PDA

View Full Version : What to say to a Police Officer about my OLL in the trunk?


Adog5
02-10-2007, 2:06 PM
If a Officer pulls you over and he asks you "Do you have any guns...blah blah in your vehicle?". How do you answer? I've heard the reply "I don't have anything illegal in my trunk.", but what if the officer asks me again specifically if I have any guns in my vehicle. If I say "Yes", does that give him reason to search my vehicle? How would you answer? Especially the case where he asks if you have a gun in your vehicle. Also, how do you perserve your rights to not being searched?

ts
02-10-2007, 2:15 PM
Option 1) Lie (Illegal to lie to a police officer)
Option 2) Tell the truth and prepare to be hassled at lease.

It makes me feel better having DOJ paper work will all my guns that could be mistaken for AW's.

Stanze
02-10-2007, 2:23 PM
"Officer, there is nothing illegal in this vehicle, no you may not search it without a search warrant or probable cause."

You have not lied(even though our gun laws are based on lies, but I digress) and you have excerised your constitutional rights.

Just keep repeating your answer, if they keep repeating their question, they hate that.:D

ts
02-10-2007, 2:25 PM
Actually, I think you're supposed to get out of your car and place the officer in a citizen's arrest for attempting to violate your Constitutional rights.

In the process of that get shot. I have a friend who is a DA, well Assistant DA. Her and all her co-workers were sitting down having a drink with me and they started telling stories. Turns out one day the DA got pulled over for speeding. The officer did not have any proof and failed to provide radar evidence. So on the ticket the DA wrote, "officer did not provide radar proof" (or something to that extent). The officer tore it up and said, "sign it again without writing that!" The DA said to the officer, "I am a District Attorney and I am placing you under arrest for destruction of evidence." The officer responded with, "Do you want to get shot?" Phone calls were made and the DA and the cop went out for drinks that night and had a laugh over the whole incident. True story.

edwardm
02-10-2007, 2:26 PM
I've been pulled over before for simple (speeding, turn w/out signal) violations of a mundane nature and had that question asked of me out of the blue.

There seems to be a split in the opinions of what to do. Some suggest the "Nothing illegal here", others suggest "I've got nothing to say", still others suggest "Tell them everything up front."

I fall in the "Nothing illegal" and "Nothing to say" camps, depending on the ciircumstances. Refusing to allow a search does not constitute PC for a search, so it stands to reason that declining to answer a question does not give rise to PC.

Each refusal (of a search or to answering questions) invokes a different right, and it's a generally accepted (and practiced) principle that exercise of one right (i.e. the 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination) cannot be used as a weapon to infer the waiver of another right (i.e. the 4th Amendment right against unreasonable searches and seizures). To conclude otherwise has literally been called illogical by the courts.

These thoughts represent a "pure" set of facts. If the facts are 'dirty', i.e. the officer sees a marijuana pipe on the front seat, or a baggie of a dried, green, leafy substance, or smells alcohol, then this does not apply. You do what feels best to you.

Why would an officer suddenly pop off the question, "do you have any guns in the trunk?"

That doesn't follow.

M. Sage
02-10-2007, 2:30 PM
If a Officer pulls you over and he asks you "Do you have any guns...blah blah in your vehicle?". How do you answer? I've heard the reply "I don't have anything illegal in my trunk.", but what if the officer asks me again specifically if I have any guns in my vehicle.

No, you give the same answer. It's the same question.

rorschach
02-10-2007, 2:33 PM
Option 1) Lie (Illegal to lie to a police officer)

Wrong. Illegal to lie to a federal officer. However, by your lying, you may be interfering with an investigation, which is a crime.

Option 2) Tell the truth and prepare to be hassled at lease.

It makes me feel better having DOJ paper work will all my guns that could be mistaken for AW's.

Unless it's registered AW paperwork, it means nothing if the officer wants to be a harda55 and seize your toys anyway.

11Z50
02-10-2007, 2:47 PM
I don't know why he'd ask if you had any guns in the trunk. If an LEO asked me if I had any weapons, even if I did, but in the trunk, or even the back of an SUV in a locked container, I'd say no. Beyond officer safety, which would mean weapons within my access, he has no right to ask about other weapons. Once he has ascertained there is no threat to his safety, he needs to get back to the lawful reason he stopped stopped you. Something in the trunk, or not in plain view, is none of his concern.

thedrickel
02-10-2007, 2:53 PM
I would cooperate up until the point I felt my rights were being violated. At that point, make him show his hand.

There's no single right or wrong answer to this question. Too many variables involved.

The best advice I can give you is - watch COPS. A lot.

11Z50
02-10-2007, 3:37 PM
The real issue is why the LEO stopped you. If it's a minor traffic violation, he really can't go there. Once he is satisfied you pose no threat, ie nothing in your hands, no weapons in plain view, no expended or live ammo in view, no magazines, speedloaders such, no zippered gun cases in the back seat, it's back to the original traffic stop.

Let's say you get stopped for speeding coming home from the range. Your weapons are all locked in a locker-type box in the back compartment of your SUV, not in plain view.

The LEO contacts you, gets your license and other doc's required. Both your hands are in plain view, and the LEO visually scans the interior of the vehicle and sees nothing unusual. At this point, unless there was some weird exigent circumstances, he's really pushing it to even ask if you have weapons. If he does, and you say "no", by all means he's done. If it goes any further, the evidence will be supressed.

If he does ask anyhow, I think how he asked would be important. If he asked "Do you have any weapons?" I'd say "No" If he asked "Do you have any weapons in the vehicle?" I'd ask why he wanted to know. He'd really be pushing it at this point, so his response would be critical. If he had a reasonable response, I might tell him about the locked container in the back, out of reach, that contained my legal, unloaded guns...If he came up with some BS reason, I'd decline further comment and ask him to summon his superior to the scene before anything else happened. I'd tell him I did not feel comfortable with his actions and wanted a witness present before we did anything else. If he backed off and went back to the traffic stop, I'd cooperate, sign the citation and go from there.

Meaneng
02-10-2007, 3:43 PM
"Why would you ask that, officer?"

"What has that got to do with (speeding, taillight, etc.)?"

"That seems a strange question, officer. Why would you ask me that?"

and when he persists.....

"I'm not comfortable with you asking these questions. I have nothing illegal in my car. Am I free to go?"



I guess I would be more comfortable being non-cooperative that lying....

Pthfndr
02-10-2007, 3:50 PM
"I'm not comfortable with you asking these questions....... Am I free to go?"


This is what I'd most likely do.

bg
02-10-2007, 4:17 PM
Wrong. Illegal to lie to a federal officer. However, by your lying, you may be interfering with an investigation, which is a crime.
I don't why it should be agains the law. The feds lie to
us all the time...

metalhead357
02-10-2007, 4:21 PM
LOL!

I dunno whether to laugh or cry... I apparently get stopped A LOT if this is really a question that needs answering; I see I might be in the extreme minority here.

I get asked EVERY time whether I have weapons in the car. Every time I say yes AND THEY'RE LEGALLY STORED AND UNLOADED (before my ccw). From there its always been 50/50...some wanna check...some just just say cool, ok, have a good day.......

Lest anyone forget- IF you DO say yes.....the cops DO have the legal right to do a custodial check to make sure the weapons are indeed unloaded and being transferred lawfully.

Simple rule- Dont own own or transport illegal guns...dont illegally transport lawful guns. If you dont know- then dont do either until you find out

Since the CCW and when asked I do the 'normal' of saying "I am a CCW permit holder...so yes..How would you like me to proceed from here". And since then the most I've had past that is along the lines of "Ok, where is it?" and when I state where they've just proceeded on without skipping a beat and quite litterally the guys actually seemed to relax.... I ASSUME they then realize they're dealing with a lawful/legal citizen that aint got nothing to hide- But plenty to protect;) .

Now on the OTHER hand. DFG guys always ask and I always say yes and 98% of the time they DO check the weapon(s). I can litterally only think of ONE time in countless stops the guy didn't ask to see them...just asked if they were unloaded- I said yes except for the one on my CCW- and we went about talking deers and hunting for another 20 minutes.

11Z50
02-10-2007, 4:40 PM
Going back to the earlier scenario I was talking about, insert this:

LEO: "Do you have any weapons?" Me: "Yes I do. I have a CCW and ID in my wallet. would you like to see them?" LEO: "Yes, where is your weapon?" Me: "In a shoulder rig, under my jacket, my left side." (LEO examines CCW) "OK, everything seems to be in order. The reason I stopped you was........"

You see, LEOs know that the Sheriff has already checked you out. You are not a threat. I've never had one ask to see my weapon.

Benelli Boy
02-10-2007, 4:57 PM
I was stopped by Nevada Highway patrol for speeding. He asked me if I had any weapons and I said 'yes, they are in locked cases in the back of my trunk'. He asked me a couple of questions and told me to just slow down. I think if you are honest and transporting in a legal manner, no one is going to hassle you. Lying or being stand-offish it's going to get you anywhere. The officer may even let you go without giving you a ticket. YMMV

OldWestGambler
02-10-2007, 5:39 PM
I have been pulled over many times and never have been asked "Do you have guns." I think as long as you don't look guilty or worried, things will be just fine. Also, don't wallpaper the back of your ride with NRA decals. I have an NRA hitch cover and when I have guns inside on the way to the range, I take it off. When I don't have guns, I put it back on. When a cop pulls you over, you have more power than you think. Put both hands on the wheel, smile and be cool and everything will be fine. Or look worried and cause red flags to go up.

