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View Full Version : Is Shooting Under the Influence Legal?


Blood Ocean
02-01-2010, 5:27 PM
Hey Mom, not asking if it's a good idea asking if it's a legal idea. Specifically is it illegal to consume alcohol or other legal drugs (salvia/nicotine) while shooting guns otherwise legally? The reason I ask is it is not uncommon to be shooting in the desert with a cooler full of beer and a pack of smokes.

Thanks

cbn620
02-01-2010, 5:31 PM
I know there is absolutely no law saying you can't smoke cigarettes while shooting/holding guns. I am pretty sure (90%) there are no laws pertaining to alcohol either. I don't think the word "salvia" appears in any code section in the state.

OlderThanDirt
02-01-2010, 5:44 PM
Pretty sure its not against the law, but its almost guaranteed to put you in the running for a Darwin Award.

jb7706
02-01-2010, 5:58 PM
legal != right, ethical or wise in all situations. Why would one risk a potentially deadly GSW because one wanted to consume alcohol while shooting? To each his/her own I guess.

cbn620
02-01-2010, 6:02 PM
He made it clear he is aware it's not a good idea. He's curious about the law.

B Strong
02-01-2010, 6:08 PM
I wish I could ask a friend of mine, but another friend managed to blow his arm off below the elbow with a 7mm Mag while they were drinking and hunting.

He bled out before he could get help.

Keep drinking and shooting seperate.

CHS
02-01-2010, 6:38 PM
Legal. Not wise though.

thedrickel
02-01-2010, 6:40 PM
People are *always* drinking and shooting at Cow Mtn when I go there. When the teenagers show up with 40's and a few heaters . . . it's time to GTFO.

SkatinJJ
02-01-2010, 6:48 PM
Having fun with your clothes on?

Legal or not, NOT ALLOWED IN CALIFORNIA!!!


























Shoot naked1

loather
02-01-2010, 7:12 PM
People are *always* drinking and shooting at Cow Mtn when I go there. When the teenagers show up with 40's and a few heaters . . . it's time to GTFO.

.40s and 40s don't mix. Not even shooting the empty bottles. You'll never clean up all the glass.

This kind of crap is *precisely* the reason I wear (concealed, not mall-ninja) body armor whenever I visit a place like this. Drinking and shooting is a recipe for disaster.

To the OP: Why even ask a question like this?

GrizzlyGuy
02-01-2010, 7:17 PM
Legal. I find that I get my best long-range groups with a beer in my system. Beyond 1 beer... goes downhill fast.

Seesm
02-01-2010, 8:28 PM
Salvia?

paul0660
02-01-2010, 8:34 PM
Beyond 1 beer... goes downhill fast.

To a point, alcohol is aiming fluid.

pitchbaby
02-01-2010, 10:44 PM
I drink water and soda when I shoot and I seem to have a "blast" every time.

Vtec44
02-01-2010, 10:46 PM
Legal. I find that I get my best long-range groups with a beer in my system. Beyond 1 beer... goes downhill fast.

hahahaha...

Sutcliffe
02-02-2010, 1:41 AM
It would tend to not be the best of ideas. Anything that clouds your judgement could get you in trouble. Disturbing the peace, reckless endangerment would come to mind.

b.faust
02-02-2010, 1:46 AM
Legal. I find that I get my best long-range groups with a beer in my system. Beyond 1 beer... goes downhill fast.

Funny, same thing happens when I play pool.
Beyond 8 beers and my game goes downhill REALLY fast.
;)

B.

Philthy
02-02-2010, 3:51 AM
I love(d) smoking while shooting, but I bet that means elevated lead levels.

xrMike
02-02-2010, 11:04 AM
Anybody who'd smoke salvia and then attempt to shoot firearms is an idiot beyond the pale, regardless of legality.

You can't even put "salvia" in the same sentence as "nicotine". Personally, if I had to remain present among armed idiots, I'd trust the idiot with a few beers in him more than I'd trust the idiot who just did a few hits of salvia.

MasterYong
02-02-2010, 11:28 AM
Perfectly legal, so long as it's legal to drink where you're shooting.

Now, the salvia on the other hand, IS NOT LEGAL TO CONSUME. That stuff is sold as "incense" for a reason. Not to mention you should not be ingesting the most powerful hallucinogen (by weight) in the world while you have guns.

Regulations were passed a few yeas back that added all the unlisted, unpopular, and designer drugs to the list of illegal drugs. The text was something to the effect of banning consumption of any chemical whose effects mimicked the effects of scheduled drugs. So, by proxy, salvia is illegal to consume because it is a powerful hallucinogen. This was done as a result of all the new designer and "old world" drugs that were becoming more and more popular in the drug subculture in the 90s.

