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View Full Version : Can I open carry in my frontyard?


OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 10:25 AM
My frontyard faces the street. I live in LA county. Can I carry my loaded gun in a holster in the open on my property?



1hd

P5Ret
07-30-2012, 10:30 AM
Yes but expect a visit when the neighbors call the police or sheriff. Expect to see guns drawn, because the call will no doubt go out as a "man with a gun". It is also legal to carry concealed on your property or place of business, so that may be a better way to go. The less attention you draw to yourself the better off you are.

littlejake
07-30-2012, 10:36 AM
Yes, you will draw a SWAT team in LA county. If your front yard is not fenced, then it's an area where you're in legal limbo as to your property rights -- i.e. People can walk across your front yard. In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you refuse, and they shoot you 100 times.

greg36f
07-30-2012, 10:40 AM
My frontyard faces the street. I live in LA county. Can I carry my loaded gun in a holster in the open on my property?



1hd



Absolutely........there really is no better way to tell all the s&^%heads in your neighborhood that you have guns......The little rascals always have such a hard time deciding what house to burg next…….This is a big help.

Stand by for lots of conflicting info that may or may not get your into trouble.

The real answer is “it depends”…..

It depends on fences, gates, locks, access, and on and on and on…

I think it’s a terrible idea even if you work out all the legal points.

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 10:58 AM
Yes, you will draw a SWAT team in LA county. If your front yard is not fenced, then it's an area where you're in legal limbo as to your property rights -- i.e. People can walk across your front yard. In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you refuse, and they shoot you 100 times.

Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.


So I have no gun rights and no property rights. There is no castle doctrine in California that I know of. Sooooo, what rights do I have to protect my family? Do I have I right to jump in front of a bullet intended for my kids? Do I have a right to call the cops before someone touches my kids or wife? Tell me SOMETHING reassuring....

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:00 AM
Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.

If it is not fenced, it is open to the public, you will be arrested for illegal UOC.

hornswaggled
07-30-2012, 11:03 AM
What they could get you for is carrying a loaded firearm in a public place, and yes I realize that your yard is your property. There have been cases of people getting charged while standing in their own driveway with a loaded gun, and in LA you DEFINITELY will if the cops know about it.

greg36f
07-30-2012, 11:06 AM
Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.


So I have no gun rights and no property rights. There is no castle doctrine in California that I know of. Sooooo, what rights do I have to protect my family? Do I have I right to jump in front of a bullet intended for my kids? Do I have a right to call the cops before someone touches my kids or wife? Tell me SOMETHING reassuring....



You my friend; have found a home here on Cal Guns "Off Topic"......:rolleyes:

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 11:20 AM
If it is not fenced, it is open to the public, you will be arrested for illegal UOC.

So, open carry on my property is illegal. Nice.

I hate this cesspool called California.

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:21 AM
So, open carry on my property is illegal. Nice.

I hate this cesspool called California.

No, that was the answer to your OP. Things would be different with a fenced property, or inside your home.

littlejake
07-30-2012, 11:22 AM
you might want to read the wiki article of GFSZ's -- it has nothing to do with school zone signs -- it's 1000 feet. You cannot sling a dead cat in LA County and not hit a GFSZ. And 1000 ft from what -- school perimeter? not defined.

http://wiki.calgunsfoundation.org/Gun_Free_School_Zones

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:25 AM
It should also be mentioned that you were referring to a handgun being holstered. Open carry of long guns has not been outlawed (yet) and would be legal if you were not in a GFSZ

Twiggz
07-30-2012, 11:28 AM
Back yard is fine as long as it's fenced in and in your house is fine. You could build a fence in the front yard and carry, but that's still iffy IMO.

Librarian
07-30-2012, 11:47 AM
And the long answer to this FAQ is at the wiki -- http://wiki.calgunsfoundation.org/Unlicensed_Concealed_Carry

killathrilla
07-30-2012, 11:49 AM
...

Coded-Dude
07-30-2012, 11:52 AM
I've said it once, and I'll say it again......I don't know, can you ? :D

meaty-btz
07-30-2012, 11:53 AM
Walled Gardens folks. Wall up your house and property.. Good way to keep goblins, street types, and salesmen at bay.

P5Ret
07-30-2012, 11:53 AM
25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.

Yes California does have a Castle Doctrine law and has had for well over 100 years, read PC section 198.5.

Liberty1
07-30-2012, 12:04 PM
Case law says 'have a fence stay out of jail'.

People v Strider

http://blogs.findlaw.com/california_case_law/2009/09/people-v-strider-no-b204571.html

killmime1234
07-30-2012, 12:06 PM
25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.

Yes California does have a Castle Doctrine law and has had for well over 100 years, read PC section 198.5.

It's been opined, by which authority I can't remember, that it is still considered a "public place" if it is publicly accessible, regardless of property lines. I believe you'll find that information in the FAQ page Librarian posted.

ETA: Liberty1 beat me to the punch.

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 12:09 PM
25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.



Sorry, but the calguns wiki link above stands in direct opposition to your statement.

P5Ret
07-30-2012, 12:14 PM
Case law says 'have a fence stay out of jail'.

People v Strider

http://blogs.findlaw.com/california_case_law/2009/09/people-v-strider-no-b204571.html

Not really applicable to the situation, as the defendant did not own or live at the property, and basically ran from the police, at a known gang house where there had been previous shootings.

P5Ret
07-30-2012, 12:17 PM
Sorry, but the calguns wiki link above stands in direct opposition to your statement.