Dr. Peter Venkman
02-10-2007, 6:19 PM
Lying just gets you further in the hole if he does decide to search. Legally transport your guns and there shouldn't be a problem. CHP does not do very many consentual searches anymore IIRC due to a lawsuit. If the officer asks if he can search, just say no and be sure not to give him a reason to. If he asked me if I had firearms, I'd say "Yes I do, and I am coming from/going to the rifle range". Lying just gets you into bigger trouble.

E Pluribus Unum
02-10-2007, 6:31 PM
Cops are lie detectors.... they know when someone is lieing... best to either tell the truth or remain silent.

11Z50
02-10-2007, 7:11 PM
Cops are lie detectors.... they know when someone is lieing... best to either tell the truth or remain silent.


You poor trusting soul. I hope you never run across a "lie detector" Cop. Prisons are full of those that cooperate with the cops.

Don't resist, but know your rights and exercise them.

veeklog
02-10-2007, 7:18 PM
I have been reading this thread, and I am a little surprised at the answers. As a LEO for the past nine years, I have learned that the general public has little contact with the police unless it is for a minor infraction such traffic citation or vitim of a crime. As a senior person, I am in a semi-FTO position. This means that many of the people I work with have already gone through training, but are still too green to know anything. But, it is also my job as a fellow Cal-Gunner and contributer on this board to give advice that might be helpful to a few of you on this board.

All vehicle fall under the "Mobile Conveyance Exception" to the 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. What the U.S. Supreme Court has stated that if the officer finds probable cause to search the vehicle, the officer does not need your persmission or a warrant to search the vehicle because the vehicle is mobile and is could be moved at any time. Probable cause can be ascertained by such example such as drug odor emitting out of the vehicle, dog alert for narcotics, or suspicious behavior coupled with LYING!!! Lying is a big no-no, and I would not recommend it. All of you don't believe me? Ask a friend who is a criminal lawyer, cop, or Google "Mobile Conveyance Exception." The term had been fought in the Supreme Court for years, and finally the court has set guidelines for the searches.

My best advice for people if they are stopped and lawfully transporting weapons in the car such as OLL's is to tell the cops that you have weapons unloaded in the trunk. Most cops will check out the guns, and in case of the OLL's, start asking questions, you give them the response they need. Most cops don't know about OLL's because the state doesn't train them on this, so it is our job to educate them. Once he runs the guns and see everything is copacetic, you will be on your way. Cops don't want to be lied to; we get lied to everyday. Plus, it is refreshing to have someone tell us the truth. I have been pulled over and screamed/ticketed by the CHP and RSO because I was driving too fast. But I did tell them I had guns in the car, and after checking them out, they told me to slow down or wrote me a ticket.

M. Sage
02-10-2007, 7:54 PM
My understanding is you don't have to answer. The way I understand is if you refuse to answer (5A says you don't), they can't use that to invoke the exception to 4A.

When in doubt, don't answer.

"Do you have any guns in the trunk?"

"Why, what's the matter, officer?"

I'd rather not end up like SPG because some cop thinks it's an SB23 AW and since it won't come up on his system it's an un-registered AW.

FreedomIsNotFree
02-10-2007, 7:55 PM
Its not illegal to lie to a Police Officer unless he/she is investigating a crime.

If you are asked questions about drugs/guns...etc..etc.. during a traffic stop the Officer is "fishing" to see if you are committing any other crimes.

They hope that if you are doing anything else illegal they can get you to either admit it or incriminate yourself in one way or another.

They are taught how to "convince" folks to waive their rights...the average person is at a disadvantage to that type of questioning/interrogation.

Bottom line is it works.

Everyone needs to decide themselves how they are going to play this type of scenario.

In this setting there is no crime in lying to an officer and even if he catches you lying, that alone does not give him PC to then search your trunk.

I dont want anyone digging around in my car. I just tell em "No" if they ever ask me.

rorschach
02-10-2007, 8:24 PM
I was stopped by Nevada Highway patrol for speeding. He asked me if I had any weapons and I said 'yes, they are in locked cases in the back of my trunk'. He asked me a couple of questions and told me to just slow down. I think if you are honest and transporting in a legal manner, no one is going to hassle you. Lying or being stand-offish it's going to get you anywhere. The officer may even let you go without giving you a ticket. YMMV

I think because Nevada is more tolerant, even accepting of gunowners. California is intolerant, cops here are taught that anyone possessing a gun is an automatic threat not to be trusted, even if it's 100% in compliance with the law. In 6 months at the CHP Academy, not once were scenarios involving firearms treated in a positive manner. It was never "Well maybe he has a permit" or "Maybe this guy is on his way to the range" law abiding gun-owner approach, it was always the "Assume this guy is a cop killer" approach. No doubt it may have saved a few officers lives by keeping them vigilant, but at what cost to individual freedom?? Even as a cay-det I understood this, but one does not question CHP Staff Officers if they do not want a rough time.

rorschach
02-10-2007, 8:26 PM
Cops are lie detectors.... they know when someone is lieing... best to either tell the truth or remain silent.

Now thats a good idea for everything in life, not just dealing with coppers. Wives and doctors are the same.

FreedomIsNotFree
02-10-2007, 8:52 PM
I was stopped by Nevada Highway patrol for speeding. He asked me if I had any weapons and I said 'yes, they are in locked cases in the back of my trunk'. He asked me a couple of questions and told me to just slow down. I think if you are honest and transporting in a legal manner, no one is going to hassle you. Lying or being stand-offish it's going to get you anywhere. The officer may even let you go without giving you a ticket. YMMV

In the State of Nevada you can carry LOADED in your vehicle....even a concealed pistol....that is why it was no big deal to him.

I Think North Las Vegas and Boulder City are the only exceptions.

edwardm
02-10-2007, 8:56 PM
I find that to be a disingenous suggestion. You are, in effect, advising people to offer more information than they are legally bound to offer.

I would not answer any questions, other than your name and address. Provide a DL, insurance and registration. Be polite, keep your hands in plain view at all times unless told otherwise, and again firmly, but politely, decline to answer any questions. The officer may have reasonable grounds to ask where you are going to/from. How you answer that question is your own business.

Current caselaw supports the contention that refusal to answer questions or submit to a search does not give rise to probable cause sufficient to justify an automobile search. Other factors, such as the smell of alcohol, emtpy beer cans, contraband, weapons or other illicit items in plain view, obvious nervousness, fidgeting, profuse sweating, flight or clearly false or evasive answers all change the equation.

Given the recent issue with the OLL in El Dorado County, and SwimmingPoolGuy, offering information like this officer advises could be very detrimental to your short-term and long-term freedom.

FreedomIsNotFree
02-10-2007, 9:01 PM
Next time just play like you are deaf...hand the Officer your license, registration and insurance...move your hands around like you are trying to say something...

SemiAutoSam
02-10-2007, 9:02 PM
Ive been pulled over and ticketed on many occasions when I lived full time in Reno and Carson city.

I had a PO BOX on as my Driver License and registration address and you should have seen the NHP when they pulled me over they wanted to know my SSN and my Physical address. I let them know #1 they did not need nor did they have the right to ask for my SSN even if I had one which I do not. and my physical address was also not of their business. On several occasions after they ran my MVR they let me off with a warning to slow down.

but when it came to weapons I let them know when and if they asked yes I have a CCW and the card I handed you is behind my license. Most didn't even realise they had it in their hand.

CalNRA
02-10-2007, 9:07 PM
there are people in jail or fighting the DA out of their own pockets because of they did exactly what you suggested here.

I have been reading this thread, and I am a little surprised at the answers. As a LEO for the past nine years, I have learned that the general public has little contact with the police unless it is for a minor infraction such traffic citation or vitim of a crime. As a senior person, I am in a semi-FTO position. This means that many of the people I work with have already gone through training, but are still too green to know anything. But, it is also my job as a fellow Cal-Gunner and contributer on this board to give advice that might be helpful to a few of you on this board.

All vehicle fall under the "Mobile Conveyance Exception" to the 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. What the U.S. Supreme Court has stated that if the officer finds probable cause to search the vehicle, the officer does not need your persmission or a warrant to search the vehicle because the vehicle is mobile and is could be moved at any time. Probable cause can be ascertained by such example such as drug odor emitting out of the vehicle, dog alert for narcotics, or suspicious behavior coupled with LYING!!! Lying is a big no-no, and I would not recommend it. All of you don't believe me? Ask a friend who is a criminal lawyer, cop, or Google "Mobile Conveyance Exception." The term had been fought in the Supreme Court for years, and finally the court has set guidelines for the searches.

