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43Duc
10-09-2010, 1:29 PM
Our chief is pondering the idea of signing letters to allow us to purchase our own ARs instead of using the department issue. I already own an AR that I inherited, but it's at my house in Florida with some other things I inherited. My question is this: if my chief gives me a letter to purchase an AR, can I just bring my AR into the state and register it using that letter?


Thanks for any advice offered!

TRICKSTER
10-09-2010, 1:36 PM
I believe that it has to go through a FFL that is also licensed to handle AW's.
You would be committing a felony by bringing it in by yourself.

43Duc
10-09-2010, 1:41 PM
I believe that it has to go through a FFL that is also licensed to handle AW's.
You would be committing a felony by bringing it in by yourself.

I understand that the complete weapon would have be shipped from FFL to FFL. My question is whether or not the chief's letter would allow me to register it, or is it only good for me to buy a new one. I'd rather use my father's AR than have to sell it to buy another (sentimental reasons - same reason I carry his .38 for back-up; pop's is always with me).

ke6guj
10-09-2010, 4:14 PM
I understand that the complete weapon would have be shipped from FFL to FFL. My question is whether or not the chief's letter would allow me to register it, or is it only good for me to buy a new one. I'd rather use my father's AR than have to sell it to buy another (sentimental reasons - same reason I carry his .38 for back-up; pop's is always with me).

there is no federal requirement that you use an FFL to import your AR-15 that you legally own in different state, one that you acquired through inheritance. And normally, CA law would not apply either with importing that long gun into CA. The issue is that because it is an AW, do the rules change, and does having letterhead negate any of those rules regarding importation of an AW, I dunno.

This is the exemption in question,
12280(f)(2) Subdivisions (a), (b), and (c) shall not prohibit the delivery, transfer, or sale of an assault weapon or a .50 BMG rifle to, or the possession of an assault weapon or a .50 BMG rifle by, a sworn peace officer member of an agency specified in subdivision (e), provided that the peace officer is authorized by his or her employer to possess or receive the assault weapon or the .50 BMG rifle. Required authorization is defined as verifiable written certification from the head of the agency, identifying the recipient or possessor of the assault weapon as a peace officer and authorizing him or her to receive or possess the specific assault weapon. For this exemption to apply, in the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives the assault weapon prior to January 1, 2002, the officer shall register the assault weapon pursuant to Section 12285 on or before April 1, 2002; in the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives the assault weapon on or after January 1, 2002, the officer shall register the assault weapon pursuant to Section 12285 not later than 90 days after possession or receipt. In the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives a .50 BMG rifle on or before January 1, 2005, the officer shall register the .50 BMG rifle on or before April 30, 2006. In the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives a .50 BMG rifle after January 1, 2005, the officer shall register the .50 BMG rifle not later than one year after possession or receipt. The peace officer must include with the registration, a copy of the authorization required pursuant to this paragraph.
unfortunately, I don't see an "importation" exemption specifically noted in that exemption for you to import your previously-owned AW that would be covered by the PD love letter. It might have to be imported through a licensed AW dealer and then DROSed to you. Sucks that you might have to reDROS a firearm that already belongs to you.

I don't see a legal difference between buying a new AW from an AW dealer and transfering your pre-owned AR through an AW dealer.

jtmkinsd
10-09-2010, 5:38 PM
You're going to incur some steep costs in getting your already owned gun here. Transfer fees for AWs is not an inexpensive endeavor. If it's what you want to do, the letter would suffice for what you are asking, it's just going to cost you some money. I would venture to guess you could write off the expenditure on your taxes perhapse. Shipping and transferring could run $200-$300

43Duc
10-09-2010, 10:49 PM
Thanks for the help everyone. I'm kinda "spitballing" here, so please bear with me. A couple of questions on shipping:

1. I read on the ATF website that I can ship a firearm directly to myself as long as it's addressed to myself. I have a house both in Florida and here in my name. I make a trip annually every winter to Florida to work on the property and do maintenance, so I could do that then. Is that an option?

2. Could I disassemble the AR and drive back to California with the pieces then assemble it and register it with the chief's letter?

3. Should I just give it up, sell it in Florida and buy another one here?

Thanks again!

(my best option is to kiss this state good-bye)

jtmkinsd
10-09-2010, 11:03 PM
Well you have some issues here. Is it actually a "Colt AR-15" or is it some other variant that is on the AW list?