It is NOT illegal to possess however. This is the biggest argument head cases always give when they're told taking salvia is a no-no. They say, "but I can get it on the internet or buy it from the local head shop!" -Doesn't matter, it's being sold as "incense" and many even go so far as to print on the label "not for human consumption".

[because I know someone will ask, I know this for two reasons: 1. in my younger years I had a strong interest in ethnobotonay and entheogens, and we were all PISSED when the DEA made salvia, datura, chacruna, and the like illegal to consume and 2. I have a good friend that's still into that crap. There are a lot of drugs that are legal to possess but not legal to consume. San Pedro cactus, for example, the most popular landscaping cactus in America, has copious amounts of mescaline as well as three other psychoactive alkaloids.]

ETA: I'm only pointing this out in case someone finds this thread, Google's "salvia" and decides to buy some not realizing it's still illegal to consume. No disrespect intended towards the OP and I understand that he said he was not considering doing these things.

bodger
02-02-2010, 11:33 AM
I know Salvia. She holds my beer while I shoot. :D

Blood Ocean
02-02-2010, 11:48 AM
Thanks guys, as I stated originally I was curious to know the legal ramifications concerning controlled substances and firearms. No I don't smoke salvia ever, and typically wait until the shooting is done to start drinking the beer but it's never a bad idea to know the laws. Did anyone read the post about the rangers pulling guns? I'd hate to be caught shooting and not be 100% prepared to deal with the fuzz, and that means planning for situations that may or may not occur. Thanks to everyone who bothered to read my post before replying.

alex00
02-02-2010, 11:51 AM
Hey Mom, not asking if it's a good idea asking if it's a legal idea. Specifically is it illegal to consume alcohol or other legal drugs (salvia/nicotine) while shooting guns otherwise legally? The reason I ask is it is not uncommon to be shooting in the desert with a cooler full of beer and a pack of smokes.

Thanks

This might apply. It wouldn't be too hard to convince a jury in some areas of California that shooting a gun with even one beer on board is "grossly negligent". It may not apply if you are out in the desert, alone.

246.3. Except as otherwise authorized by law, any person who
willfully discharges a firearm in a grossly negligent manner which
could result in injury or death to a person is guilty of a public
offense and shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not
exceeding one year, or by imprisonment in the state prison.

Lex Arma
02-02-2010, 11:53 AM
Driving = use of complex machinery by lay persons to get from point A to point B. Driving while intoxicated is negligent use of the machinery.

Shooting = use of simple machinery by lay persons to either practice inflicting deadly force, or to inflict deadly force. Shooting while intoxicated is negligent use of the machinery.

See also California Penal Code Section 246.3(a).

I'm pretty sure I could get a conviction of someone found to be intoxicated while shooting a firearm. And I would use an NRA firearms instructor as my expert witness.

And since cars aren't designed and intended to be deadly weapons, but guns are, the argument would go like this: No level of alcohol in the bloodstream is safe when you are handling a firearm.

Its not only STUPID, but IMHO ILLEGAL!!!!

And yes, I am making this one exception. This is legal advice.

IrishPirate
02-02-2010, 12:05 PM
legal but not smart. If you're a 300lb dude or a regular drinker, one beer probably wont do much damage, but if one beer usually gives you a buzz...don't drink and shoot. Any damage you cause while under the influence of alcohol WILL be exponentially worse (in legal terms) than if sober.

wildhawker
02-02-2010, 12:13 PM
However, and not disagreeing with you here, my wife and I recently discussed Rx and the population in the context of driving and shooting (she's an RN, soon to be FNP).

She argues that when a medicine that could impair someone mentally/physically/emotionally is prescribed by the doctor, they should automatically inform the DMV for a) at least notification in case of a stop by LEO and b) possible suspend the license until the doctor removes the Rx note. I made the case that a) this would be in essence provide for a general warrant, b) such a system would grind to a halt the economy and c) create a whole new class of criminals to incarcerate, much as in drugs and prostitution.

I bet you could get the conviction, but on a philosophical level I must disagree with you here. Everyone responds to different substances (such as, and including, alcohol) different physiologically. Some anti-depressants and similar classes of Rx (which a substantial portion of the population does take daily) would, using your argument, both preclude use of a car and the carry of a weapon for self-defense. We like to point at alcohol and illicit drugs, but we're lacking the fortitude to extend the argument to its natural conclusion.

Given the widespread daily use of various types of over-the-counter and Rx medications, pre-emptive law enforcement would be devastating. Post-incident enforcement, however, should be less selective but is more agreeable with my views on reasonableness.

