(FL) Questionable vehicle carry arrest...

Discussion in 'Carry Issues' started by Palmguy, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. Palmguy

    Palmguy Boom.

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    Apologies if this is a repost, I didn't see it anywhere...

    Glen Coffee (former 49ers running back) was arrested in FWB last night for carrying a concealed weapon. Arrest report stated that a .380 Sig was found in the center console "readily accessible" to Coffee. I'm assuming that his 2008 Caddy had a lid on the center console, and if so it seems like this is a bogus charge (FS 790.001 and 790.25).

    Arrest report here: http://richmedia.onset.freedom.com/nwfdn/l9zd36-doc20101008100226.pdf

    News story here: http://www.nwfdailynews.com/news/former-33707-coffee-running.html

    The arrest report states that the firearm was "located in the center console / armrest readily accessible to Coffee Jr." Only problem is that a firearm only has to be securely encased OR not readily accessible for it to be legal.

    The charge he was arrested on:

    A member on FSN was arrested for a similar happening several months ago, the charges were recently dropped but only after spending thousands in defense fees and everything else that goes along with being arrested and charged etc.

    Yes, the easy answer is "get a CWFL"...and while I don't disagree with that sentiment, it's missing the point. We have a responsibility to know the law when we own and carry firearms, but so do LEOs who are arresting people.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2010
  2. G31

    G31 Millennium Member

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    Just because an arrest is made, doesn't mean it will go beyond the asst. state atty.'s desk. I've seen some BS arrests (Including Battery on LEO, when a drunk guy stumbled during FSTs, placing his hand on another female officer. she then arrested him on felony battery, and I stood there thinking, "are you f'ing serious???"). A good ASA will just "no file" this kind of stuff and move on. More often than not, you will not need to spend thousands to defend yourself, if the charge is really BS.

    I will bet that the charges will be dropped, UNLESS there's more to the story than this. We all know how well the news works.

    It can also be argued that there is some way, shape, or form that the guy didn't meet statutory requirements. It can also be argued that somehow his method of securing the gun does not meet past case law definition for "securely encased". I'll be the first to say that just because a law is on the books, doesn't mean you can't be arrested and convicted of a violation, even if you do everything right (to your knowledge). This is why case law is very important. The statute is only part of the equation.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010

  3. Palmguy

    Palmguy Boom.

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    A good ASA may circular file the case, but my point is that a good cop shouldn't make the arrest in the first place. It's a waste of taxpayer dollars and a violation of the rights of the accused (in my opinion, if nothing more).

    From what I've seen, there isn't a whole lot of ambiguity here, even in case law. You have a plainly worded statute with a stated objective for liberal interpretation in favor of the "lawful use, ownership, and possession" of firearms. You have an if it meets this list of conditions or this list of conditions, it's legal. Container with closed lid? Good to go. Period. The cases I've seen the courts have relied on the very plainly worded text of the statutes.

    Here's an example: http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=5762136955601467555&hl=en&as_sdt=2&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr

     
  4. MrSmoofy

    MrSmoofy

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    I've always understood the FL law to mean 2 steps. IF the gun is in the center console or glove box that's not enough it would also need to be in some kind of secured holster as well. Now I'm no expert and I could be wrong but that's what I've always been told and understood it.
     
  5. John Rambo

    John Rambo Raven

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    No. There are no 3 step or 2 step rules. No steps at all.

    The gun can't be immediately available for use.

    This means it can be enclosed in any kind of container (zippered, clasped, latched) or even a holster that covers the trigger completely with a thumb break.

    Cops are not half as well-informed of our gun laws as people hope they are. As a result they frequently make mistakes. This will get thrown out, unless the latch on his center console was broken or the center console was open.
     
  6. aviator0402

    aviator0402

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    FL law you can have a hand gun in your Glove compartment/ center console, as long as its in a holster with a snap. there is a specific provision for this in the statute.
     
  7. John Rambo

    John Rambo Raven

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    No there is not. At least not that I've ever seen.
     
  8. Rusty Shackleford

    Rusty Shackleford mmhmm

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    Florida Firearms Law, Use & Ownership by Jon H. Gutmacher is a good resource written by an expert.
     