I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 12:23 PM
Not really applicable to the situation, as the defendant did not own or live at the property, and basically ran from the police, at a known gang house where there had been previous shootings.

Yeah, but the problem is, the cops can't distinguish a property owner from any other random open carry citizen. So they have to assume the OC is illegal. Fence or no fence. I am guessing.

Well, whatever the law says, its so vague, I don't know how anyone can defend their property and family without running afoul of the law. This is just a pathetic situation.

BTW, in case you haven't guessed yet, I am completely new to carrying guns for self-defense. Up to now, I've only done target shooting for pleasure and never actively attempted to protect anything (even myself!).

mdimeo
07-30-2012, 12:26 PM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

Have fun in the lockup!

Glock22Fan
07-30-2012, 12:32 PM
Wow, some of you sure are bursting to expose your ignorance (and I don't mean the OP, although he seemed initially reluctant to believe the advice given "Surely you jest?").

It has been said over and over again that common sense isn't very commmon sense in California and the exemplar of that is that your property can still be public property. At least, that's the way the courts here see it. Doesn't matter if you don't like it, doesn't matter if your dictionary says different, anywhere the public has access, it does not matter who owns it, can be treated as public property. The only way to be safe is behind a locked, or at least lockable, barrier. (fence with lockable gate, your front (or garage) door or where ever else you can ban public acccess).

And p5Ret, try looking up People v. Overturf and the court case a while back involving one of our members, Theseus. Play silly games and ignore case law, win stupid prizes.

greg36f
07-30-2012, 12:50 PM
Originally Posted by OneHotDog
Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.


So I have no gun rights and no property rights. There is no castle doctrine in California that I know of. Sooooo, what rights do I have to protect my family? Do I have I right to jump in front of a bullet intended for my kids? Do I have a right to call the cops before someone touches my kids or wife? Tell me SOMETHING reassuring....


OP, I will not get into the legal debate already discussed here because others are moiré qualified and articulate.

I will say this though. Try not to get sucked into the negative attitude that is too often on display here on Cal Guns.

California is not perfect and there are many laws that should not exist or need changing; but it's not as bad as some will lead you to believe. We have pretty good laws that allow you to protect yourself in your home and there are exceptions that allow you to bring your gun into your yard or even a "true" public space if need be.

If you hear you kids cry for help and some guy is attacking them with a shovel in your yard, blaze away.

If your neighbor is getting beaten to death in the street, you are good to go protecting him / her.

Just because you cannot walk around your front yard with a gun does not mean all is lost.

Don’t get sucked into the negative. It will just blind you to the positive and make you one more angry gun owner.

Wiz-of-Awd
07-30-2012, 1:31 PM
"I think"

...deliberately testing your neighbors and the law regarding your 2A rights is a step in the wrong direction. Know your rights and exercise them, but be careful to not impose them onto others who have rights as well.

This kind of "publicity" is very much to blame, when the attention it gains turns into legislation against your (our) rights.

A.W.D.

taperxz
07-30-2012, 1:43 PM
25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.

Yes California does have a Castle Doctrine law and has had for well over 100 years, read PC section 198.5.

You have missed many points in your assumptions. First and foremost UOC of a handgun in this situation is now illegal. (there are many exemptions)

You also need to understand trespass laws. Even in the country, without posting or fencing, a property may be private but the assumption of public access is what the courts would look at. Without signs or fencing the public can assume ones property is accessible until the private property owner orders them to leave. 200 acres of land is no different than a city lot.

CA law will always consider under current law, unposted or un fenced property to be publicly accessible thus, creating your inability to openly carry a handgun in these areas where shooting is prohibited and short of an LTC. Posting and fencing is a game changer. You now have private, inaccessible property.

You MAY still openly carry a long gun, except in a GFSZ

Decoligny
07-30-2012, 2:28 PM
Yes, you will draw a SWAT team in LA county. If your front yard is not fenced, then it's an area where you're in legal limbo as to your property rights -- i.e. People can walk across your front yard. In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you refuse, and they shoot you 100 times.

I don't know why people insist on combining two seperate and distinct laws.

GFSZ law has nothing to do with the "public area" which is an unfenced front yard.

The "public area" reference has to do with the law against having a loaded firearm in an incorporated city, or in a prohibited area of unincorporated territory.

They do not apply to each other.

I live in unicorporated Kern County. I can legally carry a loaded firearm (openly or concealed) on my own front lawn. It wouldn't matter one bit if I lived right across the street for an elementary school.

Decoligny
07-30-2012, 2:30 PM
If it is not fenced, it is open to the public, you will be arrested for illegal UOC.

However, on his own property he can carry concealed, he just can't carry loaded.

P5Ret
07-30-2012, 2:31 PM
So if my front yard is a "public place" as some have suggested, and I lived in the city of Palo Alto, it would be a crime for me to smoke in my front yard? they have a no smoking in public place ordinance their definition of a public place seem to be pretty much in line with what all the lawyers here are saying. Pretty interesting good thing I don't smoke or feel the need to draw unwanted attention to myself by carrying a loaded gun in my front yard, not that anyone could see me as my closest neighbor is about 100 yards away.

Easiest way to stay out of trouble, having learned from an older brother who couldn't stay out of trouble is to not draw attention to yourself in the first place. Kind of what I said in the first post I made in this thread.

rayrayz
07-30-2012, 2:45 PM
Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.


