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Storing rifle/shotgun behind truck seat

Motodeficient

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Nov 14, 2012
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I live in Maine. I have a regular cab truck, does anyone know if its legal for me to store an unloaded rifle or shotgun behind the seat if its not in a secure case? What about if its unloaded and in a gun case, but the case is not locked?

I was thinking about getting the Du-Ha storage box that fits behind the seat and holds one or two long guns, but this doesn't have a cover its just an open box.

Was also thinking about possibly storing my AR-15 broken down in a soft padded case behind the seat.

Any thoughts?
 
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boyscout399

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Lyman, Maine
If it's accessible to the driver it must be visible, not concealed. It cannot be loaded in a vehicle whether you have a CCW permit or not.
 

Motodeficient

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If it's accessible to the driver it must be visible, not concealed. It cannot be loaded in a vehicle whether you have a CCW permit or not.
That doesn't really answer any of my questions though. I guess what I want to know is; what is considered "accessible" or "not accessible" to a driver of a regular cab pickup truck. Loose behind the seat? Behind the seat in a closed gun case? Behind the seat in a closed & LOCKED gun case? In the bed of the truck? At home under your bed? Obviously a long gun cannot be loaded in your vehicle even if you have a permit.
 

boyscout399

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That doesn't really answer any of my questions though. I guess what I want to know is; what is considered "accessible" or "not accessible" to a driver of a regular cab pickup truck. Loose behind the seat? Behind the seat in a closed gun case? Behind the seat in a closed & LOCKED gun case? In the bed of the truck? At home under your bed? Obviously a long gun cannot be loaded in your vehicle even if you have a permit.
Sorry for the misunderstanding. The law doesn't define what is "accessible" or "not accessible" so that's going to be up to the officer who decides to charge or not charge you, and the judge and jury who decide to convict or not convict you. As to Maine Law, as long as the firearm is unloaded, the only applicable law is the prohibition on concealed carry. I'll quote it here:
1.Display or carrying prohibited. A person may not, unless excepted by a provision of law:
B. Wear under the person's clothes or conceal about the person's person a firearm, slungshot, knuckles, bowie knife, dirk, stiletto or other dangerous or deadly weapon usually employed in the attack on or defense of a person.
The common definition of "about the person's person" leads me to believe that if you can reach and grab it then it's "about your person." The common definition of concealed means "not visible." Legally, a gun in a gun case is "concealed." A gun in a locked case is still concealed. The case isn't concealed, but the GUN is. Whether a cop would charge you with it is a different matter. That's gonna depend on whether it's a pro-gun cop or an anti-gun cop.

As to assembly. That statute uses the Title 17-A definition of what a firearm is:

12-A. "Firearm" means any weapon, whether loaded or unloaded, which is designed to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive and includes any such weapon commonly referred to as a pistol, revolver, rifle, gun, machine gun or shotgun. Any weapon which can be made into a firearm by the insertion of a firing pin, or other similar thing, or by repair, is a firearm.
So if it can be assembled or repaired into a firearm, then it's a firearm. Disassembly doesn't matter.
 
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Motodeficient

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Thanks for your responses. I suppose its too risky either way, better just to stick with the concealed handgun (Once the permit finally arrives, its been 8 weeks today, as we discussed in my other recently posted thread here).


But now I am questioning how I can even legally transport my rifles/shotguns in this truck to a target shooting destination. It seems like the only way we can truly agree that it is legal would be to place the long guns unloaded in plain view. This is not always practical however.
 

Grapeshot

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Sorry for the misunderstanding. The law doesn't define what is "accessible" or "not accessible" so that's going to be up to the officer who decides to charge or not charge you, and the judge and jury who decide to convict or not convict you. As to Maine Law, as long as the firearm is unloaded, the only applicable law is the prohibition on concealed carry. I'll quote it here:


The common definition of "about the person's person" leads me to believe that if you can reach and grab it, then it needs to be visible. Legally, a gun in a gun case is "concealed." The case isn't concealed, but the GUN is. Whether a cop would charge you with it is a different matter. That's gonna depend on whether it's a pro-gun cop or an anti-gun cop.

As to assembly. That statute uses the Title 17-A definition of what a firearm is:

So if it can be assembled or repaired into a firearm, then it's a firearm. Disassembly doesn't matter.
Think you're going to need more than that to make it clear. A long gun behind my seat (on the floor) it not readily nor easily accessible - in fact I cannot remove it from there in my truck w/o stopping and opening the door. There are other solutions http://www.du-ha.com/

A gun in a case is concealed? Even if locked? So a gun safe in a vehicle would be concealled? Really?
 

Motodeficient

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Yes as I mentioned in the first post, I was looking at the Du-ha storage bin to go behind the seat of my regular cab silverado. However its an open bin with no cover or lock. So I wasn't sure if this would be a legal or not.





