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sfwdiy
11-07-2008, 2:38 PM
I just got finished reading the general discussion thread here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=130281) about a guy who had an OLL taken from his safe. There was some discussion about whether or not one can refuse to open a safe if it's not specifically listed on a search warrant, but there was no definitive answer. Obviously the safe is out of bounds if the police are looking for something that wouldn't fit in there to begin with. I would think the cops couldn't make someone give them the combination as this would be in violation of the right to remain silent as well as the right not to incriminate one's self. Is there any consensus on this? Existing caselaw?

--Ben

The SoCal Gunner
11-07-2008, 2:45 PM
I'm no expert but from the readings I've done in a criminal procedure and processes class, the search has to be within the scope of the search warrant and most likely the search warrant would define where and what can be searched and what property is to be seized. If looking for weapons I don't see why they wouldn't be allowed to search a locked safe just as they are able to open a closed container which may have weapons in them.

If a search warrant is to be executed on you it would be best to ask the officer executing the warrant to present a copy to you at the time of the search so you can see what can be searched and what they are looking for.

Evidence can't be testimonial so that would not violate your 5th Amendment rights.

Sundowner
11-07-2008, 3:00 PM
The gun safe builder from whom I bought my safe told me about a time when he was called out by the local police to open a gun safe. The owner had a warrant served and they were looking for a weapon so the safe was not out of bounds. The owner refused to give them the combination so they had the locksmith go out and open it for them. Found the weapon and arrested the homeowner. If they want in it, they'll get in it one way or another.

mrjones98
11-07-2008, 4:01 PM
I would think the cops couldn't make someone give them the combination as this would be in violation of the right to remain silent as well as the right not to incriminate one's self. Is there any consensus on this? Existing caselaw?

--Ben

I know there is a parallel concern with the authorities forcing you to hand over your computer password/encryption key - especially if doing so results in the surfacing of incriminating evidence.

bohoki
11-07-2008, 4:05 PM
if they have a warrant they can open it themselves of course this is a good test to see if they have a valid warrant or not

ask to see it then forget the combo

i wonder if you are allowed to line your safe with bags of powdered aluminum mixed with powdered rust

JDay
11-07-2008, 4:16 PM
I just got finished reading the general discussion thread here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=130281) about a guy who had an OLL taken from his safe. There was some discussion about whether or not one can refuse to open a safe if it's not specifically listed on a search warrant, but there was no definitive answer. Obviously the safe is out of bounds if the police are looking for something that wouldn't fit in there to begin with. I would think the cops couldn't make someone give them the combination as this would be in violation of the right to remain silent as well as the right not to incriminate one's self. Is there any consensus on this? Existing caselaw?

--Ben

It has been ruled that you do not have to give up passwords, I believe this would apply to combinations to. However they would likely just get another warrant to drill the safe. http://cyb3rcrim3.blogspot.com/2007/12/court-upholds-using-fifth-amendment-to.html

Adonlude
11-07-2008, 4:50 PM
Don't you wish you could encrypt the contents of your safe!

sfwdiy
11-07-2008, 5:46 PM
i wonder if you are allowed to line your safe with bags of powdered aluminum mixed with powdered rust

I think booby-trapping your safe with a thermite bomb would get an attempted murder charge tacked onto whatever else they were trying to pin on you.

--B

Riodog
11-07-2008, 5:51 PM
AT that point in time , WHO gives a damn?
Rio

JDay
11-07-2008, 5:55 PM
i wonder if you are allowed to line your safe with bags of powdered aluminum mixed with powdered rust

12355. (a) Except as provided in Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 12301), any person who assembles, maintains, places, or causes to be placed a boobytrap device as described in subdivision (c) is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or five years.
(b) Possession of any device with the intent to use the device as a boobytrap is punishable by imprisonment in state prison, or in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment.
(c) For purposes of this section, "boobytrap" means any concealed or camouflaged device designed to cause great bodily injury when triggered by an action of any unsuspecting person coming across the device. Boobytraps may include, but are not limited to, guns, ammunition, or explosive devices attached to trip wires or other triggering mechanisms, sharpened stakes, and lines or wire with hooks attached.

http://ag.ca.gov/firearms/dwcl/12355.php

383green
11-07-2008, 6:06 PM
AT that point in time , WHO gives a damn?
Rio

If the worst thing in your safe is a legally-configured OLL or ten, then you should give a damn. A bogus AW charge based on a legally-configured OLL rifle is a lot easier to beat in court than a legitimate boobytrap charge and/or federal destructive device charge based on an actual thermite device built into the safe.

NiteQwill
11-07-2008, 6:15 PM
I believe bohoki was what we call sarcastic nowadays.

sac550
11-07-2008, 7:00 PM
If they have a search warrant Officers will be able to search anywhere in the house 99 percent of the time. That is because any author of a search warrant (affiant) that knows what he/she is doing includes the following language in their affidavit & search warrant "all items of indicia that show dominion and control of the residence, property or vehicle to be searched". So that means officers can search anywhere a bill, letter, credit card etc could be placed, which means the whole house and the safe.