My best advice for people if they are stopped and lawfully transporting weapons in the car such as OLL's is to tell the cops that you have weapons unloaded in the trunk. Most cops will check out the guns, and in case of the OLL's, start asking questions, you give them the response they need. Most cops don't know about OLL's because the state doesn't train them on this, so it is our job to educate them. Once he runs the guns and see everything is copacetic, you will be on your way. Cops don't want to be lied to; we get lied to everyday. Plus, it is refreshing to have someone tell us the truth. I have been pulled over and screamed/ticketed by the CHP and RSO because I was driving too fast. But I did tell them I had guns in the car, and after checking them out, they told me to slow down or wrote me a ticket.

ns3v3n
02-10-2007, 9:30 PM
if you are transporting your firearm legally and have nothing legal in your car, just tell him up front that yes i do but it's a legal licensed firearm. the worst you can have is to open it up to show him. but under normal circumstances, he does not have the right to search it. if you have it just kinda tucked underneath the seat, and he sees it. lol that's plain sight rule, he can search . so transport your firearms legally and correctly. and you DONT have to say yes when they ask you to search your vehicle. those are consenual contact, which means you can say no. and if he sounds like he's giving you a demand while asking you? that's illegal on the police part, he can get into trouble by doing that.

hoffmang
02-10-2007, 9:43 PM
When I was asked this question once it was part of the guys patter. I didn't have anything with me at the time, but I also didn't really answer his question. I just nodded and smiled and continued with the conversation. With some practice, it is easy to not answer a question while not being evasive.

Everyone here has done it when asked if they were done with their homework... We were all in school at one time or another.

-Gene

11Z50
02-10-2007, 10:05 PM
Here's the deal.....

Anytime you disclose information to an LEO you are subject to prosecution. It's what they do. They will tell you to cooperate, they are all good folks and you have just made an honest mistake. Admission of an honest mistake is exactly the same thing as a confession. Guess what? You'll wind up with cuffs on.

When contacted by LE for whatever reason, remember what they get paid to do....

rorschach
02-10-2007, 10:09 PM
Here's the deal.....

Anytime you disclose information to an LEO you are subject to prosecution. It's what they do. They will tell you to cooperate, they are all good folks and you have just made an honest mistake. Admission of an honest mistake is exactly the same thing as a confession. Guess what? You'll wind up with cuffs on.

When contacted by LE for whatever reason, remember what they get paid to do....

Thats right. Everyone should go and read the 5th Amendment right now.

It's there for you, take advantage of it.

Adog5
02-10-2007, 10:14 PM
Ok, I've read every previous post and here are my new questions and problems:

1. If you tell the officer that i have a legal rifle in my truck, does he have the right to search it? Then, does he have a right to search the main car cabin? Am I giving up consent when I tell him that I have a rifle in my trunk?

2. If I tell the officer "No, I don't have any guns in my car", can he still search my vehicle? IMPORTANT: What is the penalty for lying to a police officer about the guns in your trunk?

3. If I tell the officer, "I have nothing illegal in my car." and he replies, "I'll be the judge of that, pop open your trunk.". Do I have to pop open my trunk? Can I ask the officer what probable cause he has to search my trunk? Or will this just piss him off?

veeklog
02-10-2007, 10:30 PM
Okay, before you guys start throwing me to the wolves, I just want to say I'm on your side. I became a member of Calguns because of all the help on this board. I just wanted to let other members know about stuff from a law enforcement point of view. Remember, all is done with P.C., no exception!

The definition of probable cause is:A reasonable belief that a person has committed a crime. The test the court of appeals employs to determine whether probable cause existed for purposes of arrest is whether facts and circumstances within the officer's knowledge are sufficient to warrant a prudent person to believe a suspect has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime. Now what I meant about the "mobile conveyance exception" rule is that the officer must have P.C. in order to search the vehicle. Not reasonable suspicion, but probable cause.

Members on this board are right: there is no law against lying to the poilce; police "can" (I use this term liberally guys, so don't hang me with it please!!) with interfering with the duties of a police officer. But the question that I have is why lie? If the cop catches you lying, then he/she can build up their P.C. The one thing a cop hates is being lied to, especially from John Upstanding Citizen who pays his taxes and raises his family. He can deal with Joe Dirtbag lying to him because it is the nature of the game; but a private citizen who could be his neighbor? Well, it breaks you down a little more every time.

I rememebr being a rookie and walking up to a car while in my patrol sector; my backup was 45 minutes away, and all I had was my Sig on my belt and a 870 in the rack of my truck. When I walked up to the driver during the traffic stop, the driver told me he had a loaded .357 magnum under the front seat but had no CCW. My heartbeat was racing, and I asked the driver to step out of he vehicle. After I patted him down for weapons, after putting him in a safe place (back of my car, no cuffs; I was by myself!!) I retrieved the weapon and searched the immediate area of the weapon. I ran the weapon for being stolen, and after it came back neagtive, I gave him the weapon back (put bullets in trunk though) thanked him for being honest with me, and let him up the road.

I understand that some on this board are fighting the legal system thanks to a LEO that didn't know the difference between a dreaded assault weapon and an OLL. But until November of last year I had no IDEA what OLL's were; my agency didn't educate me, the media didn't educate me, nor anyone didn't tell me about it. I found out about them surfing ARFcom for gun parts for my registered AR. Then I was enlightened, and have been spreading the word to my brethern ever since.

Okay, I am waiting for the onslaught. Guys, be gentle!!

hoffmang
02-10-2007, 10:39 PM
Adog,

1. If the officer knows you have a gun he has a Penal Code derived ability to check it for safe storage. Probably not constitutional but the 9th Circuit isn't going to overturn it because the anti-gun judges control about 55% of the circuit.

2. There is no ultimate penalty for lying to a non Federal officer. It might create PC as veeklog mentions above.

3. If you say "nothing illegal" and he says "I'll be the judge" you say, "officer, I will cooperate with you, but I will not consent to a search. Am I free to go?"

Veek,

I don't think we'll all beat you up, but realize that not all of us can afford to be the test case. I can, but I can tell you that if pulled over, my "deposition" mode turns on. Civil or criminal, I don't really have to answer the question and I choose to answer the question in a way that leaves me the most latitude.

I hear you that there are good guys, but I tend to agree with Rosarch. Your job is to find the bad and that often leads a lot of LEO guys into these sorts of encounters to have the balance tilted towards dealing with the guilty instead of the law abiding.

-Gene

11Z50
02-10-2007, 10:48 PM
Veeklog, a good, honest, law abiding citizen got lucky as hell. That is what happened. When you busted that dude, he was clearly in violation. But you exercised "selective enforcement", clearly in a Peace Officer's rights, and executed your duties in the best interest of justice.

Unfortunately, that exact same scenario might have resulted in a very different outcome with a JBT who had an anti-2A philosophy.

veeklog
02-10-2007, 11:13 PM
Veeklog, a good, honest, law abiding citizen got lucky as hell. That is what happened. When you busted that dude, he was clearly in violation. But you exercised "selective enforcement", clearly in a Peace Officer's rights, and executed your duties in the best interest of justice.

Unfortunately, that exact same scenario might have resulted in a very different outcome with a JBT who had an anti-2A philosophy.

I always had the philosophy if you weren't Joe Dirtbag and didn't lie to me, I would cut you a break whenever I could. That meant that if the crime wasn't so "obvious" and couldn't be ignored, I would cut someone a break. Common sense should override power, but with many JBT's, it doesn't. I left that guy with a positive impression of LE, and that makes my day. Many of the people that I surround myself around think the same way like I do because we realize that after we take off the badge, and just like you, we are John Q. Public, paying his taxes and enjoy the regular activities of the ordinary American.

When I was young agent, I was determined not to be JBT. Therefore, I understand most everyone on this board pretty well. They don't want to be the test case for the People vs. OLL Owner. Unfortunately, the State of California has ignored previous Federal Law and not lifted their ban on AW's. They also have not set clear guidelines on A/W weapons and have allowed the 58 District Attorney's of the State of California make their own assumptions of the law. This is extreamely retarded because it allows for "selective" enforcement and that section of the penal code confuses most DDA's.

The problem now lies is that ANY of us, including myself and a lot of cops who have OLL's just like you, could now be victims by the same anti-2nd amendment JBT and might have to be the test case. We are all in the same boat, and as long as we stick together, we should be okay. Hopefully, Hunt will prevail and this issue will slowly die.

savageevo
02-10-2007, 11:33 PM
Hey veeklog, just want to say, thanks for being part of us. Education is the key. Do you educate other Leos in other districts like riverside, san bernardino about OLL. the more others know the better we calgunners are.

veeklog
02-10-2007, 11:45 PM
Hey veeklog, just want to say, thanks for being part of us. Education is the key. Do you educate other Leos in other districts like riverside, san bernardino about OLL. the more others know the better we calgunners are.


Well, it's funny you just asked that. Last week I was in L.A. at my friend's house who just got picked up by my agency. I had finished building his OLL at my parent's house after a full day at the Costa Mesa Gun Show, and he was extreamely proud of it. He was a Marine officer in 1st Recon, and was happy to be handling a AR type weapon again. His brother and a lot of his friends came over, and all work for police departments in the L.A area. My buddy was showing them the rifle, and they all began to ask me questions on OLL. I answered all their questions, and directed them to this website. Needless to say, I will be building one OLL for one of them in the near future.

I am trying to do my part and educate many of my brethern of the gift's of OLL's. I am almost completely done with one OLL, just need my Eotech to arrive, and add a sling to the rifle.