So I have no gun rights and no property rights. There is no castle doctrine in California that I know of. Sooooo, what rights do I have to protect my family? Do I have I right to jump in front of a bullet intended for my kids? Do I have a right to call the cops before someone touches my kids or wife? Tell me SOMETHING reassuring....

nope, he does not. on the bright side you can have guns inside.....:rolleyes: Sucks that we do not have a castle doctrine......
As another member pointed out, you may not want thugs to know that you have guns as this may put targets on your home.

Coded-Dude
07-30-2012, 2:49 PM
So if my front yard is a "public place" as some have suggested, and I lived in the city of Palo Alto, it would be a crime for me to smoke in my front yard? they have a no smoking in public place ordinance their definition of a public place seem to be pretty much in line with what all the lawyers here are saying. Pretty interesting good thing I don't smoke or feel the need to draw unwanted attention to myself by carrying a loaded gun in my front yard, not that anyone could see me as my closest neighbor is about 100 yards away.

Easiest way to stay out of trouble, having learned from an older brother who couldn't stay out of trouble is to not draw attention to yourself in the first place. Kind of what I said in the first post I made in this thread.

I can't seem them citing fro smoking in your yard(but who knows, this is CA).....now citing/arresting you for public intoxication in your own yard?(happens all the time I'm sure).

supra
07-30-2012, 2:51 PM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

It seems simple enough. However, case law will further define terms such as "public place" ect. If you want to keep your gun rights, you should take the advice given by Calguns and informed Calgunners like Librarian.

Interpreting the penal code yourself without any case law to support your opinion is a good way to get yourself in trouble. The LEO, DA, and/or judge does not care about your interpretation of the law.

steelcore
07-30-2012, 2:54 PM
Easiest way to stay out of trouble, having learned from an older brother who couldn't stay out of trouble is to not draw attention to yourself in the first place. Kind of what I said in the first post I made in this thread.

I agree. Why push the envelope? Do you NEED to carry a gun in your front yard? Are you there for hours, exposed to drive-by shootings?

Just carry concealed on your property if you honestly want protection. I've done it when I was concerned about retaliation, but no one would have EVER known I had a condition 1 weapon on me.

If you want to draw negative attention and make your neighbors unfriendly and doubt your intentions, go ahead and show off that pistol. Might as well carry a sign on a stick as well, cause I'd take that as a cry for attention if my neighbors did that.

odysseus
07-30-2012, 3:07 PM
These threads come up all the time. I have to always ask, if you had an attorney, what answer do you think your attorney would recommend you do for your own best interest?

Most probably that while perhaps you might think you are in a position to argue about it in court, your attorney might tell you that it is slippery, you could be arrested anyway and put in jail and have to post bond, you could lose a criminal court case on a myriad of reasons, and it will cost you a lot of money either way even if you won. Is it worth it? Sure we all need test cases, cases that go further to test the law and liberty. Do you want to be and even can you be that person?

...and as mentioned, people concealed carry on their property all the time and no one is the wiser. Quasi public access on private owned property is tricky to carry loaded on and LE in most urban\suburban areas will have an arrest first policy. Open carry in today's society brings in a lot of issues from the unwashed masses. Yes - it shouldn't be this way, but it is the state of things.

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 3:23 PM
I agree. Why push the envelope? Do you NEED to carry a gun in your front yard? Are you there for hours, exposed to drive-by shootings?

Just carry concealed on your property if you honestly want protection. I've done it when I was concerned about retaliation, but no one would have EVER known I had a condition 1 weapon on me.

If you want to draw negative attention and make your neighbors unfriendly and doubt your intentions, go ahead and show off that pistol. Might as well carry a sign on a stick as well, cause I'd take that as a cry for attention if my neighbors did that.

Yeah, but if my property is considered a public area according to case law, carrying concealed is also not an option. The bottomline is that you cannot be outside in a public area and carry a firearm without a LTC.

This goes back to my question that I posted over at the LTC discussion forum. No permit, no carry, no protection.

Okay, you say "OP, if a bad guy accosts you or your family, just go in the house and get your firearm". Hey, no problem, except my firearms are locked and the ammo is locked and they in two different locations. (I have small curious children that wanna grab and touch everything. So I'm safety conscious, and not just because this cesspool called California requires me to be. I don't want my children hurt.) Meanwhile, the bad guys have already hurt my kids or wife.

I'll risk the unlawful concealed carry on my property if I have to though.

greg36f
07-30-2012, 3:53 PM
Yeah, but if my property is considered a public area according to case law, carrying concealed is also not an option. The bottomline is that you cannot be outside in a public area and carry a firearm without a LTC.

This goes back to my question that I posted over at the LTC discussion forum. No permit, no carry, no protection.

Okay, you say "OP, if a bad guy accosts you or your family, just go in the house and get your firearm". Hey, no problem, except my firearms are locked and the ammo is locked and they in two different locations. (I have small curious children that wanna grab and touch everything. So I'm safety conscious, and not just because this cesspool called California requires me to be. I don't want my children hurt.) Meanwhile, the bad guys have already hurt my kids or wife.

I'll risk the unlawful concealed carry on my property if I have to though.

OP, you are confusing "public access" and "public property".

steelcore
07-30-2012, 3:59 PM
First, why would you get arrested for a concealed carry on your own property? Only if you were drawing attention, right? No police officer would make contact with you unprovoked.

