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Old November 5, 2012, 06:58 PM   #1
Captains1911
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Transporting Shotgun in Vehicle

I just purchased a new SUV, and discovered an excellent hiding spot for my Remington 870. I live in Virginia but very close to MD and WV that I travel to often. I also travel into DC occasionally. My question pertains to the legality of transporting the shotgun out of state. I plan to keep it in a gun sock, unloaded but with shells in the side saddle, and additional shells in a seperate unlocked compartment. My understanding is that this should be no problem in VA and WV, but I'm unsure about MD and DC. I also visit NYS a few times a year, sometimes with brief stops in NYC. Any guidance on the legality of all this would be appreciated.
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Old November 5, 2012, 07:34 PM   #2
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You know to be careful when relying on the internet for legal advice, which this is not.

New Your City: One site informs me that "shotguns may be kept in the city for only 24hours while in transit and these must be unloaded and stored in a locked container or automobile trunk for the period.

District of Columbia: The same site provides that "District of Columbia laws prohibits the transportation of firearms through the city unless the travel is to or from lawful recreational firearm-related activity"

The general rule it references is set out on that site, but you will note that a firearm must be unloaded, cased and locked in the automobile trunk. Once you reach your destination municipal laws may come into play.

Please do NOT rely on the above or the web site, which is located at http://www.cjrpc.com/interstate_1.htm . It is quite a few years out of date and I note it is wrong in at least one respect. If it is wrong about National Parks it may be incorrect as to other laws. One thing that is clear to me is that, if the laws are still the same as referenced above, transporting your shotgun in the manner described would at least be in violation of laws of the District of Columbia, New York City, and the so called general rule. Re that generl rule, I believe it incorrect as to the transportation of an unloaded shotgun in a motor vehicle (long guns need not be in a locked trunk). Of course I may be wrong about that one.

You didn't mention, but a lot of frequent business travelers stay in hotels and motels. Some take their security firearms into the room with them. That raises all sorts of different issues depending on the jurisdiction.

See if you can get a pamphlet, possibly on line, for each jurisdiction you intend to visit. The info you seek may be available from the NRA or an online source such as Calguns.net (of course for the particular local).

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Old November 5, 2012, 07:55 PM   #3
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I understand MD and DC have all kinds of very specific rules...and I believe what you're suggesting could cause you a lot of problems.

I suggest you contact some law enforcement agencies to find out what the laws are.
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Old November 5, 2012, 10:30 PM   #4
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Question? Why do you need to drive around with a shotgun in your car, and also if you need to ask these questions, that should be the first indaction that you probably should re think your plan.
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Old November 5, 2012, 11:56 PM   #5
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I suggest you contact some law enforcement agencies to find out what the laws are.
^^^This^^^

Laws pertaining to transporting firearms can/do vary widely from state to state.

Would also suggest calling each state you plan on traveling in.
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Old November 6, 2012, 02:15 AM   #6
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As is apparent from his post, the OP is aware of the fact that he not only has to concern himself with different states and the District, but cities such as NYC.

No offense to the corrections and other LEO's, but the laws of the various jurisdections are so confusing that I would be careful just asking any officer. Even the folks at our AG firearm division have trouble correctly explaining Cali firearm law. Still, if at all possible check them out on the equivalent of state attorney general web pages and don't forget the feds.

Lastly, "HIDING SPOT". That smells like a concealed weapon. Here in Cal, where an unloaded shotgun can be in the car, I don't believe I can toss a blanket over it or otherwise hide it.
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Old November 6, 2012, 07:21 AM   #7
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I would just check with local police to see what's legal. It'll be all bad to get a fine or worst a (seizure)
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Old November 6, 2012, 07:43 AM   #8
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Lastly, "HIDING SPOT". That smells like a concealed weapon. Here in Cal, where an unloaded shotgun can be in the car, I don't believe I can toss a blanket over it or otherwise hide it.
I've never heard of a "concealed" long gun. I'd like to learn more about this idea.
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Old November 6, 2012, 08:00 AM   #9
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With all due respect to law enforcement, it has been my experience that they are not always the right people to ask. I suggest a district attorney's office.
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Old November 6, 2012, 09:28 AM   #10
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Question? Why do you need to drive around with a shotgun in your car, and also if you need to ask these questions, that should be the first indaction that you probably should re think your plan.
I'm not sure how to respond to this... Do u have a CCW? I think perhaps you are in the wrong place.
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Old November 6, 2012, 09:30 AM   #11
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MD is my biggest concern as that's the state I travel to most frequently. I don't plan to have the gun loaded with shells in the tube, but as mentioned potentially with shells in the side saddle (which tecnically is considered unloaded). Some research leads me to believe that in MD the ammo must be separate from the gun and one the two must be locked. So if the ammo is in a locked container in the rear cargo area, and the gun is unlocked in a sock under the rear passenger seats, does this comply?
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Old November 6, 2012, 10:48 AM   #12
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I'm LEO and I can assure you that many police officers are not well informed on firearms laws. In Massachusetts the laws are confusing to say the least. I once observed a kid convicted of leaving a firearm unattended in a motor vehicle, problem is the law he was charged with pertains to handguns only, not the shotgun he left in his car. If the officer is wrong you may eventually win but that is after the arrest, confiscation, car towed, bail and other legal fees. Most States allow you to travel through with a properly stored firearm if your going hunting, competition or some other event involving firearms in another jurisdiction. There should be full faith and credit between all States in regards to firearms licenses/permits, similar to driver's licenses.
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Old November 6, 2012, 11:02 AM   #13
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I have a CPL here in MI, and at least in my state you have to have your long gun unloaded and cased in a vehical. I just cant see the reason to have a shot gun in a "hiding spot" in your SUV thats all. I'm sure that if you were to get pulled over and you told the cop you had a shotgun in a "hiding spot" in your car they might have some more questions for you.

