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Old November 30, 2009, 12:17 PM   #76
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...I thought in the US you were innocent till PROVEN guilty?
Yes, there is the presumption of innocence. But it really works out to be more complicated that you seem to think. It's really all explained in detail in this thread, so you might want to read it carefully.
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Old November 30, 2009, 12:24 PM   #77
ssmdive
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Tom Servo

Quote:
and the last thing I'd have wanted is an LEO tearing me a new one for allowing an unregistered NFA weapon on the range. By allowing it, I could potentially get snared into some sort of liability.
Do you run the serial numbers of all guns to see if they are reported stolen?
Do you run background checks on people to see if they are felons?
All of those could also make you liable as well, but you don't do all that do you?

The point being that you assume that title I guns are legal, you assume that shooters are all not felons, but you assume that all title II arms are illegal. While you have that right.... That does not make it true, nor logical to think that way.

Quote:
As it stands now, it's simply much easier to carry a copy of the stamp and live with the minor inconvenience. Is it right? No, but it beats the monumental amount of hassle that could be the alternative.
True, and that is what I told splashdown.... But the fact remains that the possession of a title II weapon is not automatically illegal, yet you and others are fine with people thinking that.

Quote:
Trust me, if I were President (Vote Servo 2012!), I'd sign an executive order suspending enforcement of the NFA. Until then, we have to deal the hand we're dealt.
While I also think NFA laws are unconstitutional... The problem is that "dealing with the hand we are dealt" is different than what is going on here. Dealing with the hand we are dealt would be following the law, yet you and others seem to be supporting an opinion that title II arms are illegal till proven legal and you don't hold that same stance with title I items.

Not bashing you... just pointing out what I see is an error in consistency.

You don't check to see if the 600.00 semi auto AR on the range has been stolen or is being shot by a felon... You assume they are legal. But the 6,000.00 HK94SD is automatically assumed to be illegal?

The problem is not only in the public's perception, "MG's, suppressors..ect are ILLEGAL, unless you are LEO/have a license...ect"

But also OUR perceptions such as the ones that are being shown here.

Fact: The law says that only the DoJ or the ATF can ask to see your Forms.

But people in this thread have stated you have to have the originals with you, have to have the forms all the time.... ect. YES, it is a damn smart move to have a COPY of the forms... But you are not required by law, yet even some of us think you are.

That IMO is a way of thinking that automatically puts us at a disadvantage. Fact is that as long as WE tend to think title II items are inherently illegal... then the public's opinion just gets stronger.

Idiot RO's like the one at Markham that tried to say splashy was "a felon for not having the paperwork with him"... just feed the public's wrong opinion... WE should know better and not just accept it and encourage the stupidity.
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Old November 30, 2009, 12:33 PM   #78
Claude Clay
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i keep with each item a notarized copy of its paperwork
just because it is easier
notary is free at my bank and 5 minutes of my time vs being hassled--
rightly or wrongly--
its a no-brainier.
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Old November 30, 2009, 12:35 PM   #79
ssmdive
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fiddletown

Quote:
Yes, there is the presumption of innocence. But it really works out to be more complicated that you seem to think. It's really all explained in detail in this thread, so you might want to read it carefully.
Sorry, my reply was sarcasm.

Quote:
What you can't seem to get your head around is that it's your responsibility to show that the NFA weapon was legally possessed.
Is it your responsibility to prove you are not a felon to shoot at a public range? Is it your responsibility to prove that AK was not stolen? Is it your responsibility to prove that gun was not used in a crime?

Title II items are not illegal. Why do you want people to automatically assume they are?

I compare this to a cop pulling over a guy only to see if he has insurance. Yes, they law might state that he has to have insurance, but the cop does not have the right to pull a guy over ONLY to check his insurance.

It seems to be a case of you wanting people to automatically think they are illegal, and we want people to assume that they are legal unless they have other reasons to think they are not.

OUR attitudes sometimes hurt us more than we think.
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Old November 30, 2009, 01:16 PM   #80
Frank Ettin
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Sigh....