If someone confronts you on the lawn and you don't make some effort to retreat before drawing your weapon, it's a sign of aggression. That's how the police and judge will look at it. It doesn't matter AT ALL how you view it. They make the decisions. Don't be the guy that makes law more strict because he wanted to see how far he could push the grey area of the laws.

If you need to be outside and carry a gun while your children play, move to a different area. Saying "it costs a lot to move" isn't valid either, because nothing is worth more than family.

wildhawker
07-30-2012, 4:32 PM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

And you'll stick with the consequences, too.

-Brandon

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 4:41 PM
OP, you are confusing "public access" and "public property".

Since I don't know the difference I guess I am......

Connor P Price
07-30-2012, 4:56 PM
Since I don't know the difference I guess I am......

It takes a wise person to admit what they don't know. Check out the Calguns Wiki section on Semi Public Places Restrictions by scrolling down a bit at this link: http://wiki.calgunsfoundation.org/Unlicensed_Concealed_Carry

That gives a pretty good explanation of the issue at hand here. If you're interested in learning more you can click the links in the wiki to read the full decisions. I'd read People v Overturf, People v Strider, and People v Yarbrough. Leave Perez and Jimenez for last if your exceedingly curious.

Librarian
07-30-2012, 4:59 PM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

Strider says differently.

You don't have to like it - I certainly do not - but the courts are interpreting 'public access' to mean 'in a public place' for purposes of concealed and loaded carry, and using a fence or other barrier to indicate no public access.

BrokerB
07-30-2012, 5:05 PM
1) Make sure someone videos you while your glock is strapped to your chest

2) Make sure your family will is in order

3) your family will get money once la sheriffs shoot you with your hands in the air

HowardW56
07-30-2012, 5:44 PM
25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.

Yes California does have a Castle Doctrine law and has had for well over 100 years, read PC section 198.5.

The public access and fenced yard are case law...
People v. Stryder (http://www.hoffmang.com/firearms/B204571.pdf)

People v. Jimenez (http://law.justia.com/cases/california/caapp4th/33/54.html)

There are more...

Decoligny
07-30-2012, 7:50 PM
Yeah, but if my property is considered a public area according to case law, carrying concealed is also not an option. The bottomline is that you cannot be outside in a public area and carry a firearm without a LTC.

This goes back to my question that I posted over at the LTC discussion forum. No permit, no carry, no protection.

Okay, you say "OP, if a bad guy accosts you or your family, just go in the house and get your firearm". Hey, no problem, except my firearms are locked and the ammo is locked and they in two different locations. (I have small curious children that wanna grab and touch everything. So I'm safety conscious, and not just because this cesspool called California requires me to be. I don't want my children hurt.) Meanwhile, the bad guys have already hurt my kids or wife.

I'll risk the unlawful concealed carry on my property if I have to though.

The case law that deals with the specific definition of "public place" deals with the law concerning carrying a loaded firearm. This case law does not expand the definition of "public place" to any other sections of the Penal Code.
The law against carrying concealed does not have a reference to "public place". The penal code contains a clear plainly worded exemption for on private property.

FX-05 Xiuhcoatl
07-30-2012, 8:00 PM
Yes, you will draw a SWAT team in LA county. If your front yard is not fenced, then it's an area where you're in legal limbo as to your property rights -- i.e. People can walk across your front yard. In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you refuse, and they shoot you 100 times.

they will shoot you where the sun doesn't shine :D

advocatusdiaboli
07-30-2012, 8:42 PM
My two cents and I've studied this issue a bit:
You can carry on private property that is physically barred from public access: i.e. a fence and gate, posted no trespassing/private property etc. If your front yard, though legally private, is open for public access without passing through or over a gate or fence then it is a public place for the purposes of firearms law. You can open carry on private property without public access, on private property with public access you cannot. this isn't rocket science, unlike some firearms laws. It is pretty straight forward once you understand the rule.

OneHotDog
07-30-2012, 10:08 PM
My two cents and I've studied this issue a bit:
You can carry on private property that is physically barred from public access: i.e. a fence and gate, posted no trespassing/private property etc. If your front yard, though legally private, is open for public access without passing through or over a gate or fence then it is a public place for the purposes of firearms law. You can open carry on private property without public access, on private property with public access you cannot. this isn't rocket science, unlike some firearms laws. It is pretty straight forward once you understand the rule.

What is the definition of a fence? Is any specific height required? Does it have to fully enclose my front yard? These are stupid details that should never have to be asked if the law wasn't so moronic.

taperxz
07-30-2012, 10:51 PM
What is the definition of a fence? Is any specific height required? Does it have to fully enclose my front yard? These are stupid details that should never have to be asked if the law wasn't so moronic.

4 ft. picket fence with a small gate would do the trick. Carry would be allowed within that area of fenced property.

haveyourmile
07-30-2012, 11:00 PM
http://cdn.overclock.net/a/a6/a624466f_so_much_fail_trollcat.jpeg

Librarian
07-30-2012, 11:12 PM
What is the definition of a fence? Is any specific height required? Does it have to fully enclose my front yard? These are stupid details that should never have to be asked if the law wasn't so moronic.

4 ft. picket fence with a small gate would do the trick. Carry would be allowed within that area of fenced property.

But 'nobody knows'; the courts are not providing that level of guidance.

There are lots of unresolved areas at that level of detail.
- What is 'permanent' for converting a large-capacity mag to 10 rounds? Nobody knows.
- What is 'secure' in PC 16850's 'secure container'? Nobody knows.
- If you bolt your gun safe to your car, does it then become a 'utility compartment' of a motor vehicle? Nobody knows.