Have a "major" case of BRD.

metalhead357
02-11-2007, 1:33 AM
I have been reading this thread, and I am a little surprised at the answers. As a LEO for the past nine years, I have learned that the general public has little contact with the police unless it is for a minor infraction such traffic citation or vitim of a crime.

My best advice for people if they are stopped and lawfully transporting weapons in the car such as OLL's is to tell the cops that you have weapons unloaded in the trunk. Most cops will check out the guns, and in case of the OLL's, start asking questions,

Again I say LOL! I guess I'm just "lucky" in my umpteen hundred encounters with cops then. I know it didn't/doesn't help I drove late nights through bad section of town ((on the way home...not looking for crack you wise guys:p )) and have a real bad problem with buring out tailights ((yes, its been supposedly fixed several times....uh hugh...:cool: )) as well as I'm sure my long hair didn't help matters.....

I concur with the advice- Peeps got plenty to protect when talking with cops- so DO keep that in mind...but NOTHING...NOTHING will be gained by lying to them; heck- watch enough episodes of cops and you can figure that out.

Adog- No offense but ya' gotta read what's already been written. YES- THE COPS DO HAVE THE RIGHT IF YOU SAY YES TO A WEAPON IN THE CAR. If you say no and they *somehow* find reason to actually search~ things oft times dont end in the civilians favor even if everything else is legit and he does discover one.

I've read the chest puffin' about not answering cop's questions...its a nice attitude to have until you're face to face with 6'5" Chippie playing jedi mind tricks:p . They do have a BS meter set on ultra sensative and can smell fear, BS, and WILL keep hounding you until you either submit to a consensual search, stand up for your rights, or actually/inadvertantly/accidentally give them probably cause to search. I've been with friends on several occasions (now many years ago) where before hand they've talked a tuff game and then the blue lights come and they're shaky, whinney, indecisive and certainly lacking any confidence to say NO to a cop...and yet they go ahead and lie like a doofus and have it bite him/them on the arse. This is TRULY one of those cases where its easier to walk the walk (of truth) than to talk the talk and get schooled by a cop in front of your friends. Trust me-- We'll never let you live it down! Or havent you heard thats what friends are for!!!!!!!!

Just dont be a hot head, dont lie, remain calm, Dont talk when they're talking, explain- dont bark at them the laws- They WILL take that as a challenge to prove you wrong in most cases...or havent ya' dealt with Type A personalities before?

But hey.....already said...keep it legal...ALL of it legal...and even a cop with a bad hair day is usually gonna leave ya' alone; when he doesn't that's what lawyers are for-- use 'em if you need 'em!!!!!!!!


About my only hesitation/reservation is what Sam has said- and its bothered me for years...if they ask where are you going and/or coming from; What the H*** difference does THAT make and does that fall under fishing or reasonable questioning............:confused:

veeklog
02-11-2007, 2:40 AM
[QUOTE=metalhead357]Again I say LOL! I guess I'm just "lucky" in my umpteen hundred encounters with cops then. I know it didn't/doesn't help I drove late nights through bad section of town ((on the way home...not looking for crack you wise guys:p )) and have a real bad problem with buring out tailights ((yes, its been supposedly fixed several times....uh hugh...:cool: )) as well as I'm sure my long hair didn't help matters.....

Let's see: white guy, long hair, bad neighborhood, broken taillights. Now why would cops ever pull you over? (lol)

You know, the more I read and blog with all of you online I realize that we all are in the same boat. We pay our taxes, work decent jobs, obey all laws, yet we are treated like criminals by our own state because we want to enjoy some of the same toys like other states have. The thing is that NONE of the OLL's are illegal and we should not be in fear of transporting them in our cars.

The problems lies with state politicians, doj, and their education of law enforcement officials. A rookie cop who never fired a weapon outside of his service pistol is not going to know the difference between a assault weapon and an OLL. He/she will think it is an a/w, and seize your property. Trust me, I have see it last summer with seizure of a top loading Bushmaster Carbine.

As a career LEO, I feel pretty horrible writing this. I am not encouraging people to lie to the police; on the contrary, I am encouraging you to tell cops the truth for their safety. But I also see why people would lie, even honest, upstanding pillars of society. People that invested $1400 USD (that's what is invested in mine) in a OLL doesn't want to lose it because a cop didn't know the difference between a OLL and AW. And believe me, I and others are in the same boat!!

I posted a few days ago where I could go shoot my OLL w/o getting hassled, and many responded with suggestions. Thank you. But it shouldn't have to be like that. We should be able to go shoot whereever range (as long as it accomodates ammo type) without fear of getting hassled.

Thanks guys

artherd
02-11-2007, 4:00 AM
If a Officer pulls you over and he asks you "Do you have any guns...blah blah in your vehicle?". How do you answer? I've heard the reply "I don't have anything illegal in my trunk.",
This is the best answer.

but what if the officer asks me again specifically if I have any guns in my vehicle.
Tell him "I already answered your question, am I free to go?"

If I say "Yes", does that give him reason to search my vehicle? yes, he may order you out of the car, search the car for weapons, and anything he finds in the legitimite search would be admissible.

How would you answer? Especially the case where he asks if you have a gun in your vehicle. Also, how do you perserve your rights to not being searched?
I say "Officer, I have no contraband of any sort in my vehicle." If they press the point they are already being hostile, so I simply ask if I am free to go. If they say "yes" I drive away. If they say "no" I say, my attorney would like to know under what grounds you are detaining me and exactly how long you intend the detention to last.

edwardm
02-11-2007, 6:22 AM
But as a peace officer, would you obtain free legal representation from your union or department? Or would you be wholly on your own in a matter like possession of an alleged AW?


I always had the philosophy if you weren't Joe Dirtbag and didn't lie to me, I would cut you a break whenever I could. That meant that if the crime wasn't so "obvious" and couldn't be ignored, I would cut someone a break. Common sense should override power, but with many JBT's, it doesn't. I left that guy with a positive impression of LE, and that makes my day. Many of the people that I surround myself around think the same way like I do because we realize that after we take off the badge, and just like you, we are John Q. Public, paying his taxes and enjoy the regular activities of the ordinary American.

When I was young agent, I was determined not to be JBT. Therefore, I understand most everyone on this board pretty well. They don't want to be the test case for the People vs. OLL Owner. Unfortunately, the State of California has ignored previous Federal Law and not lifted their ban on AW's. They also have not set clear guidelines on A/W weapons and have allowed the 58 District Attorney's of the State of California make their own assumptions of the law. This is extreamely retarded because it allows for "selective" enforcement and that section of the penal code confuses most DDA's.

The problem now lies is that ANY of us, including myself and a lot of cops who have OLL's just like you, could now be victims by the same anti-2nd amendment JBT and might have to be the test case. We are all in the same boat, and as long as we stick together, we should be okay. Hopefully, Hunt will prevail and this issue will slowly die.

1911su16b870
02-11-2007, 8:47 AM
Thanks veeklog and others for the posts. This is a really good, practical thread.

EricCartmann
02-11-2007, 9:04 AM
an OLL is not a gun. a gun goes bang, a OLL does not. It is a part that makes up a gun, but it is not "a" gun. so you would not be lying if you said no.

M. Sage
02-11-2007, 9:31 AM
an OLL is not a gun. a gun goes bang, a OLL does not. It is a part that makes up a gun, but it is not "a" gun. so you would not be lying if you said no.

Legal-wise, an AR-style lower reciever IS a firearm. It's got the serial number, it's the part that has to be obtained through an FFL (in CA).

veeklog
02-11-2007, 9:35 AM
[QUOTE=edwardm]But as a peace officer, would you obtain free legal representation from your union or department? Or would you be wholly on your own in a matter like possession of an alleged AW?[/

Unless it is in the scope of our duties, the agency is not going to represent us on a off-duty situation. They will put you on the "rubber gun" squad and you will be doing administrative duties until the matter is resoved.

The agency I work for falls under the Executive Branch of Government under Presidential decree; therefore, we are not allowed to have unions. But when I was in uniforn and did have a union, the union would not represent us because of limited funds. We had a lot of off-duty incidents, and they had to be selective on what case held more importance.

Guys, I hate to break it to you, but we are in the same boat. Just because I work in Law Enforcement doesn't mean I get a free ride. In fact, the judges would be harsher with us because they would say we should have known better. So I hope I'm not the test case for the People of California v. OLL Owner

Teletiger7
02-11-2007, 9:59 AM
I have been reading this thread, and I am a little surprised at the answers. As a LEO for the past nine years, I have learned that the general public has little contact with the police unless it is for a minor infraction such traffic citation or vitim of a crime. As a senior person, I am in a semi-FTO position. This means that many of the people I work with have already gone through training, but are still too green to know anything. But, it is also my job as a fellow Cal-Gunner and contributer on this board to give advice that might be helpful to a few of you on this board.

All vehicle fall under the "Mobile Conveyance Exception" to the 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. What the U.S. Supreme Court has stated that if the officer finds probable cause to search the vehicle, the officer does not need your persmission or a warrant to search the vehicle because the vehicle is mobile and is could be moved at any time. Probable cause can be ascertained by such example such as drug odor emitting out of the vehicle, dog alert for narcotics, or suspicious behavior coupled with LYING!!! Lying is a big no-no, and I would not recommend it. All of you don't believe me? Ask a friend who is a criminal lawyer, cop, or Google "Mobile Conveyance Exception." The term had been fought in the Supreme Court for years, and finally the court has set guidelines for the searches.

