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Posted: 10/24/2001 6:20:05 PM EDT
I approached a Class-III dealer at a gunshow recently and inquired about a supressed weapon, and what was involved with getting a class-III stamp. I was told not to bother, the Bexar Co. Sheriff, Ralph Lopez would not approve it. I was bothered by this, as I have a clean record. So I contacted the Sheriffs department, and was told flatly that if I was not a law enforcement officer, neither the Sheriffs dept. nor the Chief of Police would approve an application for a class-III weapon, period. Is this a civil rights violation? If so, how can I persue it?
Link Posted: 10/24/2001 6:50:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/24/2001 6:46:15 PM EDT by Robbie]
Current law for class III type devices does have a part where each state can make up it's own rules. For Arizona (and a few other states)...you're cleared...you just have to send in the paperwork and tax $$ to the ATF for them to do the background check. For other states...nobody...no how For other states...Yes...but only if the "Chief Local Law Enforcement Officer" says ok. Basically your sherrif or chief of police would have to sign off on your paperwork before you send it to the ATF. And they can make up pretty much whatever local rule they want on that as far as I know. The above is very basic. I'm not sure which state yours falls into. If it's one of the "no way" states, then moving is about your easiest option. If you're in one of the states that wants the LEO to sign off on it. Shopping for CLEO's nearby isn't easy and sometimes you end up with the same guy saying "no." In some states, a corporation can get a class III weapon and bypass the CLEO signature. So in theory incorporating yourself or incorporating a small business. However if you ever go out of business, the class III weapon goes back. Sometimes the Class III dealers have advice on how to navigate this legal maze. Here's a link that goes into it a little more: [url]http://www.westernfirearms.com/how.htm[/url] Filing suit can be done. Not cheaply though as you'd probably have to go as far as the state Supreme Court of the US Supreme Court and without a financial sponsor, the cost is prohibitive.
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 8:20:11 PM EDT
What pisses me off is that the CLEO is not the one who makes the decision. They think that they are some how lible if they sign off on it, when all they are doing is signing a document showing that YOU are not a felon or have anything barring you from owning guns, AND that in your state it is legal do own such weapons. I had to go through this with the state police, I couldnt even get past the receptionists because all he would say is that "we don't give approval of those types of guns, they are illegal" 5 minutes of that and I just hung up and went to my sherrif, he signed it off after I explained everything to him... BISHOP
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 8:31:49 PM EDT
As I said in a similar way in anothor topic: If something is being done to you, yes, it is legal. If you are doing something, then no, it is not legal.
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 8:38:54 PM EDT
Some of them don't sign. One way to go about it is to schedule an appointment with your local CLEO, and ask for a sig. If he says he will only sign for other LEO's, remind him that the only crime ever committed with an NFA weapon [b][size=4]WAS COMMITTED BY![/b][/size=4] a LEO, with his personal MAC-10. You still won't get your sig, but making hypocrites feel like shit based on thier own hypocricy is our duty to society. Mine is SUPER GOOD about signing, and I got a NFA range 20 mins. from my house... I really ought to take advantage of it.
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 10:21:35 PM EDT
If you've explored all avenues for a signature in your locality, there is another tactic you can try. While corporate ownership is possible, its more expensive and a bit more of a hassle than ownership by you personally - you have to keep the corp alive, including filing any necessary tax returns, paying any required annual fees to the state, business licenses, etc. However, instead of actually obtaining a weapon through a corp., you can use it to try to pressure your CLEO into giving an individual signoff. Try and get some face time with the sheriff to explain what you want. If/when he says no, politely and calmly explain that their approval and signature is not required, and there are other methods at your disposal to legally purchase and possess an NFA weapon in their jurisdiction. By giving you a signoff, they get to keep track of what you have in your possession (they see what you're buying when they sign-off on your form 4). OTOH, if they refuse to sign, explain that you will still obtain the weapon in question, as well as any other NFA weapons you wish, at any time, without their approval or notification by means of corporate ownership. In other words, you give them a choice - give me a signoff and you'll know what I've got and when I got it, or I will completely circumvent your authority and obtain any weapons I want, whenever I want and you'll be completely in the dark as to what types of weaponry are in my possession. (And, because the form 4 is a tax document, the local CLEO cannot get info from BATF without enough probable cause to support a warrant).
Link Posted: 10/26/2001 3:24:47 AM EDT
The CLEO is not the only avenue. You can get a state or local prosecutor to sign or a state or local Judge. Make appointments with ALL of them until you have run down the list. Plead your case. Bring with you a DMV and criminal (state and local) abstract showing you are a good boy. Fill out, completely, the Form 4 AND have the fingerprint cards already finished when you go in for the sig. Also, have a copy of the state and federal law to educate the uneducated. Tell all of them, in the end if they refuse, that you plan on filing suit for a [i]mandamus[/i] order requiring the sig- it's been done in several states that OK class III. Don't say this UNLESS they deny. Also, if they deny, do as McCarrots suggested and remind them of that fact! What a dick.
Link Posted: 10/26/2001 3:26:25 AM EDT
Oh yea, and Texas allows NFA suppressors. Update us on what happens.
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