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Are officers allowed to own firearms that are banned to by the state they live in?

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  • Are officers allowed to own firearms that are banned to by the state they live in?

    I live in southern California, not the most friendly state when it comes to guns. I know officers here are allowed to have high capacity mags and AR's and AK's with mag release buttons instead of the bullet button. But are officers here allowed to own machine guns, such as PKM's, M60's, etc? I'm very interested to know, thanks for helping me.

  • #2
    While I am not all that familiar with your specific state laws I would assume the answer is no. Unless, that person has a class III firearms license. Generally officers do not personaly own fully automatic weapons, they are issued to them by their agency, or bought with their own money and signed off on by the chief/sheriff.

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    • #3
      If it's like that in Illinois, I'm sure it's similar here.

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      • #4
        How would an officer obtain a class III firearms license?

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        • #5
          CA while NFA firearms are legal for individuals, the added state permits and scrutiny means that one's wallet has to be rock star or movie star kind of funded.

          Any machinegun registered after 1986 is restricted to Government agency use only so a dept. would have to issue you one as a duty weapon.

          If you want an individual owned weapon, you best money bet would be to get a residence set up in Arizona and store and shoot your guns there as they can not be brought back into CA. Keep in mind that a common gun like a M16 for individual ownership is going to start at $10,000.00 up to $23,000.00 depending upon the rarity of the model. This is normal gun prices not taking into consideration the added cost to have one in CA.

          The only other option for you would be to actually open a gun shop that caters to department sales and operate an actual for profit business.

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          • #6
            In New York, while you are employed as a law enforcement officer in the State (including feds), an officer can possess non-NYS compliant guns and magazines that are manufactured after Sept 14 1994. Once LEO retires, he/she can't possess non-NYS compliant firearms and magazines. Also an LEO can request to purchase Class III firearms for a personal use, but this requires not only ATF tax stamp, but also need to get approval from your local CLEO prior to purchasing a class III firearm.

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            • #7
              The short answer to your question is no. But if the officer in question has a class three from the ATF he can have full auto. But any gun dealer who has a class three can for that matter. The problem is getting a class 3. The state has made it very difficult. And LEO in California are not allow to personally own the type of AR or AK w/o a bullet button that you described without letterhead from their respective agency. I know people who have those items and much more without the letterhead but they are not supposed to. When it comes to guns, California totally sucks.
              Last edited by SHU; 04-15-2011, 11:56 PM. Reason: why not?

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              • #8
                M1, that only applies to Class III weapons. If they are retired and meet the qualifications of LEOSA, they are exempt. There is already case law on this. And there are some things one needs to know, but if its not banned by Federal Law (Class III) you can own it in NY, post 1994.
                Hey Kidd, I've got more time On Meal than you have "On the Job"

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Lawdawg45
                  My suspicious cop nature wonders why you want to know?

                  Your best bet would be to pose this question on the local discussion page for California.

                  LD45
                  My wish is that the man is to much of a man to live in CA and wants to spend his life with guns in it. Even if that is not the case and he is milk toast and wants to live in CA he has a quest for the understanding of the laws he is chosen to uphold.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 1911user View Post
                    M1, that only applies to Class III weapons. If they are retired and meet the qualifications of LEOSA, they are exempt. There is already case law on this. And there are some things one needs to know, but if its not banned by Federal Law (Class III) you can own it in NY, post 1994.
                    Hello 1911user. When you retire as an LEO, your personal class III firearm (pre 1986?) can still be possessed (verified through a NYS Class III dealer and DCJS instructor and manufacturer). LEOs in NY State are exampt from Penal Code section 265, for this only applies while you are on the job, not when you retire (unless I've been taught wrong by LE Instructors) as when LEO retires, he/she is now just a civilian. This is why many agencies exchange or collect post 1994 high capacity magazines from retirees. If there is a case law, I'd love to see as I'm in the business of teaching LEOs as a DCJS certified instructor.

                    LEOSA covers both qualified active and retirees/separated LEOs. Recent change in October 2010 changed that no state can't have ruling on type of ammunition (as long as type of ammunition is not banned by federal law) that qualified individuals can have (NJ for instance didn't even allow their retired LEOs to have hollow points). LEOSA also states that even though qualified individuals can carry concealed pistols/revolvers, they must obey and follow the local rules and regulations.