Dont get me wrong I am all for the 2nd amendment and the constitution, I just dont under stand why someone would want to carry a hidden shot gun or 1,000 rounds of ammo in thier vehicle. I dont go around looking for a fire fight, but it seems like some people plan on it.
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Old November 6, 2012, 11:06 AM   #14
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I dont go around looking for a fire fight, but it seems like some people plan on it.
I CCW all day every day. I don't go around looking for a fight either, quite the opposite. But unfortunately the possibility always exists that a fight may find me. Is that not why we carry?
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Old November 6, 2012, 06:04 PM   #15
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I've never heard of a "concealed" long gun. I'd like to learn more about this idea.
Yes, grasshopper, many conealed weapon laws are restricted to handguns or firearms less than a certain length, but not all. Do the research. I will give you a clue. North Dakota.
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Old November 6, 2012, 06:08 PM   #16
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Just to make it clear, I have nothing but respect for LEOs and I only suggest that because of the complexity of gun laws, and the volume of laws that they deal with, that most are not the best source of info on them. Even state attorneys have trouble understanding some of the gun laws.
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Old November 6, 2012, 06:54 PM   #17
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Klawman you are so very right, here in Michigan any firearm rifle/shotgun falls under pistol laws if the overall length is less than 30 inches.
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Old November 6, 2012, 08:59 PM   #18
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Dang it Jaguar, I am like that monkey with a typewriter or the clock that gets the time correct twice a day. I know I have a 50/50 chance of predicting the next POTUS.
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Old November 7, 2012, 12:16 AM   #19
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For Maryland.
CARRYING AND TRANSPORTATION IN VEHICLES

Rifles and shotguns being transported in motor vehicles must be unloaded.

It is a crime to wear or carry openly any rifle or shotgun with the intent or purpose of unlawfully injuring any person.

For Washington D.C.
In Washington, D.C., all firearms must be registered with the police, by the terms of the Firearms Control Regulations Act of 1975.

I live in NOVA and don't carry any weapons (even a folding knife) when I go to MD or D.C.
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Old November 7, 2012, 12:16 AM   #20
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Klawman,

I'm often told "even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and again".
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Old November 7, 2012, 12:30 AM   #21
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I plan to keep it in a gun sock, unloaded but with shells in the side saddle, and additional shells in a seperate unlocked compartment.
Why, in case an impromptu hunting trip presents itself? By the time you got that into action I imagine the fight would be over. Just use the car to get away from trouble. Don't load the gun up and come back.
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Old November 7, 2012, 02:57 AM   #22
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Klawman,

I'm often told "even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and again".
I like it.

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Old November 7, 2012, 05:30 AM   #23
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Capt --

Keep in mind in reading firearms laws, reports etc and etc. i have seen mentions of regions (don't remember where) where a shotgun with shells in a side saddle would be considered "loaded" because the ammo and gun are next to each other / can be made ready to fire quickly. Might have been NJ, or NYS or both?

On the east cost where you are I would think you are in a veritable minefield of firearms laws and pitfalls. Drive through NJ to get to NYS? I lived there, there are more ways to jack someone with a firearms felony there than I care to mention. One memorable case I read involved a person who had moved from texas with a M1 carbine, and another gun or two. Said person got in minor legal troubles and this gun and a few other tid bits that would not raise even an eyebrow in another state were translated into 7 felony charges.

If you do the research I think you are going to find this is a whole lot of trouble for a just how much benefit? You want to know that you are 100% in the clear everywhere you go due to the nature of the places you travel and their laws. Face it, you could be the victim of fate... say you get rear ended or your truck gets stolen and because of inattention to detail you are in violation somehow, now you may well be hit with a weapons charge. It's the nature of places like NJ, NYC, MD, DC. I have lived there and now live in the west, I am sure even a minor issue like this, if you are otherwise square would not amount to much in most of the western states, back east a whole other story.

Please also keep in mind that while I full support the right to carry, keep arms in one's vehicle etc, many, many persons will question why one feels the need to keep a long arm in their vehicle even if it's an accepted right to do so and legal to do so. The simple reason for this is we CCW, or carry arms shall we say for self DEFENSE.

Defense implies an emergent threat situation that must be met immediately to save your life or facilitate escape from the situation. It is difficult to construct terribly reality based situations (i.e. NOT end of the world, blah blah blah) where getting a shotgun out of your vehicle, loading it, and deploying it somehow meets with an emergent need for defense of your life as a civilian. In these sorts of situations, you having the time or get it out, load it and deploy it makes it seem not like defense at all, more like offense which, frankly is not the primary duty or reason why civilians are carrying arms.

Yes I know in most states one may use deadly force to protect the life of another or stop certain felonies. I get that, but again, first off, how likely is it ever that you are going to find yourself in some such situation? A situation where you know a felony is happening, or life is in danger, and you have time to get your gun, load it, and do something? What kind of thing are you thinking of getting involved in? An active shooter? Robbery?

Do you see how this sort of discussion makes it look a little like you are either looking for a gun fight or looking to overstep a bit? Even more so given the legal aspects and such given where you are and where you travel.
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Old November 7, 2012, 07:00 AM   #24
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RsqVet said it much better than I did.
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Old November 7, 2012, 09:10 AM   #25
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RsqVet said it much better than I did.
X 2

Thats what I meant in my post also. Well said RsqVet!
I carry as much as I can, and I do it to protect myself and my family. I am not going around playing cop, or looking for a gun fight ect. Just because you have a ccw does not mean that you are a cop. I carry a spare mag with both my ccw guns in hopes that if the need asrises I hopefully have enought ammo to disingauge from the situation. I dont want to stay and fight it out. I'm not rambo.

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