I was also wondering about storing a broken down AR-15 in a soft padded case behind the seat



 
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boyscout399

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Think you're going to need more than that to make it clear. A long gun behind my seat (on the floor) it not readily nor easily accessible - in fact I cannot remove it from there in my truck w/o stopping and opening the door. There are other solutions http://www.du-ha.com/

A gun in a case is concealed? Even if locked? So a gun safe in a vehicle would be concealled? Really?
Maine law does not say "readily accessible." That's why I quoted the statute in my post. Maine law says "about the person's person" The common definition of "about the person" is "within reach." The common definition of "concealed" means "not visible" so yes, a gun in a case is concealed. Can you see the gun? No. The case conceals it.
 

boyscout399

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Lyman, Maine
Yes as I mentioned in the first post, I was looking at the Du-ha storage bin to go behind the seat of my regular cab silverado. However its an open bin with no cover or lock. So I wasn't sure if this would be a legal or not.





I was also wondering about storing a broken down AR-15 in a soft padded case behind the seat



The open top bin looks like it would be visible, therefore, not concealed. The AR15 in a case is not visible, and needs to be out of reach. It's a stupid inconsistency with Maine law, but an overzealous cop and DA could get you convicted.
 

boyscout399

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Lyman, Maine
Thanks for your responses. I suppose its too risky either way, better just to stick with the concealed handgun (Once the permit finally arrives, its been 8 weeks today, as we discussed in my other recently posted thread here).


But now I am questioning how I can even legally transport my rifles/shotguns in this truck to a target shooting destination. It seems like the only way we can truly agree that it is legal would be to place the long guns unloaded in plain view. This is not always practical however.
Maine law isn't concerned with "practical" lol. It's stupid I know. I don't know if you ever saw the videos about Wisconsin's conflicting firearm laws, but Maine has a similar flaw. The only way to make it legal is if it's always visible.
 

boyscout399

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Technically speaking, by the letter of the law, if you don't have a concealed weapon's permit, than any time you're carrying your gun in a case, you're breaking the law.
 

boyscout399

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Technically speaking, by the letter of the law, if you don't have a concealed weapon's permit, than any time you're carrying your gun in a case, you're breaking the law.
This was not the legislator's intent when they created the ban on concealed firearms, but like most legislation, it was crafted very poorly and without much thought and has this stupid unintended consequence.
 

Grapeshot

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Did I say something wrong?
Only when you serve to remind me that there are such inane laws on the books.

Maine is such an attractive state to me - then I look at the gun laws and I get frustrated.

Illinios I understand, even Washington D.C., but Maine does not compute.
 

Motodeficient

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Yet the Brady Campaign says our gun control laws are very lacking, giving Maine a 7 out of possible 100 points. LOL

http://www.bradycampaign.org/xshare...1_Brady_Campaign_State_Scorecard_Rankings.pdf

Your state (VA) gets 12 points, and even a star! hurray!

The Brady Campaign has really done gun owners a favor with this report. We now have a ranked order of which states to stay the hell away from.



BTW Maine is a state the votes Democrat, if that helps explain anything :banghead:
 
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Grapeshot

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Yet the Brady Campaign says our gun control laws are very lacking, giving Maine a 7 out of possible 100 points. LOL

http://www.bradycampaign.org/stategunlaws/scorecard/ME/

Your state gets 12 points, hurray!
Realize that everything is relative and I do know how to work around our Virginia gun laws better.

In Virginia I can OC in vehicles, state buildings including the General Assembly building, in all state parks and even if consuming adult beverages (I don't) and do not have to I.D. myself to LEOs. Not bad for a state where powdered wigs are still in style.

Nevertheless when I start quoting the Bradyites as a source, it may be time to retire from my current advocation. :lol:
 

Motodeficient

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I wasn't mocking your or your state, just the Brady Campaign in general, as I happened to be looking over their site to see what they are up to these days.
 

boyscout399

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Lyman, Maine
Only when you serve to remind me that there are such inane laws on the books.

Maine is such an attractive state to me - then I look at the gun laws and I get frustrated.

Illinios I understand, even Washington D.C., but Maine does not compute.
It's just how the ban on carrying concealed guns was crafted that's the problem. And this is the case if you look at the laws in many states. Also, as long as you're not dumb, there's no reason why a cop would find a concealed long gun in your car anyway. Don't consent to searches. And even if they did, the rural police are not going to bat an eye at an unloaded gun in a case in a car on the way to the range or on the way to hunting. It's realistically a non-issue. However, I am a stickler for the letter of the law, so I just make sure any long guns in my vehicle are visible, then there will never be a question of compliance.

There really aren't that many gun laws in Maine relating to self defense TBH. There's the ban on fully automatic guns (unless federally stamped). There's the ban on concealed guns (except for handgun with permit). There's the ban for loaded in vehicles (this is the most problematic IMO). The ban on schools. And lastly the ban in posted bars. Everything else is fair game. Heck, Virginia is almost identical.
 
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