View Full Version : Is there a legal problem with my G23?

02-21-2012, 7:04 PM

I'm very likely to move in with someone who has, a couple of years ago, been hospitalized in a psychiatric institution after he experienced a psychotic episode due to a bad mix of medications (that were then determined while he was institutionalized that he never should've been prescribed in the first place and has never been on them again). To get out he had to sign a form that, at the very least, barred him from buying guns for 5 years. He can't recall any other details as he said they had him doped up when they made him sign it.

If I move in with him, am I liable for having a Glock 23? Am I obligated to get rid of it or at least keep it out of his reach (that is in the pistol safe when not on my person) until the 5 year period is over? Or does this simply mean he can't buy guns himself and there's no legal problem with ME having a gun while living with him?

Thank you.

02-21-2012, 7:15 PM
Well he's not a felon right? Not sure on the legalities of this but would like to know when someone answers. I would obviously keep it locked up in a safe where he cannot gain access to it.

02-21-2012, 7:31 PM
Make absolutely sure you get all the particulars of what occurred as independently as possible. Not all that uncommon for someone to lie about what happened.

If he is a prohibited person, then you must ensure that he never has access to your firearm. That means that you are controlling it on your person or that it is locked up to where he cannot access it.

Note that if he can get to the keys or the combination that could be a problem. If he has the tools and skills to break into the safe that could conceivably be a problem (although I think that less likely).

The best answer is that you should go talk to a lawyer and get a really good answer.

And I'd double-check his story. I know a fair bit about medications and it is rather uncommon for someone who is not on heavy psych medications or illegal drugs to end up in a psych ward.

And the idea that he signed away his rights in order to get out of the joint suggests he may not have the judgment you desire in someone with whom you will be sharing an abode.

Also, I don't work in a mental health facility, but I don't think they have you sign away your firearms rights in order to get out. You get 5150'ed and they give you a notification that your rights have been revoked and that you can go to the court and ask that your rights be restored.

I don't think this guy is giving you the straight story. It may be that he doesn't want to tell you the truth or he may still not understand what was happening back then - which casts doubt on the rest of the story as well.

02-21-2012, 7:38 PM
I don't know if this will affect the OP, but there was discussion of something similar earlier this year:



Thread: 3rd Circuit: Gun Ownership And Living With A Felon

Huet’s argument that her status as a non-felon brings her case within the scope of Second Amendment protection is unavailing.... Huet would not violate 922(g)(1) simply by possessing a firearm. She would, however, violate 922(g)(1) and 2 by aiding and abetting a felon to possess a firearm.

02-21-2012, 7:59 PM
From what I've heard of this if you admit yourself to a mental institution you can't buy or be around firearms for 5 years but if someone else admits you this doesn't apply. I think they have you sign a form when you leave asking you if it was a voluntary admission or not... If you have a gun he can't have access to it. I'm not a lawyer, just stuff I've heard....

02-21-2012, 8:02 PM
Sounds like he got himself a 5150, which is an involuntary psychiatric hold, and the rest of his story is just sugar coated BS. If he got himself 5150'd he cannot posses a firearm for 5 years. Lock your firearm up or keep it on you.

02-21-2012, 9:22 PM
Have a lock for your bedroom door. Have a pistol safe & store the Glock in it, if you don't carry it with you. Don't let him even know that you own a gun. Don't worry, not many more reasonable things that you can do. If he breaks into your room & steals your gun, he not you, is breaking the law. Just like if some random felon crackhead did the same thing.

Solid Foundation
02-21-2012, 9:40 PM
Make absolutely sure you get all the particulars of what occurred as independently as possible.


The best answer is that you should go talk to a lawyer and get a really good answer.

THIS is the absolute best answer.
If you're dealing with something like this why are you coming here? Find a professional who's job is to give you a correct answer or be held liable. "I read it on the internet" is never a good defense.

No offense to anyone else but if you read the first sentences of some of these posts you'll see that no one has a good answer for you yet...

"Not sure on the legalities..."
"I don't know if this..."
"From what I've heard..."
"Sounds like..."

Like I said, some of the information on this thread is valid BUT it may not be valid to your particular case.

Be smart and do the proper research. Don't get your answer from a questionable source on the internet.

02-21-2012, 9:55 PM
You're not getting the full story. (...or depending on the nature of your cohabitation, you may not want to hear it) If I signed away my rights when 'I was doped up' in error, at the very least I'd know exactly what I signed away - not some nebulous 'I signed something - don't know exactly what and haven't had the inclination to find out what exactly I signed.'
But, keep your gun locked up and hold on to the only set of keys/combination otherwise you too could find yourself gunless.

02-21-2012, 11:13 PM
Being treated in a psych facility is not something most of us want to recall in great detail.
It could be that things are as he said. He may have had some medication reaction and then been pretty medicated during his stay and may not want to remember the details.
It takes one signature to put you on a 72 hr 5150 Detain and Treat hold and that signature is not yours. If the hold is for danger to self or danger to others than a form is generated and sent to State DOJ and you will be unable to own or control firearms for 5 yrs.
It takes 2 signatures for a 5250 which usually follows a 5150 and neither of those signatures is your own. With this federal law prohibits gun possession for life.
If you are discharged by a competent nurse they will have you sign a form at discharge that notifies you of your right to a hearing in Superior Court to plead for your gun rights.
There is a yes box and a no box. This signature is mainly for us to prove that that we informed you of this procedure. Any forms that are checked yes we send to court with your address for f/u legal hearing. If one decides at time of d/c to not go to court it does not mean that they can not seek legal hearing in the future.
A small safe may be in order. The fact the your roommate has disclosed this issue could portend that he or she is honest and forthright. Marcus

02-22-2012, 8:38 AM
Not to thread-jack, but a very interesting related question is what happens if the OP is not made aware of the firearm status of his roommate, or if the roommate does not cooperate or doesn't provide enough/correct information. Surely this is quite different from the Huet case quoted above.

While there is a lot of speculation here, these boards are frequented by competent lawyers who can provide useful initial guidance.