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View Full Version : So, an LEO approached me at the range today...


Syntax Error
01-31-2010, 10:24 PM
I was shooting my OLL at the Glass Factory today at East Camino Cielo and a law enforcement officer (not sure what branch, didn't really pay attention to it) and he asked me to inspect my OLL Stag-15 to see if it was California legal.

I wasn't sure if I was obligated to submit to his request but since my rifle was configured legally, I figured it wasn't worth the trouble to have the LEO on my *** about the issue. He asked me if I can remove my magazine and I informed him that I couldn't, because I had a bullet button (Raddlock) installed. He nodded and let me on my way.

While the LEO did seem to know promptly that my rifle was configured legally and let me go quickly after asking whether or not my magazine was readily detachable, it was a bit unnerving that the LEO would be cruising by the range to check if people had legally configured rifles or AWs.

There were others with AR-15s, and one of them had their rifle illegally configured as far as I can tell (detachable magazine, 30 round magazines, evil features), but luckily for them, the LEO didn't seem to notice their rifle since it was in their case.

A question I've been asking myself this whole day is whether or not I was obligated to submit to the LEO's request to inspect my rifle to see if it's legally configured or not. Could I have just respectfully told him to pound sand or would he have some sort of probable cause? The Fifth Amendment allows for the right to silence and the right against self-incrimination, as burden of the proof for such things would be born upon the state. But, I can't help thinking if this would've ended worse than it did today or whether the LEO would've hassled others with OLLs that happened to be illegally configured (I maintain that if you do this, you do so at your own risk).

It's also a story for fellow CalGunners to be ever-vigilant to make sure that their OLLs are legally configured so the DA won't have anything to pin upon you if LEOs were ever to freak out about your OLL. ;)

Lone_Gunman
01-31-2010, 10:29 PM
While I would be very tempted to tell him to get a warrant or contact my lawyer I am curious what the legal minds here will say.

DK9mm
01-31-2010, 10:30 PM
While I would be very tempted to tell him to get a warrant or contact my lawyer I am curious what the legal minds here will say.

I have the same thought.

dantodd
01-31-2010, 10:33 PM
There were others with AR-15s, and one of them had their rifle illegally configured as far as I can tell (detachable magazine, 30 round magazines, evil features), but luckily for them, the LEO didn't seem to notice their rifle since it was in their case.

Don't assume that it was illegal. It is no less of a jump for the officer to ask about your AR than it is for you to assume the other shooters gun is illegal. It could very easily have been a RAW.

No way to know if he had RAS/PC to perform a non-consensual search. The mere presence of an AR probably doesn't rise to that level but he could easily have had other suspicions. Your behavior could have played into it or other things that he noticed about your possessions.

hollabillz
01-31-2010, 10:34 PM
There were others with AR-15s, and one of them had their rifle illegally configured as far as I can tell (detachable magazine, 30 round magazines, evil features), but luckily for them, the LEO didn't seem to notice their rifle since it was in their case.


Just FYI, they could have owned it pre-ban and gotten a permit for it...

hollabillz
01-31-2010, 10:35 PM
Don't assume that it was illegal. It is no less of a jump for the officer to ask about your AR than it is for you to assume the other shooters gun is illegal. It could very easily have been a RAW.


Beat me to it. :D

SanSacto
01-31-2010, 10:36 PM
While I would be very tempted to tell him to get a warrant or contact my lawyer I am curious what the legal minds here will say.

I have the same thought.

While I would be very tempted to tell him to get a warrant or contact my lawyer I am curious what the legal minds here will say.

I have that same thought. :p

Syntax Error
01-31-2010, 10:37 PM
I didn't think that the rifle could've been a pre-ban registered AW, so I guess that's also another reasonable conclusion as well. I was just concerned that the LEO might've proved trouble for the guy who had the AR-15 with the detachable magazine.

Thankfully, after he checked my rifle, he stuck around a bit and then just took off. :o

hoffmang
01-31-2010, 10:37 PM
Your path or a simple "no thanks" will also work. You just have to remember to be very nice but very sure of your position.

-Gene

Hopi
01-31-2010, 10:38 PM
Was he wearing a uniform? If so, what color? If not, did he provide ID?

What type of vehicle was he driving? Truck? Patrol car?

lorax3
01-31-2010, 10:38 PM
Well, I doubt a 12031(e) check would fly since it can already can legally be loaded.

Unless he had suspicion of a crime being committed the LEO would probably need to stop at a consensual encounter.

He could however observe and stop you for a number a reasons. Overall length looks less than 30", barrel length looks less than 16". He thought he heard you shoot 12 rounds in a fixed magazine semi-automatic centerfire rifle that should only be able to hold ten.

All possible elements of crimes. 12276.1, and 12020.

Although even these can be legal with the proper permits or registration. The weapons could be RAW's or the person may legally have an SBR with a CA DOJ Dangerous Weapons Permit.

Syntax Error
01-31-2010, 10:38 PM
Was he wearing a uniform? If so, what color? If not, did he provide ID?

What type of vehicle was he driving? Truck? Patrol car?

It was a Chevy Tahoe type vehicle. Couldn't remember what service he was working for. Possibly park service or maybe SB sheriff or something? Who has jurisdiction around that area?

EDIT: He was a uniformed LEO.

Window_Seat
01-31-2010, 10:38 PM
Was the LEO specifically there to inspect rifles, or was he also there to shoot at the range? Does this happen often at all ranges, where LEOs go in UC, or IU to spy? I never really thought of this kind of situation happening (BION).

I'm also curious and will be watching for answers from the legal experts.
:popcorn:

Erik.

dantodd
01-31-2010, 10:39 PM
Your path or a simple "no thanks" will also work. You just have to remember to be very nice but very sure of your position.

-Gene

And if you do choose a simple "no thanks" the officer will let you know if he does have RAS/PC. Likely in terms that will be pretty clear.

Hopi
01-31-2010, 10:39 PM
It was a Chevy Tahoe type vehicle. Couldn't remember what service he was working for. Possibly park service or maybe SB sheriff or something? Who has jurisdiction around that area?

Was the Tahoe black/white?

Syntax Error
01-31-2010, 10:41 PM
Was the Tahoe black/white?

Yeah, I think so.

Lone_Gunman
01-31-2010, 10:45 PM
Your path or a simple "no thanks" will also work. You just have to remember to be very nice but very sure of your position.

-Gene

That would be hilarious.

"Excuse me sir, I would like to inspect your rifle to verify it is California legal."

-"Uh, no thanks."

"Sir, I am asking you to allow me to inspect your weapon"

-"Naah. I'm good. Have a nice day though."

hollabillz
01-31-2010, 10:48 PM
That would be hilarious.

"Excuse me sir, I would like to inspect your rifle to verify it is California legal."

-"Uh, no thanks."

"Sir, I am asking you to allow me to inspect your weapon"

-"Naah. I'm good. Have a nice day though."

ahahhahahhahha :laugh:

Hopi
01-31-2010, 10:50 PM
Yeah, I think so.

Tan/brown uniform?

If so, those are SB county Sheriffs. Probably saw you from the road and came down for some fishing....

Aren't you like 7-ft tall? You probably stuck out...:p

Syntax Error
01-31-2010, 10:53 PM
Tan/brown uniform?

If so, those are SB county Sheriffs. Probably saw you from the road and came down for some fishing....

Aren't you like 7-ft tall? You probably stuck out...:p

I'm 6 feet, I don't think I particularly stand out. :chris:

battleship
01-31-2010, 10:58 PM
Crap, this is the first time ive heard of an encounter of this nature or any nature for that matter at a range. Personally think its a complete waste of tax payers money. Unless the police were called out to some disturbance or on going criminal activity and the result was finding a AW.
Then this seems more like a shot in the dark with limited results on there part.
They could better serve the community patroling the streets looking for thieves than wondering into a range, thats my two cents.
Perhaps bagging someone with an illegally configured rifle is deemed better work than that piece of crap who is braking into your house, stealing your car and kiddnapping someones child, i can think of a million things far more important for the police to deal with. Than something like this yet this must be a high profile, media catching event for them if they come up with the goods.
Glad it came to nothing for you than an uneasy feeling.

Hopi
01-31-2010, 11:05 PM
Crap, this is the first time ive heard of an encounter of this nature or any nature for that matter at a range. Personally think its a complete waste of tax payers money. Unless the police were called out to some disturbance or on going criminal activity and the result was finding a AW.
Then this seems more like a shot in the dark with limited results on there part.
They could better serve the community patroling the streets looking for thieves than wondering into a range, thats my two cents.
Glad it came to nothing for you than an uneasy feeling.

The SB Sheriffs frequent E. Camino Cielo because it is heavily used for many different recreational activities.

Like I said above, they were probably just driving by the range and looked down casually as the road gives a bird's eye view of the area. They were just fishing and Syntax had a bit of bad timing being in the right place at the wrong time.

BigDogatPlay
01-31-2010, 11:06 PM
My thinking...

** You're in a public place.
** You have a rifle, possession of which in certain configurations is a felony.
** The rifle is in plain sight.

The LEO can certainly ask you, which he did, to inspect, and you can choose to grant his request or you can chose to deny his request. You chose, rightly IMO, to work with him. After all... you were perfectly legal and had no reason to try and hide it.

If the LEO can articulate a reasonable suspicion that the weapon in question might be illegally configured or an unregistered AW, then he could detain and take the weapon without your permission to determine whether or not the felony exists.

And FWIW... if there is some other issue going on that you might not be aware of, such as illegal guns or prohibited persons showing up at that location, then as a LEO I might be inclined to cruise through once in a while to see what I could find.

haodoken
01-31-2010, 11:16 PM
My thinking...

** You're in a public place. YES.
** You have a rifle, possession of which in certain configurations is a felony. YES.
** The rifle is in plain sight. YES.

The LEO can certainly ask you, which he did, to inspect, and you can choose to grant his request or you can chose to deny his request. You chose, rightly IMO, to work with him. After all... you were perfectly legal and had no reason to try and hide it.

If the LEO can articulate a reasonable suspicion that the weapon in question might be illegally configured or an unregistered AW, then he could detain and take the weapon without your permission to determine whether or not the felony exists.

And FWIW... if there is some other issue going on that you might not be aware of, such as illegal guns or prohibited persons showing up at that location, then as a LEO I might be inclined to cruise through once in a while to see what I could find.

+1 All of the above. Go to a PRIVATE range for PRIVACY! If you go to a range on public property expect LEOs to be around.

battleship
01-31-2010, 11:18 PM
Thats probably the case, and yes they are paid to enforce the law and to ensure it is being followed, but at the same time i have to say there is far worse things for them to be dealing with, when s#@% happens around me i always wonder were are the cops when you need them, i use to think like this when i lived in Oakland, truth is there isn't enough cops in the right places that is why crime is so high. Obviously Oakland is a complete different ball game. but crime is on going 24/7 and has no boundaries so when i here of stuff like this taking place i hope the real crime around is also been given the same attention if not greater priority.

M. Sage
01-31-2010, 11:19 PM
Was he wearing a uniform? If so, what color? If not, did he provide ID?

What type of vehicle was he driving? Truck? Patrol car?

I was wondering if he was in uniform or not, too. If some un-uniformed yahoo came up and identified as a LEO and started demanding to see my rifle, my paranoia would kick into overdrive. He'd have a very hard time convincing me he was LE, and I'd have a hard time remaining civil if he pushed it.

oaklander
01-31-2010, 11:29 PM
I agree with Gene that you probably could have refused if it was configured properly (and it was).

That being said, we must remember that each and every one of us is an ambassador for the OLL movement.

Another approach would have been simply to say "sure, check it out - you can even shoot it of you want - it shoots great! Do you know about Calguns.net? It's a great place for information about the legality of these types of rifles."

I've let a LOT of interested people shoot my OLLs at the range, and based on the questions from some of them, a few were probably LE (but not in uniform). If you have 100 percent confidence that what you have is legal, and you have the cohones, then by all means, invite them to shoot it.

RobG
01-31-2010, 11:45 PM
I agree with Gene that you probably could have refused if it was configured properly (and it was).

That being said, we must remember that each and every one of us is an ambassador for the OLL movement.