Driving = use of complex machinery by lay persons to get from point A to point B. Driving while intoxicated is negligent use of the machinery.

Shooting = use of simple machinery by lay persons to either practice inflicting deadly force, or to inflict deadly force. Shooting while intoxicated is neglient use of the machinery.

See also California Penal Code Section 246.3(a).

I'm pretty sure I could get a conviction of someone found to be intoxicated while shooting a firearm. And I would use an NRA firearms instructor as my expert witness.

And since cars aren't designed and intended to be deadly weapons, but guns are, the argument would go like this: No level of alcohol in the bloodstream is safe when you are handling a firearm.

Its not only STUPID, but IMHO ILLEGAL!!!!

And yes, I am making this one exception. This is legal advice.

wildhawker
02-02-2010, 12:15 PM
legal but not smart. If you're a 300lb dude or a regular drinker, one beer probably wont do much damage, but if one beer usually gives you a buzz...don't drink and shoot. Any damage you cause while under the influence of alcohol WILL be exponentially worse (in legal terms) than if sober.

Please provide a cite or a better substantiation for your assertions that such behavior is "legal" and "damage will be exponentially worse".

Toolbox X
02-02-2010, 1:49 PM
I've been known to drink a few while camping and shooting. Good times.

Blood Ocean
02-02-2010, 2:31 PM
Nice input Wildhawker, venturing into the legal w/ prescription arena is where my next thread will go, I didn't want to cross substances and get a bunch of "what do you mean shooting heroin and guns at the same time?" slams so I started with the most basic beer and smokes example. Before this gets slammed no I will not bother asking the legality of heroin and anything.

Lex Arma
02-03-2010, 8:43 AM
However, and not disagreeing with you here, my wife and I recently discussed Rx and the population in the context of driving and shooting (she's an RN, soon to be FNP).

She argues that when a medicine that could impair someone mentally/physically/emotionally is prescribed by the doctor, they should automatically inform the DMV for a) at least notification in case of a stop by LEO and b) possible suspend the license until the doctor removes the Rx note. I made the case that a) this would be in essence provide for a general warrant, b) such a system would grind to a halt the economy and c) create a whole new class of criminals to incarcerate, much as in drugs and prostitution.

I bet you could get the conviction, but on a philosophical level I must disagree with you here. Everyone responds to different substances (such as, and including, alcohol) different physiologically. Some anti-depressants and similar classes of Rx (which a substantial portion of the population does take daily) would, using your argument, both preclude use of a car and the carry of a weapon for self-defense. We like to point at alcohol and illicit drugs, but we're lacking the fortitude to extend the argument to its natural conclusion.

Given the widespread daily use of various types of over-the-counter and Rx medications, pre-emptive law enforcement would be devastating. Post-incident enforcement, however, should be less selective but is more agreeable with my views on reasonableness.

I was responding to the condition of "intoxication", not subscription to mood altering drugs. If the drug warning says the person should not operate machinery or drive a car while taking the drug, and the person knew of the warning, yet operated the machinery/car anyway - guilty if caught, liable if sued.

wildhawker
02-03-2010, 9:06 AM
I'm not versed in the law surrounding classes of drugs and how their use can be prosecuted, so some of my argument may not have any legal weight. My point was simply that common and often-used drugs, including alcohol, marijuana and prescriptions, can cause similar impairments and might each expose users to criminal and civil liability. Can a state policy or program designed to mitigate a perceived problem by suspending licenses or some such penalties only do it for a narrow slice of humanity, or should it be more equitably broad? Would such a policy pass constitutional muster? I'm not sure, but if it can I wouldn't be surprised to see this used as an attack on the carry permit system, and possibly automobile driver's licenses.

I was responding to the condition of "intoxication", not subscription to mood altering drugs. If the drug warning says the person should not operate machinery or drive a car while taking the drug, and the person knew of the warning, yet operated the machinery/car anyway - guilty if caught, liable if sued.

loather
02-03-2010, 9:50 AM
Can a state policy or program designed to mitigate a perceived problem by suspending licenses or some such penalties only do it for a narrow slice of humanity, or should it be more equitably broad? Would such a policy pass constitutional muster? I'm not sure, but if it can I wouldn't be surprised to see this used as an attack on the carry permit system, and possibly automobile driver's licenses.