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...the possession of a title II weapon is not automatically illegal...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...Title II items are not illegal. Why do you want people to automatically assume they are?...
Title II weapons are automatically illegal unless you have the tax stamp. The fact that it is a Title II item is open and obvious. Your possession of the proper tax stamp, if you do have it, is not open and obvious. Therefore, holding, for example, a sbr in your hand where an LEO can see it is probable cause to believe you are committing a crime. That is sufficient reason for him to arrest you, or at least detain you for investigation (see Powderman's excellent post 73).

You can of course, immediately resolve the issue by showing your proper documentation. The elements of the crime of illegal possession of a Title II weapon are satisfied by simply having it in your possession. Your defense, having a proper tax stamp, is an affirmative defense that you must raise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...I compare this to a cop pulling over a guy only to see if he has insurance....
A false analogy. There's nothing about driving a car that suggests (or might constitute probable cause to believe) that you don't have insurance.

A better analogy would be marijuana. You're sitting in your front yard, near the sidewalk. An LEO walks by and observes you with a plastic bag containing greenish, leafy material. He also observes you smoking what appears to be a hand rolled cigarette. He also notices that the smoke from that hand rolled cigarette has a distinctive oder he has been trained to recognize as that of burning marijuana.

He now has reason to believe, from what's in plain sight, that you are in possession of marijuana. Marijuana is a controlled substance, and its possession is illegal except under some very narrow circumstances not immediately apparent. So he detains you.

You tell him that you have a state issued medical marijuana card permitting you to possess and use marijuana. He doesn't have to believe you. But if you can produce the card, the issue can be resolved.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...we want people to assume that they are legal ....
I don't see any way that can happen.

Last edited by Frank Ettin; November 30, 2009 at 01:24 PM.
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Old November 30, 2009, 01:31 PM   #81
ssmdive
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Sigh....

OUR attitudes sometimes hurt us more than we think, and more than our worst enemy.

Quote:
Title II weapons are automatically illegal unless you have the tax stamp.
Then my point that they are not automatically illegal is proven; You may have the tax stamp.

The point is you and others seem to support the notion that ALL title II items are illegal and until you have proven otherwise. You automatically assume the person is a criminal.

IMO that just plays to the anti gunners. WE provide them the ammo to perpetuate the public perception that title II items are illegal by taking that as a default position ourselves.

Last edited by ssmdive; November 30, 2009 at 02:04 PM.
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Old November 30, 2009, 01:53 PM   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
OUR attitudes sometimes hurt us more than we think, and more than our worst enemy.
It has nothing to do with attitudes. It's the way the law is and works in real life.
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Old November 30, 2009, 02:04 PM   #83
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Guys, I have seen this very subject hashed out many times, even on nfa websites. Somebody grabs on to this one little tidbit of law to the exclusion of anything else that may also be in effect at the same time.....the result
is the same as 5 years ago, and 10 years ago. You WILL have to carry a photocopy of your form 1 or 4 when in public view, just as you carry your CHL
when you have your handgun on you. Just because you just got finished reading "the turner diaries" and watching a Waco stand off documentery
doesn't change a thing.

When you own NFA items and act really weird and uncooperative around other shooters, you only reinforce what they may have been taught wrongly by the media( only a oddball hothead owns something like that)

From thier limited contact with a NFA owner...well they would be right. And the next person that comes up with a NFA item is going to in some way pay for the previous guys attitude.

Be proud of your NFA device, and be a model for other shooters...edjucate and promote good will with fellow shooters and range officers and police.
(don't be a sullen uncooprative poster-boi for some fringe group, that forces
an officer to take you in) working in a gunshop I seen my share of intense gun toting loners lol
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Old November 30, 2009, 02:25 PM   #84
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Fiddletown,

Making some interesting points, and I see what you're saying about the SBR situation. However, I hope you would agree that there is a very simple way to make people presume that these weapons are legal, simply write it more clearly into law. Why not make it a presumption that NFA weapons are legally in possession of the citizen unless there is reason to believe that they are illegally possessed (other than their mere existence and presence at the range.)

I do believe this is very similar to the car issue. You could argue that driving a car is a privilege, which in theory would be a more restrictive situation than owning a firearm, which is covered under the second amendment. So in theory you could argue that the mere possession of a car would allow you to pull that person over and check that they were legally in possession of their paperwork confirming their driving privilege.