Another approach would have been simply to say "sure, check it out - you can even shoot it of you want - it shoots great! Do you know about Calguns.net? It's a great place for information about the legality of these types of rifles."

I've let a LOT of interested people shoot my OLLs at the range, and based on the questions from some of them, a few were probably LE (but not in uniform). If you have 100 percent confidence that what you have is legal, and you have the cohones, then by all means, invite them to shoot it.

My sentiment exactly. I have been asked by several shooters about mine while at the range. I suspect more than one was "fishing" a bit for illegal configurations. I have offered everyone asking a chance to shoot it with a few taking me up on it.

haodoken
01-31-2010, 11:50 PM
Thats probably the case, and yes they are paid to enforce the law and to ensure it is being followed, but at the same time i have to say there is far worse things for them to be dealing with, when s#@% happens around me i always wonder were are the cops when you need them, i use to think like this when i lived in Oakland, truth is there isn't enough cops in the right places that is why crime is so high. Obviously Oakland is a complete different ball game. but crime is on going 24/7 and has no boundaries so when i here of stuff like this taking place i hope the real crime around is also been given the same attention if not greater priority.

True, but you have to remember, if it was a Sheriff/LEO he/she was assigned to that patrol area LEOs are not often allowed to go out of the area they are assigned to.

hoffmang
02-01-2010, 12:03 AM
That would be hilarious.

"Excuse me sir, I would like to inspect your rifle to verify it is California legal."

-"Uh, no thanks."

"Sir, I am asking you to allow me to inspect your weapon"

-"Naah. I'm good. Have a nice day though."

This is about a perfect way to try to navigate such a situation.

-Gene

leelaw
02-01-2010, 12:41 AM
This is about a perfect way to try to navigate such a situation.

-Gene

Sounds like the receipt checkers at Fry's or similar stores.

"Receipt, please"

"Merry Christmas!"

<blank stare, stammer as I leave>

hoffmang
02-01-2010, 12:46 AM
Sounds like the receipt checkers at Fry's or similar stores.

"Receipt, please"

"Merry Christmas!"

<blank stare, stammer as I leave>

My wife doesn't like going to Fry's with me exactly due to this technique...

-Gene

lavgrunt
02-01-2010, 1:06 AM
I really don't know why cops bother......I mean, personally if I saw someone at the range with an AR/AK and they were just enjoying a day at the range in a responsible manner and didn't have 'PAROLEE' written all over them, then who cares !!!!.....Have fun !!!

......I would be very insulted if they didn't offer to let me pop off a few rounds though.........

EBWhite
02-01-2010, 1:15 AM
Sounds like an over zelous copper. I would told him to go away nicely.

lavgrunt
02-01-2010, 1:19 AM
Sounds like an over zelous copper. I would told him to go away nicely.

......Problem is, if its a public range the officer has as much right to be there as you do.......Kinda makes it hard to tell him to go away, now don't it ???

nobody_special
02-01-2010, 1:34 AM
My wife doesn't like going to Fry's with me exactly due to this technique...

-Gene

I've got my wife using this technique at Fry's... :43:

Seesm
02-01-2010, 1:37 AM
He could have just sat back and saw you using a tool to swap mags and it would have been better than doing what he did IMHO anyway...

Maybe some old timer called and said someone had a ILLEGAL weapon...?

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 1:40 AM
My wife doesn't like going to Fry's with me exactly due to this technique...

-Gene


then she would hate going with me,

I look over both shoulders, then break into a sprint for the parking lot

true story

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 1:41 AM
Possibly park service
EDIT: He was a uniformed LEO.

I had to LOL at the one

oaklander
02-01-2010, 2:14 AM
LOL,

That totally sounds like fun!!!

then she would hate going with me,

I look over both shoulders, then break into a sprint for the parking lot

true story

bigcalidave
02-01-2010, 2:43 AM
We had a BLM ranger show up at the range today, walking around looking at stuff. Just came by and asked if anyone had anything they shouldn't have... ? I got in his way and gave him the calguns intro, talked to him for a little while. He was just cruising, looking at peoples exposed guns. Mostly he was out there because people have been leaving trash at the range. We made sure to leave with a lot more than we came in with.

Side note, lol, someone from out of state was there, and I was talking them up as well, invited them to join us here. He brought up that he had a Judge with him (they are pretty cool ! Loud as hell though) and I promptly advised him to lock it up in his vehicle and be careful. I hope he makes it back out of cali ok!!! I gave him all the details on how to build an AR to bring next time he visits too.

The LEOs are doing their job, and you shouldn't be breaking the law. If you have guns exposed, they can look at them all they want. If they want to touch / search / etc, tell them you would rather they didn't. If you are friendly and talk to them, you probably won't have any problems! And like Oaklander just said, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE tell people about your guns, and calguns!!! I got at least four people to want to immediately purchase ARs today. It's great fun!

Ford8N
02-01-2010, 6:08 AM
+1 All of the above. Go to a PRIVATE range for PRIVACY! If you go to a range on public property expect LEOs to be around.

Yup, that's why I avoid popular shooting areas. It's best to stay low profile until we have incorporation, even though we are legal. There are still some LEO's that like to throw their badge around and create drama, nobody likes drama when enjoying a hobby.

AJAX22
02-01-2010, 6:15 AM
Do the normal 'unloaded' checks apply at a range?

B Strong
02-01-2010, 6:35 AM
I was shooting my OLL at the Glass Factory today at East Camino Cielo and a law enforcement officer (not sure what branch, didn't really pay attention to it) and he asked me to inspect my OLL Stag-15 to see if it was California legal.

I wasn't sure if I was obligated to submit to his request but since my rifle was configured legally, I figured it wasn't worth the trouble to have the LEO on my *** about the issue. He asked me if I can remove my magazine and I informed him that I couldn't, because I had a bullet button (Raddlock) installed. He nodded and let me on my way.

While the LEO did seem to know promptly that my rifle was configured legally and let me go quickly after asking whether or not my magazine was readily detachable, it was a bit unnerving that the LEO would be cruising by the range to check if people had legally configured rifles or AWs.

There were others with AR-15s, and one of them had their rifle illegally configured as far as I can tell (detachable magazine, 30 round magazines, evil features), but luckily for them, the LEO didn't seem to notice their rifle since it was in their case.

A question I've been asking myself this whole day is whether or not I was obligated to submit to the LEO's request to inspect my rifle to see if it's legally configured or not. Could I have just respectfully told him to pound sand or would he have some sort of probable cause? The Fifth Amendment allows for the right to silence and the right against self-incrimination, as burden of the proof for such things would be born upon the state. But, I can't help thinking if this would've ended worse than it did today or whether the LEO would've hassled others with OLLs that happened to be illegally configured (I maintain that if you do this, you do so at your own risk).

It's also a story for fellow CalGunners to be ever-vigilant to make sure that their OLLs are legally configured so the DA won't have anything to pin upon you if LEOs were ever to freak out about your OLL. ;)

By any chance are you a young fella?

The only uniformed officer interest I get is guys who want to check out the shooting irons out of curiousity - being an old shooter is a little different than being a 20 or 30 something.

tenpercentfirearms
02-01-2010, 6:39 AM
You can always politely say no thank you. If he insists, then cooperate. And you can always explain, "It is nothing personal officer, I just don't consent to searches out of principle. I am sure you understand." If he gives some reason for thinking he has PC, then don't resist and let him inspect. You can always be polite and not give consent. Always.

SikDMAX
02-01-2010, 6:54 AM
Maybe he was amazed at the clean range!!!!

Was the huge pile of trash still there?

cdtx2001
02-01-2010, 7:28 AM
My wife doesn't like going to Fry's with me exactly due to this technique...

-Gene

Haha, I do the same thing and my wife hates walking out with me for the same reason. I also do that Wallyworld and BestBuy.

To the OP, glad your encounter had a happy ending, but I know how you feel.

not-fishing
02-01-2010, 7:31 AM
oaklander
Calguns Addict Join Date: May 2006
Location: Oakland


That being said, we must remember that each and every one of us is an ambassador for the OLL movement.

Another approach would have been simply to say "sure, check it out - you can even shoot it of you want - it shoots great! Do you know about Calguns.net? It's a great place for information about the legality of these types of rifles."


I like that Idea.

A little education and show No Fear.

alex00
02-01-2010, 7:48 AM
Do the normal 'unloaded' checks apply at a range?

No, they do not. 12031 prohibits carrying a loaded firearm in certain areas. The (e) check only applies to determine if a gun carried in those prohibited areas is loaded. If you are carrying a gun in an area where discharging a firearm is allowed, the (e) check doesn't apply. There may be some Fish and Game codes that authorize checks in hunting areas, but I'm only talking about 12031.

AJAX22
02-01-2010, 7:55 AM
If there is no legal reason for the officer to look at your gun, then you should respectuflly decline their invitation.

When you measure Risk vs. Reward, there is NO good reason to interact with law enforcement voluntarily.

It sucks, (there are some really nice guys in LE) but you have a LOT more to loose through the interaction than you have to gain... particularly when it comes to firearms.

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

and 'inspection' is still a search...

do not give consent

Your 'ambassadorial' nature comes from how you conduct yourself and your attitude.

Chances are you ARE breaking some law of some kind at any given moment of your life... and just because you don't know what it is, or it is unconstitutional, or it is based on obscure case law, or it is burried in the back of the tax code, or it has been declared void by the supreme court.... doesn't mean that it isn't a law and you aren't breaking it.

seriously, be polite, but do NOT consent to a search, or an inspection, or anything....

You have very little to gain and everything to loose.

dixieD
02-01-2010, 7:57 AM
Another approach would have been simply to say "sure, check it out - you can even shoot it of you want - it shoots great! Do you know about Calguns.net? It's a great place for information about the legality of these types of rifles."

I generally agree, but I would not go so far to offer him to shoot it. If he was malicious all he would need to do is bump fire it for a short auto burst.....

One thing I've been wondering after reading the original post is what might have happened if when asked if he could remove the magazine the OP said sure and then did so using a bullet or other tool. For the uniformed that would appear to be exactly the operation of a detachable magazine (not a removable fixed magazine). I think saying 'no sir this is a fixed magazine' is a very good response.

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 8:10 AM
it's sort of an antiquated, "living" document.. so it probably does not apply:

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.

Telperion
02-01-2010, 8:38 AM
"Sir, may I inspect your rifle?"

How completely tactless. If an LEO wants to inspect my rifle, at least he could do it under the pretense of friendliness and "hey that's a cool stock/upper/optic, I'm thinking of getting one for my duty gear, could I have a look?" I agree with oaklander's point of being ambassadors, but if the officer starts out by goose-stepping, I'm more inclined to give him the cold shoulder.

vantec08
02-01-2010, 8:45 AM
Right, Bigdave . . . only real problem I've ever seen was with BLM. And yes, bro Ajax, inspection IS search - same same. I saw a forest service ranger talking to a couple of guys once who had ARs in Bee Canyon, and in the next little canyon over, 4 bangers loaded up and left. Its about raw authority guys, not about common sense.

VaderSpade
02-01-2010, 8:50 AM
I’ve been ask a couple times by Game Wardens if they could check my rifle. I always tell them “Only if you have the right to do so without asking. I do not wish to have ANY of my civil rights violated.”
So far one has said, “Since the rifle is in plain sight I do have the right to check and see if it’s loaded” and did so.
The other two just asked (with bewildered looks on their faces) “is it loaded” I told them no, and was sent on my way. I believe in these cases (because of the way I stood up to them) they may have thought I was a lawyer, and were truly afraid of doing something wrong. The look on their faces when you stand up to them with confidence is priceless.

bodger
02-01-2010, 8:58 AM
My concern in a situation like this is that the LEO can basically do whatever he wants and leave you holding the sack of s**t to sort it out legally. After he has confiscated the rifle.
It seems like it's easy to encounter an LEO that does not know the laws regarding OLL and bullet buttons.

I'm inclined to go with Gene's advice, but an overzealous LEO might take that as a challenge to his authority and then confiscate. I always have the flow chart and the SAC PD memo on me, but who knows, I might have screwed up and dropped the mag with a bullet button to show the LEO that my rifle is configured legally. That might have been exactly what this guy was waiting to see and bye-bye Bushmaster.

