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Posted: 2/3/2006 5:52:08 PM EDT
A thread on Calguns got me thinking about this. It was said that if a pistol grip is slipped on and off of a gun and not truly attached via a screw or anything else, is it legal. This would make sense given that a bayonet can't be used to increase the length of a rifle to 30 inches since it's not truly attached and can easily be removed. The pistol grip would never really be "attached" to the gun the same way a bayonet is not a part of the gun. It would be used as an independant part of the gun to help shoot it and would then go with you after shooting it. I just wanted to see some opinions of this. Thanks.
Link Posted: 2/3/2006 6:45:56 PM EDT
I remember a couple years back on calguns people were talking about a glove with the pistol grip either sewn into the palm or velcroed. I cant remember what the outcome was or if anyone contacted the doj to get their view on it. As you can see it never really caught on...
Link Posted: 2/3/2006 6:49:19 PM EDT
I don't think it's that complicated. If the pistol grip is attached, either bolted or simply pressed on, it's still attached and could get you in trouble. There is no subdividing "attached" here.

Your barrel length example is a bit different. If it's going to be considered part of the length of a barrel, it'll have to be part of the barrel, so it has to be welded, silver-soldered, blind-pinned or some other "permanent" manner. That's also very reasonable.

You're lucky though, California does not have a "constructive possession" law, so you probably would not be prosecuted for simply being in possession of the lower AND the pistol grip. "Constructive Possession" says that it doesn't matter if the gun, device, whatever is asembled or disassembled, if you have the parts you have the whole. I say "probably" because we've now seen how the AG (and DOJ as his enforcement arm) looks at the law the way he wants it to be, not the way it literally is, meaning don't get caught with your pistol grip slipped on but not bolted on. DOJ will not see it your way.

But this latest off-list lower DOJ memo should give you a bit of pause for ANYTHING that close to the line.
Link Posted: 2/3/2006 7:15:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Homeinvader:
I don't think it's that complicated. If the pistol grip is attached, either bolted or simply pressed on, it's still attached and could get you in trouble. There is no subdividing "attached" here.

Your barrel length example is a bit different. If it's going to be considered part of the length of a barrel, it'll have to be part of the barrel, so it has to be welded, silver-soldered, blind-pinned or some other "permanent" manner. That's also very reasonable.

You're lucky though, California does not have a "constructive possession" law, so you probably would not be prosecuted for simply being in possession of the lower AND the pistol grip. "Constructive Possession" says that it doesn't matter if the gun, device, whatever is asembled or disassembled, if you have the parts you have the whole. I say "probably" because we've now seen how the AG (and DOJ as his enforcement arm) looks at the law the way he wants it to be, not the way it literally is, meaning don't get caught with your pistol grip slipped on but not bolted on. DOJ will not see it your way.

But this latest off-list lower DOJ memo should give you a bit of pause for ANYTHING that close to the line.


I didn't mean adding the bayonet to the length of the barrel, but to the actual gun. It isn't considered part of the gun and therefore not part of its overall length just as I'm hoping the non-physically attached pistol grip would also not be considered part of the gun. I agree it's a very fine line but if done with caution, probably one that would never be questioned as most people see the gun when it is not being used, and it would ceratinly be pistol gripless.
Link Posted: 2/4/2006 6:52:38 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/4/2006 6:58:37 AM EDT by AR15fan]

Originally Posted By Homeinvader:

You're lucky though, California does not have a "constructive possession" law...



Huh? Constructive possession is used to establish the probable cause to arrest and obtain convictions in Cali every day. They dont need a "constructive possession law." Its regularly used in narcotics and explosives cases.

If you are stopped on the way to the range with your rifle, and unattached pistol grip and a screwdriver all in the trunk of your car, your screwed.

On top of "constructive possession" you also have conspiracy to commit if two or more persons (CPC 182 & 184) and attempt to commit (CPC 664) if the DA can convince 12 jurors that you were interupted on the way to the range where you intended to install that PG to shoot the rifle.
Link Posted: 2/4/2006 10:06:22 AM EDT
And every time you slip the pistol grip into its slot you are manufacturing an assault weapon. Even if you remove it after every range session, teh installation is a problem each and every time. The law does not describe attachment method, only that it be attached.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 1:43:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By Homeinvader:

You're lucky though, California does not have a "constructive possession" law...



Huh? Constructive possession is used to establish the probable cause to arrest and obtain convictions in Cali every day. They dont need a "constructive possession law." Its regularly used in narcotics and explosives cases.

If you are stopped on the way to the range with your rifle, and unattached pistol grip and a screwdriver all in the trunk of your car, your screwed.

On top of "constructive possession" you also have conspiracy to commit if two or more persons (CPC 182 & 184) and attempt to commit (CPC 664) if the DA can convince 12 jurors that you were interupted on the way to the range where you intended to install that PG to shoot the rifle.



No such thing for firearms at the state level. At the state level, if it's not attached, it's not a violation. This is different from narco or explo cases where there is. Technically speaking, you could have an unattached pistol grip or collapsible stock and you DO NOT have constructve possession of an AW. Conspriacy and Intent are complately different, especially of they can prove you intended to attach install them in violation of the law. But Conspiracy and Intent charges can exist independently of Possession. Probable Cause is something else too as it doesn't necessarily lead to charges. Probable Cause is allowed to be mistaken if it's legit Probable Cause.

City of Los Angeles, however, DOES have a Constructive Possession clause for AWs. LA Municipal Code 55.05 (a) 4: Any part or combination of parts designed or intended to convert a weapon into an assault weapon...

If you live in LA city, you'd best be sure not to have ANY AW creating part with your new off-list lower receiver: No flash hider, no pistol grip, not collapsible stock.

Consturctive Possession does exist at the federal level for most possession felonies, firearms included.

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