Post By IdahoPO
Carrying (CHL/non-LEO) around a felon friend or relative
I'll be getting my CHL soon, and there is one issue that I have been pondering, but not been able to find a straight answer to. My father is a convicted felon, and is therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm. If I am legally carrying and he is with me, should something go wrong (stopped by LEO or who knows what else), could he be "considered in possession" of the gun (violating law and his probation), even though it was "on or about my person"? The main reason why I ask this is because he is still on probation of the offense. As part of the probation he is polygraphed regularly. One question they always ask him is "Have you done anything to violate the conditions of your probation?" I don't want to cause issues for him because I was carrying around him. He is very diligent about making sure he abides by all of the conditions, and is sure to avoid any situations where it could even be construed that he is violating any of them. For example, I carry legally concealed in my car all the time, and he will never go in or around my car, just to be on the safe side. One thing that might be worth mentioning is that his probation officer has allowed him to keep guns in his home. They all belong to me, and they are all stored in a locked safe that he does not know the combo to. I live in a small apartment, and have no room for the safe. It may also be worth mentioning that his felony offense was non-violent, and was not drug or weapons-related (it was what some people may call a "white-collar" crime).
Have any of y'all ever been in this same situation (carrying off-duty or as a non-LEO while with a convicted felon)?
All of this is in the state of Texas, BTW.
Your guide will have to be Texas Criminal Laws, and a Google search should help you. With respect to either a violent or non-violent felony: That makes ZERO difference with prohibitions regarding firearms in the possession of any person convicted of a felony.
My next and obvious question for you is this. Irrespective of the required Polygraph exam, does your Dad's Probation/Parole Officer know there are firearms in your residence? If he/she doesn't know that there are weapons in the home occupied by your Dad, they could violate him . Note that I said could.
From my perspective, you and your Dad need to have a sit down with his PO. If he/she okays it, you should be good to go.Needless to say, that means your Dad does not handle a firearm under ANY circumstances.
YOU will be in possession of the weapon
Originally Posted by rfs2005
HE will not be in POSSESSION of the weapon
The Texas laws state that he is prohibited from possessing a weapon because he has a felony conviction. I'm currently searching for Texas's definition of "possession".
I realize that the violent or non-violent nature of the offense has no bearing on the law allowing or prohibiting him possessing the firearm. However, I do think that played a role in his PO allowing the guns to remain in the house, in a safe. If he had a violent, weapons-related offense, I don't believe they would have allowed firearms or other weapons in the house at all.
Yes, his Probation Officer knows the guns are in the house. They said it was okay, as long as they were kept locked in the safe and he did not know the combination to the safe. Whenever I open the safe, I close and lock the door to the room in which the safe is located so that he is more "at peace" with the fact that he is not possessing and does not have access to the firearms. Whenever I take them out of the house to hunt, go the range, etc... he stays in another room until I leave, and does the same when I return and put the guns up. He never even sees the guns unless I show him a picture.
It seems like my question is more of how "possession" is defined.
Thanks for the reply.
Possession (law), exclusive practical control of a thing, in the context of the legal implications of that control
If you have it in your physical possession NOBODY else can be in possession of it
Thanks, guys. Iowa, the definition you provided is along the lines of what I was thinking. My dad and I will double check with the PO, just to be safe. The LAST thing I want to do is have my actions cause problems for him.
My guess is that the PO will stipulate that the gun must be "on me" (attached via holster) whenever my dad is around, which is fine by me. It's not like I plan on leaving my gun sitting out in the open.
If you are in a car with him, make sure the car is under your control (And the gun is in the trunk or some such very far from him), or make sure the gun is ON your person. If you're around him at your house, you can put the gun up in a different room or keep it on you. I wouldn't keep guns at his house as he could be violated by the letter of the law even with what you're saying about him not knowing the combo. The biggest thing though is in a car. If it's in your sole possession it is yours, if it's in the center console between you two, it can be both of yours.
What Iowa said. Don't leave it laying around any common areas.
I'll give my input from PO's perspective. First off, let me say that I appreciate the fact that you are inquiring about it first rather than just doing it. And the best person to ask is going to be his PO.
As others have pointed out as long as you remain in positive physical control of the weapon your father would not be considered in possession of it as it relates to a new crime. However, when the agreement of supervision states that the probationer "will not possess, nor have access to firearms or other dangerous weapons" the topic becomes a little more grey. It can certainly be articulated that access exists if you are sitting two feet away from him with a gun. The general statement that I say to the people I supervise is that when I go to their house I want to be the only one carrying a gun.
As far as the PO allowing guns to be in the home in a safe. By our policy this takes district manager's written permission, not just a verbal agreement. I would only request that this be allowed in rare circumstances. Such as a LEO who has had a family member get in trouble but still wants to allow them live at their house. I'm not going to tell a cop that they can't have a firearm and I should have no reason to think I would be in much danger from them in that house.
So in summary I definitely respect your 2nd amendment rights but I would ask you to refrain from carrying in the company of one of my clients. It puts them too close to committing a new felony if you get careless with that weapon. (I'm not saying YOU would, but that would be my general concern)
Last edited by IdahoPO; 10-21-2012 at 11:29 AM.
Originally Posted by IdahoPO
That ^^^^^^^^^^^^is just about as good an answer as you're going to get.