It's tough to know exactly what to do when you can't have confidence that the LEOs know the laws as well as we do.

I shoot my AR exclusively at private ranges. Being on public land with an OLL spooks me.

SixPointEight
02-01-2010, 9:21 AM
My concern in a situation like this is that the LEO can basically do whatever he wants and leave you holding the sack of s**t to sort it out legally. After he has confiscated the rifle.
It seems like it's easy to encounter an LEO that does not know the laws regarding OLL and bullet buttons.

I'm inclined to go with Gene's advice, but an overzealous LEO might take that as a challenge to his authority and then confiscate. I always have the flow chart and the SAC PD memo on me, but who knows, I might have screwed up and dropped the mag with a bullet button to show the LEO that my rifle is configured legally. That might have been exactly what this guy was waiting to see and bye-bye Bushmaster.

It's tough to know exactly what to do when you can't have confidence that the LEOs know the laws as well as we do.

I shoot my AR exclusively at private ranges. Being on public land with an OLL spooks me.

Dropping your mag isn't illegal as long as the tool isn't attached to the gun. Drop the mag, pop a new one in right in front of a LEO, not illegal.

bodger
02-01-2010, 9:27 AM
Dropping your mag isn't illegal as long as the tool isn't attached to the gun. Drop the mag, pop a new one in right in front of a LEO, not illegal.


I know that, my point was that since the LEO specifically asked if the magazine was "readily detachable" (whatever THAT means, I guess we can assume w/o tool), and if one were to drop the mag via the BB to demonstrate, an LEO that doesn't know the law might consider that it was in fact detachable and grab the gun.

I guess clamming up is the best policy. The laws are bad enough, the fact that there are LEOs out there that don't know them really complicates things.

Decoligny
02-01-2010, 9:34 AM
Well, I doubt a 12031(e) check would fly since it can already can legally be loaded.

Unless he had suspicion of a crime being committed the LEO would probably need to stop at a consensual encounter.

He could however observe and stop you for a number a reasons. Overall length looks less than 30", barrel length looks less than 16". He thought he heard you shoot 12 rounds in a fixed magazine semi-automatic centerfire rifle that should only be able to hold ten.

All possible elements of crimes. 12276.1, and 12020.

Although even these can be legal with the proper permits or registration. The weapons could be RAW's or the person may legally have an SBR with a CA DOJ Dangerous Weapons Permit.


There is the fact that the OP's OLL could at a glance look exactly like an "Assault Weapon". Possession of an unregistered assault weapon is a crime. The officer was investigating to ensure that the OP wasn't in fact in illegal possession of what looked to him at first glance to be an assault weapon.

His legitimate choices of action in his investigation were to ask if it was a legally registered assault weapon, and then verify that, and if it wasn't, to then investigate to ensure it was configured properly to be exempt from the assault weapon definition.

He did so with what seem to be as little intrusiveness as possible for the situation.

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 9:40 AM
He did so with what seem to be as little intrusiveness as possible for the situation.


I beg to differ

Dangerpin
02-01-2010, 9:58 AM
Dropping your mag isn't illegal as long as the tool isn't attached to the gun. Drop the mag, pop a new one in right in front of a LEO, not illegal.

Thank you for saying that, JT. I was reading some of the comments and beginning to wonder about why that would be a problem. I wouldn't do it, nor would I approve a search request, but wondered why it would be an issue.

Decoligny
02-01-2010, 9:58 AM
I beg to differ

An officer saw what easily could have been a crime in progress, looked at the OLL, asked one question, got an answer, and left.

Compare that to some other instances where people have had their OLLs taken from them until the LEO could do "research", call in other officers, run the info by a supervisor, and then illegally confiscate the OLLs and arrest the individual, run them through the court system, and cost the gun owner tens of thousands in bail and court costs.

This particular case seems pretty unintrusive to me.

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 10:02 AM
walking out of a grocery store could "easily be a crime in progress" as could be driving down the street, or being in your home with the door locked, all "possible crimes in progress"

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 10:08 AM
I was shooting with some friend last week

CHP drives up

when he exit's his car, I announce (loud enough for him to hear) MAGS OUT, ACTIONS OPEN!

he asks: these guns all registered?

we just look at him

CHP: you know, you can't have any AK47, we would have to take those

me thinking: what at total idiot

CHP: that's a nice AR15 on the table there

me: thinking.... the 20" A2 sitting RIGHT NEXT TO MY ROMEY-G?????

CHP: well, as long as all your guns are registered... stay safe


me thinking: I thought this was just a youtube prank, I didn't know you had a cruiser and a gun for real :eek:

<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/sxODBppps18&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/sxODBppps18&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

Dangerpin
02-01-2010, 10:12 AM
walking out of a grocery store could "easily be a crime in progress" as could be driving down the street, or being in your home with the door locked, all "possible crimes in progress"

This is where the crazy gun laws have taken us. Guilty until proven innocent seems to be the accepted way of doing things. I only hope that more LEO education fixes this in the short term and laws that respect our rights can finish the job permanently.

Syntax Error
02-01-2010, 10:16 AM
This particular case seems pretty unintrusive to me.

While fortunately, the LEO understood that my OLL was a legally-configured AR-style rifle, the "problem" may be that other LEOs may see simply "AW" rather than a legally-configured OLL. The situation could have been a hassle, but fortunately for me, it wasn't.

Maybe the whole point is moot at this time, but I still don't like it. Sure, one can say "only those breaking the law need not fear", but if my time here at CalGuns has taught me anything is that people should stand up to their constitutional rights especially in the face of search and seizures that can end up being a headache at the least or confiscation and/or trial at the worst.

I'm inclined to think that since the shooting range was public, my weapon was in "plain sight" and thus the LEO had justification to check if my rifle was legally configured.

Just another reason to make sure we represent the OLL community properly, having our rifles in legal configuration is one part of this.

nn3453
02-01-2010, 10:16 AM
So far one has said, “Since the rifle is in plain sight I do have the right to check and see if it’s loaded” and did so.


^^

Everyone here who is saying that they would have told LE to go pound sand is missing the fact that the "range" is not really a private range and is public property. Law enforcement is authorized to make sure that your guns are not loaded.

If you want privacy, go up to the range on West Camino Cielo, pay them yearly dues or range fees and you won't be hassled for shooting a legal gun. For the younger shooters amongst us though, range rules are followed and doing something silly can get you ejected. Also, you can't shoot at bottles and other crap and leave a pile of trash behind like people do at the public range. If you don't like those restrictions, the public range is an option but be prepared to deal with LE.

vantec08
02-01-2010, 10:23 AM
Not likely without some MAJOR changes in the legislature, bro Dangerpin. Napoleonic law (guilty till proven innocent) is intruding further and further into our daily lives, not just gun law. I end up with the same thing - -- at some point, LEOs (like our military personnel) will have to make a decision on how far they are willing to intrude. It wont matter to the authority-cowboy LEOs, they seem to have an inbred need.

SikDMAX
02-01-2010, 10:27 AM
Syntax..... was the big pile of trash still there on the upper parking area? Howd things look?

Sorry for your hassle.

five.five-six
02-01-2010, 10:29 AM
^^

Everyone here who is saying that they would have told LE to go pound sand is missing the fact that the "range" is not really a private range and is public property. Law enforcement is authorized to make sure that your guns are not loaded.



Ehhh, don't let the name fool you, a "public" range is still a private business

Syntax Error
02-01-2010, 10:30 AM
Syntax..... was the big pile of trash still there on the upper parking area? Howd things look?

Sorry for your hassle.

Yeah, the trash was still there. You guys did good work cleaning the place up! Last time I went there, it was a total pigsty! :cool:

bodger
02-01-2010, 10:30 AM
Not likely without some MAJOR changes in the legislature, bro Dangerpin. Napoleonic law (guilty till proven innocent) is intruding further and further into our daily lives, not just gun law. I end up with the same thing - -- at some point, LEOs (like our military personnel) will have to make a decision on how far they are willing to intrude. It wont matter to the authority-cowboy LEOs, they seem to have an inbred need.


I agree and this is why it's difficult to know what is the best course of action to take with LEOs, even when one knows that their rifle is configured legally.

Say nothing and possibly agitate a power hungry cop who feels challenged . Or comply and demonstrate why the rifle is legal with the BB, even providing documentation in the form of flow chart, etc. Only to find that the officer is mis-informed.

Makes me want to shoot in Arizona exclusively.

haodoken
02-01-2010, 10:32 AM
^^

Everyone here who is saying that they would have told LE to go pound sand is missing the fact that the "range" is not really a private range and is public property. Law enforcement is authorized to make sure that your guns are not loaded.

If you want privacy, go up to the range on West Camino Cielo, pay them yearly dues or range fees and you won't be hassled for shooting a legal gun. For the younger shooters amongst us though, range rules are followed and doing something silly can get you ejected. Also, you can't shoot at bottles and other crap and leave a pile of trash behind like people do at the public range. If you don't like those restrictions, the public range is an option but be prepared to deal with LE.

+1 Exactly. Public Ranges are ON PUBLIC PROPERTY. Everything is in plain view!!! LEOs can legally wander in look at stuff. It's like having a baggie of dope in your back seat and the LEOs see it when they look in. You have no expectation of privacy when in plain view. Moral of the story is "GO to a PRIVATE RANGE".

I still see alot of BBed ARs with people still putting in 30rd mags. Quite obvious when you see PMAGs going in (on a BBed AR) and the shooter goes on for 30 rounds. Everyone does it, whether ignorant of the law or they just don't care. The "I got a BB on my AR so a 30rd mag in the mag well is no big deal" attitude alive and well. :eek:

bodger
02-01-2010, 10:35 AM
+1 Exactly. Public Ranges are ON PUBLIC PROPERTY. Everything is in plain view!!! LEOs can legally wander in look at stuff. It's like having a baggie of dope in your back seat and the LEOs see it when they look in. You have no expectation of privacy when in plain view. Moral of the story is "GO to a PRIVATE RANGE".

I still see alot of BBed ARs with people still putting in 30rd mags. Quite obvious when you see PMAGs going in (on a BBed AR) and the shooter goes on for 30 rounds. Everyone does it, whether ignorant of the law or they just don't care. The "I got a BB on my AR so a 30rd mag in the mag well is no big deal" attitude alive and well. :eek:

Yep, I see it all the time at A Place To Shoot in Saugus. BB and 30 rounder, not 10/30 either. Load the mag, 30 rounds downrange, drop mag and repeat.
I mind my own business at the range so I don't say anything. Whether that's a god idea or not, that's what I do.

hill billy
02-01-2010, 11:09 AM
Yep, I see it all the time at A Place To Shoot in Saugus. BB and 30 rounder, not 10/30 either. Load the mag, 30 rounds downrange, drop mag and repeat.
I mind my own business at the range so I don't say anything. Whether that's a god idea or not, that's what I do.

I'm surprised to hear this as most times the RO's there are fairly vigilant, maybe I'd even say nosey. :D

Top the OP, next time something like this happens to you it would behoove you to pay attention to what agency they represent should you need that info later on.

porky
02-01-2010, 11:37 AM
Hey- I am NOT an expert-IMO you did exactly as you should have and people get all butt hurt about it.

You are on National Forest Land and The SB County Sheriff patrols that particular area and West Camino Cielo as well-

I am almost certain inspection rules apply in this case- YOU DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE -that IS against the law

When it comes to the weapon you're talking about, we get into shenanigans!

You are trying to"get around the Cali law", you are, in their minds, violating the SPIRIT of the law

You are not breaking the law at all, but we should all understand what we are trying to do- get around a "senseless law"

So deal with it! If you had an obviously "ok" gun-so boring- there would probably be no problem-

But, come on! Lots of AR buyers-you have all witnessed this- disable their buttons and other mag releases and use them only when they see the law coming- They mysteriously acquire hicap mags that they have owned since they were two, and all kinds of other B.S.! So move out of California or deal with it!!!

I love the idea of combat rifles- not very useful on a day to day basis, but soooo coool, and I want one! I will eventually buy one and I also seem to remember that I bought some hicaps for whatever gun I will purchase, years ago when it was legal! Seriously, I did........:cool:

pnkssbtz
02-01-2010, 11:38 AM
If there is no legal reason for the officer to look at your gun, then you should respectuflly decline their invitation.