The difference here is that one concerns a right, and the other a privilege. We don't have a right to drive automobiles, plain and simple. We are allowed by the government when we take the appropriate driver education courses and summarily pass the (far-too-simple IMO) tests to receive our license. At that point we are privileged drivers. Comparing that to concealed carry permits is a bit different. Imagine a world post-McDonald and post-Sykes, and those decisions have our expected outcomes. Now also consider the possibility of open carry restrictions. Face it, they're going to at least try to restrict carry to concealed only. If and when that happens, the sort of "license" restrictions above *certainly* won't pass constitutional muster as a right is involved. At that point you would be restricting the only way someone has to exercise their civil rights.

To be honest, I'm of the opinion that a concealed carry license in the first place would be unconstitutional if open carry were banned. As it's been stated before, they can restrict one method of carry but have to leave the other open. I've been trying to wrap my brain around it, but I can't see any reason why the government would need to know that information or otherwise benefit from it aside from statistical reasons.

wildhawker
02-03-2010, 10:07 AM
Currently, I'd agree with you. However, I can see a reasonable argument being made that driving could very well become a recognized right inasmuch that it's intrinsic to both the modern application of the right to travel and the lifeblood of intra and interstate commerce. In such a case that driving is considered a right, even if subject to simple rational basis standard of review, equal protection suits might influence how drug/alcohol policy affects that right.

The difference here is that one concerns a right, and the other a privilege. We don't have a right to drive automobiles, plain and simple. We are allowed by the government when we take the appropriate driver education courses and summarily pass the (far-too-simple IMO) tests to receive our license. At that point we are privileged drivers. Comparing that to concealed carry permits is a bit different. Imagine a world post-McDonald and post-Sykes, and those decisions have our expected outcomes. Now also consider the possibility of open carry restrictions. Face it, they're going to at least try to restrict carry to concealed only. If and when that happens, the sort of "license" restrictions above *certainly* won't pass constitutional muster as a right is involved. At that point you would be restricting the only way someone has to exercise their civil rights.

To be honest, I'm of the opinion that a concealed carry license in the first place would be unconstitutional if open carry were banned. As it's been stated before, they can restrict one method of carry but have to leave the other open. I've been trying to wrap my brain around it, but I can't see any reason why the government would need to know that information or otherwise benefit from it aside from statistical reasons.

Nose Nuggets
02-03-2010, 10:52 AM
The difference here is that one concerns a right, and the other a privilege. We don't have a right to drive automobiles, plain and simple. We are allowed by the government when we take the appropriate driver education courses and summarily pass the (far-too-simple IMO) tests to receive our license. At that point we are privileged drivers. Comparing that to concealed carry permits is a bit different. Imagine a world post-McDonald and post-Sykes, and those decisions have our expected outcomes. Now also consider the possibility of open carry restrictions. Face it, they're going to at least try to restrict carry to concealed only. If and when that happens, the sort of "license" restrictions above *certainly* won't pass constitutional muster as a right is involved. At that point you would be restricting the only way someone has to exercise their civil rights.

To be honest, I'm of the opinion that a concealed carry license in the first place would be unconstitutional if open carry were banned. As it's been stated before, they can restrict one method of carry but have to leave the other open. I've been trying to wrap my brain around it, but I can't see any reason why the government would need to know that information or otherwise benefit from it aside from statistical reasons.

Where in the constitution does it give the government the ability to regulate if you can drive a car you purchased? We don't have the RKBA because a piece of paper says we do. we have that right because we are free people.

KING_PALM
02-03-2010, 11:42 AM
blood ocean can you do my taxes while drinking a beer?

Blood Ocean
02-03-2010, 11:57 AM
You know it bud, I'm just not allowed to charge you for it anymore.

WokMaster1
02-03-2010, 4:01 PM
People are *always* drinking and shooting at Cow Mtn when I go there. When the teenagers show up with 40's and a few heaters . . . it's time to GTFO.

I thought that's when the tannerite comes out.:D

strangerdude
02-03-2010, 4:04 PM
No but it is frowned upon, back in 2000 some relatives and I were shooting and drinking out in some open land in Moreno Valley and Riverside Sheriff showed up, checked our weapons, advised us that drinking and guns don't mix, and sent us on our way.

Lex Arma
02-04-2010, 4:25 AM
This is not as difficult an analysis as many of you are supposing. It is perfectly reasonable to spend a day hunting/shooting, then when the guns are cleaned and put away -- enjoying your favorite adult beverage. As long as your body metabolizes the alcohol by morning before you suit up, load up and head out to the field again, you are acting in a safe AND lawful manner.

Lex Arma
02-04-2010, 4:35 AM
Re: CCW and open carry. If/when these activities are mainstreamed, expect permit restrictions and maybe even laws, that restrict the right in establishments that serve primarily alcohol (e.g., bars) and/or pot.