  9. Rusty Shackleford

    Rusty Shackleford mmhmm

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    It's in the legal definition of "securely encased."

    790.001

    (17) "Securely encased" means in a glove compartment, whether or not locked; snapped in a holster; in a gun case, whether or not locked; in a zippered gun case; or in a closed box or container which requires a lid or cover to be opened for access.


    But if we're splitting hairs, it doesn't have to be in the glove compartment (or any other container) if it's snapped in a holster.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  10. John Rambo

    John Rambo Raven

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    Nope. Not according to the statutes, which define securely encased.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  11. John Rambo

    John Rambo Raven

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    (17) "Securely encased" means in a glove compartment, whether or not locked; snapped in a holster; in a gun case, whether or not locked; in a zippered gun case; or in a closed box or container which requires a lid or cover to be opened for access.
     
  12. John Rambo

    John Rambo Raven

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    Nor does it have to be in a holster if its in a glove compartment. We're not splitting hairs. My original statements stand.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  13. Rusty Shackleford

    Rusty Shackleford mmhmm

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    I interpreted his statement to mean that a gun snapped in a holster in the glove box is legal.

    You interpreted it to mean that it MUST be snapped in a holster.

    We weren't even on the same page.
     
  14. Palmguy

    Palmguy Boom.

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    To recap the last few posts...a handgun in a glove compartment or center console does NOT have to be in any kind of holster.

    These 2 step/3 step rules that people talk about do not exist in Florida law.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  15. fuzzy03cls

    fuzzy03cls

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    Absolutely. If it's as it's stated, it's nothing more then a overzealous LEO that doesn't understand the FL gun laws & should have to take remedial classes on the subject before being allowed back on the street.
    In fact a lot of you guys should really read & understand FL gun law without a CWL & with a CWL.
     
  16. diablo_svr

    diablo_svr

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    Anytime I'm put into a no carry situation (post office, etc...) I just put it in the center console. All that matters is that it's in something that is snapped, latched, zipped, etc... This is one of the things learned in FL CWL course.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  17. G31

    G31 Millennium Member

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    If the charges stick, I'm going to be inclined to believe there's more to the story, honestly.

    As you have posted, there is the other part of the statute (FSS 790.25(5)) that states the following:
    "...or is otherwise not readily accessible for immediate use."

    It seems the guy got nailed on this part, as the arresting officer felt the gun was readily accesible for one reason or another. I would hesitate to question the intent of the officer, or call him a bad cop, without having his side of the story. This is really all speculation until more details come out.

    I don't know the case law on this subject, so I'll go with what you're saying. I can tell you other aspects of weapons/firearms, such as that of the use of force, are not so clear-cut, even though the statutes are clearly worded.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  18. fastbolt

    fastbolt

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    Since I'm in no way familiar with FL law ...

    Does the glovebox have to be enclosed, meaning does there have to be a cover/lid/door which closes and secures/conceals the contents, and a firearm contained therein is not readily accessible for immediate use as long as the glove box is closed? 790.001 seems to read that way.

    If so, was the center console/armrest described in the article the type which is open and uncovered, or has a door which can be closed and secured? How was the gun considered readily accessible for immediate use in this instance?

    It seems that this might have some bearing when considering the applicable statute and any relevant case law supporting an arrest.

    I can't remember what the center console of an Escalade is like and I'm not inclined to assume.

    I always took current case law interpretations and definitions into account when determining whether probable cause existed for an on-view arrest in my state.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2010
  19. NAC

    NAC

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    As a former FL LEO I can tell you there is no step process. I too don't know where this BS myth came from. The law is clear- in a container with a lid or holster with a thumb break. It could be in a shoe box next to you on the seat, if the shoe box has a lid you're good.

    If these are the actual facts of the case then this was a bad arrest and will get tossed. The saying is still the same- you can beat the charge but you won't beat the ride.. if the cop has it in for you.
     
  20. Ryobi

    Ryobi SummertimeRules

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    Cops are almost always better informed about carry laws than permittees. Its part of the job. It's only on the internet that the average ccw'er know more about firearms and the law than the pros..