When you measure Risk vs. Reward, there is NO good reason to interact with law enforcement voluntarily.

It sucks, (there are some really nice guys in LE) but you have a LOT more to loose through the interaction than you have to gain... particularly when it comes to firearms.

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

and 'inspection' is still a search...

do not give consent

Your 'ambassadorial' nature comes from how you conduct yourself and your attitude.

Chances are you ARE breaking some law of some kind at any given moment of your life... and just because you don't know what it is, or it is unconstitutional, or it is based on obscure case law, or it is burried in the back of the tax code, or it has been declared void by the supreme court.... doesn't mean that it isn't a law and you aren't breaking it.

seriously, be polite, but do NOT consent to a search, or an inspection, or anything....

You have very little to gain and everything to loose.

Part in bold, can't be said enough.

nat
02-01-2010, 11:40 AM
^^

Everyone here who is saying that they would have told LE to go pound sand is missing the fact that the "range" is not really a private range and is public property. Law enforcement is authorized to make sure that your guns are not loaded.



Are you saying your rifle can't be loaded at the range :rolleyes:

Vtec44
02-01-2010, 11:46 AM
Are you saying your rifle can't be loaded at the range :rolleyes:

LOL I was wondering the same.

Decoligny
02-01-2010, 11:47 AM
walking out of a grocery store could "easily be a crime in progress" as could be driving down the street, or being in your home with the door locked, all "possible crimes in progress"

You are really stretching here. Walking out of a grocery store where a robbery hasn't been called in, would not qualify, same with driving down the street. However, driving down the street in a blue and white 2009 Ford Mustang, when a bank in the direction you were coming from was just robbed by a man in a blue and white 2009 Ford Mustang is definitely probable cause to stop you for investigation that you possibly committed a crime.

Same issue here. Currently possessing an unregistered "AW" in California is illegal. The exception is if you can prove that you had it pre-ban, and registered it pre-ban. Having what looks to be an "AW" gives the LEO probable cause to believe you are committing a violation of California Penal Code 12280 (b). This give him the authority to investigate.

(b) Any person who, within this state, possesses any assault weapon, except as provided in this chapter, shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail for a period not exceeding one year, or by imprisonment in the state prison. However, a first violation of these provisions is punishable by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500) if the person was found in possession of no more than two firearms in compliance with subdivision (c) of Section 12285 and the person meets all of the following conditions:
(1) The person proves that he or she lawfully possessed the assault weapon prior to the date it was defined as an assault weapon pursuant to Section 12276, 12276.1, or 12276.5.
(2) The person has not previously been convicted of a violation of this section.
(3) The person was found to be in possession of the assault weapon within one year following the end of the one-year registration period established pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 12285.
(4) The person relinquished the firearm pursuant to Section 12288, in which case the assault weapon shall be destroyed pursuant to Section 12028.

SixPointEight
02-01-2010, 11:47 AM
Are you saying your rifle can't be loaded at the range :rolleyes:

It's official! No loaded guns at gun ranges!

spyderco monkey
02-01-2010, 12:03 PM
Hey, important question- are we allowed to have a loaded, holstered gun at the glass factory, or is that a no-go?

Syntax Error
02-01-2010, 12:04 PM
Hey, important question- are we allowed to have a loaded, holstered gun at the glass factory, or is that a no-go?

I saw plenty of guys with holstered pistols at the glass factory that day. The LEO didn't seem to pay any mind, but I've no idea if that means it's legal or not.

Dangerpin
02-01-2010, 12:06 PM
You are really stretching here. Walking out of a grocery store where a robbery hasn't been called in, would not qualify, same with driving down the street. However, driving down the street in a blue and white 2009 Ford Mustang, when a bank in the direction you were coming from was just robbed by a man in a blue and white 2009 Ford Mustang is definitely probable cause to stop you for investigation that you possibly committed a crime.

It sounds to me like you are stretching.

It seems to me you are saying owning an AR is probable cause because it looks like an AW. The officer never said he was checking because someone had reported a person using an AW at the range so your metaphor breaks down at that point.

In this case he merely saw an AR.

Ok, maybe this is a bit of a stretch on my part, but this is really pissing me off. You aren't pissing me off, but the situation we are in as Californians is. What would you recommend we do, paint our BBs red so as to make them more visible? Seriously, I'm really interested in your opinion, not trying to be a smart***.

bodger
02-01-2010, 12:07 PM
I'm surprised to hear this as most times the RO's there are fairly vigilant, maybe I'd even say nosey. :D

Top the OP, next time something like this happens to you it would behoove you to pay attention to what agency they represent should you need that info later on.


I have seen them question a shooter as well. In fact, they inquired once about my BB equipped Bushmaster with 10/30 mag once. Seems to run hot and cold out there on this issue. Last time I shot there, which was two weeks ago, there was a guy with an OLL, BB equipped, but clearly shooting 30 round mags. The RO didn;t give him a second glance, didn't seem to notice.

If somebody was shooting a RAW, would they ask to see the paperwork? I've never seen that happen, don't know the procedure.

Hopi
02-01-2010, 12:16 PM
Hey, important question- are we allowed to have a loaded, holstered gun at the glass factory, or is that a no-go?

Legal.

CA Penal Code
12031. Loaded Firearm; Carrying in Public Place or in Vehicle
(a)(1) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when he or she carries a loaded firearm on his or her person or in a vehicle while in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city or in any public place or any public street in a prohibited area of unincorporated territory.
(f) As used in this section, "prohibited area" means any place where it is unlawful to discharge a weapon.
(g) A firearm shall be deemed to be loaded for the purpose of this section when there is an unexpended cartridge or shell, consisting of a case that holds a charge of powder and a bullet or shot, in, or attached in any manner to, the firearm, including, but not limited to, in the firing chamber, magazine, or clip thereof attached to the firearm; except that a muzzle-loader firearm shall be deemed to be loaded when it is capped or primed and has a powder charge and ball or shot in the barrel or cylinder.

spyderco monkey
02-01-2010, 12:36 PM
Thanks!

dantodd
02-01-2010, 12:49 PM
In this case he merely saw an AR.


You do not know that. Likely the OP doesn't even know that. There are lots of things that could be going on. .223 reports heard recently near a crime. OP resembles a parolee the police officer recently saw a picture of. LEO happened to be rolling up while the OP was coincidentally stashing 2 or 3 other weapons and thought he might have been hiding something. I could go on, but I'm sure you get the picture. Yes, the officer may have been making a judgment based simply on the fact that the rifle in question was black but there may have also been other circumstances of which we are unaware. It was also a consensual interaction so the OP had the option of how to respond. He could have refused the consensual search and then the officer would have to choose the next step. Since the OP permitted the search there is no way to know if the officer had RAS to perform a non-consensual search or if he would have backed down, or made an illegal search.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 12:56 PM
Do the normal 'unloaded' checks apply at a range?
Nope.

Unloaded is not required on private property as long as the owner has granted permission for loaded carry (pretty much a default unless you've been 86'd from a range).

Unloaded is not required in unincorporated county areas where shooting is not otherwise prohibited.

Ranges within city limits are going to fall under #1
Ranges in unincorporated county are going to fall under either one.
An "e" check would never be legal on a range, nor would running serial numbers or ID checks, unless a gun is observed as being in an illegal configuration.

And even then, it's a tough call legally.
Illegal "assault weapon" or a RAW?
The observing cop has no way of knowing unless he is well versed in the law and knows all of the names on the Kasler list and sees a lower that he knows to be off-list and not produced prior to 2000.

If the cop observes a gun that appears to be RAW/URAW, is it a violation of 4A to run a check when no other crime is suspected?

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 1:04 PM
Everyone here who is saying that they would have told LE to go pound sand is missing the fact that the "range" is not really a private range and is public property. Law enforcement is authorized to make sure that your guns are not loaded.
Think again about what you just said.

It's a firing range.

People shoot guns there.

You can't shoot an unloaded gun.

Having a loaded gun at a range... public or private... is not illegal, therefore, there is no legal requirement that guns be unloaded, therefore, no legal right for an officer to conduct a check to verify that the gun is not loaded.

CSDGuy
02-01-2010, 1:18 PM
In any event, the rifle is out in plain sight. The LEO doesn't have to ask... all he merely needs to do is simply observe that the BB is installed. If he see/hears you shooting more than 10 rounds from one magazine (no top offs) with the OLL that is BB equipped, you're done. How would he know you're shooting an OLL? Simple. The make/model is engraved on the lower... If the rifle turns out to be on the AW list, you're going to have to prove you legally have it in California. Or you're done.

As to the "e" check? Well, if you're in a location where discharge is permitted (ranges qualify), he can ask to check the rifle (or other firearm), but the "e" check wouldn't be allowed as a pretext to inspect the rifle. You can politely refuse the "e" check.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 1:21 PM
Hey- I am NOT an expert-IMO you did exactly as you should have and people get all butt hurt about it.
On the other side of the coin... seems like cops tend to get all butt hurt about it when a private citizen asserts their CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS.
I am almost certain inspection rules apply in this case- YOU DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE -that IS against the law
BS.
Whether inspection rules apply or not, you ALWAYS HAVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE TO GIVE CONSENT TO A SEARCH.
If the officer has RS/PC/Warrant, then he can do it anyways, but the 5A protects us from incriminating ourselves.
We do not have to answer any questions, and we do not have to consent to a search of our person or property.
You are not breaking the law at all, but we should all understand what we are trying to do- get around a "senseless law"
No... we are not trying to get around a senseless law.
We are legally configuring our weapons to be WITHIN the law.

The "spirit" of the law? Sacramento would issue an outright ban on every centerfire gun ever made if they could get away with it.

It's not a loophole, it's not violating the spirit of the law, and it's not getting around the law.
It is LEGAL. <<< there is a period at the end of that sentence
But, come on! Lots of AR buyers-you have all witnessed this- disable their buttons and other mag releases and use them only when they see the law coming- They mysteriously acquire hicap mags that they have owned since they were two, and all kinds of other B.S.! So move out of California or deal with it!!!
Whether someone is doing something illegal or not... and yes, it happens... the burden of proof is on the state.
If someone is using a high-cap in a bullet-button AR15, that's illegal no matter how he obtained the magazine.
If someone is using a high cap in a 10/22 or a featureless AR15, it's not illegal.

Possession of high caps is not illegal.
Use of high caps is not illegal. (unless the gun has a fixed magazine)

The only crimes related to high-caps are importing, manufacturing, selling, giving, lending, or offering for sale.
Unless you catch someone trying to sell a high-cap, you have no way to prove that a crime was ever committed by the person with the magazines.

Even stretching it... If I were to purchase a 30 round rebuild kit, and one day while I'm at work, my friend comes over to visit my wife and while there assembles my rebuild kits... I now am in LEGAL possession of a new high-cap magazine. My friend is guilty of manufacturing, and perhaps even giving, but I am not guilty of any crime when coming home from work and seeing the assembled mags on my bench.


So... unless it's an gun with a maglock, there is no crime being committed at any range related to high caps.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 1:24 PM
Hey, important question- are we allowed to have a loaded, holstered gun at the glass factory, or is that a no-go?
LOC is legal in unincorporated county where shooting is not otherwise prohibited.

Doheny
02-01-2010, 1:40 PM
I agree with Gene that you probably could have refused if it was configured properly (and it was).

That being said, we must remember that each and every one of us is an ambassador for the OLL movement.

I agree. Respect begets respect. You let him look and he was on his way.

Frankly, he was just doing his job.

Decoligny
02-01-2010, 1:41 PM
It sounds to me like you are stretching.

It seems to me you are saying owning an AR is probable cause because it looks like an AW. The officer never said he was checking because someone had reported a person using an AW at the range so your metaphor breaks down at that point.

In this case he merely saw an AR.

Ok, maybe this is a bit of a stretch on my part, but this is really pissing me off. You aren't pissing me off, but the situation we are in as Californians is. What would you recommend we do, paint our BBs red so as to make them more visible? Seriously, I'm really interested in your opinion, not trying to be a smart***.

The metaphor breaks down, because in the other situations there was nothing that "looked" like a law was being broken.