Patriot
11-07-2008, 7:06 PM
I know there is a parallel concern with the authorities forcing you to hand over your computer password/encryption key - especially if doing so results in the surfacing of incriminating evidence.

It has been ruled that you do not have to give up passwords, I believe this would apply to combinations to. However they would likely just get another warrant to drill the safe. http://cyb3rcrim3.blogspot.com/2007/12/court-upholds-using-fifth-amendment-to.html

The following excerpt from the above link is consistent with my understanding of the issue:

In distinguishing testimonial from non-testimonial acts, the Supreme Court has compared revealing the combination to a wall safe to surrendering the key to a strongbox. The combination conveys the contents of one's mind; the key does not and is therefore not testimonial. A password, like a combination, is in the suspect's mind, and is therefore testimonial and beyond the reach of the grand jury subpoena.

On a practical note, I'd imagine that if they are legally entitled to look in your safe, then physically getting into it is unlikely to pose much of a problem. In fact, since chances are you obligingly provided the make and model of your safe on a safe affidavit, they probably know exactly what they're up against if they did their homework. (That is, assuming LE has access to records of safe affidavits in the course of a lawful investigation.:confused:)

bohoki
11-07-2008, 8:15 PM
so it would be illegal to store bags of thermite in a safe

i'm not saying have it activate with opening there is not triggering device

unless someone trys to torch it open how about a warning sign on the outside about caution combustibles inside no torches?

383green
11-07-2008, 8:31 PM
unless someone trys to torch it open how about a warning sign on the outside about caution combustibles inside no torches?

Heck, my Ft. Knox safe came right from the factory with a decal in the instruction package saying something along the lines of "danger: black powder inside". If you have any (perfectly legal!) flammables, propellants or low-grade explosives inside the safe (and who doesn't store some ammo in the safe along with their guns?), then it seems prudent to me to place a suitable warning on the outside of the safe. If this has the added effect of making anybody think twice about cutting the safe open, whether they have a legal reason to do so or not, then that's just a convenient benefit.

Now, bags of thermite on the other hand... maybe it's just my conditioning as an oppressed Californian, but it seems unlikely to me that "bags of thermite" are things that us ordinary, unlicensed commoners are legally allowed to have sitting around, so this doesn't seem to me like something that I, as a fine upstanding citizen, would have sitting in my gun safe. If I'm mistaken, and there's no legal restriction or regulation about having bags of thermite sitting around, then somebody please clue me in, because in that case I have old trailers to rust and soda cans to granulate! And even an old magnesium VW engine block to powder! :D

bwiese
11-08-2008, 12:01 AM
You should get one of the Trutanich-Michel gun safe "get a warrant" magnetic placards.

If the gun safe isn't on the warrant they can't open it.

If they illegally open it without the warrant specifying it, the putative evidence garnered therefrom has a fair chance of not being usable against you. And if there's 'no case' you're certainly gonna get new safe paid for by taxpayers :)

Threats to "open a safe by any means necessary" are just that. If you open the safe you're effectively consenting to the search.

NEVER GIVE CONSENT TO ANYTHING.

If things are that bad your only utterances are "Talk to my lawyer."

csmintel
11-08-2008, 12:07 AM
I think booby-trapping your safe with a thermite bomb would get an attempted murder charge tacked onto whatever else they were trying to pin on you.

--B

come you makeshift arslenal anarchists!:)
Don't give people on this board any ideas....please.

anthonyca
11-08-2008, 12:54 AM
Amendment 4 - Search and Seizure. Ratified 12/15/1791.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Too bad the govenment does not follow this rule or this thread would not have to exist.

Librarian
11-08-2008, 1:46 AM
Now, bags of thermite on the other hand... maybe it's just my conditioning as an oppressed Californian, but it seems unlikely to me that "bags of thermite" are things that us ordinary, unlicensed commoners are legally allowed to have sitting around, so this doesn't seem to me like something that I, as a fine upstanding citizen, would have sitting in my gun safe. If I'm mistaken, and there's no legal restriction or regulation about having bags of thermite sitting around, then somebody please clue me in, because in that case I have old trailers to rust and soda cans to granulate! And even an old magnesium VW engine block to powder! :D
I know of no law or regulation governing bags of powdered aluminum and iron oxide mixed 3:8 by weight.

If some external event were to ignite that stuff in a safe, one might have a very entertaining subsequent period of time, and it's likely that the contents of the safe would be damaged.

JDay
11-08-2008, 5:58 AM
so it would be illegal to store bags of thermite in a safe

i'm not saying have it activate with opening there is not triggering device

unless someone trys to torch it open how about a warning sign on the outside about caution combustibles inside no torches?