My best advice for people if they are stopped and lawfully transporting weapons in the car such as OLL's is to tell the cops that you have weapons unloaded in the trunk. Most cops will check out the guns, and in case of the OLL's, start asking questions, you give them the response they need. Most cops don't know about OLL's because the state doesn't train them on this, so it is our job to educate them. Once he runs the guns and see everything is copacetic, you will be on your way. Cops don't want to be lied to; we get lied to everyday. Plus, it is refreshing to have someone tell us the truth. I have been pulled over and screamed/ticketed by the CHP and RSO because I was driving too fast. But I did tell them I had guns in the car, and after checking them out, they told me to slow down or wrote me a ticket.

Quick question, if a cop sees an OLL build rifle and he is uneducated/unsure about it's legality is he obligated, according to his training, to confiscate the weapon?

In a perfect world it would be the DOJs job to educate cops about OLLs and their legality. Oh well, just dreaming.

jnojr
02-11-2007, 10:14 AM
My best advice for people if they are stopped and lawfully transporting weapons in the car such as OLL's is to tell the cops that you have weapons unloaded in the trunk. Most cops will check out the guns, and in case of the OLL's, start asking questions, you give them the response they need.

The problem with this is, there are far too many cops who just plain don't know the law. There is a too-high probability that you can be arrested and have your rifle confiscated even though you've broken no law. In a just society, this outcome would be the least desireable of all possible outcomes... if the officer didn't know, stone-cold, that the rifle was, in fact, illegal, he'd have to let you go. Better to let ten guilty men go free than to imprison one innocent and all that. But that isn't the way it works. We've read too many anecdotes about folks who were arrested and/or had their legally-owned property confiscated, and there is never any consequence for the LEO(s) or DA involved.

My personal answer to the OLL problem is, don't have any OLLs. I bought my lowers against the possibility of being able to register them. I just don't see any point in having any kind of "neutered" rifle that holds a huge legal liability for me. The risk-benefit ratio just isn't there for me.

If I had guns, and was asked point-blank if I did, I think I'd answer, "Yes" and deal with follow-on questions on a case-by-case basis. Answering evasively is a good way to guarantee a lengthy stop. Heck, if I were a cop and someone didn't want to directly answer my questions, that would make me suspicious.

SemiAutoSam
02-11-2007, 10:24 AM
What about the right to be secure in your property and person.
Unlawful search and seizure comes to mind as well.

I understand the person thats pulled over does not want to lie to the LEO but then also does not want to give the LEO PC to search the vehicle.

If its locked up in the trunk the officer is not in danger as long as he/she does not let you have access to the trunk.

If the person were a criminal they would lie to the cop anyway.

Not a easy question to answer but one must be ready and have a defence planned before this scenario plays out. The need to plan ahead like this does not make you feel like you live in a free country now does it?

Crazed_SS
02-11-2007, 11:07 AM
My personal answer to the OLL problem is, don't have any OLLs. I bought my lowers against the possibility of being able to register them. I just don't see any point in having any kind of "neutered" rifle that holds a huge legal liability for me. The risk-benefit ratio just isn't there for me.


Im feeling the same way as you. Too much "gray" involved with OLLs. I got one for the same reason as you, but now there doesnt seem like any reason to keep it. DOJ wont say what's good enough for a fixed mag.. cant get a straight answer on if the U-15 is a thumbhole or not, etc. I know what the laws say, but unfortunately that isnt the issue here because it doesnt matter what I know.. it matters what a LEO or a DA think.

All the hassle involved sucks. Reminds me of when I used to modify import cars. I made sure all my mods were legal, but always got stopped and hassled by cops.. ended up not being worth it.

In the end I just got a Camaro.. :)

MFortie
02-11-2007, 3:15 PM
Why does it seem so difficult to drive within the speed limit and use your signals when transporting a weapon?

I think the easiest thing to do is follow the law and avoid the traffic stop in the first place. I personally am overly sensitive to traffic laws when going to and from the range.

Regards,

Mark

anonymous
02-11-2007, 3:56 PM
Actually, I think you're supposed to get out of your car and place the officer in a citizen's arrest for attempting to violate your Constitutional rights.

Some of you guys are hilarious.

veeklog
02-11-2007, 3:56 PM
Quick question, if a cop sees an OLL build rifle and he is uneducated/unsure about it's legality is he obligated, according to his training, to confiscate the weapon?

In a perfect world it would be the DOJs job to educate cops about OLLs and their legality. Oh well, just dreaming.


In a perfect world DO would train police officers or at least inform them of the OLL issue. But the problem come in training. New recruits are trained in a variety of things for 24 weeks, then they are given to an FTO and off they go. But when you account for all the time spent in the academy, new recruits get half the hours training as cosmotogists (hair dressers). So do you think DOJ is going to care about training OLL's?

It's pretty much up to us to teach people about OLL's. I try to explain to many of the people I work with about OLL's and some like myself are hooked. Cops and other LEO's need to know about them so they know OLL's are not AW's.

None of us want to lose our hard-earned money and have our rifles confiscated. I know I don't want to lose my rifle, and neither does anyone on this board. The only way that people learn about OLL's is that we, members of the shooting public and NRA, tell them about the OLL's.

M. Sage
02-11-2007, 4:09 PM
Why does it seem so difficult to drive within the speed limit and use your signals when transporting a weapon?

I think the easiest thing to do is follow the law and avoid the traffic stop in the first place. I personally am overly sensitive to traffic laws when going to and from the range.

Regards,

Mark

What, people don't get pulled over when they're following the traffic laws? What planet are you from? I'd like to move there.

I've been pulled over more than once while driving perfectly. One cop told me he'd pulled me over cause I was driving TOO perfectly. :eek:

JHC
02-11-2007, 6:38 PM
I got pulled over because my car sounded too fast. My wife got pulled over because her license plate light was too dim. If they want to pull you over they will find a reason no matter how perfect you drive.

Dont Tread on Me
02-11-2007, 6:43 PM
The ACLU guide to surviving police encounters is excellent.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3435730304776119545

Gunfighter01
02-11-2007, 7:12 PM
Ok, i have a question for Veeklog......regarding REGISTERED AW's......if registered and transported legally, what is the likely hood of being hassled on a traffic stop?,,,,,,,Also,,,,,i transport mine in a Nylon Tactical soft case, the zipper pulls are chord, not steel, and thats the only means of putting a padlock on it. Do you see me getting hassled for transporting said AW in this manner?

Dr. Peter Venkman
02-11-2007, 7:44 PM
Quick question, if a cop sees an OLL build rifle and he is uneducated/unsure about it's legality is he obligated, according to his training, to confiscate the weapon?

In a perfect world it would be the DOJs job to educate cops about OLLs and their legality. Oh well, just dreaming.

IIRC (Not a cop, just an AJ-Major and LEO Volunteer), any action an officer takes is regarded as legal until proven illegal/wrongful due to whatever reasons later on. I know this involves arrest, but I am speculating if that includes weapons as well.

M. Sage
02-11-2007, 8:07 PM
I got pulled over because my car sounded too fast.

ROFL. It SOUNDS too fast!?

I'm sorry... but I don't think I could manage being civil with that particular officer.

veeklog
02-11-2007, 8:24 PM
Ok, i have a question for Veeklog......regarding REGISTERED AW's......if registered and transported legally, what is the likely hood of being hassled on a traffic stop?,,,,,,,Also,,,,,i transport mine in a Nylon Tactical soft case, the zipper pulls are chord, not steel, and thats the only means of putting a padlock on it. Do you see me getting hassled for transporting said AW in this manner?

I don't see a problem with that; I have a registered AW also. What I did was keep a copy of my letter in the bag that I transport my rifle. When stopped, just tell the officer you have a registered AW and the copy of the letter is inside. But the AW registration should be in the DOJ database.

The suggestion to keep a copy of the letter was a suggestion from someone on this board

Teletiger7
02-11-2007, 11:35 PM
Well, after reading this thread I'm starting to get paranoid about stuff I never thought about before. Never had this situation happen before. I alwas transport my guns according to the law. Never been asked by a cop if I had a firearm on my car. If I was, I would be honest about it, because I don't like to lie period, and I've got nothing to hide. But I also don't wanna be a "test case" cause i don't have enough money to hire one of those celebrity attorneys to represent me in Court. I just hope if it happens the cop who asks has some education and doesn't blow things out of proportion. I wish all you guys good luck out there on the roads.

luvtolean
02-12-2007, 6:37 AM
I don't know why he'd ask if you had any guns in the trunk.

Gun related shirt, any kind of gun paraphanalia in the car, NRA sticker on your window...

I have been asked on two occasions if I had firearms in the vehicle.

And you can bet with my hands kept at 10 and 2 I gave an honest answer, both times, one time was "yes" and one time "no".

The "yes" answer I was 17, had gone shooting earlier in the day and had an unloaded 10/22 in the truck, back when it was not a crime. No hassles/issues after he inspected the firearm (and searched the vehicle). The second time he believed me without further questions.

Don't lie about having a firearm if questioned. You can "play games" but you'll probably piss off the officer, be searched anyway, and are going to be more likely to lose something like an OLL.