I agree totally that the situation sucks.

We really can't do anything about it though, until we get incorporation and somebody challenges the AW ban, until then, the LEO are going to operate based on their initial perceptions. There's the old addage, "If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it's probably a duck!"

Speaking of ducks, let's say the law says you can't carry around a live duck in a small cage. You however, have an anatomically correct mechanical duck, that at first glance can't be distinguished from a live duck without lifting it up to see where it takes batteries, it even quacks at random intervals.

You carry your RoboDuck around in a small cage.

To a casual observer, you are breaking the "Duck Law".

You can be pretty sure that if an LEO see this he is going to stop you to investigate whether you are actually breaking the "Duck Law", or if you just look like your breaking the "Duck Law".

I have seen several OLLs that at a glance are pretty much indistinguishable from a California "AW". It takes a close look, and a little bit of knowledge to distinguish between the two. Most LEO don't have the knowledge to tell the difference at a glance.

Syntax Error
02-01-2010, 1:48 PM
The metaphor breaks down, because in the other situations there was nothing that "looked" like a law was being broken.

I agree totally that the situation sucks.

We really can't do anything about it though, until we get incorporation and somebody challenges the AW ban, until then, the LEO are going to operate based on their initial perceptions. There's the old addage, "If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it's probably a duck!"

Speaking of ducks, let's say the law says you can't carry around a live duck in a small cage. You however, have an anatomically correct mechanical duck, that at first glance can't be distinguished from a live duck without lifting it up to see where it takes batteries, it even quacks at random intervals.

You carry your RoboDuck around in a small cage.

To a casual observer, you are breaking the "Duck Law".

You can be pretty sure that if an LEO see this he is going to stop you to investigate whether you are actually breaking the "Duck Law", or if you just look like your breaking the "Duck Law".

I have seen several OLLs that at a glance are pretty much indistinguishable from a California "AW". It takes a close look, and a little bit of knowledge to distinguish between the two. Most LEO don't have the knowledge to tell the difference at a glance.
I would have to agree with this. The LEO probably saw a potential AW and questioned me accordingly, and let me go (I wasn't really detained, but he approached me and asked) after I demonstrated that my rifle was indeed California legal.

In the end of the day, I would have to go with the presumption that until the ridiculous laws regarding "assault weapons" are overturned, just be sure to have your rifles in legal configuration! Best not to take any chances and certainly not give anything that local authorities and prosecutors can use against you.

Doheny
02-01-2010, 2:06 PM
... (I wasn't really detained, but he approached me and asked) ....

Did you think that you could just leave when he asked to see it? If no, then you were detained.

BigDogatPlay
02-01-2010, 2:20 PM
Ehhh, don't let the name fool you, a "public" range is still a private business

At the risk of beating a dead horse, I think you are oversimplifying.

A casual shooting range on public land = public place.

A more formal, pay a fee to shoot, range on private property that is open to the public for use = public place.

A fully private, members only range maintained by a club that only allows dues paying members and their guests (no general public allowed) or an informal range on someone's ranch property for their own use = private place.

In the first two examples a peace officer has every right to enter and exercise authority as needed or required even if the range is on otherwise private property. That is a business, open to the public for a fee.

And for what it's worth DFG wardens, generally and in my experience, are a lot more hip to firearms laws. They also have a greater measure of capability to make inquiry when the situation falls within their priniciple scope. Your results may vary, but the wardens I've known and interacted with have always been in the know.

DTOM CA!
02-01-2010, 2:29 PM
Okay, lets say he had a registered AW but did not have the paperwork with him. Do you consent then because your AW is gone for a long time if you say yes. Just because you do not have a BB or a 10 round mag mean that you are breaking the law. I also wonder how much the police need to identify themselves ? I was watching "To catch a Predator" and a Cop in a gillie suit jumps out of the bushes and says get on the ground, Police. If a guy jumped out from the bushes at me my first reaction would be to defend myself.

AJAX22
02-01-2010, 2:45 PM
Why consent? seriously people... its not going to add inches to your whoohadilly to get all buddy buddy with the cop...

its his job to put people in jail.

There is no lolipop for being a good kid.

Its all stick and no carrot.

Given the choice between the slim Possibly of getting a pinecone rectally inserted and opting to not have a pinecone rectally inserted... why say "OK, go ahead and TRY to stuff that pinecone up my buttocks".....

You have the option to NOT consent...

Avail yourself of it.

(my apologies in advance if this is too crude, I just want to make sure it sinks in)

TMC
02-01-2010, 3:13 PM
I didn't think that the rifle could've been a pre-ban registered AW

Not to single you out Syntax Erros, but so many folks think that AR's have only been around since they stated paying attention. Some of us have been shooting them since before many of your were born and have more than 1 that we registered way back when.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 3:20 PM
Not to single you out Syntax Erros, but so many folks think that AR's have only been around since they stated paying attention. Some of us have been shooting them since before many of your were born and have more than 1 that we registered way back when.
Quite true... but if the lower is a Spikes/Kaiser/JD/Mega/etc.... then it's obviously not.

Are there any AR lowers that were overlooked on the 1989 and later lists?

Vtec44
02-01-2010, 3:25 PM
A more formal, pay a fee to shoot, range on private property that is open to the public for use = public place.

I always thought this is private place, though "public" in this case means that no membership is required but the property is privately owned. The owner of that range makes the rules that you need to follow and have the rights to refuse you.

BKinzey
02-01-2010, 3:26 PM
When registration for AWs started I looked up the rules. One of them was I did not have to carry my registration with the rifle. Has this changed?

A visual inspection isn't going to reveal if an AW is registered or not. So I'm confused as to how a LEO could claim that seeing a rifle from a distance would give him PC to inspect a rifle. Is the idea he could make note of the make, model and serial # and call it in? If he does so, then can one be required to supply ID to show they are the registrant?

BigDogatPlay
02-01-2010, 3:29 PM
I always thought this is private business, though "public" in this case means that no membership is required but the property is privately owned. The owner of that range makes the rules that you need to follow and have the rights to refuse you.

So does the grocery store you shop at, which is on private property, but open to the public. It's the same principle at it's core even though the venues are distinctly different.

BKinzey
02-01-2010, 3:33 PM
...Are there any AR lowers that were overlooked on the 1989 and later lists?

Essential Arms, Model J-15, out of Louisiana.

Vtec44
02-01-2010, 3:35 PM
So does the grocery store you shop at, which is on private property, but open to the public. It's the same principle at it's core even though the venues are distinctly different.

It's open to the public, but I'm curious to see where in the laws it says such place is considered public place? No, I'm not trying to be a smartass.

BigDogatPlay
02-01-2010, 3:37 PM
A visual inspection isn't going to reveal if an AW is registered or not. So I'm confused as to how a LEO could claim that seeing a rifle from a distance would give him PC to inspect a rifle. Is the idea he could make note of the make, model and serial # and call it in? If he does so, then can one be required to supply ID to show they are the registrant?

From 20 yards away at a public place I, as a LEO see you shooting an AR with evil features, standard capacity mags, and you drop mags with the push of a button by your finger, no tool involved. Could be you are committing a felony in my presence in one of several ways.

In asking you to take a look at your rifle, since I can not see it's markings or serial number from 20 yards away, I am attempting to establish whether or not a felony has been or is being committed. That is called an investigation, and the rules become somewhat different. If the rifle is indeed a RAW with your name attached to it in the DB, a serial number check will establish that post haste and end of discussion. If it's an OLL built with features and no mag lock, then it's a problem.

I don't disagree that the entire business of the AWB is utter foolishness. It absolutely is. But until that gets corrected through litigation or legislation it is still the law and if someone is going to head out for some recreational shooting with an illegally configured gun or an unregistered AW, then one is running a risk of having the law take a giant dump on them. And I think it is incumbent on those of us who are OLL shooters (which includes me) to represent our hobby in as positive a light as we can.

bwiese
02-01-2010, 3:59 PM
Are there any AR lowers that were overlooked
on the 1989 and later lists?

The 1989 Roberti-Roos list banned only the "Colt AR-15".

The Kasler list (11 CCR 5499) banned a variety of ARs found while a DOJ employee perused an issue or two of Shotgun News and Gun List on his restroom break.

As one other poster mentioned, there's an Essential Arms model that wasn't listed.

And my American Spirit Arms ASA-15 lowers aren't banned-by-name, thus I have two "Category 3" ARs reg'd AWs.

There are probably others; I'd bet the Kasler list got 80-85% but quite a few probably leaked thru.

bwiese
02-01-2010, 4:00 PM
When registration for AWs started I looked up the rules. One of them was I did not have to carry my registration with the rifle. Has this changed?

No.

But it's generally a good idea to keep a copy of the reg with you just in case the cops' radios or MDTs are down (or you're in a fringe radio receiption area, etc.)

hoffmang
02-01-2010, 4:02 PM
One interesting thing to keep in mind. BLM is federal. The 2A applies to him already.

-Gene

Hopi
02-01-2010, 4:27 PM
One interesting thing to keep in mind. BLM is federal. The 2A applies to him already.

-Gene


Are you implying that 'arms in common use' are protected from bans while possessed on federal land?

We Are Apocalypse
02-01-2010, 4:34 PM
I really don't know why cops bother......I mean, personally if I saw someone at the range with an AR/AK and they were just enjoying a day at the range in a responsible manner and didn't have 'PAROLEE' written all over them, then who cares !!!!.....Have fun !!!

......I would be very insulted if they didn't offer to let me pop off a few rounds though.........

You mean you would profile? Because a 22 year old Hispanic male with tattoos is definitely going to have an illegally configured OLL as opposed to a 40 year old White male, right :rolleyes:? That's all a department needs, a story to get out that one of their officers was at a shooting range inspecting the guns of all the minorities and people with tattoos but leaving the 40 year old business men with friends and family alone.

"Sir, may I inspect your rifle?"

How completely tactless. If an LEO wants to inspect my rifle, at least he could do it under the pretense of friendliness and "hey that's a cool stock/upper/optic, I'm thinking of getting one for my duty gear, could I have a look?" I agree with oaklander's point of being ambassadors, but if the officer starts out by goose-stepping, I'm more inclined to give him the cold shoulder.

I'd rather him be up front with me as to what he's looking for. I have more respect for that, then I would an LEO pretending to be interested in my set up merely to check to see if it's legal. With that said, just because I have respect for him being up front, doesn't mean I intend to consent.

OlderThanDirt
02-01-2010, 4:40 PM
You mean you would profile? Because a 22 year old Hispanic male with tattoos is definitely going to have an illegally configured OLL as opposed to a 40 year old White male, right :rolleyes:? That's all a department needs, a story to get out that one of their officers was at a shooting range inspecting the guns of all the minorities and people with tattoos but leaving the 40 year old business men with friends and family alone.

Well, statistics are pretty clear on who is committing violent crimes and who is paying the majority of taxes in this country.

packnrat
02-01-2010, 4:50 PM
kinda along the same lines, leo wants to inspect your gun:

during hunting trip.
unloaded rifle and pistol on seat in clear view. all leagle, no problem there.
wookie leo i belive, after looking at my papers, pushed me aside to get into my truck - he had to open the door. never even asked to look.

is that leagle?? i had no problem him looking at said guns, just the way he did it and he stated he can do what ever he wants.

there is what is right, proper, and leagle. not all applied to this incounter.:eek:

.

NorCalMama
02-01-2010, 4:54 PM
If there is no legal reason for the officer to look at your gun, then you should respectuflly decline their invitation.

When you measure Risk vs. Reward, there is NO good reason to interact with law enforcement voluntarily.

It sucks, (there are some really nice guys in LE) but you have a LOT more to loose through the interaction than you have to gain... particularly when it comes to firearms.

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

Never consent to a search...

and 'inspection' is still a search...

do not give consent

Your 'ambassadorial' nature comes from how you conduct yourself and your attitude.

Chances are you ARE breaking some law of some kind at any given moment of your life... and just because you don't know what it is, or it is unconstitutional, or it is based on obscure case law, or it is burried in the back of the tax code, or it has been declared void by the supreme court.... doesn't mean that it isn't a law and you aren't breaking it.

seriously, be polite, but do NOT consent to a search, or an inspection, or anything....

