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Posted: 5/15/2005 8:16:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/15/2005 8:19:01 PM EST by JohnReich]
Well, my life is ruined. I just got a DUI and was charged with a 4th degree misdemeanor improper continence of a firearm. I had two unloaded pistols in the back seat of my car, apparently buried under some cloths, and with no ammo anywhere near them. WHAT IS THE FIREARMS TRANSPORTATION LAW?! The cops all told me different, seemingly made up things, and two of them had an argument with each other about it. My understanding was that guns were OK in a car, as long as there was no ammo within reach. I hope this doesn’t go on my record, because I intend to be a nurse, and they won’t allow some kind of pistol-packing drunk-driving moron to be a nurse, or anything. What should I do? Do I need a lawyer?

Oh, by the way, this is my first criminal or major traffic offense of any kind. The only other thing I've done is run a stopsign.
Link Posted: 5/15/2005 11:22:15 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/15/2005 11:26:10 PM EST by swingset]

Originally Posted By JohnReich:
What should I do? Do I need a lawyer?



Without question.


If they were not in a case, but lying under some cloth, might go against you.

Ohio law states carry is prohibited in a motor vehicle unless it's in one of these conditions:

A closed package, box, or case;

A compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle;

Plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for securing a firearm;

Plain sight, with the action open or the weapon stripped or, if the firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or which cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 2:55:41 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/16/2005 3:30:00 AM EST by mobius]

Originally Posted By JohnReich:
I hope this doesn’t go on my record, because I intend to be a nurse, and they won’t allow some kind of pistol-packing drunk-driving moron to be a nurse, or anything. What should I do? Do I need a lawyer?



ah yeah most defineitly this will go on your record, unless your attorney......and yes you will need to get a lawyer,he might get the judge to plea bargain the firearms charge to a lesser fine......but I wouldn't hold my breath on it happening for the DUI, judges tend not to plea bargain DUI down to something else, because the folks at MADD look at what kind of punishments they had out, and judges don't want to rock their boat when it comes down to election time.... .....also just be prepared for your insurance to be cancelled as well.......your drivers licence suspended for a few months, you can ask that a limit of driving privilages be given to you, to and from work, etc..... but when you do get your drivers licence back, it will cost you very dearly...........had a bud of mine get a DUI and they sent him a notice that his insurance is cancelled, he had to get one of those high cost bond kind of inusrance, SR somthing......that was like 4 times what it was for what he originally had........and the cost to get his licence reinstated was like 4 or 500 bucks........and that was many years ago........who knows what it is now......oh and did I mention he also spent 3 or 4 days in jail? yep, it was his first DUI as well, the judge can do that to you, ......some judges have a really hard-on for people who come before them with a DUI, and it isn't pretty, and he had a lawyer....didn't do him a bit of good, and had a lawyer fee to pay, on top of everything else. the one up here in parma, oh has no qualms about it, and will throw the book on you, with or without a lawyer......hope you don't have to go before that kind of judge. he was nice enough to let him go home to change into some jeans and was told to report back that afternoon to serve his sentence........ I can't remember what the fine was.....but it was something outrageous, I think the max that he could impose at the time.

yep simply not worth getting a DUI........too many bad things happen to you when you do. I don't even drive after having one beer.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 3:38:37 AM EST

A closed package, box, or case;

not to hijack, but I have a hard case that is locked when I travel in my car. Is it legal to have ammo in the case (keep in mind , 'locked') with my ar ? I keep the case in my trunk.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 4:28:37 AM EST
have no idea, I was told that the ammo has to be seperate from the firearm, and not loaded in in a mag when transporting. when I go to the range, I have my ammo in the back seat, in a can, and the fireams in a case in the rearmost part of my SUV.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 4:37:44 AM EST
I don't drink, however with regards to transportation I always go for plain site:

Rifles in Racks in back window

Handguns: Action open on dash

I have never had a problem.

Dan
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 4:53:54 AM EST
Ok, Get a good lawyer, and pay for it. The lawyer will be expensive but if he is confident in getting you off then pay the friggin price. Money is replaceable.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 5:17:19 AM EST
Get the very best lawyer you can afford. Borrow money if you must. The DUI will cost you $$$ and headaches no matter what , but a good attorney should be able to get you some relief on the firearms charges.

Take a lesson from this event. DUI is no joke and cops/judges love the good PR they get for 'making the roads safer'.

Link Posted: 5/16/2005 9:34:05 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/16/2005 9:34:54 AM EST by CsabaH]
Ok need to know a few things.

1. Did you submit to a test(breathalyzer?)
2. How high did you blow if you did
3. What were you stopped for?
4. Did you perform any field sobriety tests when you got out of the car?
5. How did you act w/ the officer(s)?

If you did not blow, then your license is automatically suspended for 1 year, you will not be elgible for privilages for at least 30 days. If you did not blow the charge they will have to prove is the 4511.19 A1A, which is OVI general. Which basically means, they have to show that the stop was a good stop, have to show that you failed, or refused to submit to any field sobriety tests, have to show that you were read the ALS form, and that you were offered a chemical test.

See when you get charged with OVI (used to be known as DUI), you get charged w/ 4511.19 A1A, which is the OVI General charge, then if your breath, blood or urine is tested, they charge you w/ whichever one you fall under whether it's High/Low.

Low Breath = .08-.17
High Breath = .17 and up

Then also they charge you with your traffic infraction that caused you to get pulled over(ie: left of center, travelling outside lanes of travel, failure to signal, or an equip violation.....etc) When you get to court for your preliminary hearing(which w/in 5 days after you are arrested), the court reviews "Probable Cause" At this point the prosecutor may or may not offer you plea bargain. From the experience I've had thus far w/ our legal system, pretty much everything gets pled. So basically, You get charged with just the OVI for the most part, and they drop or reduce the other charges. I'm not sure how the weapons charge may or may not play out. If you don't have the money or don't wish to spend the money you can opt for the public defender. 9/10 this is a good idea, only cause they are familiar w/ the judge and prosecutors, so they know what they can push, and what they can't.

Sorry for the long winded post, that's just my 2 cents, ok well maybe more like a quarter I'm sure some of the other LEO's could chime in and give you some more info as well
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 10:39:03 AM EST
Ditto on CsabaH's questions, they'll make a big difference. Also, it might matter what agency you were stopped by, some have different prosecutors... but a good lawyer is a must.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 11:05:50 AM EST

Originally Posted By CsabaH:
Ok need to know a few things.

1. Did you submit to a test(breathalyzer?)
2. How high did you blow if you did
3. What were you stopped for?
4. Did you perform any field sobriety tests when you got out of the car?
5. How did you act w/ the officer(s)?

If you did not blow, then your license is automatically suspended for 1 year, you will not be elgible for privilages for at least 30 days. If you did not blow the charge they will have to prove is the 4511.19 A1A, which is OVI general. Which basically means, they have to show that the stop was a good stop, have to show that you failed, or refused to submit to any field sobriety tests, have to show that you were read the ALS form, and that you were offered a chemical test.

See when you get charged with OVI (used to be known as DUI), you get charged w/ 4511.19 A1A, which is the OVI General charge, then if your breath, blood or urine is tested, they charge you w/ whichever one you fall under whether it's High/Low.

Low Breath = .08-.17
High Breath = .17 and up

Then also they charge you with your traffic infraction that caused you to get pulled over(ie: left of center, travelling outside lanes of travel, failure to signal, or an equip violation.....etc) When you get to court for your preliminary hearing(which w/in 5 days after you are arrested), the court reviews "Probable Cause" At this point the prosecutor may or may not offer you plea bargain. From the experience I've had thus far w/ our legal system, pretty much everything gets pled. So basically, You get charged with just the OVI for the most part, and they drop or reduce the other charges. I'm not sure how the weapons charge may or may not play out. If you don't have the money or don't wish to spend the money you can opt for the public defender. 9/10 this is a good idea, only cause they are familiar w/ the judge and prosecutors, so they know what they can push, and what they can't.

Sorry for the long winded post, that's just my 2 cents, ok well maybe more like a quarter

I'm sure some of the other LEO's could chime in and give you some more info as well




I really appreciate your assistance. I recognize that I was wrong here, and I’m not trying to weasel out of the charges. I’d just prefer not to be nailed to the wall when I consider myself a relatively respectable citizen who just made a big mistake. There is not a pattern of abuse.

1. Did you submit to a test (breathalyzer?)
A: Yes.

2. How high did you blow if you did
A: 0.161

3. What were you stopped for?
A: Improper turn, struck a curb.

4. Did you perform any field sobriety tests when you got out of the car?
A: Not until much later, at the station. I guess I failed, but I don’t really understand how. I walked the line, did the alphabet, etc. without a problem.

5. How did you act w/ the officer(s)?
A: Polite and cooperative. The main officer seemed to find it amusing to cuff me without double-locking, push me on to my face as I was getting out of my vehicle “oops ha ha ha” and poke me in the head with a pistol several times. Still, I completely ignored this, as I assume it is standard procedure. As I was leaving and while I was sitting around, they thanked me for being cooperative and helpful, but I could tell that the arresting officer thought I was slime. I asked how I was supposed to transport the firearm, and he said, “Are you a police officer or a lawyer? Then don’t fucking question a law enforcement officer, boy!” All of the other cops were very nice and friendly, though.

Link Posted: 5/16/2005 11:23:46 AM EST

Originally Posted By JohnReich:


I really appreciate your assistance. I recognize that I was wrong here, and I’m not trying to weasel out of the charges. I’d just prefer not to be nailed to the wall when I consider myself a relatively respectable citizen who just made a big mistake. There is not a pattern of abuse.

1. Did you submit to a test (breathalyzer?)
A: Yes.

2. How high did you blow if you did
A: 0.161

3. What were you stopped for?
A: Improper turn, struck a curb.

4. Did you perform any field sobriety tests when you got out of the car?
A: Not until much later, at the station. I guess I failed, but I don’t really understand how. I walked the line, did the alphabet, etc. without a problem.

5. How did you act w/ the officer(s)?
A: Polite and cooperative. The main officer seemed to find it amusing to cuff me without double-locking, push me on to my face as I was getting out of my vehicle “oops ha ha ha” and poke me in the head with a pistol several times. Still, I completely ignored this, as I assume it is standard procedure. As I was leaving and while I was sitting around, they thanked me for being cooperative and helpful, but I could tell that the arresting officer thought I was slime. I asked how I was supposed to transport the firearm, and he said, “Are you a police officer or a lawyer? Then don’t fucking question a law enforcement officer, boy!” All of the other cops were very nice and friendly, though.




Ok since you submitted to a breath test, you will be charged w/ 4511.19A1A and 4511.19A1D. If they offer you a plea bargain, they will ask you to plea to the A1D(OVI breath low), in return they will drop the other two traffic charges. Again I'm not sure how your weapons charge will pan out, but it will be dependent on the judge. Where did you get stopped and what court are you going to?

When and how was the gun discovered? After you were handcuffed and in the back of the car, while they were doing an inventory or did you tell them about it?

BTW, not every cop is the same. It's just like any other profession, in that everyone does the job differently, so I hope you don't have a bad taste in your mouth after your ordeal. With that said, I hope everything goes well w/ your proceedings. I don't think they will try to throw the book at you, but at the very least you are looking at just an OVI charge, maybe 2-3 days in jail, at least $500 worth of fines.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 11:37:38 AM EST
Stopped in Westerville, and Westerville court unless I file for a transferal, which I don’t think I’ll do because I need work privileges ASAP unless they want me to become a real criminal unemployed welfare leach.

I guess they just saw it sitting there in the back when they pulled me over. They did yell at me about not telling them, but I wasn’t given a chance to speak, so I’m not sure what was up with that. I wasn’t being belligerent or anything, so my guess is that they cuffed me because they saw it.

And, just to be clear, I don’t blame the cops at all. I think the one guy could have treated me with some degree of respect, but he isn’t required to by any means. I think the vast majority of cops are good people, but, as with anything, some of them are just there so they can boss people around and act hard. I still have faith in the system; this situation only arose because I’m retarded, not because they were attempting to set me up or something. Nobody forced me to drink and drive.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 11:55:06 AM EST
Going back to how to transport a firearm in Ohio for a moment, Ohio law is not the model of clarity. For this reason (among others) cops will give you all kinds of crazy answers. According to the Ohio Supreme Court decision from the 80's, all you need to do is have the gun unloaded and in a bag. See Ohio v. Beasley, 4 Ohio St. 3d 24 (1983), which is an interesting read. In Beasley, the defendant had a revolver in a plastic zippered bag in the front seat with loose ammo in the same bag. The court found that she abided by the law, but had to take it that far to prevail after losing at the lower levels.

I don't see any legal reason why the ammo and firearm have to be kept in separate compartments of the car. I would not press my luck and have everything in the front seat, but having ammo and (cased) gun in the trunk or back of a SUV is legally ok. Of course, a misinformed cop may arrest you even if you are doing everything legaly.
Link Posted: 5/16/2005 4:29:05 PM EST
Dude,

yer hit bad his ..... Sorry you had to meet some of Westerville's "finest" , unfortunately with most of the townships and municipalities around central Ohio there is at least one dildo per dept that really gives all other good, professional officers a bad rap....

By the time it's all said and done you'll be out a few grand and time spent. The upside is that after a year you can talk to a attorney and judge about expungment (more money)...

good luck,

Mike

P.S. whatever you do please don't carry guns around in yer backseat, that's asking for a heapload of problems.......

Link Posted: 5/17/2005 11:42:32 AM EST
If you wish to divulge, give us an update, when you go to court.
Link Posted: 5/17/2005 3:08:35 PM EST
I'll let you guys know what happens. Thanks for all the help/input.
Link Posted: 5/17/2005 4:04:13 PM EST
get them to drop the gun thing for a no contest on the dui. Good luck.
Link Posted: 5/19/2005 4:09:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/19/2005 4:15:13 PM EST by PigGuy]

Originally Posted By Pudwak:
get them to drop the gun thing for a no contest on the dui. Good luck.


Exactly. As far as I know, if you're found guilty on ANYTHING gun related, you're denied the RKBA for life.

Ohio Revised Code

§ 2923.16. Improperly handling firearms in a motor vehicle.

(A) No person shall knowingly discharge a firearm while in or on a motor vehicle.

(B) No person shall knowingly transport or have a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle in such a manner that the firearm is accessible to the operator or any passenger without leaving the vehicle.

(C) No person shall knowingly transport or have a firearm in a motor vehicle, unless it is unloaded and is carried in one of the following ways:

(1) In a closed package, box, or case;

(2) In a compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle;

(3) In plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for the purpose;

(4) In plain sight with the action open or the weapon stripped, or, if the firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or which cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight.
Link Posted: 5/19/2005 4:25:09 PM EST

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By JohnReich:
I hope this doesn’t go on my record, because I intend to be a nurse, and they won’t allow some kind of pistol-packing drunk-driving moron to be a nurse, or anything. What should I do? Do I need a lawyer?



ah yeah most defineitly this will go on your record, unless your attorney......and yes you will need to get a lawyer,he might get the judge to plea bargain the firearms charge to a lesser fine......but I wouldn't hold my breath on it happening for the DUI, judges tend not to plea bargain DUI down to something else, because the folks at MADD look at what kind of punishments they had out, and judges don't want to rock their boat when it comes down to election time....



NOT Nescisarily... Most of the DUI's we process get plead down to "wet reckless." That means Reckless Operation M4 charge with about $500 in fines and three days in jail, all suspended, pending one year of probation. It's frustrating when we arrest a habitual drunk with 5 priors in the last 5 years and yet they plead the case down and drop all the other charges just to get things moving...

Having said all that JohnReich don't fret, all is not lost. A good lawyer will help you work out a deal, or get you off if there's a chance... It will cost you money one way or the other though. Sometimes they will also let you plead out to the DUI and drop all the other charges.