Sure, maybe there are no perfect analogies, but when you get right down to it, the law certainly does not require any LEO or RSO (excepting the BATF or DOJ, and where state laws apply) to check the paperwork of any person holding an NFA firearm to ensure it's legality. So IMHO, any who do so are in effect taking liberties with their authority. I would also argue that there are NO documented cases of a RSO or LEO being held liable for not checking an NFA weapon at a range, at least none that I have ever heard or read about. Someone please feel free to prove me wrong. Are you really making the world a safer place by checking my MP-5SD?

In any case, if the facts of the situation are that asking for NFA paperwork is beyond the purview of all but BATF or DOJ LEOs, then I would imagine it would make a local cop's life easier to give the citizen the benefit of the doubt, since it is really beyond the scope of his duties to enforce this particular federal law (which again may be subject to debate, though I would ask for citations of law, not another list of LEOs saying what they WOULD do, regardless of the legality.)

I agree with SSM, I think far too many of us who purport to be in favor of less government intervention in the case of firearms ownership show an incredibly odd view of the same issue when the firearm just happens to be an NFA weapon. It really isn't that much different from the "good gun, bad gun" view of the Brady Bill supporters. That is a fine line I don't want to get anywhere near. My NFA firearm is really not that evil, and just because it is an NFA weapon should not draw the attention of the RSO in any undue fashion.

This particular Markham Park incident was just a bit over the top for me, and frankly reeked of an old codger who had a bit of power and wanted it to go a long way. And by the by, I did not have any sort of confrontation with him at all, being that he was so adamant in his view that I was a federal felon, I actually started to question whether or not I had all the right info, hence this thread. In any case, I'm a safe and legal owner of a NFA weapon, a former serviceman, an American citizen, and extremely handsome to boot, and I just didn't appreciate being accused of committing a felony is all.
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Old November 30, 2009, 02:26 PM   #85
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...Then my point that they are not automatically illegal is proven; You may have the tax stamp....
No, it's not enough that you may have a tax stamp. You must have a tax stamp for it to be legal.

And no one has to prove that you don't have a tax stamp. It's impossible to prove a negative. Having the required tax stamp is an affirmative defense. Showing that you have it is up to you.

That is how the law works. You may not like it, but your not liking it doesn't change it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...The point is you and others seem to support the notion that ALL title II items are illegal and until you have proven otherwise. You automatically assume the person is a criminal....
Yes, that is in fact how the law works. Having a Title II weapon in your hand is on its face illegal unless you can show that you have the necessary documentation. That is the legal reality.

It's the same as smoking your doobie on the street corner. That's presumptively illegal possession of marijuana, at least until you show the nice officer you medical marijuana card.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...WE provide them the ammo to perpetuate the public perception that title II items are illegal by taking that as a default position ourselves...
It is nothing at all like that. It is the reality of the way the law works.

Some things are presumptively, on their face, illegal. You may have an affirmative defense, but presenting that defense is up to you.

Another example is shooting someone. That is, on its face, a crime. It's going to be up to you to present sufficient evidence from which can be inferred that your use of lethal force was justified self defense.

This is the way things are in the real world.
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Old November 30, 2009, 02:52 PM   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptsplashdown
...However, I hope you would agree that there is a very simple way to make people presume that these weapons are legal, simply write it more clearly into law. Why not make it a presumption that NFA weapons are legally in possession of the citizen unless there is reason to believe that they are illegally possessed (other than their mere existence and presence at the range.)...
In theory, the law could be changed as you describe. Write your Congressman. In reality, I think the likelihood of getting federal law changed this way is pretty small, but you have the right to try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptsplashdown
...So IMHO, any who do so are in effect taking liberties with their authority....
Yes, I understand that's your humble opinion. But I suspect that LEOs would disagree, and I'm further confident that judges will support the LEOs' view rather than yours.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptsplashdown
...In any case, if the facts of the situation are that asking for NFA paperwork is beyond the purview of all but BATF or DOJ LEOs, then I would imagine it would make a local cop's life easier to give the citizen the benefit of the doubt, since it is really beyond the scope of his duties to enforce this particular federal law...
I don't necessarily agree that the NFA paperwork is beyond the purview of local LEOs, for the various reasons I and others have described. Among other things, they may enforce federal law. In addition, there are usually state laws relating to possession of Title II weapons.