You have very little to gain and everything to loose.

*ding ding ding* We have a winner!!! Couldn't agree more!

i8z7NC5sgik

We Are Apocalypse
02-01-2010, 4:57 PM
Well, statistics are pretty clear on who is committing violent crimes and who is paying the majority of taxes in this country.

Statistics also say that white males are more likely to commit "white collar crimes" so I guess the FBI and IRS should investigate every white male business owner they come across :rolleyes:.

Back on topic, you have more guts than me, I would not have consented, even though I know I have my rifle legally configured. There's just too much of a chance of negative outcome.

SkyStorm82
02-01-2010, 5:01 PM
You mean you would profile? Because a 22 year old Hispanic male with tattoos is definitely going to have an illegally configured OLL as opposed to a 40 year old White male, right :rolleyes:? That's all a department needs, a story to get out that one of their officers was at a shooting range inspecting the guns of all the minorities and people with tattoos but leaving the 40 year old business men with friends and family alone.

Where in his post did he mention Hispanic or white?

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 5:30 PM
It's open to the public, but I'm curious to see where in the laws it says such place is considered public place? No, I'm not trying to be a smartass.
"Public Place" has different implications.
If it is private property with controlled access, even though it is a "public place", the law is applied differently from, for instance, a parking lot or an unfenced front yard.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 5:34 PM
And my American Spirit Arms ASA-15 lowers aren't banned-by-name, thus I have two "Category 3" ARs reg'd AWs.
If they aren't banned by name, was registration required? Was this only because of the "evil features" and lack of the option to use a mag lock at the time?

I would presume that you can't today "unregister" them, but really, I guess having them registered with no mag locks and the ability to use your high-caps is preferable to how a current OLL would be configured.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 5:39 PM
Well, statistics are pretty clear on who is committing violent crimes and who is paying the majority of taxes in this country.
Except those who are committing violent crimes aren't using AWs except in very rare situations.

One of those situations?

What was the ethnicity and/or socioeconomic background of the guys involved in the North Hollywood bank robbery?

Whiskey84
02-01-2010, 5:39 PM
That would be hilarious.

"Excuse me sir, I would like to inspect your rifle to verify it is California legal."

-"Uh, no thanks."

"Sir, I am asking you to allow me to inspect your weapon"

-"Naah. I'm good. Have a nice day though."

:rofl2: hahaha

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 5:42 PM
kinda along the same lines, leo wants to inspect your gun:

during hunting trip.
unloaded rifle and pistol on seat in clear view. all leagle, no problem there.
wookie leo i belive, after looking at my papers, pushed me aside to get into my truck - he had to open the door. never even asked to look.

is that leagle?? i had no problem him looking at said guns, just the way he did it and he stated he can do what ever he wants.

there is what is right, proper, and leagle. not all applied to this incounter.:eek:

That was a 100% illegal search.

B Strong
02-01-2010, 5:54 PM
Quite true... but if the lower is a Spikes/Kaiser/JD/Mega/etc.... then it's obviously not.

Are there any AR lowers that were overlooked on the 1989 and later lists?


I've handled rewelded M16/AR15 receivers that had various M16 front ends combined with a back end w/o the auto sear hole - these receivers had various contractor front ends - very Early Armalite/Colt AR15 markings (that would be covered by R-R) but there were H. & R. and General Motors marked front ends as well, with M16, XM16 E1 & M16A1 as the model designation - all of these receivers would be off list.

The likelyhood of finding one of these is nil, but they're out there.

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 6:13 PM
and General Motors marked front ends as well,
Oh man... I'd love to have a Government Motors rollmark... then get Obama to sign it.

That's even better than someone's 80% build where they engraved the manufacturer as "FCKCADOJ"

SixPointEight
02-01-2010, 6:17 PM
Oh man... I'd love to have a Government Motors rollmark... then get Obama to sign it.

That's even better than someone's 80% build where they engraved the manufacturer as "FCKCADOJ"

LMAO no way! That's awesome

Dangerpin
02-01-2010, 6:30 PM
The likelyhood of finding one of these is nil, but they're out there.

As nil is another term for zero the likelihood would, I think, be slightly more than nil but just slightly more. :)

So then, since we can't know, and apparently won't be told by the LEO, what factors might play into if the LEO is just fishing or actually has a right to detain and search/inspect our weapon, the best course of action is to;

1 Keep our weapons in a legal configuration (duh)
2 Keep flowchart or RAW documentation handy
3 Decline the search and shut the hell up
4 If the LEO has a legitimate cause to search he/she will search even if we decline
5 Hope the LEO isn't so pissed at our making his job hard that he doesn't harass us beyond the request to inspect
6 Finally, hope we don't spend a night in jail while waiting for the prosecutor to cut us loose.

or (perhaps slightly less good)

1 Keep our weapons in a legal configuration
2 Keep flowchart or RAW documentation handy (papers please!)
3 Be a good ambassador for the OLL movement and potentially give away our rights in hopes that this will be less confrontational
4 Hope the LEO knows the law, hope you haven't missed some new twist in legal interpretation or LEO misinterpretation of such.
5 Hope we don't spend a night in jail while waiting for the prosecutor to cut us loose.

Nice.

So LEO's, if you approach us and we pucker up it probably has less to do with if our weapon is in a legal configuration and more to do with a rapid decision on civility vs defense of our rights.

B Strong
02-01-2010, 6:41 PM
Oh man... I'd love to have a Government Motors rollmark... then get Obama to sign it.

That's even better than someone's 80% build where they engraved the manufacturer as "FCKCADOJ"


I'm not always as smart as I should be.

I ran into those receivers long before AW laws were on the table here in Ca.

At the time, you could buy a Colt AR from any FFL for around $400.00 - $500.00 bucks.

Those receivers were were $350.00 iirc and I thought them wildly over priced.

I kick myself in the *** everytime I think of them, and to add insult to injury a friend of mine was there, and I talked him out of buying too - he mentions it every now and then when the bill comes for lunch...

pat038536
02-01-2010, 7:09 PM
then she would hate going with me,

I look over both shoulders, then break into a sprint for the parking lot

true story


When they ask me to see my receipt, I hold it up at about shoulder height and and stay about 1.5 arm lengths away and say "SEE!" as I continue to walk past them without stopping.

ryang
02-01-2010, 8:14 PM
While I would be very tempted to tell him to get a warrant or contact my lawyer I am curious what the legal minds here will say.
I think you misunderstand the purpose of a warrant. Warrants are used to legally search areas normally considered private for evidence of a crime. You're on a public range and the LEO is asking about a rifle in plain view.

I also think you misunderstand the purpose of "tell him to contact my lawyer". Normally that is done after you are arrested of a crime and the LEO wishes to question you about it. If you meant that you wanted to contact your laywer, that would have to wait until after the LEO gave you permission. At that point he's in the middle of an investigation and calls the shots.

"Sir, may I inspect your rifle?"

How completely tactless. If an LEO wants to inspect my rifle, at least he could do it under the pretense of friendliness and "hey that's a cool stock/upper/optic, I'm thinking of getting one for my duty gear, could I have a look?" I agree with oaklander's point of being ambassadors, but if the officer starts out by goose-stepping, I'm more inclined to give him the cold shoulder.
You think it's better for the LEO to use subterfuge and lie to you than ask you a polite question? You, sir, are wacked. Doubly so for also thinking "Sir, may I inspect your rifle?" is goose-stepping. I can't think of a more polite way to ask a straightforward question.

That was a 100% illegal search.
A handgun in plain view can be checked to see if it's loaded. Even with the slide locked back it's still possible there's a round in the chamber. So while the LEO may have been pretty crude about how he did it, what he did was legal.

A visual inspection isn't going to reveal if an AW is registered or not. So I'm confused as to how a LEO could claim that seeing a rifle from a distance would give him PC to inspect a rifle. Is the idea he could make note of the make, model and serial # and call it in? If he does so, then can one be required to supply ID to show they are the registrant?
Yep, run the firearm to verify it's a RAW and check your ID to verify you are the person it's registered to. Or if not, that the registered owner is physically there. If the check takes too long, the LEO has your info and can file a report later if the rifle turns out be illegal after all.


It seems a number of people are either unsure or think the LEO did not have PC to check the weapon to see if it met all OLL requirements. He did. It's very easy for him to articulate that many people have OLLs that either intentionally or not are configured illegally and that's why he wanted to check. The LEO politely asked the OP if he could check the rifle. As many have suggested, there's nothing wrong with the OP saying no. But the LEO can still check over the OPs objections because he has PC.

Another thing to keep in mind is a LEO does not have to articulate PC to you. He may do so as a courtesy but he is not required to do so by law. So yeah, a lot of people are going to wonder if there was valid PC or not. Unfortunately a lot of people (like Cokebottle) are likely to get the answer wrong. So here's one polite and low-key way to handle pretty much any similar situation:

LEO approaches and asks your permission for something.
You politely decline.
LEO does whatever he wanted anyway.
Assuming you are subsequently free to go, ask (politely) for the LEO's name and badge number. (It's on you to have pen and paper. You can ask for a card but he doesn't have to give one.) Also note the time, LEO agency and location. Then when you get home you can call the lawyer of your choice and get expert legal opinion whether the LEO made an illegal search or detention. That's the only way to be sure. You can ask for public opinions but they usually aren't trustworthy. Some are, but how can you tell who's right and who's wrong if you're not sure yourself?

dantodd
02-01-2010, 8:37 PM
I think you misunderstand the purpose of a warrant. Warrants are used to legally search areas normally considered private for evidence of a crime. You're on a public range and the LEO is asking about a rifle in plain view.

No, warrants are used to search anytime an officer doesn't have RAS or PC to execute a search and is not given consent. The fact that the rifle is in plain sight does not make it "searchable." This is tantamount to saying that if an officer sees you walking down the street with an iPod since it is plain sight he can demand to inspect it to see if it has any pirated content and or to run the serial number. The possession of a firearm is NOT PC that a crime is being or has been committed.

I also think you misunderstand the purpose of "tell him to contact my lawyer". Normally that is done after you are arrested of a crime and the LEO wishes to question you about it. If you meant that you wanted to contact your laywer, that would have to wait until after the LEO gave you permission. At that point he's in the middle of an investigation and calls the shots.

Miranda is pretty clear about this I am surprised that you are not aware of the case. You should really read up on it. If you are not free to walk away from the encounter you are detained which is a form of under arrest. If you are being questioned while detained you have the right to refuse to answer and direct all questions to your attorney.

From MirandaWarning.org:
"If you are detained by police and not allowed to leave freely, police must read you the Miranda Warning so that you fully understand your rights regarding being questioned. If the police do not intend to use those answers against you at a trial, they do not need to ‘Mirandize’ you."




A handgun in plain view can be checked to see if it's loaded. Even with the slide locked back it's still possible there's a round in the chamber. So while the LEO may have been pretty crude about how he did it, what he did was legal.

First, the firearm in question was a long arm. Second, to be able to inspect a weapon to see if it is loaded without PC or RAS the weapon in question must be in a location/situation where it is not permitted to be loaded. The range, I'm fairly certain, is not such a place.



It seems a number of people are either unsure or think the LEO did not have PC to check the weapon to see if it met all OLL requirements. He did. It's very easy for him to articulate that many people have OLLs that either intentionally or not are configured illegally and that's why he wanted to check. The LEO politely asked the OP if he could check the rifle. As many have suggested, there's nothing wrong with the OP saying no. But the LEO can still check over the OPs objections because he has PC.


The presence of a gun is NOT PC that it is illegally configured. The PC you suggested doesn't pass the smell test. I am not saying there wasn't PC but merely saying that many are illegally configured is NOT PC. Try that by just randomly pulling over any lowered Chevelle and claim that since many lowered Chevelles are used in crimes I had PC to pull this one over and detain the occupants.

Josh3239
02-01-2010, 8:41 PM
Ryang, very good post. It looks like you beat me to it. Long story short LE doesn't need a warrant if your stuff if it is in plain view. To understand warrantless searches you have to understand privacy. How much privacy can you expect when you are shooting at a public range? Not much. How much privacy can you expect when you have a handgun in your car on a public street in plain view? Not much.