ZapThyCat
02-12-2007, 7:35 AM
Why can't you be truthful? If you have something lawfully, he can't do anything about it....!

Sig226
02-12-2007, 11:10 AM
Phone calls were made and the DA and the cop went out for drinks that night and had a laugh over the whole incident. True story.


Sick. Just Fin sick.

JHC
02-12-2007, 3:26 PM
ROFL. It SOUNDS too fast!?

I'm sorry... but I don't think I could manage being civil with that particular officer.

Yep he said it sounded too fast,.. it was just a 383 with a geardrive, a lumpy cam and a mild exhaust. I think the cop was just a gearhead that wanted to see what was under the hood so I didn't protest.

dychen
02-12-2007, 7:02 PM
Up here in El Dorado County, I'm sticking with the No OLL thing and am even sketchy about my SU-16, cause i've had a buddy thats in the academy ask me if it was an AW.

Other then that, remember folks, rights are like muscles, if you dont use them they get weak and go away, at this point in time, there just about gone..

metalhead357
02-12-2007, 9:13 PM
Other then that, remember folks, rights are like muscles, if you dont use them they get weak and go away, at this point in time, there just about gone..
:confused: :confused: And you dont see a connection with what else you said?


Up here in El Dorado County, I'm sticking with the No OLL thing and am even sketchy about my SU-16, cause i've had a buddy thats in the academy ask me if it was an AW.



Go buy an OLL!!! It IS legal....and excercise those rights;)

gh429
02-12-2007, 11:46 PM
The definition of probable cause is:A reasonable belief that a person has committed a crime. The test the court of appeals employs to determine whether probable cause existed for purposes of arrest is whether facts and circumstances within the officer's knowledge are sufficient to warrant a prudent person to believe a suspect has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime. Now what I meant about the "mobile conveyance exception" rule is that the officer must have P.C. in order to search the vehicle. Not reasonable suspicion, but probable cause.

That's actually not 100% accurate. Per the California vehicle code an officer (non CHP) is granted reasonable cause for search for equipment violations. Like for example your taillight is out... Reasonable cause in cali is held to a less stringent standard than probable cause...

I have been pulled over more times I can count (probably over 100). Usually it's "can you pop your hood please", but I do get the "do you have any weapons in the vehicle" question all the time.

The smartest thing to do is to ask "do I have the right to refuse?" That puts the onus of the legal search on the officer.

I can guarantee that I have read more search / seizure cases and know the law better than the majority of officers that pull me over.

But honestly if you're playing curbside lawyer you're never going to win. It just that simple. On the other hand I have had my weapons looked at quite a few times, a chat with the cop, and the cop realizing that I am NOT a criminal and me getting on my way. In fact my driving record is clean, despite getting pulled over all the time... You don't have to lie to not legally put yourself at risk...

veeklog
02-13-2007, 6:22 AM
That's actually not 100% accurate. Per the California vehicle code an officer (non CHP) is granted reasonable cause for search for equipment violations. Like for example your taillight is out... Reasonable cause in cali is held to a less stringent standard than probable cause...

I have been pulled over more times I can count (probably over 100). Usually it's "can you pop your hood please", but I do get the "do you have any weapons in the vehicle" question all the time.

The smartest thing to do is to ask "do I have the right to refuse?" That puts the onus of the legal search on the officer.

I can guarantee that I have read more search / seizure cases and know the law better than the majority of officers that pull me over.

But honestly if you're playing curbside lawyer you're never going to win. It just that simple. On the other hand I have had my weapons looked at quite a few times, a chat with the cop, and the cop realizing that I am NOT a criminal and me getting on my way. In fact my driving record is clean, despite getting pulled over all the time... You don't have to lie to not legally put yourself at risk...

The definition of "Probable Cause" I quoted is from Black's Law dictionary.

There is no such thing as "reasonable cause." If you mean "reasonable suspicion" then okay, that is what you meant. Ask any lawyer or judge if "reasonable cause" exist. He/she will tell you there is no such thing.

Remember, the test the courts make is that "Reasonable suspicion" is one step below "Probable Cause." Police Officers can grow PC through RS, but w/o P.C., they can only do a patdown for weapons on the person for officer safety (Terry V. Ohio, 1964).

Can you ask the police officer that pulls you over that you refuse the search of your vehicle? Sure, but then there are a lot of reprocussions if that happens. Like you said the police can do an equipment check, they can impound your vehicle if they find any vehicle violations and do an "inventory check", and then there might be administratve violations from the DMV. The DMV has ruled that there is no right to drive, and that it is a priviledge. Can the police pull your DL for refusal? That something the DMV might be able to answer.

Hope that was helpful

Dont Tread on Me
02-13-2007, 6:32 AM
Interesting. I asked a week or so ago if the cops can "check your spare" without any PC like they can in the UK and basically get in your trunk that way. The general opinion was no. It looks like you are saying that equipment inspections are a way in.

veeklog
02-13-2007, 6:41 AM
I'm not in uniform anymore. I am a criminal investigator, and I don't do vehicle stops anymore. When I quoted the definition of "probable Cause" that is what a judge usually requires of us before we make an arrest or write a search warrant.

There are so many loopholes in the Vehicle Code it's incredible. The say the vehicle code is an officer's best friend. Remember, the DMV says it is a priviledge to drive, not a right. That is why if you refuse a breathalizer check for drunk driving, the officer can automatically pull your license. Even if you win the case in court, you still might not get your license back because the of the administrative issue.

Remember, when all else fails, the DMV spells "God."

1911_sfca
02-13-2007, 10:09 AM
That's actually not 100% accurate. Per the California vehicle code an officer (non CHP) is granted reasonable cause for search for equipment violations. Like for example your taillight is out... Reasonable cause in cali is held to a less stringent standard than probable cause...

Absolutely not. An equipment violation would only provide PC to pull over the driver and issue a citation. If, during the course of the encounter, the officer can develop PC to search the vehicle, that's another issue. But a broken tail light absolutely does not imply PC to search the vehicle.

There is no such thing as "reasonable cause."

You might need to re-read P.C. 832-835, the basis of a Cali LEO's powers of arrest. :D You will encounter the term "reasonable cause" quite a bit in section 833. It is a phrase that's generally equivalent to reasonable suspicion.

By the way, nice to have another LEO on the board (there are more than a few), and good comments by you on this thread. The more education LEOs can have about Cali gun laws, the better off we all are.

11Z50
02-13-2007, 10:46 AM
Veeklog, part of what I do is criminal defense investigation. The first thing I look at in a case is the initial contact. What caused the cops to contact the defendant? If this initial contact, or interest was not developed on sound PC, the case will not survive a 1538.5 motion and will be dismissed. The ADA's know this and rarely will file on a weak case. The Federal system is much different, and often an AUSA will get a sweeping federal indictment that results in dozens of defendants getting arrested and held to answer. I have worked on several fed cases in which the defendant was in fact innocent, caught up in the fed system for months until we could get him released.

Getting back to this original question, I still say if asked about weapons in the vehicle, keep in mind that you have rights. Absent articulatable PC during a traffic stop, the LEO can't get into your trunk, locked containers, or anything out of immediate reach that is not in plain view. A citizen has every right to object to (not resist) an unreasonable warrantless search. If the cops cross the line and violate your rights, there are remedies.

hoffmang
02-13-2007, 12:02 PM
The DMV DL pull is a specific administrative action and has specific Vehicle Code legislation supporting it in the context of a DUI and only a DUI. Refusing a contents search of a vehicle beyond Terry can not have repercussions officially.

-Gene

Dont Tread on Me
02-13-2007, 12:13 PM
11Z50 - keep posting it is great to get your viewpoint. We can get a little paranoid here that the system is biased against our rights.

PS I also promise to slow down for Madera Ranchos next time I'm speeding along Ave 12 to Fresno:-)

veeklog
02-13-2007, 2:29 PM
Absolutely not. An equipment violation would only provide PC to pull over the driver and issue a citation. If, during the course of the encounter, the officer can develop PC to search the vehicle, that's another issue. But a broken tail light absolutely does not imply PC to search the vehicle.



You might need to re-read P.C. 832-835, the basis of a Cali LEO's powers of arrest. :D You will encounter the term "reasonable cause" quite a bit in section 833. It is a phrase that's generally equivalent to reasonable suspicion.

By the way, nice to have another LEO on the board (there are more than a few), and good comments by you on this thread. The more education LEOs can have about Cali gun laws, the better off we all are.

Unfortunately, P.C. 832-835 does not fall under my powers because I am a federal criminal investigator. In this state we are not even considered Peace Officers under P.C. 832, which is goofy as hell. How can I carry a gun, charge people with state violations, testify in state court under Prop 115, testify as an expert witness, and be the affiant for state arrest and search warrants, and be the affiant for a Title III wire application, yet I am not considered a Peace Officer under P.C 832? After nine years of doing this gig, it just scrambles the mind!!