I'm sure that those of the law enforcement community are grateful for your interest in making their lives easier, but they have their jobs to do. And while it's one thing to give a citizen a break of going 5 mph over the speed limit, I suspect that an LEO and his agency would come under severe community criticism for winking at Title II weapons. (And subjecting a cop to that sort of hassle isn't making his life any easier.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptsplashdown
...It really isn't that much different from the "good gun, bad gun" view of the Brady Bill supporters. That is a fine line I don't want to get anywhere near. My NFA firearm is really not that evil, and just because it is an NFA weapon should not draw the attention of the RSO in any undue fashion....
Swell, but none of this changes the legal reality.
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Old November 30, 2009, 03:23 PM   #87
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Quote:
I do believe this is very similar to the car issue. You could argue that driving a car is a privilege, which in theory would be a more restrictive situation than owning a firearm, which is covered under the second amendment. So in theory you could argue that the mere possession of a car would allow you to pull that person over and check that they were legally in possession of their paperwork confirming their driving privilege.
the problem is your compairing a SBR-NFA weapon to a car is ok but you can't use just any car take my Street-Strip albut legal car out on the road and you better belive I have my insurance and registration at the ready.
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Old November 30, 2009, 03:24 PM   #88
ssmdive
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Quote:
No, it's not enough that you may have a tax stamp. You must have a tax stamp for it to be legal.
But having an NFA item !=illegal

You are saying that having an NFA item = illegal.... and that is just not true in any way shape or form no matter how many people *think* it is true.

Quote:
And no one has to prove that you don't have a tax stamp.
So you DO suggest that in regards to NFA that we are in fact guilty till proven innocent? When did we give up Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat?

Quote:
It's impossible to prove a negative.
BTW, that is not true. Not really important here, but not true.

http://departments.bloomu.edu/philos...eanegative.pdf

Quote:
That is how the law works. You may not like it, but your not liking it doesn't change it.
The LAW actually say's that I don't have to show it to anyone but the ATF. That is CLEARLY written out in NFA, 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53 § 479.71. Local laws say that I am fine as long as I am following FEDERAL law. What you are stating is not LAW, but practical application or "best practice".

Quote:
Yes, that is in fact how the law works. Having a Title II weapon in your hand is on its face illegal unless you can show that you have the necessary documentation. That is the legal reality.
Respectfully, the law does not say anyone has to CARRY NFA paperwork and the law does not say having a title II item removes my right of being innocent till proven guilty. So that is not how the law IS, although it might be how it "works".

Please cite the LETTER of the law that says you MUST have the forms with you?

If you can't, then you must admit that what you are claiming is NOT law, but an incorrect application that is widely accepted....

Quote:
Some things are presumptively, on their face, illegal.
Only because you and others gladly accept they are "presumptively, on their face, illegal". And that's my point. People like you and others just accept that you must have the form, so Johnny Law and Ricky the RO just accept it.

Like I said, please quote FEDERAL law (Like I have) that supports your position that you MUST have the paperwork with you, and that you MUST show it to any Tom, Dick, and Harry that asks for it. I'd really like to know, all I can find is you must register the items and have to show the forms to the ATF.

No one is arguing that it is not a damn good idea to have the forms to avoid the hassle. This is really about people not knowing the law and just incorrectly thinking that a "best practice" is the law thus diluting the actual law.

The case here is Ricky the Range Officer tried to say that unless the paperwork was with the weapon that splashy here was a felon.... and that dog will just not hunt.

Does Ricky the RO have the RIGHT to deny splashy the use of the range? Of course! He can tell anyone to pound sand based on not liking the guys haircut.

Does the local LEO have the right to ask to see the forms? They can always ask, and it would be a damn good idea to produce them. But FEDERAL law says that you only need to produce them to the ATF. Will Johnny law arrest splashy? Most likely, but I have heard of people being arrested even WITH the forms since most LEO's have no clue what a Form 4 is and "knows" that MG are illegal.

