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sschrick

Handgun in Car, under 21 year old driving

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So my oldest son is 15 and has his Driver's Lerners Permit.  Will be getting his restricted license in a few months.  I know TN law now allows loaded handguns to be carried in a vehicle without an HCP.  Both my wife and myself have our HCPs, so that is not really an issue. 

Does the TN law discern or appoint ownership of who is driving as to what is in the car?  If he is driving and I am in the car, can the gun still be in the car?

Now, I am pretty sure once he turns 16, he cannot drive with the gun in the car without either my wife or myself, is this correct?

 

He just informed me today that he learned in Driver's Ed at school, that if he is driving, there can be no alcohol in the car whatsoever.  Not unopened container, not in the trunk, not even empty cans or bottles.  News to me.

 

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I believe he has to be 18 in order for him to have it in the vehicle by himself. 

Ownership most always goes to the driver. If there were some alcohol left (on accident of course) in the trunk and he was pulled under 21 that would ruin some folks day. 

Someone with more knowledge will be along to add or wreck my post shortly. :cop:

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Generally, the minimum age to possess a handgun in Tennessee without parental permission is 18.  Someone under 18 can possess a long gun without parental permission.  The way I understand if you can possess a firearm, you can have it loaded in your vehicle.  It looks like according to law below, you would need to be 18 to have a handgun loaded in a vehicle.  Would seem to be legal for under 18 to have a loaded long gun in a vehicle.

39-17-1319.  Handgun possession prohibited -- Exceptions. 

(2) "Juvenile" means any person less than eighteen (18) years of age.

(b) Except as provided in this section, it is an offense for a juvenile to knowingly possess a handgun.

(d)  (1) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the juvenile is:

      (A) In attendance at a hunter's safety course or a firearms safety course;

      (B) Engaging in practice in the use of a firearm or target shooting at an established range authorized by the governing body of the jurisdiction in which such range is located or any other area where the discharge of a firearm is not prohibited;

      (C) Engaging in an organized competition involving the use of a firearm, or participating in or practicing for a performance by an organized group which is exempt from federal income taxation under § 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3)), as amended, and which uses firearms as part of the performance;

      (D) Hunting or trapping pursuant to a valid license issued to the juvenile pursuant to title 70;

      (E) Accompanied by the juvenile's parent or guardian and is being instructed by the adult or guardian in the use of the handgun possessed by the juvenile;

      (F) On real property which is under the control of an adult and has the permission of that adult and the juvenile's parent or legal guardian to possess a handgun;

      (G) Traveling to or from any activity described in subdivision (d)(1) with an unloaded gun; or

      (H) At the juvenile's residence and with the permission of the juvenile's parent or legal guardian, possesses a handgun and is justified in using physical force or deadly force.
 

 

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Until the AG rules I would avoid having anyone under 21 in possession of a handgun.  The owner of the auto could, as could a permit holder.  I think you could argue the point, but would be expensive to do so.  Has recently been discussed here: https://www.tngunowners.com/forums/topic/101498-castle-doctrine-question/

 

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1 hour ago, sschrick said:

Does the TN law discern or appoint ownership of who is driving as to what is in the car?  If he is driving and I am in the car, can the gun still be in the car?

IANAL but it seems to me that the easiest way to handle it is if you are in the car with him then just make sure that the gun is on your person and the same with your wife.

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If you (or your wife) are passengers, the handgun and the unopened alcohol are yours, not his. There's no issue at all in that case.

Driving by himself, it's 18 or 21 for handguns*, 21 for unopened alcohol.

*See the thread linked above by chancesR. The plain reading of the laws look to be 18 to me and to many here, but TDOS seems to think it's 21. Maybe we'll get the AG's opinion soon and hopefully it won't make things murkier.

 

Edited by monkeylizard

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I definitely was not ever planning on him driving alone with the handgun, until he is older.  I just wasn't sure about it being (just) in the car and not on my person, if he was driving.

 

as for the booze, interesting enough info.  I will adhere to that. 

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For the alcohol, think about it from the cop's perspective after pulling your son over for speeding or rolling through a stop sign . . . "Honestly, officer! That 24 pack cube of Bud Light in the back seat is my dad's!" I'm guessing Officer Friendly might not believe him.

TCA 57-5-301 covers beer. I'm sure there's something similar for liquor and wine, but I'm not going to go digging in the TCA for it.

Quote

(e)  (1) It is unlawful for any person under twenty-one (21) years of age to have in the person's possession beer for any purpose, and it is unlawful for any such minor to transport beer for any purpose except the same be in the course of employment.

   (2) A violation of subdivision (e)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor.

   (3) Any person under twenty-one (21) years of age found to have violated subdivision (e)(1) shall, regardless of the final disposition of such violation, have the right to have the records, as defined in § 40-32-101, of such violation destroyed after the passage of six (6) months from the date of the violation. Such destruction shall occur upon motion of the person to the court which heard the violation and shall be without cost to such person.

Edited by monkeylizard

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I was just thinking.....if laws were clearly written, what in the heck would lawyers do ? :devil:

Edited by chances R
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I was just thinking.....if laws were clearly written, what in the heck would lawyers do ? default_devil.gif

Now there's a thought!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Yep.....I suppose on a strict reading of 57-5-301 which I posted, Junior wouldn't be able to drive home from the grocery store with mom or dad in the passenger seat if beer had been purchased. He'd technically be transporting beer. No cop in his right mind would ever enforce that, but based on the letter of the law . . .

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48 minutes ago, monkeylizard said:

Yep.....I suppose on a strict reading of 57-5-301 which I posted, Junior wouldn't be able to drive home from the grocery store with mom or dad in the passenger seat if beer had been purchased. He'd technically be transporting beer. No cop in his right mind would ever enforce that, but based on the letter of the law . . .

my thoughts exactly.

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On 2/16/2017 at 11:02 AM, sschrick said:

So my oldest son is 15 and has his Driver's Lerners Permit.  Will be getting his restricted license in a few months.  I know TN law now allows loaded handguns to be carried in a vehicle without an HCP.  Both my wife and myself have our HCPs, so that is not really an issue. 

Does the TN law discern or appoint ownership of who is driving as to what is in the car?  If he is driving and I am in the car, can the gun still be in the car?

Now, I am pretty sure once he turns 16, he cannot drive with the gun in the car without either my wife or myself, is this correct?

 

He just informed me today that he learned in Driver's Ed at school, that if he is driving, there can be no alcohol in the car whatsoever.  Not unopened container, not in the trunk, not even empty cans or bottles.  News to me.

 

If you or your wife is in the car, and have possession of the firearm in question is clearly lawful and there is no risk of charges.  The fact he's driving and you're riding is no different under state law than you driving and carry and he's riding as a passenger.

Technically speaking if you are accompanying your son and teaching him the use of a handgun in self defense, he could be openly carrying a handgun, although I would recommend it because a lot of our police officers do not understand the finer points of TN firearm laws.

The in the car exception to 39-17-1307 probably does NOT apply to a minor since they are restricted from purchasing firearms by state law.  

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