As to fence, it's my opinion that 12-foot chain link fence with razor wire on top surely qualifies, and a 1-foot decorative flower-bed fence surely does not.

I cannot afford to be the test case that gets the law clarified.

wildhawker
07-30-2012, 11:20 PM
But 'nobody knows'; the courts are not providing that level of guidance.

There are lots of unresolved areas at that level of detail.
- What is 'permanent' for converting a large-capacity mag to 10 rounds? Nobody knows.
- What is 'secure' in PC 16850's 'secure container'? Nobody knows.
- If you bolt your gun safe to your car, does it then become a 'utility compartment' of a motor vehicle? Nobody knows.

As to fence, it's my opinion that 12-foot chain link fence with razor wire on top surely qualifies, and a 1-foot decorative flower-bed fence surely does not.

I cannot afford to be the test case that gets the law clarified.

Right. Most can't, and no one should. There are far better ways to address this.

-Brandon

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:20 PM
But 'nobody knows'; the courts are not providing that level of guidance.

There are lots of unresolved areas at that level of detail.
- What is 'permanent' for converting a large-capacity mag to 10 rounds? Nobody knows.
- What is 'secure' in PC 16850's 'secure container'? Nobody knows.
- If you bolt your gun safe to your car, does it then become a 'utility compartment' of a motor vehicle? Nobody knows.

As to fence, it's my opinion that 12-foot chain link fence with razor wire on top surely qualifies, and a 1-foot decorative flower-bed fence surely does not.

I cannot afford to be the test case that gets the law clarified.

Im basing my opinion on the fact that in the country, there are tens of thousands of miles of either 4 ft. field fence on t posts or 4 strand barbed wire. All about 4 ft high and this same height makes trespass into and ag area a federal offense under the homeland security laws.

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:23 PM
Right. Most can't, and no one should. There are far better ways to address this.

-Brandon

We certainly know the standard in a back yard is a six foot fence and no one seems to balk at carry in the back yard.

wildhawker
07-30-2012, 11:27 PM
We certainly know the standard in a back yard is a six foot fence and no one seems to balk at carry in the back yard.

I'm not sure that's true. Can you cite authority that supports such an assertion?

-Brandon

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:32 PM
I'm not sure that's true. Can you cite authority that supports such an assertion?

-Brandon

No but in past threads where you may or may not have participated, having a firearm on you in the privacy of your back yard i thought was generally accepted. I know you draw legal lines and i understand why, You are not a misinformation kinda person. Are you saying you would not engage in this act or just that it "could" get you in trouble depending on the whimsical needs of a DA?

steelcore
07-30-2012, 11:37 PM
That's cause you can't look cool in front of your neighbors when you're in the back yard! Why else does anyone buy guns, but to flaunt them and let everyone know which house to rob for the most guns?!

On a serious note, I really can't understand why ANYONE wants to advertise their firepower. Most police officers keep their badge hidden when off duty. Why? Cause it tells every criminal who poses the greatest threat to their deeds. That's what you'll become when people think you're a vigilante. Please think about it.

taperxz
07-30-2012, 11:39 PM
That's cause you can't look cool in front of your neighbors when you're in the back yard! Why else does anyone buy guns, but to flaunt them and let everyone know which house to rob for the most guns?!

On a serious note, I really can't understand why ANYONE wants to advertise their firepower. Most police officers keep their badge hidden when off duty. Why? Cause it tells every criminal who poses the greatest threat to their deeds. That's what you'll become when people think you're a vigilante. Please think about it.

This is really not the point of the thread for most of us. Its simply about what exactly the law will allow and what it denies you.

steelcore
07-30-2012, 11:52 PM
taperxz,

For most it's not the point, I agree.

Most people don't accept the reality that we live in a state where most people think that guns do the killing...or at least most voters think that. Pushing the envelope gets those people to call the police because they're afraid. After that the public expects the police to take some sort of action, and nothing would satisfy the public more than to see an arrest of the "evil gun toting man". Then it becomes a newscast and BAM!...more negative reports about guns to fuel the liberal fire.

All this because someone wants to openly carry in their front yard? I think it's bull****, but I think it's a VERY real possibility, and that's why I'm against it. Keep it concealed if it's so necessary and it'll be better for EVERYONE in the end!

SickofSoCal
07-31-2012, 12:01 AM
you might want to read the wiki article of GFSZ's -- it has nothing to do with school zone signs -- it's 1000 feet. You cannot sling a dead cat in LA County and not hit a GFSZ. And 1000 ft from what -- school perimeter? not defined.

http://wiki.calgunsfoundation.org/Gun_Free_School_Zones

And what about private schools that you don't even know about? What about home schools? What about charter schools? What about tech schools? What about universities? What about night schools?

BTW, there's a move afoot to increase those bubble spheres to 1,400' ... if you ask me, the 2A is D.O.A.!!!!

wildhawker
07-31-2012, 12:27 AM
No but in past threads where you may or may not have participated, having a firearm on you in the privacy of your back yard i thought was generally accepted. I know you draw legal lines and i understand why, You are not a misinformation kinda person. Are you saying you would not engage in this act or just that it "could" get you in trouble depending on the whimsical needs of a DA?

I recall discussing curtilage and the earlier cited doctrines (among others). I don't recall determining a threshold value for a 'secure' non-public area.