They call it drilling for a reason, no torch involved.

saki302
11-08-2008, 10:41 PM
Just another thought- what if there is a safe in the house which does not belong to you (and you do not have access to), or the house owner- i.e. storing for a buddy who is overseas.

-Dave

sorensen440
11-08-2008, 10:45 PM
AT that point in time , WHO gives a damn?
Rio

I do since I would be innocent up to that point

sorensen440
11-08-2008, 10:47 PM
You should get one of the Trutanich-Michel gun safe "get a warrant" magnetic placards.

If the gun safe isn't on the warrant they can't open it.

If they illegally open it without the warrant specifying it, the putative evidence garnered therefrom has a fair chance of not being usable against you. And if there's 'no case' you're certainly gonna get new safe paid for by taxpayers :)

Threats to "open a safe by any means necessary" are just that. If you open the safe you're effectively consenting to the search.

NEVER GIVE CONSENT TO ANYTHING.

If things are that bad your only utterances are "Talk to my lawyer."

Where can I get one of those magnets??


and I agree
never never never give consent
forget the damage to the safe they are relatively cheap

Matt C
11-08-2008, 11:00 PM
Where can I get one of those magnets??


Donate to my legal fund! Or you can just call and ask- (562) 216-4444.

JDay
11-08-2008, 11:05 PM
Just another thought- what if there is a safe in the house which does not belong to you (and you do not have access to), or the house owner- i.e. storing for a buddy who is overseas.

-Dave

You know the old saying, possession is 9/10 of the law.

hill billy
11-09-2008, 6:52 AM
:cool::cool:

http://i82.photobucket.com/albums/j258/FIVESIXTN/hkSONY996.jpg

sac550
11-09-2008, 8:24 PM
Hill Billy,

I love the sign! Where can I get some?

ke6guj
11-09-2008, 8:33 PM
Hill Billy,

I love the sign! Where can I get some?


Right here
Donate to my legal fund! Or you can just call and ask- (562) 216-4444.

tenpercentfirearms
11-09-2008, 9:45 PM
Donate to my legal fund! Or you can just call and ask- (562) 216-4444.

I got mine from a BWO donation.

artherd
11-09-2008, 10:08 PM
Donate to my legal fund!
that's how I got mine! :)
Or you can just call and ask- (562) 216-4444.
bah! If you're a commie!

p7m8jg
11-09-2008, 10:14 PM
If they got a search warrant for the house, they've got the right to see the contents of the house - including any safes. If you won't open it they'll get a locksmith to drill it.

FWIW

artherd
11-09-2008, 10:15 PM
When they threaten to cut open the safe anyway - look level headed back and ask them "How much do you make a year?" "<reply>" "How many years do you think you'll be working to repay me for the contents of my safe then? Still want to cut it open or are we done here?"

hill billy
11-10-2008, 5:34 AM
that's how I got mine! :)

bah! If you're a commie!

:( I guess I'm a commie. I didn't even know about the donation part, someone posted the pic and suggested a call and I called them up and they are sending me some.

tenpercentfirearms
11-10-2008, 6:30 AM
If they got a search warrant for the house, they've got the right to see the contents of the house - including any safes. If you won't open it they'll get a locksmith to drill it.

FWIW

Wrong. If they have a search warrant, the have the permission to search what is listed on the search warrant. If it specifically states the safe, then maybe. If it does not, I am not volunteering anything and I sure as heck am never giving them the combination to my safe. If they want to call a lock smith and get everything going. I might wait until the dude is getting out his tools and then realize they called my bluff and I will open it for them. Until then, no.

JDay
11-10-2008, 6:46 AM
When they threaten to cut open the safe anyway - look level headed back and ask them "How much do you make a year?" "<reply>" "How many years do you think you'll be working to repay me for the contents of my safe then? Still want to cut it open or are we done here?"

Police have certain legal protections, not to mention that their union/association has a legal defense fund. They wont sweat it.

eta34
11-10-2008, 7:28 AM
Wrong. If they have a search warrant, the have the permission to search what is listed on the search warrant. If it specifically states the safe, then maybe. If it does not, I am not volunteering anything and I sure as heck am never giving them the combination to my safe. If they want to call a lock smith and get everything going. I might wait until the dude is getting out his tools and then realize they called my bluff and I will open it for them. Until then, no.

Correct. However, most cops will list safes/containers in the "places to search" area.

Bugei
11-10-2008, 2:39 PM
I think booby-trapping your safe with a thermite bomb would get an attempted murder charge tacked onto whatever else they were trying to pin on you.

--B

The sticker on the front of the gun safe said "WARNING: contains black powder and acetylene tanks. Use no torch."

They'd still get in. It would just take longer. But it made an amusing ornament on the safe.