Is it easier to just carry a damn copy of the forms to prevent the BS? Of course!

But I am gonna need to you cite law where it shows ownership of NFA removes the individuals right of innocence till proven guilty.

And I am gonna need you to cite LAW where it says that you have to produce the form to anyone that asks.

Maybe you are getting my point that while you are claiming these things are "law", they are in fact just an accepted practice perpetuated by people who don't know the real law, or just are not bothered to really care. That is attitude, not law.

Or, you could cite where I give up my rights when I own title II items, and cite where the laws says I have to have the forms with me.
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Old November 30, 2009, 03:45 PM   #89
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Quote:
Being asked to show proof that you are in legal possession of NFA items doesn't violate your rights because you are under no obligation to comply. Of course, if you don't comply then there is no evidence to refute the charge and you will be arrested and prosecuted.

Being arrested for possessing NFA items (in the absence of any paperwork showing that you have them legally) doesn't violate your rights because possessing NFA items (in the absence of any paperwork showing that you have them legally) is sufficient evidence for a legal arrest and prosecution.
Except.... NFA paperwork is technically tax paperwork and it is mandatory for law enforcement to get a warrant to demand it from the owner.

After all, police don't just run around demanding that, since you have a $20 bill in your back pocket, that you must not have paid your taxes this year.... show me your 1040 form!

The only LEO's that don't require a warrant for NFA paperwork are department of treasury agents... IRS and ATF agents. Now that ATF is under DOJ rather than treasury they have some sort of administrative loophole, IIRC. But they can still demand them. FBI/DEA/ local police cannot demand your tax forms without a warrant.
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Old November 30, 2009, 03:49 PM   #90
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Yes, what he said...

But seriously, SSM very clearly spelled out my position: Life can always be made easier by giving up or giving in to authorities of any type who have powers of arrest. What far too many on this thread are suggesting is that they are okay with jumping through hoops for a LEO that is not in fact following the letter of the law. An extension of this attitude can be extremely detrimental to your civil liberties.

If you are okay with LEOs who are enforcing made up laws about NFA weapons, then what's to stop them from making up laws that infringe on other aspects of your life? It would certainly be easier to catch criminals if there was no need for probable cause, no rules against "profiling," no need for LEOs to adhere to the bill of rights... All of these things would make you safer (perhaps,) but the end result would be like living in China, North Korea, Iran, etc. If ignorance of the law is not a defense for a citizen who violates said law, then it surely should not be a defense for a LEO who does the same.

I hear you guys, the REAL WORLD works this way. Well great, but the real world, particularly when it comes to enforcement of the law, is more or less created by LEOs, and to be honest some who are apparently LEOs who have posted seem disturbingly unconcerned with the law. Call me crazy, but shouldn't the law be the way the REAL WORLD works?

Yes, there are situations like this which are out of the norm and difficult to interpret, which is why I was pleased to see posts by SSM and AK (and one or two others) which actually refer to written law. Some of you guys are going on and on about reality vs. perception, and it is you (all of us) who create the perception.

For example, if a local LEO or RSO knows he is out of line (as the RSO was in the Markham Park case,) and treats the citizen not just with respect but with the law in mind, then there is no problem to begin with. I shoot my SD, which is legal, for which I do have paperwork that can be provided to the BATF, everyone has a great day, end of story. Instead, former LEO and current RSO who doesn't know the law accuses yours truly of being a federal felon, maybe calls local or federal LEOs, and I get unnecessarily (and perhaps illegally?) hassled for no reason at all.

Your Solution: Conform to the demand to produce paperwork-"SHOW ME YOUR PAPERS"-despite the law not requiring it, to avoid a hassle.

My Solution: Do what you have to do to deal with the situation, but at least make an attempt to show the LEO or RSO the error of his or her ways so they don't act inappropriately next time around.
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Old November 30, 2009, 04:30 PM   #91
Frank Ettin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
....You are saying that having an NFA item = illegal.... and that is just not true in any way shape or form no matter how many people *think* it is true...
Of course I never said that. What I have written is on this board for all to see.

Legally, it is presumptively illegal. The presumption may be rebutted. You have control of the best evidence rebutting that presumption -- your tax stamp.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...So you DO suggest that in regards to NFA that we are in fact guilty till proven innocent?...
Okay, here's how it works in real life.

Evidence establishing probable cause to believe a crime has been committed and that you committed it is usually readily apparent (openly holding a Title II weapon, smoking your joint on the street corner, standing over a body with a smoking gun in your hand) or available to law enforcement using its various investigative tools (interviews, forensics, search warrants, etc.). Probable cause will support your arrest. It will also support charging you with the crime.

The prosecutor evaluates the evidence and decides if he has sufficient evidence to convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the essential elements of the crime (you possessed a Title II weapon, you possessed marijuana or you intentionally shot a particular person). If he decides he does, he goes to the grand jury and seeks an indictment (the expression of the grand jury's opinion that probable cause exists to believe you committed the crime) or he files a bill of particulars (or something similar called by a different name in the particular jurisdiction); and you are bound over for trial.

You go to trial presumed innocent. That means that it's the burden of the prosecutor to overcome that presumption of innocence by proving beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the essential elements of the crime (you possessed a Title II weapon, you possessed marijuana, you intentionally shot a particular person). If he can't meet his burden of proof, you are entitled, under your presumption of innocence, to an acquittal.

So the normal defense tactic is to try to create a reasonable doubt that it was you, that you did it or that you did it intentionally. That will be pretty hard to do when you were seen holding the sbr, or when you were out in public openly smoking your doobie, or when you claim you had to shoot in self defense.

There is another class of defenses. These are called affirmative defense. If you are asserting one of these defenses, you are saying that you aren't guilty because you were legally entitled to do what you did. You were legally entitled to possess this Title II weapon or marijuana. You were legally justified in shooting this person who attacked and would have killed you if you had not used lethal force to stop him.

The principal evidence supporting your affirmative defense is within your control (your tax stamp, your medical marijuana card, your testimony about how you were attacked). And since this evidence is within your control, the law requires that you raise your affirmative defense and put forward the evidence to support it.

Does that clear things up for you?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmdive
...If you can't, then you must admit that what you are claiming is NOT law,...
What I am claiming is that if you have open possession of an obvious Title II weapon, it would be probable cause for your arrest. Give it a try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptsplashdown
...My Solution: Do what you have to do to deal with the situation, but at least make an attempt to show the LEO or RSO the error of his or her ways so they don't act inappropriately next time around....
Have fun.

Last edited by Frank Ettin; November 30, 2009 at 05:19 PM.
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Old November 30, 2009, 04:34 PM   #92
SAIGAFISH
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dont go to ranges
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Old November 30, 2009, 05:26 PM   #93
Powderman
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Quote:
Why not make it a presumption that NFA weapons are legally in possession of the citizen unless there is reason to believe that they are illegally possessed (other than their mere existence and presence at the range.)
Because until we, as the American people, CHANGE the law, or exercise our three legislative avenues (petition, referendum or recall), it IS the law.

Read this carefully.

If you have something IN YOUR HAND or in your immediate area of control (see: Chimel v. California) that is highly regulated, or deemed to be contraband by existing law, you are BEGGING to have that item inspected or checked.

And by posing the point of view that police officer can NOT enforce Federal law is dead WRONG. Even if we are out of our jurisdiction, but within the same State, we can detain for the proper jurisdiction.

So go ahead, and wave your SBR/SBS/AOW/Title II around at the range all you want. I guarantee that sooner or later you WILL be contacted by an officer--whether that officer is municipal, county, State or Federal.

Go ahead and give the officer some guff about jurisdiction. We love to hear that one. You might want to read up on mutual aid agreements and/or policies concerning your State before you do so, though.
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Old November 30, 2009, 05:29 PM   #94
AK103K
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dont go to ranges
Thats been my solution for the most part, or at least ranges that dont have many people there, and who dont care if you shoot these types of weapons there. Lucky for me these days, I rarely see a soul at the range when I shoot, and its nice not to have the attention and hassles.