Opposing these "regulations" will make gun owners look and sound stupid, especially when every NRA instructor you find, will say that guns and intoxicants don't mix.

Meplat
02-04-2010, 5:38 AM
Damn! Not just drunk, but clueless. Ever heard of a tourniquit?

I wish I could ask a friend of mine, but another friend managed to blow his arm off below the elbow with a 7mm Mag while they were drinking and hunting.

He bled out before he could get help.

Keep drinking and shooting seperate.

TrooperMKIII
02-04-2010, 10:39 AM
Don't know the legality but I have always liked this sign in Fall River Mills CA.

http://www.gilbeck.net/circumnavigation/may03trip13.jpg

loather
02-04-2010, 10:43 AM
Where in the constitution does it give the government the ability to regulate if you can drive a car you purchased? We don't have the RKBA because a piece of paper says we do. we have that right because we are free people.

the Tenth amendment to the United States Constitution reads,

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

So, there's where the Federal government says the states can regulate driving a car you purchased.

Also note that it's completely legal for an unlicensed driver to drive within the confines of public property, as long as that person has permission from the property owner. The vehicle in that case need not even be registered as long as it never touches public roadways. The regulation on driving is simply another form of taxation, albeit convoluted.

CHS
02-04-2010, 12:46 PM
Don't know the legality but I have always liked this sign in Fall River Mills CA.

http://www.gilbeck.net/circumnavigation/may03trip13.jpg

Uhhhhh, what's it say? That pic is a TAD small.

targetarcher
02-04-2010, 2:04 PM
bdsmchs, it appears to say "BULLETS*BOOZE"

While "shooting" and "drunk" (or even feeling the effects) don't mix, shooting and (for me) about 1 stout or IPA with lunch often leads to some pretty wicked afternoon scores (in practice).

Funny story, WADA allows up to a .10 g/L (about .01BAC) while shooting (for Archery and Modern Pentathalon sports involving shooting), but doesn't establish any guidelines for other shooting sports. No beta-blockers for any of the ISSF and IPC shooting sports though, it says further down the same page. So it would appear that at least internationally, you're good to have a beer beforehand if you fall under ISSF or IPC. I haven't investigated what USADA has to say on the subject- I know they're more restrictive on Archery (no trace of alcohol is allowed for US competitors).

nrakid88
02-04-2010, 4:25 PM
Ha, salvia? And guns? Are you kidding, go youtube the kids trying to make PB&J sandwiches after smoking sandwichs. Now pretend that the sandwich can kill you if you make it wrong.

That has Darwin Award of the Century candidate written all over it.

7x57
02-04-2010, 4:30 PM
Much as it bothers me, the increased scores for moderate alcohol consumption makes some kind of sense. It's a muscle relaxant, and what are you told to do when you aim?

ETA: sucks for us coffee drinkers though. :(

7x57

MasterYong
02-05-2010, 8:28 AM
Ha, salvia? And guns? Are you kidding, go youtube the kids trying to make PB&J sandwiches after smoking sandwichs. Now pretend that the sandwich can kill you if you make it wrong.

That has Darwin Award of the Century candidate written all over it.

Been dippin in a little yourself today?

:p

targetarcher
02-05-2010, 9:50 AM
Almost as good as smoked salmon. Hard to light, but man, once you do, the high is incredible! :D

TURBOELKY
02-05-2010, 11:10 AM
Budweiser and guns.....a Rednecks dream. Although I'm partially Redneck, I wouldn't do it. Is it legal? Hell, what is legal now days?:sleeping:

Nose Nuggets
02-05-2010, 12:14 PM
the Tenth amendment to the United States Constitution reads,



So, there's where the Federal government says the states can regulate driving a car you purchased.

Also note that it's completely legal for an unlicensed driver to drive within the confines of public property, as long as that person has permission from the property owner. The vehicle in that case need not even be registered as long as it never touches public roadways. The regulation on driving is simply another form of taxation, albeit convoluted.

true enough, but there are unconstitutional federal regulations each state has to adhere to based on art 1 sec 8.

bwiese
02-05-2010, 1:19 PM
Re: CCW and open carry. If/when these activities are mainstreamed,
expect permit restrictions and maybe even laws, that restrict the right
in establishments that serve primarily alcohol (e.g., bars) and/or pot.

Bingo. They'll be congruent with those of other CCW states, with possible relaxations for visiting dining establishments that happen
to serve liquor.


Opposing these "regulations" will make gun owners look and sound
stupid, especially when every NRA instructor you find, will say that
guns and intoxicants don't mix.

Bingo again. And politically, appearance of sanity is Stage 1.