Thursday, May 12, 2016

Whaddaya think?

A Wisconsin school teacher got arrested on a felony charge, because he had his handgun in the console of his car that was parked on school grounds. Supposedly unloaded. Somebody must have ratted him out.

According to WisconsinCarry, the teacher "believed" he was following the law by storing his gun, unloaded, in the center console of his locked car. WisconsinCarry's position is that his gun was "encased" by being in the console.

According to WisconsinCarry, "Wisconsin law requires your gun be UN-loaded and encased when on School Grounds EVEN in your own vehicle. Here is the statutory definition of encased: "(b) "Encased" means enclosed in a case that is completely zipped, snapped, buckled, tied or otherwise fastened with no part of the firearm exposed." 

Remember how Illinois law read (reads?) about transporting a firearm - "... unloaded and enclosed in a case, firearm carrying box, shipping box, or other container..."  OK, so I always thought "other container" could be my backpack, fanny pack, briefcase, lunch box or McDonald's bag. But I wasn't brave enough to put it to the test, as was a gun owner several years ago in DuPage County. As I heard the story, he was arrested but fought it through the courts and was found Not Guilty. And then he sued and won $50,000, which probably about covered his legal fees.

My opinion is that it is a real stretch of the imagination to consider a center console as a 'case". My opinion (not a "legal" opinion, of course) is that a weapon is not "encased" when placed there.

Would the teacher have been okay, had he placed his firearm, unloaded, in a zipper pouch in the console?

Any thoughts?

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