
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2009
  7. Tex62

    Tex62 Member

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    TexasRifleman,

    This is like putting a puzzle together. I should have been a lawyer... :D

    One other question...

    What constitutes a vehicle? Would this include a bicycle?

    Thanks for helping clarify all this...
     
  8. zxcvbob

    zxcvbob Member

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    Go for broke; make it a unicycle. ;)
     
  9. bdickens

    bdickens Member

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    The Castle Doctrine and the Motorist Protection Act are two entirely different things.

    The Castle Doctrine removes the egregious "duty to retreat" while the Motorist Protection Act allows law-abiding citizens to carry handguns in their cars for protection.
     
  10. DHJenkins

    DHJenkins Member

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    Ahh, now see I'd consider that a ways beyond harrassment and more along the lines of attempted forceable entry.

    The problem, of course, is that reaching in to retrieve your weapon once already involved in a situation leaves you open to attack while doing so.

    I think this section of the penal code would be more pertinant to your question:

    Basically, as outlined, it would be legal (and safer) for you to 'carry while pumping' so long as you pay at the pump. If you walk into the store carrying, you'd more than likely be violating the above statute.

    IMO, this statute, coupled with the above quoted self-defense statutes listed by Texas Rifleman should pretty much cover you.

    Also, a vehicle as defined by the TPC is a motor vehicle.

    My advice would be to fuel up in the city - not in the boonies or outskirts. Gas prices are lower anyway.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2009
  11. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    Nope. Motor vehicle as DHJenkins says.

    Texas Supreme Court defines it (in Slaughter v. Abilene State School). This cite discusses whether automobiles and motor vehicles are the same, but it's a good guide as to what a court would rule a "motor vehicle" I think.

    In one Attorney General letter, the AG's office says:

     
  12. ChickenRanch

    ChickenRanch Member

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    Is it true that if you are carrying a concealed handgun in your vehicle in the state of Texas, your ammunition (or clip) has to be seperate from the gun?
     
  13. Deltaboy1984

    Deltaboy1984 Member

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  14. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    Nope, that's not true. Where the heck did you hear that?
     
  15. Wolfebyte

    Wolfebyte Member

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  16. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    From the story:

    That's absolutely amazing, even more amazing that he would say that to a cop.

    I bet his attorney will want to choke him for that one....

    As well he should be. I'm truly amazed. I thought it might be April 1 there for a second.

    So many great lessons here of what NOT to do though, might be a fun topic for Strategy and Tactics :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2010
  17. Deltaboy1984

    Deltaboy1984 Member

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    After reading the Story Austin PD would be well served to ticket or arrest the 20 year old man for his actions that got his truck tires shot.
     
  18. ChickenRanch

    ChickenRanch Member

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    Not sure where I heard it, but have heard it several times
     
  19. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

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    Just wondered. That sounds like one of the things you'd hear in a gun store :)

    Texas law doesn't appear to address loaded or unloaded at all, it just mentions the requirement that it be concealed.

     
  20. ChefKristian

    ChefKristian Member

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    The guy should have willfully diffused the situation by exiting MoPac... It was with in his ability to make the use of his weapon a LAST RESORT... just like what is taught in the CHL class he took... And then to fire his weapon on the highway without giving any thought to what would happen to the stray bullets if he had missed, HE WAS AIMING FOR THE OTHER GUYS HEAD AND HIT HIS TIRE...MoPac has houses and businesses all down the road...

    Man... what a way to lose his gun rights forever.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2010
  21. Owen Sparks

    Owen Sparks member

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    In Mississippi, another CD state, your vehicle is concidered an extention of your home. Anything that is legal in your home is legal in your car except for open containers of alcohol.
     
  22. ChefKristian

    ChefKristian Member

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    Heck, I keep one mag in the gun, one in the center console, and one in my pocket!
     
  23. dturner1993

    dturner1993 Member

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    It is not up to the cops to decide if a person did anything wrong. You are incorrect. It is up to the state attorney. If you murder someone, you are going to jail...it's that simple.
     
  24. dturner1993

    dturner1993 Member

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    You are correct on this one...this also applies in Texas.
     
  25. dturner1993

    dturner1993 Member

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    Actually the law does define loaded versus unloaded. If it is loaded, it is referred to as a "readily dischargable firearm". And yes, you can carry both either loaded or unloaded....doesnt matter.
     
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