Vtec44
02-01-2010, 8:42 PM
"Public Place" has different implications.
If it is private property with controlled access, even though it is a "public place", the law is applied differently from, for instance, a parking lot or an unfenced front yard.

I see. So if there's a dedicated entrance and fence to deter and regulate public access, that will offer some what "private place protection" even though that business is serving the public?

Cokebottle
02-01-2010, 9:00 PM
I see. So if there's a dedicated entrance and fence to deter and regulate public access, that will offer some what "private place protection" even though that business is serving the public?
Absolutely.

It depends on the statute, but regardless, this thread is about a LEO approaching someone AT A FIRING RANGE, presumably at the benches.

Whether a public range, private range, or an informal shooting area such as Dillon Road... The officer has no right to perform an "e" check unless guns are required to be unloaded.
All ranges are either private property, or public property in unincorporated areas where shooting is not otherwise prohibited.

The moment you pull out of the driveway onto a public road, the officer has the right to conduct an "e" check.

The only thing that gives an officer the right to go beyond an "e" check is if he had RS/PC that a crime has, is, or is about to be committed.

Anothercoilgun
02-01-2010, 9:18 PM
This is just amazing. Finger push a button and major crimes are being committed. The sky is falling. Get the water the hills are burning. But when a tool pushes a button there is no harm no foul. Travel east over to the invisible line called CA-AZ and this is all but a dream, better yet a joke of the east with said butt as the west.

I am so damn sick of how because someone wrote something behind seemingly closed doors all of a sudden its righteous and demands the attention of a standing army to dish spite toward those undeserving, who prior to such enactment in all its bull shee-it glory have practice the demonic act for decades. Though clearly stated, regardless, the faintly lit embers of exemptions and pre-dates are snuffed out with heavy boots. Big grins a many and green double sparking snakes gleaming in the eyes blind them as they unknowingly one by one chip away at an idea so withered down these days to the point where it is no longer recognizable.

This is a sad pathetic game where nobody wins.

Telperion
02-01-2010, 9:19 PM
You think it's better for the LEO to use subterfuge and lie to you than ask you a polite question? You, sir, are wacked. Doubly so for also thinking "Sir, may I inspect your rifle?" is goose-stepping. I can't think of a more polite way to ask a straightforward question.

I already suspect both in any official contact with a police officer. And yes I do find the notion of an inspection in the context of a casual conversation a better investigative technique than a traffic stop approach and mentality. You may think otherwise, but I won't question your mental stability for disagreeing. I know Officer "Friendly" is checking for the bullet button at the same time he's ogling the scope. Edit: if the officer in the OP's case had been a bit more subtle, he would have accomplished the same and the OP probably wouldn't have found the interaction worthy of a CGN post.

Have you read the forum rules regarding personal attacks? I suggest a refresher.

jaq
02-01-2010, 10:23 PM
This is just amazing. Finger push a button and major crimes are being committed. The sky is falling. Get the water the hills are burning. But when a tool pushes a button there is no harm no foul. Travel east over to the invisible line called CA-AZ and this is all but a dream, better yet a joke of the east with said butt as the west.

I am so damn sick of how because someone wrote something behind seemingly closed doors all of a sudden its righteous and demands the attention of a standing army to dish spite toward those undeserving, who prior to such enactment in all its bull shee-it glory have practice the demonic act for decades. Though clearly stated, regardless, the faintly lit embers of exemptions and pre-dates are snuffed out with heavy boots. Big grins a many and green double sparking snakes gleaming in the eyes blind them as they unknowingly one by one chip away at an idea so withered down these days to the point where it is no longer recognizable.

This is a sad pathetic game where nobody wins.

Kind Sir, thank you for that. That such exquisite art should be spent on such a sorry subject appears unseemly and sad...Aye, sad is the very core of me.

But enough of sadness.
Cease, Man, to mourn, to weep, to wail ; enjoy thy shining hour of sun ;
We dance along Death's icy brink, but is the dance less full of fun?

OP: You handled it well, and thanks for posting about it.

SVT-40
02-02-2010, 12:13 AM
No, warrants are used to search anytime an officer doesn't have RAS or PC to execute a search and is not given consent. The fact that the rifle is in plain sight does not make it "searchable." This is tantamount to saying that if an officer sees you walking down the street with an iPod since it is plain sight he can demand to inspect it to see if it has any pirated content and or to run the serial number. The possession of a firearm is NOT PC that a crime is being or has been committed.



Miranda is pretty clear about this I am surprised that you are not aware of the case. You should really read up on it. If you are not free to walk away from the encounter you are detained which is a form of under arrest. If you are being questioned while detained you have the right to refuse to answer and direct all questions to your attorney.

From MirandaWarning.org:
"If you are detained by police and not allowed to leave freely, police must read you the Miranda Warning so that you fully understand your rights regarding being questioned. If the police do not intend to use those answers against you at a trial, they do not need to ‘Mirandize’ you."





First, the firearm in question was a long arm. Second, to be able to inspect a weapon to see if it is loaded without PC or RAS the weapon in question must be in a location/situation where it is not permitted to be loaded. The range, I'm fairly certain, is not such a place.





The presence of a gun is NOT PC that it is illegally configured. The PC you suggested doesn't pass the smell test. I am not saying there wasn't PC but merely saying that many are illegally configured is NOT PC. Try that by just randomly pulling over any lowered Chevelle and claim that since many lowered Chevelles are used in crimes I had PC to pull this one over and detain the occupants.

Actually the information you give about Miranda admonishments is not correct. Miranda is not required for most "detentions". Miranda is required during a custodial interrogation.

Traffic stops are by definition a "detention". DUI stops are a detention, but LEO's are allowed to ask questions about drinking and such BEFORE an arrest. Most domestic fights are "detentions"

The key to the necessity of a Miranda admonishment is custody AND interrogation. Without both Miranda is not necessary.

Now that said ,at any time you can stop talking to a LEO. It's up to you.

Regarding the above comparison about "lowered Chevelles". Here is another slant. When an officer sees a "lowered vehicle" it is not necessary for him to KNOW it's actually lower than the legal limit. If it "appears" to be he can make a stop to confirm it's too low. If it is too low he can write a cite. If not, it's a thanks and have a nice night. No confrontation about anyone's rights being violated because there was no violation.

Much of the law is black and white. But some is more subtle and based on appearances alone until facts can be verified.

Using the same logic an officer COULD do the same with OLL's. Now I'm not advocating that. I'm just saying it could occur and be legal.

besides we are really talking about scenarios without actually having all the information needed to really know what is "proper" or not because there are always facts not in evidence in any "internet" based discussion.

The whole problem really is a problem of stupid legislation, which will hopefully be remedied in the future by favorable rulings by the "Supreme's"


Every Office develops his own "style" of approaching individuals. Sometimes it's best to use the formal approach, and other times is best to "soft sell". There is no right way every time. If I was to become curious about a shooters rifle's configuration I would watch him for an extended period to try and ether confirm or rule out a illegal configuration. In the end you might have to just walk up and ask.

Or as said above "soft sell", and not focus on the legality and ask about other things such as accuracy and load data Ect. to "break the ice" in hopes of confirming legality during the small talk. "Body language" is of the utmost importance during these type of encounters because a experienced cop can usually get what he needs without ever letting the person whom he suspects ever knowing he is actually "investigating".

dantodd
02-02-2010, 12:43 AM
Actually the information you give about Miranda admonishments is not correct. Miranda is not required for most "detentions". Miranda is required during a custodial interrogation.

Traffic stops are by definition a "detention". DUI stops are a detention, but LEO's are allowed to ask questions about drinking and such BEFORE an arrest. Most domestic fights are "detentions"

The key to the necessity of a Miranda admonishment is custody AND interrogation. Without both Miranda is not necessary.

Now that said ,at any time you can stop talking to a LEO. It's up to you.


You are right, I mis-applied Miranda. I should have said that you have all the rights included in Miranda at the moment you are not free to leave. That does not mean the police are required to read you in.


Regarding the above comparison about "lowered Chevelles". Here is another slant. When an officer sees a "lowered vehicle" it is not necessary for him to KNOW it's actually lower than the legal limit. If it "appears" to be he can make a stop to confirm it's too low. If it is too low he can write a cite. If not, it's a thanks and have a nice night. No confrontation about anyone's rights being violated because there was no violation.

I was referring to CPC violations CVC violations are different because there is a different standard for detentions to investigate.

Using the same logic an officer COULD do the same with OLL's. Now I'm not advocating that. I'm just saying it could occur and be legal.

I believe you are wrong here. The presence of a gun is not automatically PC that a crime is or has been committed. There is voluminous case law supporting this, unfortunately I don't have it handy, hopefully someone with a better memory will post it.

besides we are really talking about scenarios without actually having all the information needed to really know what is "proper" or not because there are always facts not in evidence in any "internet" based discussion.

I agree which is why I kept my statements to "the presence of a gun itself is not PC" if you look back at my posts you will see where I said there could well be other issues that the OP chose not to share or was not aware of that could have constituted PC.

The whole problem really is a problem of stupid legislation, which will hopefully be remedied in the future by favorable rulings by the "Supreme's"

I certainly can't argue with that.


FWIW I have never suggested the officer involved did anything wrong. He engaged in a consensual encounter and got the information he was after. No big deal.

SVT-40
02-02-2010, 1:25 AM
Regarding my assertion that: "Using the same logic an officer COULD do the same with OLL's. Now I'm not advocating that. I'm just saying it could occur and be legal."

I agree the "gun" is irrelevant. It's how it's equipped. Just like the car in my scenario is not relevant. It's how it is equipped. The OLL laws are related to a certain "type" of guns. So hypothetically if I was watching a shooter whom I suspected of having a illegally equipped rifle I would try and establish visually from a distance whether it had "evil" features or not. If I saw what I thought was a illegal feature, or if I suspected it was illegally equipped I could approach the shooter to confirm the or deny the equipments legality.

Lets say you say a shooter with a AR type rifle. You could see he had a "tool" to remove the mag and used the tool to remove the mag. But the mag appeared to be a standard 30 round AR type mag.

Since you are not required to have a mag lock on a Registered assault rifle it would be reasonable to suspect the shooter was shooting a OLL, and thus was required to have a mag with a ten rounds or less capability.

Now the mag COULD be blocked to only hold 10 rounds, but how would you know without actually checking?

The presence of what APPEARS to be a illegal feature would give an officer reasonable suspicion that the rifle was not legally equipped. Thus allowing a "inspection".

No constitutional violation.

The appearance of a "10/30" mag in a OLL MAY give LEO's RS to inspect your rifle because on it's face a over ten round mag in a OLL alone would indicate a violation.

(One reason I would never have a "10/30" type mag)

Just like I'm always sure my car is legally equipped and I try my best to avoid CVC violations.

Nothing is set in stone regarding what is "right and wrong" with inspections of firearms by LEO's. Far too many variables and each "incident" would have to be judged on it's own merits.

I really don't see the necessity for a LEO to be at any range doing "inspections" It would not be a reasonable use of ones time.

The only reason any LEO inspections should occur is based on some type of VERIFIED complaint.

Just MHO

Cokebottle
02-02-2010, 1:26 AM
FWIW I have never suggested the officer involved did anything wrong. He engaged in a consensual encounter and got the information he was after. No big deal.
This

An officer can ASK anything he likes, completely legally.
If the person contacted decides to talk or comply and incriminates himself, that too is a legal search or arrest.

Cokebottle
02-02-2010, 1:35 AM
Lets say you say a shooter with a AR type rifle. You could see he had a "tool" to remove the mag and used the tool to remove the mag. But the mag appeared to be a standard 30 round AR type mag.

Since you are not required to have a mag lock on a Registered assault rifle it would be reasonable to suspect the shooter was shooting a OLL, and thus was required to have a mag ten rounds or less.
You can always watch him shoot and count the number of rounds fired between mag changes, or watch him load rounds into the mag(s).

Granted, he could be loading only 10 rounds into a high cap, but without actually witnessing more than 10 rounds being fired, RS/PC starts to get a little more shaky, especially since you are aware of the existence of 10/20/30/40 round mags.