For us on the Fed side, "Reasonable Suspicion" is the same as "Reasonable Cause" on the state side. So apologize for my slippage of the brain!! But what I think people were misinterpreting was my definition of Terry. What I was saying that a officer can only do a patdown on the person for weapons and the immediate area. The officer cannot go into a locked trunk of the vehicle. A broken tailight does not give the officer P.C. to search the vehicle; But it doesn't say a officer cannot build his/her P.C. on what is being said and the facts that he/she accumulated. Just to all of this board, choose your words wisely, and be careful in what you say!!

odysseus
02-13-2007, 3:34 PM
About my only hesitation/reservation is what Sam has said- and its bothered me for years...if they ask where are you going and/or coming from; What the H*** difference does THAT make and does that fall under fishing or reasonable questioning............:confused:

Put me in the same boat. Everyone talks of not being an *** and pushing the cops buttons, and keeping everything at 10 and 2, all of them good things to do - but how about what they might say that pushes my buttons? That's one right there - asking me where I am going and where I came from. That just pisses me off to no end. And all cops who stop you do it. I should ask them where they live, and are they paying all their taxes too?

This reminds me of an incident when I was in highschool when walking in the neighboorhood I was stopped (with lights - LOL) and asked where I was going and where from, and to have my backpack searched. When I asked why he said, cause there have been burglaries in the "area". I submitted, he foraged a little and let me go - all being an ego-head the whole time (also telling me his disapproval of my Metallica shirt and long hair - 'back in the day). Except I went right to a telephone booth and called the station, got a lieutenant, and he honestly told me there were no burglaries in that area. I then made an official complaint - from a 16 year old. That was my first intro to cops lying to me to have me submit my rights to them, for their leisure and comedy.

Bottomline, never lie. Lying is not going to help in this kind of case, nor is it defensible in a situation with no immediate duress. If you feel you don't want to answer, and by all means it is your right - don't. I haven't been in this situation, but I feel that if it came to me finding that an officer is way out of line and actually up to no good, I will simply clam up and only speak about my rights and ask them to send a supervisor on duty.

However their are reprecussions to all this - and thus - be sure you are voting for the right people in all your offices nationally and locally - mayors, judges, sherriffs, city officals, county seats. People have to report to others, as LE does too. I have seen LE officers terminated due to pressures at a local level due to their hot heads ripping into "civilians".

pnkssbtz
02-13-2007, 4:20 PM
Here is another question.

There is a horizontal Strut Tower bar in the cargo area of my car (Nissan 350z).

If I were to transport my firearms in a case, and were to wrap a cable through the locking mechanism and then through the case and around strut tower and lock it with a COMBINATION lock, and a cop asked to search my vehicle for whatever reason, would I be obligated to divulge the combination of the lock so he could inspect the contents of the container?

-hanko
02-13-2007, 4:49 PM
Here is another question.

There is a horizontal Strut Tower bar in the cargo area of my car (Nissan 350z).

If I were to transport my firearms in a case, and were to wrap a cable through the locking mechanism and then through the case and around strut tower and lock it with a COMBINATION lock, and a cop asked to search my vehicle for whatever reason, would I be obligated to divulge the combination of the lock so he could inspect the contents of the container?
Are you saying that if you'd done nothing wrong other than related to a traffic issue, you'd allow a search??:rolleyes:

-hanko

pnkssbtz
02-13-2007, 5:28 PM
-hanko,

No, I am lawful and would never submit to a search. But that would not stop a search from happening.

In regards to transporting my OLL, if I am interacting with a cop who does not know the law, but takes it upon himself to act upon and enforce a law he does not know or understand, I have no recourse legally except after the fact. At which point my property would have already been seized.


I am wanting to know if I have to divulge the combination to a combination lock if asked while my property is being searched under probable cause.

If I were to be searched and detained, they could find keys to the lock on my person or the property that they have searched, which they could then use to open a locked container. But if there are no keys, and the container cannot be removed from the vehicle without destruction or damage to the vehicle or the container; could a cop do so with nothing more than a probable cause motive?


Regardless of the contents of a container, my 5th amendment rights should protect me from self incrimination by divulging such knowledge. Since refusal to consent to a search does not warrant grounds for probable cause, does invoking the 5th Amendment also not give warrant to grounds for probable cause?

Would the failure to divulge information that has the possibility to incriminate yourself constitute as "obstructing justice" whether or not divulging the information would actually incriminate yourself?

Dont Tread on Me
02-13-2007, 5:41 PM
The Department of Homeland security has excellent on-line training for its officers. Take a look around the following articles for how they work the game of getting you to waive your 4th amendment rights. It also shows that they are well trained on what your rights are. I'm linking to the transcripts but they are also provided in podcast format so you can listen along at the gym...

http://www.fletc.gov/training/programs/legal-division/podcasts/4th-amendment-roadmap-podcasts/transcripts/terry-stop-frisk.html

It looks like cops cannot just frisk you. "Terry" stops apply only when, and I quote, "the officer had facts that led him to his reasonably suspect Terry was presently armed and dangerous."

artherd
02-13-2007, 8:43 PM
I always had the philosophy if you weren't Joe Dirtbag and didn't lie to me, I would cut you a break whenever I could. That meant that if the crime wasn't so "obvious" and couldn't be ignored, I would cut someone a break. Common sense should override power, but with many JBT's, it doesn't. I left that guy with a positive impression of LE, and that makes my day. Many of the people that I surround myself around think the same way like I do because we realize that after we take off the badge, and just like you, we are John Q. Public, paying his taxes and enjoy the regular activities of the ordinary American.
Veeklog, I like your style. Drinks on me if you're ever in town.

M. Sage
02-13-2007, 8:55 PM
Here is another question.

There is a horizontal Strut Tower bar in the cargo area of my car (Nissan 350z).

If I were to transport my firearms in a case, and were to wrap a cable through the locking mechanism and then through the case and around strut tower and lock it with a COMBINATION lock, and a cop asked to search my vehicle for whatever reason, would I be obligated to divulge the combination of the lock so he could inspect the contents of the container?

This came up a while ago, and it appears that if a LEO sees a gun case or whatever in your car, they have PC to check the chamber to make sure you're transporting unloaded.

My guess would be yes.

E Pluribus Unum
02-14-2007, 1:11 AM
No... you do NOT have to give the cop your keys and you SHOULD NOT. Giving the cop your keys is what is called "Implied Consent". By giving the cop your keys you are giving away your search and seizure rights. He cannot break the lock or open the car.

If you get out of the vehicle and lock the door, and refuse to give him the keys he must obtain a search warrant to search the vehicle. He must do this in front of a judge and a judge will determine if PC exists to search the vehicle.

If you are transporting a LAWFUL rifle in a locked case and the officer asks to inspect it there is PC to search the rifle case only. Offer to remove the rifle case from the vehicle for the officer but remain vigilant that he may only search the rifle case and NEVER give him your keys.

If you are carrying something illegal just refuse to speak, leave the car locked, refuse to give him your keys and let him get a search warrant. Then he cannot lie and say you gave consent to search (it happens).

metalhead357
02-14-2007, 11:50 AM
-I am wanting to know if I have to divulge the combination to a combination lock if asked while my property is being searched under probable cause.

If I were to be searched and detained, they could find keys to the lock on my person or the property that they have searched, which they could then use to open a locked container. But if there are no keys, and the container cannot be removed from the vehicle without destruction or damage to the vehicle or the container; could a cop do so with nothing more than a probable cause motive?

Regardless of the contents of a container, my 5th amendment rights should protect me from self incrimination by divulging such knowledge.

Nice try but they will simply impound your car. as I already noted they DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO have a right to inspect a firearm to make sure its unloaded. Refusal to comply with THAT order WILL get your weapon confiscated IMO.


As far as your "5th amendment rights" go....to be very specific you are 'afforded' protections through/by the 4th, 5th and 6th amendments regarding stops...but to be real technical- your 5th amendment rights cannot be asserted- as they are only relevant in a CRIMINAL court of law...cannot be asserted in a civl trial.

as the other guy said- Ye, the cops would probably have to actually present themselves to a judge to get the warrent---at which time you will NOT be allowed to leave...and chances are, as I said, they will haul YOU downtown and your truck impounded until they do.....if you still refuse they'lljust go for the bolt cutters; and its doubtful they'll be gentle with the truck, the finish, the case, the lock, or the gun after you've already demonstrated your 'willingness' to comply with them.....

MUCH MORE than is necessary for a simple stop.... again, carry legal, carry legit........or dont carry/transport at all unless you're willing to take the ultimate gamble with your guns & your freedom.

eta34
02-14-2007, 12:39 PM
Just FYI, in California, if a police officer can develop probable cause that you are involved in criminal activity, or there is evidence of a crime in your vehicle, he/she does not need a search warrant to search your vehicle. This is called the vehicle exception.

Second, remember the case law I presented a while back. If you have your OLL or any firearm in a locked, but obvious gun case, the officer has the legal authority to open the case and inspect the firearm to see if it is loaded. He/she does not need a warrant or any other information than that.

Look, I understand that there are some of us out there who give cops a bad name. Just like in any job, a few bad apples who like to puff their chests leave bad tastes in the mouths of citizens. For that, I apologize.

As a LEO, I FULLY support gun rights and gun ownership, and feel that only convicted felons and those with significant mental disabilities should be banned/restricted from gun ownership. Having said that, please look at this OLL situation from the police perspective...the majority of cops are not "gun nuts" like most of us on this board. In fact, many cops never touch one until they go to the academy. Firearm laws is just one topic of many we are expected to know.

