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Old October 21, 2009, 01:26 AM   #1
prp40
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texas gun law question

i just got a 38 special that belonged to my grandfather here in Texas. Now I know I can't carry it around holstered under my jacket or attached to my hip or anything because I don't have a concealed handgun license. I've done a little bit of research but haven't found any concrete answers on a few questions so I figured I would turn to the experienced owners here so my questions are:

1. Do I need to go register this gun somewhere like at a courthouse or what? it's just been in my grandfathers closet for a long long time.

2. Can I carry this gun unloaded in my car somewhere visible like on the seat next to me or is it legal for me to put it in the glove box or under the seat? I ask because i've gotten conflicting answers on this.
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Old October 21, 2009, 01:30 AM   #2
SigP6Carry
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just check this out:
http://www.nraila.org/statelawpdfs/TXSL.pdf

I would advise speaking with your local PD specifically about it, though, if it's really of concern, though.
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Old October 21, 2009, 01:32 AM   #3
mrnkc130
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no you dont have to register it...

you can carry it in you car unloaded or loaded, just has to be concealed.
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Old October 21, 2009, 06:49 AM   #4
Double Naught Spy
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Right. We have no gun registration in Texas and the current laws say that concealed vehicle carry is legal for a non-felon. In the car, it can even be concealed on your person so long as you are in your car.
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Old October 21, 2009, 07:32 AM   #5
knight0334
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Only 5 states have registration, 4 or 5 other states require recorded transfers - TX ain't one of them..
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Old October 21, 2009, 10:07 AM   #6
NavyLT
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In the car, it can even be concealed on your person so long as you are in your car.
And directly to/from the car to/from the home.
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Old October 21, 2009, 11:37 AM   #7
Frank Ettin
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And it sounds like it would be a fine idea for you to get your concealed handgun license.
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Old October 21, 2009, 03:54 PM   #8
carguychris
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...or is it legal for me to put it in the glove box or under the seat?
I would never put a gun under the seat because it could slide out and become visible to potential thieves or to a LEO during a traffic stop.

Although carrying a concealed handgun in your vehicle may be legal, placing it in plain view is illegal per the TX Penal Code Sec. 46.02(a-1)(1). It's a felony on the premises of an establishment licensed to sell alcoholic beverages and a Class "A" misdemeanor elsewhere.
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And it sounds like it would be a fine idea for you to get your concealed handgun license.
+1. It's reasonably inexpensive and easy, although it typically takes a few months for the state to issue the license after you take the class. Be aware, however, that using a revolver* during the marksmanship test will restrict your license to carrying revolvers only. IMHO this is a really stupid rule, but they didn't ask me.

*I'm assuming that your grandfather's gun is not one of the rare Smith & Wesson Model 52 or Colt Gold Cup National Match .38 Special semi-automatics.
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Last edited by carguychris; October 21, 2009 at 03:59 PM.
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Old October 21, 2009, 04:10 PM   #9
JohnKSa
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One thing to think about. If you decide to carry concealed in your vehicle don't place the gun in a spot you will have to access in a traffic stop. Not that you're trying to hide anything from the officer--things just go more smoothly if you don't have to pick up your gun to get at your proof-of-insurance that's underneath it in the glove box.
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Old October 21, 2009, 07:44 PM   #10
Double Naught Spy
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And directly to/from the car to/from the home.
Ah, but you can't park 3 blocks from home and walk directly home and expect the legal system to consider that as being "direct."
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Old October 21, 2009, 07:51 PM   #11
fisherman66
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another fly in the oinkment...

Private property parking lots are subject to the establishment's wishes. Let's say your employer has a policy prohibiting handguns and has the proper notification published (30.06 sign); you may be subject to criminal trespassing if you have a handgun in your car. Employers may have your permission to search your vehicle (if you gave it to them in writing as part of your employment agreement.)
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Old October 21, 2009, 11:07 PM   #12
mrnkc130
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Quote:
Private property parking lots are subject to the establishment's wishes. Let's say your employer has a policy prohibiting handguns and has the proper notification published (30.06 sign); you may be subject to criminal trespassing if you have a handgun in your car
I'm not so sure that still stands, vehicle is considered extension of your home now
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Old October 22, 2009, 01:47 AM   #13
prp40
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wow lots of responses. thanks everyone. im definitely planning to get concealed handgun license.
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Old October 22, 2009, 09:46 AM   #14
carguychris
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I'm not so sure that still stands, vehicle is considered extension of your home now
This is not true as it relates to entering someone else's property with a firearm.

Under Chapter 9 of the TX Penal Code, you're allowed to use deadly force to protect yourself and others in your vehicle, or to prevent theft of "tangible, movable property", which would obviously include your vehicle. However, Chapter 9 explicitly requires that, in order to legally use deadly force, the actor (you) may "not {be} engaged in criminal activity".

As fisherman66 correctly stated, if a property owner forbids entry into his or her property with a firearm, and you enter that property with a firearm whether it's in your vehicle or not, you are committing criminal trespass under Section 30.05. Engaging in criminal trespass is "criminal activity", so the protections under Chapter 9 might* not apply.

Please note that the Section 30.06 sign referred to in fisherman66's post only applies to legal CHL holders. In other words, if a property owner posts a generic "NO GUNS" sign rather than a 30.06 sign, CHL holders who enter the property with a handgun are protected from prosecution, but non-CHL holders are not.

Of course, if you stumbled into a real-world SD scenario on someone else's property, and you could prove that you had no way of knowing that firearms were prohibited there, you would probably be OK. However, if your employer prohibits firearms, it says so in the policy handbook, and you signed a statement saying that you read and understood it, you're screwed.

There was an effort during the last TX legislative session to enact a parking-lot exception for legal CHL holders, but it withered on the vine.

*{EDIT}: Changed word "do" to "might" since scenarios exist in which the actor might not actually be charged with criminal trespass.
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Last edited by carguychris; October 22, 2009 at 01:45 PM.
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