Now... if he's shooting a drum, ya, it would be pretty silly even for a mall ninja to spend the $200+ on a Beta and then neuter it to 10rds.
Now the mag COULD be blocked to only hold 10 rounds, but how would you know without actually checking?
By the same token, as I mentioned, you are aware of 10/30 mags.
Without seeing more than 10 rounds being loaded into or fired from the mags, you would have nothing solid to base PC on... and standard rules of court dictate that if a situation can be viewed in two different ways, the way most favorable to the defendant shall be used.
The appearance of a "10/30" mag in a OLL MAY give LEO's RS to inspect your rifle because on it's face a over ten round mag in a OLL alone would indicate a violation.

(One reason I would never have a "10/30" type mag)
Or.... have 10/30s for your inner mall ninja, but transport the gun with a basic 10 rounder locked in. Get called on an e-check on the way home? Pull the takedown pin... it's a fixed-mag top loader.

lavgrunt
02-02-2010, 4:51 AM
You mean you would profile? Because a 22 year old Hispanic male with tattoos is definitely going to have an illegally configured OLL as opposed to a 40 year old White male, right :rolleyes:? That's all a department needs, a story to get out that one of their officers was at a shooting range inspecting the guns of all the minorities and people with tattoos but leaving the 40 year old business men with friends and family alone.



I'd rather him be up front with me as to what he's looking for. I have more respect for that, then I would an LEO pretending to be interested in my set up merely to check to see if it's legal. With that said, just because I have respect for him being up front, doesn't mean I intend to consent.


......How did you come to that conclusion??!! I never said anything about race, gender, age etc??!!......Based on your post, you are very misinformed about what constitutes 'profiling'........You've been lurking on ACLU.COM haven't you!!??....LOL !!!

...By the way, my last name is Ramirez and my GF is African-American.........D'OH !!!

SVT-40
02-02-2010, 7:19 PM
You can always watch him shoot and count the number of rounds fired between mag changes, or watch him load rounds into the mag(s).

Granted, he could be loading only 10 rounds into a high cap, but without actually witnessing more than 10 rounds being fired, RS/PC starts to get a little more shaky, especially since you are aware of the existence of 10/20/30/40 round mags.

Now... if he's shooting a drum, ya, it would be pretty silly even for a mall ninja to spend the $200+ on a Beta and then neuter it to 10rds.

By the same token, as I mentioned, you are aware of 10/30 mags.
Without seeing more than 10 rounds being loaded into or fired from the mags, you would have nothing solid to base PC on... and standard rules of court dictate that if a situation can be viewed in two different ways, the way most favorable to the defendant shall be used.

Or.... have 10/30s for your inner mall ninja, but transport the gun with a basic 10 rounder locked in. Get called on an e-check on the way home? Pull the takedown pin... it's a fixed-mag top loader.

All of your assertions are reasonable.

However when a officer is looking for probable cause to check someone for any illegal behavior he does not have to give the person the benefit of the doubt.

The standard in court for most thing related to PC and RS is the "reasonable officer standard". In other words COULD a "reasonable officer" believe because there was a magazine intended to hold 30 rounds inserted in a subjects rifle that the magazine COULD still be capable of holding 30 rounds.

The answer wold be yes. Giving him grounds for an inspection.

The knowledge of 10/30 round type mags being available makes no difference.

Because without actually inspecting the mag there would be no way to tell if it had been blocked at 10 rounds. Also watching the subject shoot only ten rounds is again irrelevant. Because the subject could just be loading ten rounds to give the appearance of legality.

On the drum mag thing. There are some being sold on GB supposedly "Calif. legal" blocked at 10 rounds. The same for Beta C mags. There are some Calif mall ninjas!!

A waste of $$ and not smart IMHO.

Using these "10/30" mags gives a LEO at least justification to really watch what you are doing, and maybe even PC for an inspection. Why take the chance? it's not worth it.

yellowfin
02-02-2010, 7:33 PM
Oh man... I'd love to have a Government Motors rollmark... then get Obama to sign it.

That's even better than someone's 80% build where they engraved the manufacturer as "FCKCADOJ"I wouldn't want that gremlin within 100 miles of anything I own. Ever. For any reason, at any time.

M. Sage
02-02-2010, 7:39 PM
In any event, the rifle is out in plain sight.

There has to be a reason to believe the rifle is illegal. Given all the legal ways to be in possession of an AR in CA (registered AW, off-list, MAWP and a couple others), the mere presence of a black rifle is not enough.

As to the "e" check? Well, if you're in a location where discharge is permitted (ranges qualify), he can ask to check the rifle (or other firearm), but the "e" check wouldn't be allowed as a pretext to inspect the rifle. You can politely refuse the "e" check.

you can politely refuse the 12025e "check" (you have the wrong part in quotes - the "check" is really a search), but said refusal is grounds for arrest for violation of 12025.

ryang
02-02-2010, 8:01 PM
You can always watch him shoot and count the number of rounds fired between mag changes, or watch him load rounds into the mag(s).
Yep, a LEO could do those things. But it doesn't mean he has to.

standard rules of court dictate that if a situation can be viewed in two different ways, the way most favorable to the defendant shall be used.
That's in court. It doesn't apply to a LEO on the street. And before anyone starts jumping on me for saying this, here's a common scenario: LEO sees person wobbling slightly as he walks at night. Upon closer examination the subject's pupils are constricted. Yes, the guy could have a balance problem and he could be taking prescription medication that constricts the pupils. But the LEO isn't going to think that. He's going to think maybe the guy's a long time meth user and proceed accordingly. No "most favorable to the defendant" there.

First, the firearm in question was a long arm. Second, to be able to inspect a weapon to see if it is loaded without PC or RAS the weapon in question must be in a location/situation where it is not permitted to be loaded. The range, I'm fairly certain, is not such a place.
Slight mixing of cases here. Cokebottle incorrectly stated it was "totally illegal" for a LEO to inspect a handgun in plain view in a car without consent. I explained why he was wrong.

Cokebottle
02-02-2010, 8:09 PM
you can politely refuse the 12025e "check" (you have the wrong part in quotes - the "check" is really a search), but said refusal is grounds for arrest for violation of 12025.
At a location where having a loaded weapon is not illegal?

dantodd
02-02-2010, 9:19 PM
First, the firearm in question was a long arm. Second, to be able to inspect a weapon to see if it is loaded without PC or RAS the weapon in question must be in a location/situation where it is not permitted to be loaded. The range, I'm fairly certain, is not such a place.
Slight mixing of cases here. Cokebottle incorrectly stated it was "totally illegal" for a LEO to inspect a handgun in plain view in a car without consent. I explained why he was wrong.

You are right, I had mixed the cases up.

D.R.E.
02-03-2010, 2:59 AM
Nice level headed set of posts; useful antidote to the various big talk and little knowledge blatherings that tend to frequent such threads...




All of your assertions are reasonable.

However when a officer is looking for probable cause to check someone for any illegal behavior he does not have to give the person the benefit of the doubt.

The standard in court for most thing related to PC and RS is the "reasonable officer standard". In other words COULD a "reasonable officer" believe because there was a magazine intended to hold 30 rounds inserted in a subjects rifle that the magazine COULD still be capable of holding 30 rounds.

The answer wold be yes. Giving him grounds for an inspection.

The knowledge of 10/30 round type mags being available makes no difference.

Because without actually inspecting the mag there would be no way to tell if it had been blocked at 10 rounds. Also watching the subject shoot only ten rounds is again irrelevant. Because the subject could just be loading ten rounds to give the appearance of legality.

On the drum mag thing. There are some being sold on GB supposedly "Calif. legal" blocked at 10 rounds. The same for Beta C mags. There are some Calif mall ninjas!!

A waste of $$ and not smart IMHO.

Using these "10/30" mags gives a LEO at least justification to really watch what you are doing, and maybe even PC for an inspection. Why take the chance? it's not worth it.

SVT-40
02-03-2010, 10:47 AM
Nice level headed set of posts; useful antidote to the various big talk and little knowledge blatherings that tend to frequent such threads...

Kind of refreshing isn't it!!

An actual civil exchange of ideas and information.

Timberwolf
02-03-2010, 11:02 AM
As I read through these 151 some odd posts I have to ask myself just how many of you actually have legal training. I mean there seems to be any awful lot of legal analysis flowing through this and like threads from many who probably don't understand or have expereince with the criminal, or civil for that matter, justice system.

Syntax Error
02-03-2010, 12:42 PM
As I read through these 151 some odd posts I have to ask myself just how many of you actually have legal training. I mean there seems to be any awful lot of legal analysis flowing through this and like threads from many who probably don't understand or have expereince with the criminal, or civil for that matter, justice system.
I was more gauging from opinions, and I was quite surprised with the wide array of opinions regarding my scenario; some say cooperate, others say stay silent.

Fortunately, my situation was quickly resolved, though I was uncomfortable as to the means it was done, with LEOs cruising ranges to check for UAWs.

As for the wide array of advice given in this thread, I think the forum's description describes it best:

Discuss gun rights and 2A related political topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

Caveat emptor. :chris:

BigDogatPlay
02-03-2010, 1:35 PM
As I read through these 151 some odd posts I have to ask myself just how many of you actually have legal training. I mean there seems to be any awful lot of legal analysis flowing through this and like threads from many who probably don't understand or have expereince with the criminal, or civil for that matter, justice system.

FWIW I think you are making kind of a blanket assumption here... my points of view are based on my prior career as a LEO. Now, I'm not a lawyer, and don't pretend to be one, however I think I have a pretty good grip on what works and happens in the field. I'd be happy for you to re-read my posts in the thread and let me know where you think I am mistaken, based on your own training and experience, and then let's discuss it. I'm always eager to learn.

I would echo what was said above that there have been a number of excellent and well reasoned posts in this thread. So often, when comes to what it is that LEOs do, the tone goes in the opposite direction. Spirited exchange of ideas is what it's all supposed to be about, at least for me.

:)

Timberwolf
02-03-2010, 4:05 PM
Relax guys - my comments were directed at no one individual or any one comment. It is simply an observation and maybe even food for thought as some who read these threads and posts may may not have your best interest at heart.

ryang
02-03-2010, 8:54 PM
As I read through these 151 some odd posts I have to ask myself just how many of you actually have legal training. I mean there seems to be any awful lot of legal analysis flowing through this and like threads from many who probably don't understand or have expereince with the criminal, or civil for that matter, justice system.
Totally true. And (for the most part) it really doesn't matter what level of training or qualification people claim to have--everyone is, after all, a dog on the internet. Having said that, here are some general guidelines you can use:

1. If a person makes a claim of any sort without stating their reasoning why, ignore it. There's a very good chance they think they know what they're talking about but don't. Good for sophomoric discussions, bad regarding firearm safety, tactics or law.
2. If a person gives supporting detail, at least you can make your own determination if it makes sense. They may still be wrong but at least you have a chance to research and draw your own conclusions.
3. If a person gives supporting detail and explains how it's relevant, that's the best you can hope for online. You still need to do your own research and critical thinking. Never take someone else's word for it just because it sounds good.

tiko
02-03-2010, 10:24 PM
When I shoot my OLL at my local range, the other shooters asked is it illegal because they saw that I could remove its mag by a stick, and guess who answered for me, an LEO who shot next to me explained to those people about Bullet Button.

B Strong
02-04-2010, 6:15 AM
When I shoot my OLL at my local range, the other shooters asked is it illegal because they saw that I could remove its mag by a stick, and guess who answered for me, an LEO who shot next to me explained to those people about Bullet Button.


That's more common than many folks would believe.

I was shooting my SPR thing at Los Altos Hills, I was talking to a guy about the glass I put on it when another shooter questioned the legality of the rifle.

The guy I was speaking with I.D.'d himself as a LEO and explained that the rifle was compliant - the LEO was more knowledgeable than the complainer.

bodger
02-04-2010, 7:31 AM
That's more common than many folks would believe.

I was shooting my SPR thing at Los Altos Hills, I was talking to a guy about the glass I put on it when another shooter questioned the legality of the rifle.

The guy I was speaking with I.D.'d himself as a LEO and explained that the rifle was compliant - the LEO was more knowledgeable than the complainer.


Hopefully, encountering LEOs that are knowledgeable of what makes an EBR compliant will be even more prevalent in the future.
SAC PD memo circulating through all departments would be a good thing.