-Brandon

advocatusdiaboli
07-31-2012, 6:56 AM
I said in a previous post it was clear or so I thought at the time. I figured it boils down to whether a reasonable person would think your backyard is secure to public access (i.e. John Q. Public cannot innocently by error or misunderstanding accidentally breach it), but I should have known better. It is, like so many of the laws regarding our right, sufficiently vague as to serve to infringe on our right via the threat of detainment, arrest, conviction and fines or incarceration.

While concerns over the fence dimensions and security level are warranted as vague as the law is, just as they are with locked containers as has been pointed out, you also have to consider sight. Even if the fence is reasonably secure (gated locked, high enough to require focused effort to breach the perimeter, etc.) you have to consider the neighborhood and the neighbors.

I live in a rural county where lots are large and no one is likely to spot me carrying in a holster in my backyard and if they did most people out here are comfortable with firearms. I'd still wear a pistol and not carry a long gun just to stay on the down low. I believe my property is within 1,000 feet of a middle school so I won't be carrying anyway. But try this in LA or SF, and enough neighbors might see you that you might have visitors from the local constabulary and possibly become a test case for what a DA and judge think is reasonable in terms of preventing public access. That's not the kind of lottery I want to play and I am far from alone here.

creekside
07-31-2012, 8:55 AM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

Please don't DO that! And don't lead others into that pit with you. This is precisely why we need the FAQs and advice from lawyers. I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice.

The written Penal Code is heavily modified by case law. A literal read of the Penal Code would suggest that I can use deadly force to prevent a non-violent felony, stop a riot or arrest a fleeing felon, as follows.

197. Homicide is also justifiable when committed by any person in any of the following cases:

1. When resisting any attempt to murder any person, or to commit a felony, or to do some great bodily injury upon any person; or,

2. When committed in defense of habitation, property, or person, against one who manifestly intends or endeavors, by violence or surprise, to commit a felony, or against one who manifestly intends and endeavors, in a violent, riotous or tumultuous manner, to enter the habitation of another for the purpose of offering violence to any person therein; or,

3. When committed in the lawful defense of such person, or of a wife or husband, parent, child, master, mistress, or servant of such person, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design to commit a felony or to do some great bodily injury, and imminent danger of such design being accomplished; but such person, or the person in whose behalf the defense was made, if he was the assailant or engaged in mutual combat, must really and in good faith have endeavored to decline any further struggle before the homicide was committed; or,

4. When necessarily committed in attempting, by lawful ways and means, to apprehend any person for any felony committed, or in lawfully suppressing any riot, or in lawfully keeping and preserving the peace.

If I tried it, I would go down for murder. You see, the U.S. Constitutional right to keep breathing trumps the state interest in keeping the peace or in stopping non-violent felons. So there are invisible lines Xing out about half of the existing Penal Code I just cited.

The criminal laws in particular are full of this, written from twenty to fifty to over a hundred years ago, and modified by applicable decisions from past cases.

I have personally found the California Criminal Jury Instructions (http://www.courts.ca.gov/partners/312.htm/) to be an invaluable resource for actually understanding both the written law and the case law.

I also eat where the big trucks are parked. Lots of Real Lawyers (TM) have looked at the Wiki. Don't try to be smarter than them without going to law school first.

HBrebel
07-31-2012, 9:40 AM
Just for carrying a gun on my own property? Surely you jest.

And yes my frontyard is not fenced. I am not in a GFSZ.


So I have no gun rights and no property rights. There is no castle doctrine in California that I know of. Sooooo, what rights do I have to protect my family? Do I have I right to jump in front of a bullet intended for my kids? Do I have a right to call the cops before someone touches my kids or wife? Tell me SOMETHING reassuring....

they will pull a SWAT raid on innocent citizens for delivering unpasteurized milk, they will jail and fine a land owner for 'stealing' rainwater from the state, they surely will come in hot for anybody practicing their 2A rights.

erik_26
07-31-2012, 10:13 AM
On a some what related topic (not trying to thread jack).

How about carrying in your open garage?

What if you stash a loaded gun in a cabinet or drawer etc. in your open garage?

This way you can possibly get to it to defend yourself.

Uxi
07-31-2012, 10:18 AM
Conceal carry on your property. You can legally open carry but WILL get a visit from the popo when a paranoid or ahole neighbor or random passerby notices and calls in a "Man with a Gun" report. Yes, 911 operators/dispatch SHOULD respond asking for more info but that's usually left for the first responders to determine, who will use the safety argument to justify drawing down you and if you're lucky with it ending there. If you're unlucky you're shot (people are shot in their yards for holding garden hose handles after all). Most likely the middle ground is you're in court.

OneHotDog
07-31-2012, 10:45 AM
they will pull a SWAT raid on innocent citizens for delivering unpasteurized milk, they will jail and fine a land owner for 'stealing' rainwater from the state, they surely will come in hot for anybody practicing their 2A rights.

Yes, I read about this. Unbelieveable travesty of justice. That this kind of government bullying, and that's what it is make no mistake, is allowed to occur is absolutely infuriating. The man had his property rights revoked.

Furthermore, let me clarify why I asked the question. I was NOT interested in open carrying in my front yard. I never intended to do that. This was simply asked because I wanted to know what my rights are, because the 2A is open to interpretation and is not absolute. Unfortunately, law-abiding citizens are really second-class when it comes to the 2A.

HowardW56
07-31-2012, 11:04 AM
I'll stick with the quoted law from the penal code, which shows no requirement to have a fence around your property.

You have been advised on how the law has been applied, but this is a great country, and you have every right to be as foolish as you wish...

I hope that others are wiser and avoid the opportunity to be your companion while in jail...

Decoligny
07-31-2012, 12:16 PM
On a some what related topic (not trying to thread jack).

How about carrying in your open garage?

What if you stash a loaded gun in a cabinet or drawer etc. in your open garage?

This way you can possibly get to it to defend yourself.

I beleive there is recent case law that states that your garage is just like inside your house. You do not lose the right to carry a loaded firearm either concealed or openly just because you have the front door open.

You don't lose your right to do the same exact thing inside your garage just because the door is open.

Hilldweller
07-31-2012, 1:19 PM
Not to be a grumpy old man, but for the life of me I can't understand why anyone would want to open carry in their front yard of a residential neighborhood. For what? To mow your lawn? Prune a tree? Or do you just want to sit on your front porch with a beer looking "bad"? Even if you live in the worst of areas you're just asking for trouble - either from the law or from drive-by's by idiots who want to prove they're not scared of you.

To me it's akin to "flaunting" it in your neighbors noses. "Hey, look at me, I have a gun!!!" Childish mentality. Isn't it better to smile, wave, and say "hello"?

Rant over.....

Back to your normally scheduled program...

erik_26
07-31-2012, 2:01 PM
I beleive there is recent case law that states that your garage is just like inside your house. You do not lose the right to carry a loaded firearm either concealed or openly just because you have the front door open.

You don't lose your right to do the same exact thing inside your garage just because the door is open.

Thanks.

ChaneRZ
07-31-2012, 2:23 PM
Just do a concealed carry inside your house or garage so no nosy neighbors can complain.

taperxz
07-31-2012, 2:36 PM
Not to be a grumpy old man, but for the life of me I can't understand why anyone would want to open carry in their front yard of a residential neighborhood. For what? To mow your lawn? Prune a tree? Or do you just want to sit on your front porch with a beer looking "bad"? Even if you live in the worst of areas you're just asking for trouble - either from the law or from drive-by's by idiots who want to prove they're not scared of you.

To me it's akin to "flaunting" it in your neighbors noses. "Hey, look at me, I have a gun!!!" Childish mentality. Isn't it better to smile, wave, and say "hello"?

Rant over.....

Back to your normally scheduled program...

Funny. I understand what you're saying. Up where I am if you don't have a firearm with you, they think something's wrong.

Hilldweller
07-31-2012, 2:51 PM
Funny. I understand what you're saying. Up where I am if you don't have a firearm with you, they think something's wrong.

I understand that too ! However in residential SoCal it just isn't a good fit.

Visiting Washington State soon to look at properties up there. (No, not Seattle or Spokane!) Mid state. Hoping to relocate to a more open/rural state/area. Nice thing is it's a 'shall issue' state so most everyone carries - within the normal limits.

Looking forward to being out of a big city.

A-J
07-31-2012, 3:02 PM
On a some what related topic (not trying to thread jack).

How about carrying in your open garage?

What if you stash a loaded gun in a cabinet or drawer etc. in your open garage?

This way you can possibly get to it to defend yourself.

I was cleaning my guns in my garage with the door open - too much Hoppes #9 can make you stoned! I always keep one locked and cocked while doing I can tell you that the LAPD officers I had a chat with said they "did not recommend" that I do so with an open garage door. I asked if someone had called on me (I live on a dead end street) and hte officers just looked at me with the old "WTF do you think?" faces.

As librarian said, I can't afford to guess who's right, but when I'm in the garage with the door open (and I am a LOT) I keep one close to hand without carrying. AFAIK, it's not yet illegal to have one within arms reach.

OneHotDog
07-31-2012, 3:38 PM
I was cleaning my guns in my garage with the door open - too much Hoppes #9 can make you stoned! I always keep one locked and cocked while doing I can tell you that the LAPD officers I had a chat with said they "did not recommend" that I do so with an open garage door. I asked if someone had called on me (I live on a dead end street) and hte officers just looked at me with the old "WTF do you think?" faces.

As librarian said, I can't afford to guess who's right, but when I'm in the garage with the door open (and I am a LOT) I keep one close to hand without carrying. AFAIK, it's not yet illegal to have one within arms reach.

I clean my guns in the garage with the door open too. The fumes are awful. I never carry around the house cocked and locked. Just too cautious I guess. However, your neighbors are not only nose-y, they are aholes...

BP22
07-31-2012, 4:33 PM
I clean my guns in the garage with the door open too.

I do as well and on Sunday night I had a skunk come wandering in. Scared the bejesus out of me. Probably a good thing my SR was in pieces. :eek:

sharxbyte
08-01-2012, 12:41 AM
In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.



IIRC, Residents are exempt in school zones.

FalconLair
08-01-2012, 1:27 AM
It should also be mentioned that you were referring to a handgun being holstered. Open carry of long guns has not been outlawed (yet) and would be legal if you were not in a GFSZso just strap that Mossberg over your shoulder while you're tending garden or mowing the lawn :rolleyes:

25850. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when the
person carries a loaded firearm on the person or in a vehicle while
in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city
or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area
of unincorporated territory.

Seems pretty simple. I see nothing that says your yard has to have a fence, nor is your front yard a public place. Yes it is open, and people may pass through neighbors may take a short cut across your driveway, but it is not a public place.

Yes California does have a Castle Doctrine law and has had for well over 100 years, read PC section 198.5.i've heard words like "public access" to describe your situation

Decoligny
08-02-2012, 8:44 AM
IIRC, Residents are exempt in school zones.

626.9. (a) This section shall be known, and may be cited, as the Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995.
(b) Any person who possesses a firearm in a place that the person knows, or reasonably should know, is a school zone, as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (e), unless it is with the written permission of the school district superintendent, his or her designee, or equivalent school authority, shall be punished as specified in subdivision (f).
(c) Subdivision (b) does not apply to the possession of a firearm under any of the following circumstances:
(1) Within a place of residence or place of business or on private property, if the place of residence, place of business, or private property is not part of the school grounds and the possession of the firearm is otherwise lawful.
...

HK Dave
08-02-2012, 9:50 AM
As my LAPD friends would say, "We believe in shooting first and sorting it out later."

Ctwo
08-02-2012, 2:37 PM
626.9. (a) This section shall be known, and may be cited, as the Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995.
(b) Any person who possesses a firearm in a place that the person knows, or reasonably should know, is a school zone, as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (e), unless it is with the written permission of the school district superintendent, his or her designee, or equivalent school authority, shall be punished as specified in subdivision (f).
(c) Subdivision (b) does not apply to the possession of a firearm under any of the following circumstances:
(1) Within a place of residence or place of business or on private property, if the place of residence, place of business, or private property is not part of the school grounds and the possession of the firearm is otherwise lawful.
...

or on private property, so where did theseus go wrong? what's the point of citing or even being aware of law when the plain and simple language can be interpreted in very crooked ways?

Ctwo
08-02-2012, 2:39 PM
"Within a place of residence "

and what is that supposed to mean? it does not say legal residence, so how about a cardboard box in the ditch, or are homeless not afforded 2A rights?

Coded-Dude
08-02-2012, 2:44 PM
or on private property, so where did theseus go wrong? what's the point of citing or even being aware of law when the plain and simple language can be interpreted in very crooked ways?

the private property was publicly accessible, which is what most here have been trying to purvey. you can think the law means one thing, but it is also open to interpretation by the police, attorneys, judges etc. This is why one must tread carefully in this obvious anti-gun state.

Ctwo
08-02-2012, 2:52 PM
The case law that deals with the specific definition of "public place" deals with the law concerning carrying a loaded firearm. This case law does not expand the definition of "public place" to any other sections of the Penal Code.
The law against carrying concealed does not have a reference to "public place". The penal code contains a clear plainly worded exemption for on private property.

maybe I don't understand that.

Ctwo
08-02-2012, 2:54 PM
I don't know why people insist on combining two seperate and distinct laws.

GFSZ law has nothing to do with the "public area" which is an unfenced front yard.

The "public area" reference has to do with the law against having a loaded firearm in an incorporated city, or in a prohibited area of unincorporated territory.

They do not apply to each other.

I live in unicorporated Kern County. I can legally carry a loaded firearm (openly or concealed) on my own front lawn. It wouldn't matter one bit if I lived right across the street for an elementary school.



or maybe this...?

Ctwo
08-02-2012, 2:56 PM
or maybe it is just the theseus case I don't understand. I thought it was an unloaded open carry on private land that was publicly accessible, and it was just because he was in a GFSZ?

Librarian
08-02-2012, 3:22 PM
or maybe it is just the theseus case I don't understand. I thought it was an unloaded open carry on private land that was publicly accessible, and it was just because he was in a GFSZ?

The court in his case refused to accept that the private property (a laundromat, if I recall correctly) was 'private' for purposes of the GFSZ. I thought that complete nonsense.

dixieD
08-02-2012, 3:24 PM
Yes, you will draw a SWAT team in LA county. If your front yard is not fenced, then it's an area where you're in legal limbo as to your property rights -- i.e. People can walk across your front yard. In this unfenced area, if you happen to be in a school zone, you risk prosecution under the GFSZ laws.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you refuse, and they shoot you 100 times.

Worst case, the police tell you to lie prone, you comply, and they shoot you 100 times, because you made a "furtive movement."

Agent Orange
08-02-2012, 4:22 PM
Not to be a grumpy old man, but for the life of me I can't understand why anyone would want to open carry in their front yard of a residential neighborhood. ...."Hey, look at me, I have a gun!!!" Childish mentality. ....

Guess you haven't been around OCers much. They live for that kind of stuff.

MigNoche
08-02-2012, 4:29 PM
Yeah, but if my property is considered a public area according to case law, carrying concealed is also not an option. The bottomline is that you cannot be outside in a public area and carry a firearm without a LTC.

This goes back to my question that I posted over at the LTC discussion forum. No permit, no carry, no protection.

Okay, you say "OP, if a bad guy accosts you or your family, just go in the house and get your firearm". Hey, no problem, except my firearms are locked and the ammo is locked and they in two different locations. (I have small curious children that wanna grab and touch everything. So I'm safety conscious, and not just because this cesspool called California requires me to be. I don't want my children hurt.) Meanwhile, the bad guys have already hurt my kids or wife.

I'll risk the unlawful concealed carry on my property if I have to though.

"In any civilized society, it is every citizen's responsibility to obey just laws. But at the same time, it is every citizen's responsibility to disobey unjust laws." - Martin Luther King Jr.

advocatusdiaboli
08-03-2012, 7:16 AM
the private property was publicly accessible, which is what most here have been trying to purvey. you can think the law means one thing, but it is also open to interpretation by the police, attorneys, judges etc. This is why one must tread carefully in this obvious anti-gun state.

Exactly.