43Duc
10-09-2010, 11:07 PM
Well you have some issues here. Is it actually a "Colt AR-15" or is it some other variant that is on the AW list?

It's a Bushmaster. I actually have two of them in my safe in Florida, but I only want to bring the flat-top here. The other one, along w/ some other non-CA friendly items will stay there.

The way this state is headed is the primary reason I keep a house down there - fallback.

prkprisoner
10-09-2010, 11:17 PM
2. Could I disassemble the AR and drive back to California with the pieces then assemble it and register it with the chief's letter?



This would be illegal as there is no LEO exemption for manufacturing an aw.

jtmkinsd
10-09-2010, 11:24 PM
Gotcha...Bushmaster is on the list. You can't even bring the stripped receiver into the state yourself, even with the letter. It MUST go to an AW dealer to be "transferred". Unfortunately, I don't know of any AW dealers that accept AW shippments from anyone but FFLs...If you can find one near you who will, then you could ship it to them yourself. Don't try shipping it to yourself either. Assault weapons are a whole different animal in the eyes of DOJ. If you are in CA, and in possession of an assault weapon that isn't registered, LE or not, you'd be opening a big can of worms on yourself.

jtmkinsd
10-09-2010, 11:32 PM
As screwed as it may seem...the earlier posts are going to be your only option to get the gun here and legally in your possession. Bring it to an FFL in Florida, have them ship to a local AW dealer near you, and pay to go through the motions/paperwork. It has to be processed like you bought it from a retailer and had it shipped into CA. Then you would have 90 days to register it with DOJ


(2) Subdivisions (a), (b), and (c) shall not prohibit the delivery, transfer, or sale of an assault weapon or a .50 BMG rifle to, or the possession of an assault weapon or a .50 BMG rifle by, a sworn peace officer member of an agency specified in subdivision (e), provided that the peace officer is authorized by his or her employer to possess or receive the assault weapon or the .50 BMG rifle. Required authorization is defined as verifiable written certification from the head of the agency, identifying the recipient or possessor of the assault weapon as a peace officer and authorizing him or her to receive or possess the specific assault weapon. For this exemption to apply, in the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives the assault weapon prior to January 1, 2002, the officer shall register the assault weapon pursuant to Section 12285 on or before April 1, 2002; in the case of a peace officer who possesses or receives the assault weapon on or after January 1, 2002, the officer shall register the assault weapon pursuant to Section 12285 not later than 90 days after possession or receipt.

aquaelvis
10-10-2010, 4:45 AM
I am sure if Brass decides to issue the letter someone in your dept (range staff) will put a group buy together for you guys. That is what happens here every year or so. The deals are good, easy to do.
I want to say the last one was the Colt LE package for around $900-$1000 or so. (I think it was about $500 or so under what you could get them for other places) They came direct from Colt I think.
It was a good deal. FFL fees were cheap too.

Matt C
10-10-2010, 6:48 AM
Why not just strip it, leave the lower receiver in FL, buy and register a new receiver with the letter, and then rebuild the gun here on that receiver?

- Matt

CavTrooper
10-10-2010, 7:36 AM
You're going to incur some steep costs in getting your already owned gun here. Transfer fees for AWs is not an inexpensive endeavor. If it's what you want to do, the letter would suffice for what you are asking, it's just going to cost you some money. I would venture to guess you could write off the expenditure on your taxes perhapse. Shipping and transferring could run $200-$300

What makes transferring an AW any more expensive then transferring a non-AW?

CavTrooper
10-10-2010, 7:39 AM
This transfer talk seems like BS to me.

The guy already owns the dang ol rifle, hes getting a letter from his chief to have it for dept use... whats the deal?

Unless any of the people commenting here are lawyers that are willing to put thier opinions on paper, Id talk to someone from your department instead of wasting your time here.

43Duc
10-10-2010, 10:21 AM
This would be illegal as there is no LEO exemption for manufacturing an aw.

This makes no sense to me... disassembly and reassembly are a lot different than "manufacturing". The point is, I would not be driving into the state with a complete weapon vs. a box of parts.

CSACANNONEER
10-10-2010, 10:42 AM
What makes transferring an AW any more expensive then transferring a non-AW?

There are only a few AW dealers around and they have to pay DOJ every year for the right to do a very limited number of transfers. So, it would follow that they need to charge accordingly just to make enough to pay for their AW permit.