                    I don't agree with NYS laws in regard to possession of post 1994 non-compliant gun and magazines, however when I am teaching classes, I can only go by what I've been taught by instructors above me and by what NYS law states in PL and CPL.

                    If there is a case law in regard to this issue, I'd love to see it so that I can correct my thinking and update my knowledge.

                    If you happen to be anywhere near LI, let's go shooting one day!
                    Last edited by M1garand; 04-16-2011, 08:15 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Hi M1Garand, yes mags are not covered, but firearms both pre and post '94 (except class III) are. The case law stems from a case aganist the infamous "Drew Peterson" (alledged wife murderer). They tried to get him on a short barrel rifle, but it was ruled by the judge that his posession of the firearm was covered by LEOSA. I do believe they got him for not having a tax stamp for the short bbl, but the gun was legal. if it ain't banned by Federal Law it qualifies.

                      No one wants to be a test case, so, until NYS and the AG offically recognizes LEOSA I'd err on the side of cautuion. BTW, NYPD doesn't even have a mag policy for retirees. My old partner says the pistol lic application asks round capacity of each gun. He answered 15 for his Glock service pistol and another large cap gun he owns, they didn't blink an eye and he has renewed 2x so far.
                      Hey Kidd, I've got more time On Meal than you have "On the Job"

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 1911user View Post
                        Hi M1Garand, yes mags are not covered, but firearms both pre and post '94 (except class III) are. The case law stems from a case aganist the infamous "Drew Peterson" (alledged wife murderer). They tried to get him on a short barrel rifle, but it was ruled by the judge that his posession of the firearm was covered by LEOSA. I do believe they got him for not having a tax stamp for the short bbl, but the gun was legal. if it ain't banned by Federal Law it qualifies.

                        No one wants to be a test case, so, until NYS and the AG offically recognizes LEOSA I'd err on the side of cautuion. BTW, NYPD doesn't even have a mag policy for retirees. My old partner says the pistol lic application asks round capacity of each gun. He answered 15 for his Glock service pistol and another large cap gun he owns, they didn't blink an eye and he has renewed 2x so far.
                        Thanks for the reply. Yes, I also did hear same thing about NYPD officers retirin with their post 1994 manufactured "evil" magazines as well.

                        Be safe and enjoy your weekend!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by FutureLEO77 View Post
                          I live in southern California, not the most friendly state when it comes to guns. I know officers here are allowed to have high capacity mags and AR's and AK's with mag release buttons instead of the bullet button. But are officers here allowed to own machine guns, such as PKM's, M60's, etc? I'm very interested to know, thanks for helping me.
                          Peace Officers in California are exempt from California's Assault Weapon's Ban, however still have to register "assault rifles" (i.e., personally owned AR-15's.)

                          The PKM's and M60's are class 3 firearms under the Federal Firearms Act. I don't know of any current peace officers who have acquired class 3 firearms pursuant to their employment. All class 3 firearms are typically agency owned.
                          Other officer: Oh that's right, I forgot, you're God's gift to police work.
                          Me: At least someone recognizes it.

                          Turns out basic police work isn't so hard, you just have to leave the station.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Blizz View Post
                            Peace Officers in California are exempt from California's Assault Weapon's Ban, however still have to register "assault rifles" (i.e., personally owned AR-15's.)

                            The PKM's and M60's are class 3 firearms under the Federal Firearms Act. I don't know of any current peace officers who have acquired class 3 firearms pursuant to their employment. All class 3 firearms are typically agency owned.
                            The only way EBRs (Evil Black Rifle) are legal in CA is if they were registered before the AWB, or if they were purchased after the AWB on a agency letterhead; and from a recent decision from state DOJ, you will not be allowed to keep the weapon after you retire unless you move it or you out of state.

                            Class III permit here in CA?.....dont even bother applying....you are wasting the paper and your $$$$$.
                            The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

                            "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

                            "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"

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                            • #15
                              PC-12133(b) is the best CA law on the books. With a little bit of hoop jumping one can by any handgun.

                              12133(b) - The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to a single-shot pistol with a barrel length of not less than six inches and that has an overall length of at least 10 1/2 inches when the handle, frame or receiver, and barrel are assembled.

                              If you find the correct FFL to do the work, you can buy any handgun you want, have them convert it to conform to the above, and sell it to you as such. You then take your new single shot gun and bag of original parts home, and do what you want with it.
                              _____________
                              "Corruptisima republica plurimae leges."

                              "The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws."
                              - Cornelius Tacitus

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