I've actually had more contact with the police when not at a range though, especially when we lived in a more suburban area, even though it was still rural. People have been told and conditioned that machine guns are all illegal, and it wasnt long before the police showed up the first couple of times. Most of the encounters were cool, and a couple even stayed and shot a little (I always kept a couple of mags just in case they showed up ), but most didnt.

For the most part, the ranges are just a source of people who dont have a clue as to what is legal and what isnt, but even so, they seem to know it all. I've been told on more than a few occasions that my guns were illegal and I was going to be arrested, and this was by people who were shooting at the range. I've also been chastised by shooters who thought I shouldnt be able to own them, as they gave us all a bad name. Todd forbid, they associate my machine gun with their fancy sporting clays gun or benchrest rifle. We are actually our own worst enemy most of the time.

I've always carried a copy of my paperwork with me, and have only had to show it to someone a couple of times. If you want to shoot at a range, and they will even let you, they usually require you have it along. Its their rules, and it gives the boy at the counter that little extra authority that so many of the employees and RO's at these type places seem to need and thrive on. You just made their day coming in with something that they can challenge you with. These days, I try my best to avoid them all like the plague. Actually, I'm starting to think I'm still in the 4th grade, and these are all the people wanting to be on the safety patrol and cant wait to run to the teacher to turn me in and get a gold star.

I understand perfectly cptsplashdown's question and plight, and do agree with him. I also understand how things work, and I'm tired of butting heads with nit wits and those on power and authority trips, so I just try to lay low anymore and try to have some fun. So far...life is good, and layoff (with lots of range time) is just around the corner.
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Old November 30, 2009, 08:50 PM   #95
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Florida at least has State statutes regarding automatic weapons and SBR/SBS so locals can take enforcement action. I always carry copies of all my Form 4's when ever I have one of the weapons in my possession. I think to do otherwise is silly. As a cop, I know that most cops have no clue what a Form 4 is and think that machine guns are illegal. They way I look at it I'd rather show the paperwork and avoid a problem. If the cop ignores the paperwork and arrests me, I've got two solid legs to stand on and as soon as that case hits the ASA's desk, it'll get tossed. Then my attorney will get involved.

I'm lucky enough to have a private range to shoot at so I've never taken any of my NFA stuff to a public range. Were I to do so, you can bet that my paperwork would in the case with the weapon. Thats just common sense.
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Old December 1, 2009, 12:30 AM   #96
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Technically under the "only the ATF" can see my paperwork ideology, the presiding state judge is not an ATF agent, so he has no right to see it either. Good luck with the case after that...
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Old December 1, 2009, 01:35 AM   #97
JohnKSa
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WOW!!! really? I thought in the US you were innocent till PROVEN guilty?
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So you DO suggest that in regards to NFA that we are in fact guilty till proven innocent?
You are innocent until proven guilty during your trial. If everyone were truly innocent until proven guilty no one could ever be arrested and jailed until trial because innocent people shouldn't be arrested and can't be placed in jail.

This goes back to the "magic guilt determiner" that doesn't exist. Police don't determine guilt, they don't operate based on the idea that you are innocent until proven guilty nor do they operate based on the idea that you are guilty. They merely evaluate the situation to determine if there's enough evidence to justify an arrest. If there is, they're taking you downtown even though you are innocent until proven guilty.

If you have an NFA weapon and can't/won't prove that you have it legally then there is enough evidence to justify an arrest.

If you just shot someone and can't/won't prove it was self-defense then there is enough evidence to justify an arrest.

If you are carrying a concealed handgun and can't/won't present your permit then there is enough evidence to justify an arrest.

You may have been acting legally in all the above cases but without proof the officer is going to act based on the evidence available to him. You can't ask any more of him!
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....You are saying that having an NFA item = illegal.... and that is just not true in any way shape or form no matter how many people *think* it is true...
NO, that is not what anyone is saying. Go back and look at my analogy where I shot someone in self-defense.

I did nothing illegal and yet there is EVERY indication that I am guilty of murder. Are you REALLY saying that I should be allowed to go free because I am innocent until proven guilty? That I shouldn't have to present the evidence showing I acted in self-defense because my actions were legal?