Matt C
10-10-2010, 10:49 AM
IIRC if you have the letter you have 90 days before you have to register it anyway, but I think you also need a specific description of the AW in your dept. letter.

43Duc
10-10-2010, 10:59 AM
IIRC if you have the letter you have 90 days before you have to register it anyway, but I think you also need a specific description of the AW in your dept. letter.

Yep. The process is still being worked out. If my AW doesn't fit the description of what's allowed, then I'm out of luck. So far, this whole idea is in the planning phase at my station.

jtmkinsd
10-10-2010, 11:06 AM
This transfer talk seems like BS to me.

The guy already owns the dang ol rifle, hes getting a letter from his chief to have it for dept use... whats the deal?

Unless any of the people commenting here are lawyers that are willing to put thier opinions on paper, Id talk to someone from your department instead of wasting your time here.

People come here so they don't end up needing a lawyer. His department isn't the controlling authority here, DOJ is.

jtmkinsd
10-10-2010, 11:18 AM
This makes no sense to me... disassembly and reassembly are a lot different than "manufacturing". The point is, I would not be driving into the state with a complete weapon vs. a box of parts.

Box of parts...yes...but if the receiver is in your box of parts you would be in violation. Assembling = manufacturing in CA. Once you put it together without a bullet button you've "manufactured" an assault weapon. The receiver is the "firearm". Everything else is just parts. As LE you are exempted from certain parts of the law, but you are not exempt from importation or possession laws outside what is allowed for the "scope of duties"

43Duc
10-10-2010, 11:52 AM
Box of parts...yes...but if the receiver is in your box of parts you would be in violation. Assembling = manufacturing in CA. Once you put it together without a bullet button you've "manufactured" an assault weapon. The receiver is the "firearm". Everything else is just parts. As LE you are exempted from certain parts of the law, but you are not exempt from importation or possession laws outside what is allowed for the "scope of duties"


Thanks for the clarification. I know that even if I put a bullet button on my Bushmaster it's still illegal since it's on "the list" of brands not allowed. So if I ship myself everything in pieces except the lower, then I would be good to go? I could then use the letter to purchase and register a lower?

ke6guj
10-10-2010, 2:21 PM
Why not just strip it, leave the lower receiver in FL, buy and register a new receiver with the letter, and then rebuild the gun here on that receiver?

- MattIIRC, people have tried to do that, buy a stripped lower from their local non-AW dealer and then build it up as an AW and then file the AW registration paperwork. But, you have to list where you bought the lower, and if that dealer is not an AW dealer, CADOJ has in the past denied the registration. Perhaps if you bought a stripped lower from an AW-dealer and then built it up as an AW, CADOJ might accept the registration, provided that they don't check with the AW dealer to see if it was sold as an AW. Even if they don't immediately check, if future drama were to occur, I could see CADOJ claiming that the registration was invalid since you manufactured the AW instead of buying it.

This makes no sense to me... disassembly and reassembly are a lot different than "manufacturing". The point is, I would not be driving into the state with a complete weapon vs. a box of parts.
"manufacturing", in this case, does not mean machine from scratch like Colt does. "Assemble" is a closer definition. If I have a off-list lower assembled with a mag-lock into a CA-legal confguration, I have a CA-legal rifle, not an AW. But, if I remove the mag-lock and put in a standard mag release, I have manufacturered an AW where one did not previously exist.


Thanks for the clarification. I know that even if I put a bullet button on my Bushmaster it's still illegal since it's on "the list" of brands not allowed. So if I ship myself everything in pieces except the lower, then I would be good to go? I could then use the letter to purchase and register a lower?unfortunately, due to previous reports by LEOs that tried to do the same thing by build their own AW and then registering it via letterhead and being denied by CADOJ, I think the AW you acquire has to be an AW when it is transfered to you, from an AW-dealer.

jtmkinsd
10-10-2010, 9:33 PM
Thanks for the clarification. I know that even if I put a bullet button on my Bushmaster it's still illegal since it's on "the list" of brands not allowed. So if I ship myself everything in pieces except the lower, then I would be good to go? I could then use the letter to purchase and register a lower?

as stupid as it sounds...yep...you could strip everything down...leave your bushmaster lower in Florida, and buy a new bushmaster lower with your letter here in CA, probably cheaper than it would be to ship your current bushmaster lower here...Welcome to Kalifornia :rolleyes: