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Posted: 6/11/2007 7:29:59 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/11/2007 7:33:48 AM EST by RolandofGilead]
Just moved here (Stafford) and am curious what everyone does when they go out to eat because of the alcohol law. Do you just tuck your shirt in behind your gun if you carry IWB (which is how I carry)? Is that considered "open carry" then? If you do that, how do people react around here? I'm from Oregon and people aren't used to seeing open carry even though it's legal.

Also, is "because I want to protect my family" a "good and sufficient" reason to carry at church? Has the law been tested?

Any advice would be great,
Thanks
Link Posted: 6/11/2007 7:53:49 AM EST
i believe it is illegal to carry in a church without the expressed (and maybe written) permission of the pastor.

i wouldn't worry too much about carrying in a restaurant, just keep it hidden and keep your mouth shut and nothing will happen.
Link Posted: 6/11/2007 7:54:41 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/11/2007 7:55:02 AM EST by mmike87]
When going IWB that is exactly what I do. I tuck the shirt in behind the gun. I believe this is open carry, as open carry is defined as being easily distinguishable to the common observer. A pistol grip sticking out of your pants certainly qualifies. That is understandably a bit vague, and I wish I could cite where I had read that, but it's the standard I use and seems reasonable and common practice in the Commonwealth.

How do people react? The ONLY person what has reacted so far was some idiot at Burger King that asked if I were a cop. When I said "No" he asked if I had a permit. I replied, "I am in compliance with all state laws." No way I am going to get "grilled" (couldn't resist) by some kid cashier at Burger King.

As far as the church thing goes - I have no idea. I'd try and write the Attorney General's office and ask for written clarification. At least then if someone busts you you have a decent chance of beating the charge. Personally, a letter from the AG should be a "get out of jail free" card - if you cannot ask them for clarification who can you ask? The judge at your trial?
Link Posted: 6/11/2007 8:01:44 AM EST
Thanks guys, as far as the church thing I don't really know but all the law says is a "good and sufficient reason" nothing about written permission (although we all know how some laws say one thing but you can still break it even if you follow the letter of it)
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 5:23:36 AM EST
I am Northern VA. In restaurants if I am with my family (wife + 3 kids under age 8) I wear my favorite Officers 1911 in a nice open black leather holster. No one even says boo. The image of my well dressed family and me open carrying doesn't seem to bother anyone.

If I am alone or with my buddies (who also carry) we ether fully conceal and mind our business or IWB with shirt tucked back behind gun. When I do use the IWB holser, I use one that has a noticible "J" clip (i.e. 2" wide) that folds and holds between the belt and the pants waist. The idea here is that I don't someone to notice the gun and think that it's just sticking inside my pants... I want them to notice the holster. Also, the larger-wider "J" clips (like on an Uncle Mikes IWB), if it is the same color as the pistol grip, obscures the shape of the gun to simple glances and can easily be mistaken as a PDA or other yuppy device which are very common here.
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 6:12:02 AM EST
Well it depends....

So long as nothing happens and it stays holstered you should be fine.

If something happens.... Well all bets are off at that point I fear.
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 7:37:27 AM EST
Yeah, just tuck the shirt behind the grip. It is no longer concealed and you comply with the requirement to open carry when in a place that serves alcohol for consumption on the premises. Usually, no one will say boo. Check out opencarry.org and the Virginia forum. Several threads there about open carry in restaurants. As far as church, I am not a big church goer but you have to decide your "good and sufficient" reason to carry. Get your Virginia concealed carry permit and then no one has to know.

Welcome to Stafford county. I live off of Route 610 about a mile and a half from 95.
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 9:01:14 AM EST
I usually ditch my weapon in the car rather than open carry,particularly in my (liberal) area. Since I pocket carry a snub revolver in a floppy suede holster 90% of the time,I'm really not set up for open carry anyway.

I've never tested the church issue,since my church meets in a school. Double jeopardy if I carried there!


Link Posted: 6/12/2007 2:37:41 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/12/2007 2:38:24 PM EST by Glarus]
I don't do it often, but if I know I'm going out I'll try to choose a black gun with a black belt holster and a black shirt. Hidden right in the open! Tuck it in at the last moment and pull it out at the first moment you leave. Compliance with no worries. (This law is asinine, BTW. But you all already knew that.)
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 6:30:02 PM EST

Originally Posted By RolandofGilead:
Just moved here (Stafford) and am curious what everyone does when they go out to eat because of the alcohol law. Do you just tuck your shirt in behind your gun if you carry IWB (which is how I carry)? Is that considered "open carry" then? If you do that, how do people react around here?


opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum54/18.html
Link Posted: 6/12/2007 8:47:24 PM EST
you cannot carry in a church unless you can prove that you are carrying because of an imminent and specific threat to your person

"i'm carrying to protect myself" = Not good enough

"I'm carrying because theres been a guy stalking me and he knows i go to this church" = probably good enough

Written letters by pastors, priests, aldermen, messiahs, angels etc. are not covered in the law, therefore they are null and void. If the law doesn't say that there is an exception for it, then it is not legal. However, if you had a letter from a pastor it might help in court if you ended up being prosecuted for some reason.

IMHO concealed is concealed, and if you're a legal CCWer, i'm not going to get the red ass because you carried in your church, i'd just tell you not to do it again.
Link Posted: 6/13/2007 6:15:06 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/13/2007 6:15:51 AM EST by Shogunn]
I usually open carry so I don't do anything different. I think I'm pretty much the only open carrier here in Winchester, I don't see anyone else carrying unless I go into FCF.
Link Posted: 6/13/2007 10:07:12 AM EST
Thanks for the advice guys, and for the link Dr Mark. Open carry it is...
Link Posted: 6/13/2007 11:12:24 AM EST
Having a bad memory sucks.

Link Posted: 6/13/2007 11:28:33 AM EST

Originally Posted By 21BoomCBTENGR:
you cannot carry in a church unless you can prove that you are carrying because of an imminent and specific threat to your person

"i'm carrying to protect myself" = Not good enough

"I'm carrying because theres been a guy stalking me and he knows i go to this church" = probably good enough



You sure speak with a lot of authority about this. I'm curious where this has been established as a legal precedent, and how recently.

Especially since I (fairly recently) have been through firearms-related legal training specific to Virginia, and the general consensus (among people who do this for a living) is that nobody knows what "good and sufficient reason" means, and that it has never been challenged in court.
Link Posted: 6/14/2007 3:47:38 AM EST

Originally Posted By 21BoomCBTENGR:

Originally Posted By v8unleashed:

Originally Posted By 21BoomCBTENGR:
you cannot carry in a church unless you can prove that you are carrying because of an imminent and specific threat to your person

"i'm carrying to protect myself" = Not good enough

"I'm carrying because theres been a guy stalking me and he knows i go to this church" = probably good enough



You sure speak with a lot of authority about this. I'm curious where this has been established as a legal precedent, and how recently.

Especially since I (fairly recently) have been through firearms-related legal training specific to Virginia, and the general consensus (among people who do this for a living) is that nobody knows what "good and sufficient reason" means, and that it has never been challenged in court.


I speak as far as I was taught during my basic LEO academy firearms laws training. Understand that I wouldn't bother someone if they seemed like a normal person who is just looking out for their family, BUT the law is written so vaguely that it means that a judge or magistrate has to determine what they feels is "good and sufficient". That means that LEOs could charge you with violation of it, and you'd have to go to court and have a judge decide if you have "good and sufficient" reason or not.

I'm saying be prudent, you never know what kind of cop or what kind of judge you'll get. Most laws in VA are written so vaguely that they require extensive case law to determine the finer points, i dont think there is extensive case law in reference to this part of the Code, so this is ground which should be trod lightly so to speak. YMMV


Well I think your advice is good so far as being practical goes. And theoretically, if someone is carrying concealed, no one should be the wiser.

And yes, a lot of a laws are written this way. And IMO, they shouldn't be laws. Not in a free society, that is. Because nobody knows if they're breaking the law or not. Which makes us like any other authoritarian country. Everyone is a criminal, and if they get on the wrong side of the state, it just takes a little legal creativity to ruin their life.

Things like this usually take either a person willing to push his luck so that he gets arrested and can challenge the law and get a ruling, or an overzealous LEO who thinks he knows what "good and sufficient" means, and forces someone to defend himself in court.

So far as the cops go, there are enough BAD gun laws on the books they have to enforce. I sure hope they would go out of their way to NOT enforce something which may or may not even be a law. Especially since they are supposed to be the citizenry's first line of defense against unjust laws.
Link Posted: 6/15/2007 7:39:38 AM EST

Originally Posted By RolandofGilead:
Thanks guys, as far as the church thing I don't really know but all the law says is a "good and sufficient reason" nothing about written permission (although we all know how some laws say one thing but you can still break it even if you follow the letter of it)


You can carry in a church unless posted (private property). It's only during a **service** that you need "good and sufficient reason." Al Qaeida is good as far as I'm concerned. The law does not say what qualifies as good and sufficient.
Link Posted: 6/15/2007 8:00:24 AM EST

Originally Posted By PhilipVanCleave:

Originally Posted By RolandofGilead:
Thanks guys, as far as the church thing I don't really know but all the law says is a "good and sufficient reason" nothing about written permission (although we all know how some laws say one thing but you can still break it even if you follow the letter of it)


You can carry in a church unless posted (private property). It's only during a **service** that you need "good and sufficient reason." Al Qaeida is good as far as I'm concerned. The law does not say what qualifies as good and sufficient.



Not to nitpick, but technically 18.2-283 says that you can't carry "while a meeting for religious purposes is being held." That could cover pretty much anything from a scheduled service, to someone meeting one-on-one for counseling with the pastor.

Everything about that section is vague.
Link Posted: 6/15/2007 9:50:56 AM EST
man, when i was working with my local pd i was told concealing ANY part of a firearm made a pistol "concealed"...having an exposed grip (tucking the shirt behind the grip) while having the rest of the piece inside the trou constuitutes "concealed." this was almost 20 yrs ago though, has this changed?
Link Posted: 6/15/2007 10:46:47 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/15/2007 10:50:28 AM EST by v8unleashed]

Originally Posted By PogueMahone:
man, when i was working with my local pd i was told concealing ANY part of a firearm made a pistol "concealed"...having an exposed grip (tucking the shirt behind the grip) while having the rest of the piece inside the trou constuitutes "concealed." this was almost 20 yrs ago though, has this changed?


The standard is "hidden from common observation." Another vague statute, but this one AFAIK has rulings behind it.

So far as what you were told, is it concealed if it's carried in a holster which "conceals" part of the actual pistol? Some open carry holsters conceal almost ALL of the pistol, yet they still aren't hidden from common observation.

This is the problem when people (your local PD) with no real training in the law try to explain to others what the law is. Like my NRA CCW course.
Link Posted: 6/16/2007 8:58:51 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/16/2007 9:00:34 AM EST by PogueMahone]
Link Posted: 6/16/2007 5:52:11 PM EST

Originally Posted By v8unleashed:

Originally Posted By PogueMahone:
man, when i was working with my local pd i was told concealing ANY part of a firearm made a pistol "concealed"...having an exposed grip (tucking the shirt behind the grip) while having the rest of the piece inside the trou constuitutes "concealed." this was almost 20 yrs ago though, has this changed?


The standard is "hidden from common observation." Another vague statute, but this one AFAIK has rulings behind it.

So far as what you were told, is it concealed if it's carried in a holster which "conceals" part of the actual pistol? Some open carry holsters conceal almost ALL of the pistol, yet they still aren't hidden from common observation.

This is the problem when people (your local PD) with no real training in the law try to explain to others what the law is. Like my NRA CCW course.


if a pistol grip is exposed, but the rest of the barrel/slide is concealed, can you still recognize it as a pistol? if yes, then it's not concealed is it? if half a banana is under a knapkin, but you can still see that it's a banana, it's not concealed.
Link Posted: 6/16/2007 6:12:04 PM EST
Carry everywhere that doesnt have a medal detector.
Link Posted: 6/16/2007 6:40:35 PM EST
Google "church shooting". That there's my "good and sufficient reason".
Link Posted: 6/17/2007 2:07:29 AM EST

Originally Posted By mmike87:

How do people react? The ONLY person what has reacted so far was some idiot at Burger King that asked if I were a cop. When I said "No" he asked if I had a permit. I replied, "I am in compliance with all state laws." No way I am going to get "grilled" (couldn't resist) by some kid cashier at Burger King.



Unless you have a Burger King that serves alcohol, why did you expose the pistol there? There is no reason to.
Link Posted: 6/17/2007 3:35:18 AM EST
i run into a problem with this now because I carry in my "tacticool diaper bag"....which is a maxpedition fatboy....as a stay at home dad my uniform of the day is gym shorts, T-shirt, and maxpedition complete with spare diapers, wipes, surefire, cell phone, CZ P-01, spare mag, wallet, benchmade apparition, lighter, fruit snacks, spare pacifier, extra pokemon cards for the 5 year old...etc etc etc....you get the picture....

I wear this across my chest like a messenger bag...so the "holster" hangs on my hip....

Unfortunately, there is no way to "expose" this when I go into a restaurant that serves alcohol....other than unzipping that compartment, and seating the pistol so the grip is exposed....

that law, aside from being stupid, is incredibly sexist...I know we dont have a lot of female arfcom hometown members here...but I would love to hear how the women who "purse carry" solve this issue....do you just have the pistol grip sticking out the top of your purse?...is this then open carry?
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