Therefore, in my opinion, the best way to remedy this situation is to respectfully educate police and the public through forums like this. I truly feel that being a jerk to an officer on a traffic stop, whether you are right or not, is not going to help. Many on this forum have commented how they dislike it when a cocky cop has a bad attitude or tries to flex his muscles; we feel the same way when a motorist acts the same way.

We are human, and will react according to your attitude. I am a professional, and I don't look to take people to jail at all costs. I give breaks when I can, and really appreciate when citizens treat me with the same respect I give them.

Bottom line: most cops do not believe they are "all-knowing." Frankly, if a motorist politely asked me if he could show me some information on OLLs or gun laws, I would definitely take the time to listen. I do not pretend to know everything, and am willing to learn, even if it is from the average citizen.

Attitude (right or wrong) will dictate how things go.

Thanks for your time.

pnkssbtz
02-14-2007, 12:44 PM
Nice try but they will simply impound your car. as I already noted they DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO have a right to inspect a firearm to make sure its unloaded. Refusal to comply with THAT order WILL get your weapon confiscated IMO.

Regardless of whether or not the item in question contains firearms, I am asking about A LOCKED GENERIC CONTAINER BEING SEARCHED UNDER PROBABLE CAUSE ONLY. The fact that it may or may not contain firearms can not be established by visual inspection and is irrelevant to my question.

I keep asking about having to divulge the combination of a lock, regardless of the contents of the locked container, being searched under probable cause, and I keep getting the response "if you have guns they may legally inspect if they are being properly transported.

A car being searched under probable cause is DIFFERENT than a firearm being inspected for safe transport.

Again, I am not asking about my firearms being inspected for proper safe transport.


As far as your "5th amendment rights" go....to be very specific you are 'afforded' protections through/by the 4th, 5th and 6th amendments regarding stops...but to be real technical- your 5th amendment rights cannot be asserted- as they are only relevant in a CRIMINAL court of law...cannot be asserted in a civl trial.
So you are saying my rights granted by the Bill of Rights exist only in the criminal court of law? Or is my right to not incriminate myself only exist in a criminal court of law? Using that logic, the cops could interrogate me and I *HAVE* to divulge the information, because I cannot assert my 5th amendment laws because I had not been arraigned in court yet. If so, what is the point of the 5th Amendment?

as the other guy said- Ye, the cops would probably have to actually present themselves to a judge to get the warrent---at which time you will NOT be allowed to leave...and chances are, as I said, they will haul YOU downtown and your truck impounded until they do.....if you still refuse they'lljust go for the bolt cutters; and its doubtful they'll be gentle with the truck, the finish, the case, the lock, or the gun after you've already demonstrated your 'willingness' to comply with them.....
How can a cop get a warrant issued by a magistrate during a traffic stop where the cop has also decided to search the vehicle under "probable cause" reasons?

Again, I am talking about a "probable cause" search of a vehicle.

In order for a cop to impound a vehicle they must have a reason, no? Just impounding a vehicle SO THEY CAN search it with a warrant, when they decided to search it in the first place under probable cause and came to a locked container seems a tad fishy to me.

Wouldn't they have to formally charge me with something so they could get a warrant? Otherwise what is to stop a cop from getting a warrant "To search all cars that look like they may be containing drugs."

I understand that if there is a warrant to search my vehicle then I am required to divulge a combination to a locked container. However all this is conjecture has no bearing on my question which was not about searches executed under a warrant but searches executed under probable cause.


MUCH MORE than is necessary for a simple stop.... again, carry legal, carry legit........or dont carry/transport at all unless you're willing to take the ultimate gamble with your guns & your freedom.
I thank you for your information, but I feel you are inferring information about events surrounding my question incorrectly. As I have stated previously, transporting LEGALLY will not guarantee that your property will not get confiscated due to an uninformed cop.

I have a LEGAL OLL rifle. Not all cops are able to identify it verses an assault weapon.

Ergo, I am at the mercy of the whims and ideals of any cop who were to inspect my rifle. Regardless of whether or not I was right, they would and could still legally confiscate my rifle, against my objects, and I would be forced to prove my innocence and legality of my rifle in a court of law. All due to an ignorant cop.


Again I must reiterate the context of the situation that I have asked a question about:

During a traffic stop, if a cop were to search my car against my consent and he were to encounter a locked container containing unknown contents that is secured to the vehicle in such a fashion that the container could not be removed from the vehicle without damaging the vehicle, the container, or the method of attaching them to each other, and the container was locked with a combination lock not requiring a key to open, would I be legally obligated to divulge the combination of the container so that the cop could continue his "probable cause" induced search?



However, I think E_Pluribus_Unum has answered my question. I was under the impression that a cop could use keys on my person to search any locked containers in my car if he was detaining me and searching my car under probable cause.

Looking back at the transcripts of the Terry Search and Terry Frisk that was supplied earlier in this thread, and from watching Cops last night, I know understand that a Terry Frisk first can only be executed if the officer believes I pose a risk to his safety and can only be a frisk for items that may pose a safety issue to a cop. And unless I am placed under arrest they cannot inspect any non-weapon contents on my person (such as wallet / phone / etc.).

IF, and only IF I was placed under arrest could they use items obtained on my person to inspect a locked container in my vehicle, or if they obtained a search warrant which would allow them to use force to open any container that is listed under the scope of the search warrant.


I think that from now on, I need to invest in generic lockable hard cases that do not show any outwards appearances of being a firearms container when transporting my OLL.

hitnrun
02-14-2007, 12:51 PM
In the process of that get shot. I have a friend who is a DA, well Assistant DA. Her and all her co-workers were sitting down having a drink with me and they started telling stories. Turns out one day the DA got pulled over for speeding. The officer did not have any proof and failed to provide radar evidence. So on the ticket the DA wrote, "officer did not provide radar proof" (or something to that extent). The officer tore it up and said, "sign it again without writing that!" The DA said to the officer, "I am a District Attorney and I am placing you under arrest for destruction of evidence." The officer responded with, "Do you want to get shot?" Phone calls were made and the DA and the cop went out for drinks that night and had a laugh over the whole incident. True story.


:rolleyes: LMAO...but ultimately, still just the same old BS from you.

metalhead357
02-14-2007, 1:00 PM
After re-reading your post(s) I see I didn have rather narrow blinders on & assuming 'generic case" was still identifiable as a gun case...for that I am sorry:o And I am glad that E~P was on target. But yes, you do have the right to refuse the combo.....it may still net the same results I spelled out above though...so proceed with caustion if you opt for this non-advised route.

As far as the 5th goes; I'm telling you what I know; a protection is not the same thing as a right...and in this very specific case you are asserting a protection.....or you can~ if you want to actually assert a right- then use the "right to remain silent" (a right afforded through court trial via Miranda and SCOTUS) bit.....not so much as against self incrimination but so as to consult a lawyer (another legal right). But as far as the 5th amendment self incrimination clause goes--- it will not work for you in divorce cases, civil litigation, ...arguable...during a depostition......

50 Freak
02-14-2007, 2:57 PM
Wow....

If it comes down to it and a LE asks me if I have a firearm in the car, I'm saying No. I hate to lie but the truth of the matter is. Living in the Bay Area, if I told the truth..."yes officer, I have legal firearms in the car"....The LE would focus on the "FIREARM" part and for the next hour I'll be sitting on the side of the street while some Numbnuts is "checking" my guns for his safety....what kind of crock is that...."checking my guns for his safety"...I'd like to check his gun for my safety.

The way I see it is unless I'm under investigation, I can rightfully lie to an officer or refuse to answer as I'm not hindering any type of investigation. Also he can lie to me at anytime, I think that's fair then that I can lie to him.

If at that time that he asks to search my car, I'll of course say no. If he insist, then it is a reasonable assumption that this is no longer a "simple" traffic stop. At which time, I shut up completely and ask to call my lawyer.

I'd don't buy the "I have nothing illegal" approach. Most officers will see that as admitting you have a firearm and will continue to question and prod so that he can do a "safety check" on your firearm. And when it comes down to it. You may think you have a legal firearm and you may, but do you really want to go through the months of hassle while your firearm is kept in some Police Station so that the Local DA can figure out if your OLL is legal. Then you have to pay to get your firearm back from the PD that took it illegally in the first place. Man, we sure get the short end of the stick in CA when it comes to firearms.

By the way, as a CCW, under CA law I do not have to inform the officer I am carrying. I've been pulled over a couple times (one day, I'm going to have to remember to put that stupid seatbelt on). And never once have I told the officer I'm carrying.

pnkssbtz
02-14-2007, 3:35 PM
But as far as the 5th amendment self incrimination clause goes--- it will not work for you in divorce cases, civil litigation, ...arguable...during a depostition......

Ok I read up on 5th amendment invocation and I think you are right. What I should be doing in my illustrated situation is exerting my right to remain silent.

metalhead357
02-14-2007, 3:52 PM
Ok I read up on 5th amendment invocation and I think you are right. What I should be doing in my illustrated situation is exerting my right to remain silent.

Yep- as far as I can ever make sense of that crap known as penal-code and court speak voodoo;) I hate being this technical/specific save that you asked/said some very specific items that had me focused on thier content rather than the case/box itself.

Legal logic...now aint that an oxymoron..... LOL!