Sorry to hear the cops were misleading with the firearms law, but it sounds like the proper charge was filed. That's a bit harsh in my book, but then again I wasn't there. Swingset is dead on about the law.
Link Posted: 5/19/2005 4:26:01 PM EST
DWI in Texas. Last guy I had, I did his occupational license, blew a .19

He told me that his 1st DWI (pronounced DEEWEEE) had cost him $13,000.00 up the point of hiring me.
Link Posted: 5/19/2005 7:50:36 PM EST

Originally Posted By watersniper:
[
NOT Nescisarily... Most of the DUI's we process get plead down to "wet reckless." That means Reckless Operation M4 charge with about $500 in fines and three days in jail, all suspended, pending one year of probation. It's frustrating when we arrest a habitual drunk with 5 priors in the last 5 years and yet they plead the case down and drop all the other charges just to get things moving...




like I said earlier.......depends on the judge, if he goes before one that just has a hard-on for DUIs, he is toast. granted there are some judges who will let it slide, but if you go up before one that just has a hankering to slam the book on you might as well bend over and kiss your ass.......and wallet good bye.
Link Posted: 5/20/2005 6:17:10 AM EST

Originally Posted By PigGuy:

Originally Posted By Pudwak:
get them to drop the gun thing for a no contest on the dui. Good luck.


Exactly. As far as I know, if you're found guilty on ANYTHING gun related, you're denied the RKBA for life.

Ohio Revised Code

§ 2923.16. Improperly handling firearms in a motor vehicle.

(A) No person shall knowingly discharge a firearm while in or on a motor vehicle.

(B) No person shall knowingly transport or have a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle in such a manner that the firearm is accessible to the operator or any passenger without leaving the vehicle.

(C) No person shall knowingly transport or have a firearm in a motor vehicle, unless it is unloaded and is carried in one of the following ways:

(1) In a closed package, box, or case;

(2) In a compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle;

(3) In plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for the purpose;

(4) In plain sight with the action open or the weapon stripped, or, if the firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or which cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight.



RKBA? Is that my right to bare arms? I sure as hell hope not. They took a shotgun out of my trunk and sent me a form saying that I could come pick it up whenever I want, so I don’t know that they’d give me my gun back if I wasn’t allowed to own it. I don’t want to sound like some kind of anti-authority asshole, but it actually upsets me a little that the MAN can tell me how to carry one piece of my property inside of another piece of my property.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 7:18:34 PM EST
I'm under the impression that if you're convicted of any felony (and I also thought any fire-arm related offense), you can't buy anything in the future. Though, I don't know for sure (and I'm definitely not a lawyer). I thought that was one of the questions on the form you have to fill out when you buy a gun?

A friend of mine works with a guy who was charged with a bunch of gun related bullshit, claiming that because he had a bowl (he's a pothead) in his truck with his guns that he was "in possesion of a firearm while under disability", which is a felony for some reason.

They took all his guns and as far as I know he hasn't gotten them back, though, he hasn't been tried yet, I think his trial is set for early June.

Keep us updated. Good luck.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 7:35:27 PM EST

Originally Posted By PigGuy:
I'm under the impression that if you're convicted of any felony (and I also thought any fire-arm related offense), you can't buy anything in the future. Though, I don't know for sure (and I'm definitely not a lawyer). I thought that was one of the questions on the form you have to fill out when you buy a gun?

A friend of mine works with a guy who was charged with a bunch of gun related bullshit, claiming that because he had a bowl (he's a pothead) in his truck with his guns that he was "in possesion of a firearm while under disability", which is a felony for some reason.

They took all his guns and as far as I know he hasn't gotten them back, though, he hasn't been tried yet, I think his trial is set for early June.

Keep us updated. Good luck.



Daaamn. That would be a crappy felony to have. It is like a combination of a minor misdemeanor (the pot), which is just a fine, and a 4th degree misdemeanor (the guns), and they trump it up to a felony? Pot is illegal, but it hardly makes you a dangerous drug addict who can't be trusted with guns. I wish the legal system were a little more clear.

As far as being updated, I am awaiting my arraignment, where my lawyer will attempt to get me work privileges. He said he may be able to get the gun charges dropped, but this whole thing is really cutting into my money and self-respect and whatnot.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:57:29 AM EST
John,

Where are you located in Ohio? My lawyer could be very helpful. Message me.

-John
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 10:36:54 AM EST
The one guy mentioned expungement. This is not possible, you can not have a DUI expunged in the state of ohio. If I were you get a good lawyer, plea bargain for a DUI only and take it as a lesson learned.
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