That is not even remotely realistic. If you present the appearance of breaking the law (by possessing NFA items, by carrying a concealed handgun, by shooting someone) then you had better be ready to prove your innocence (by showing your tax stamp, by showing your CHL/CCW permit, by presenting evidence that you acted in self-defense).
Quote:
FBI/DEA/ local police cannot demand your tax forms without a warrant.
1. That assumes that there are no state laws that "back up" the NFA laws. If there are, they may not be able to demand your forms but they can arrest you and prosecute you under the state laws.

2. Even if they can't demand your forms and there are no state "back up laws" I believe you will find that they can detain you until such time as you can be turned over to the ATF.
Quote:
...make an attempt to show the LEO or RSO the error of his or her ways so they don't act inappropriately next time around.
This would be analogous to my self-defense shooting where I refuse to present evidence to the officer proving my innocence. After the trial, where I finally cough up the evidence that shows I really shot in self-defense, what do you think would happen if I then admonished the arresting officer that he shouldn't arrest people in the future for shooting others because they could be innocent like I was?
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Please cite the LETTER of the law that says you MUST have the forms with you?
Having the forms protects you--it prevents your being arrested. If you don't want to have them with you and the law says you don't have to have them with you AND you don't mind being arrested then you don't have to have them with you.

If you want to avoid being arrested, having your NFA items confiscated and having to reclaim them from the police then having your forms with you seems like a pretty good idea.

Sort of like my presenting evidence that I shot in self-defense seems like a good idea even though the law doesn't say I have to talk to the officer.
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Old December 1, 2009, 01:45 AM   #98
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Having the forms protects you--it prevents your being arrested. If you don't want to have them with you and the law says you don't have to have them with you AND you don't mind being arrested then you don't have to have them with you.
Thank you, SIR!!!

This is what I--and every other poster--has been trying to say, reduced to its barest and purest essence.

I am not the trier of fact--the Court is. However, when I have probable cause--which has been defined as believing that a crime has been/will be/is being committed--I am empowered by the law to arrest the person (arrest meaning to restrict your freedom of movement), and to deliver them to the trier of fact.

I firmly believe that any man or woman who is not a felon should be able to have, keep, shoot and bear the arms they want, in any WAY that they want. I don't have a problem with inanimate objects.

But until the law is changed, IT IS THE LAW. And I--and others who wear the uniform, carry the badge and have taken the oath--will enforce that law.

Does this make sense?
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Old December 1, 2009, 09:32 AM   #99
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I understand what all of you are saying.... You all seem to be missing my point. I will try one last time.

It is the attitude that has been expressed time after time that it is just fine to arrest someone that is actually within the law (no one has show a single cite of law that says anything other than you have to show the form to the ATF) because it is the easier thing to do, and the "normal" thing.

This type of attitude hurts our position more than the actual law.... We breed a society that thinks NFA = illegal. As some have posted that police don't even know about tax stamps.... Much less the average citizen.

How can WE expect them to know the law when WE don't know it, or don't bother to actually follow the law ourselves?

It is crystal clear that most are willing to play along with the new set of made up rules..... But that is not the law no matter how many people *think* it is the law.

Said in this thread:
1. You have to have the forms with you or you are a felon.... BS
2. You have to have the ORIGINALS... BS.

Quote:
Having the forms protects you--it prevents your being arrested. If you don't want to have them with you and the law says you don't have to have them with you AND you don't mind being arrested then you don't have to have them with you.
And this is the attitude I am talking about. You are fine with legal citizens exercising 2nd Amendment rights being arrested based on nothing more than suspicion.

The law also says that felons are not allowed to own guns... So are you fine with the police arresting the guy that LOOKS like a gangbanger just to see if he is a felon?

Our worst enemy is not the Brady group... It is the gun owner that thinks assault weapons should be banned, and that MG's are illegal. And saying it is fine to arrest someone just because they have a title II item and not following some made up "law" is perpetuating that stereotypical thought process.
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Old December 1, 2009, 09:58 AM   #100
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The way the law is written in TX, and likely many other states, these items are illegal ... except for when they are not. This exception would be the tax stamp, and the burden of proof would be on the owner.

I understand the point trying to be made, it's just that that is not the way the law currently reads (again, in TX at least).

If you don't like it, write your local lawmakers.
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