OC in Virginia

This is a discussion on OC in Virginia within the Open Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; First I'd like to say hello to everybody and thank you all for the informative posts that I've already been reading. I applied for my ...

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Thread: OC in Virginia

  1. #1
    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    OC in Virginia

    First I'd like to say hello to everybody and thank you all for the informative posts that I've already been reading.

    I applied for my CHP today at the Alexandria district court. Kind of interesting experience. The clerk said I needed to disclose my SSN# and I informed her "actually your not allowed to require that information." This ticked her off and she said "we aren't allowed to?" did an about face and headed for the manager, lol. She came back and demanded my military ID, and drivers liscense. I told her I also wanted to submit my military transcript showing that I've completed marksmanship training. This technically shouldn't be required but the Alexandria court demands proof of training, not just military ID, although I find it funny that discharge papers somehow prove competency. Anyways I decided to include it. She then said, "what is this? I don't think we accept this." I said "It's my understanding that VA law considers current military service or proof of honorable discharge proof of competency." She hurried off to ask the manager again. She came back, asked for the fee and it was done. I'm now counting down the 45 days.

    Now that you have some background I'd like to ask for some info about open carry in VA.

    It's my understanding that I can walk out of my house with my pistol tucked into my waistband as long as the handle is clearly visible; please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Also I'm a little confused about open car carry. Can I leave the pistol in my waistband while driving or do I need to put it in a seat/dashboard etc.?

    Also I believe I can open carry while fully loaded correct?

    My apologies if this post is long winded. I'd appreciate any knowledgeable help I can get.

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  3. #2
    Member Array MoHawk's Avatar
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    VA law is very strict about open carry. TECHNICALLY the way the law is worded, there needs to be 360 degree visibility of your gun or it is concealed. We all know that can't work unless you have a holster on your head. I would NOT tuck my gun into my waistband. Get a nice paddle holster and carry that way. If it is tucked into your waistband, you WILL be asked for your CHP. You can open carry fully loaded. As far as carrying in your vehicle goes, once again, I would not tuck it into my waistband. Leave it in the holster or pull it out and set it on the passanger seat. However, if you get pulle dover, you should IMMEDIATELY tell the LEO where your weapon is.
    Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward, and freedom will be defended

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    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    Thanks for the quick response. I wasn't aware of the "360" part.

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    Member Array MoHawk's Avatar
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    It is a poorly worded law. That is why I said your best bets is to tuck your shirt in and wear and OWB holster. Good luck.
    Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward, and freedom will be defended

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    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    I agree that it's very poorly worded; that's why I asked to begin with. I can't wait till the CHP comes through. I'm just hoping that the judge won't hem me up on the "proof of competency" requirement. If I don't get flat out denied my plan is to hold out until the 45 days is up and demand my temporary permit. If they deny me I'll go from there.

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    Senior Member Array BkCo1's Avatar
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    It is my understanding that as long as the grip is visible you are good to go. That also applies to vehicles. Check with the Virginia Defense League. Alexandria always was a pain in the butt. I got a towed and a ticket for parking in front of a fire hydrant in Old Town once. The hydrant was on the other side of the sidewalk in a yard. Went to court and won. The city refused to refund my towing and storage fees until I went back to the judge.
    By the way welcome aboard.

    Semper Fi

  8. #7
    Member Array MoHawk's Avatar
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    I used my military ID as "proof of competency" with NO issues. I do, however, recommend you still take a course about the laws of where you can and can't carry for your OWN sake
    Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward, and freedom will be defended

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    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BkCo1 View Post
    It is my understanding that as long as the grip is visible you are good to go. That also applies to vehicles. Check with the Virginia Defense League. Alexandria always was a pain in the butt. I got a towed and a ticket for parking in front of a fire hydrant in Old Town once. The hydrant was on the other side of the sidewalk in a yard. Went to court and won. The city refused to refund my towing and storage fees until I went back to the judge.
    By the way welcome aboard.

    Semper Fi
    To me it would be common sense that if the grip is visible it would be ok. Even in a holster the grip is pretty much all that's visible. Or should I just go outside, stick a flag in the barrel and wave it around so it's more visible? Alexandria really is something, I found out the hard way that they have a personal property tax on cars. Thankfully they waive military from this. Now I just need to find a way to get out of the Fairfax county car tax. Seriously, a city car tax and a county car tax, both of which are annual?? Just seems a little unfair to me. Thanks for the warm welcome.

    Hooah!

  10. #9
    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoHawk View Post
    I used my military ID as "proof of competency" with NO issues. I do, however, recommend you still take a course about the laws of where you can and can't carry for your OWN sake
    Thanks for the input MoHawk. I think I might just take your advice on the class. All these cleverly worded laws can be pretty tough to decode. It would be good to draw on the experience of others.

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    Distinguished Member Array Black Knight's Avatar
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    I understand that as long as it can be recognized as a gun it is not considered concealed. If the grips are exposed and a person can reasonably recognize it as a gun you are fine. Many folks use this method when entering resturaunts that serve alcohol. Even though your military ID and papers may be good for the permit I would recommend you take a state approved course so you can be more up to date on the various laws. When it comes to the legal aspect you can't have too much training. Oh, and welcome to the forum.

  12. #11
    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black Knight View Post
    I understand that as long as it can be recognized as a gun it is not considered concealed. If the grips are exposed and a person can reasonably recognize it as a gun you are fine. Many folks use this method when entering resturaunts that serve alcohol. Even though your military ID and papers may be good for the permit I would recommend you take a state approved course so you can be more up to date on the various laws. When it comes to the legal aspect you can't have too much training. Oh, and welcome to the forum.
    Thanks Black Knight and once again I got a common sense answer to a poorly worded law. This is why I decided to get the CHP in the first place. I don't want to end up being guilty of a crime due to a technicality.

    About the class option, does anybody have a good recommendation of where to go? I've been shooting handguns/rifles my whole life as well as various other weapons in the Army but the whole legality of carrying a weapon in a civilian environment is what I'm worried about. I think I'm pretty clear on use of lethal force but was disappointed that VA hasn't adopted the castle doctrine

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    Member Array MoHawk's Avatar
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    Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward, and freedom will be defended

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    Member Array RunawayGun's Avatar
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    A little far away but looks pretty solid. Thanks for the link.

  15. #14
    Member Array MoHawk's Avatar
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    Where exactly are you?
    Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward, and freedom will be defended

  16. #15
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    Welcome to the forum from the Richmond area.

    18.2-308. Personal protection; carrying concealed weapons; when lawful to carry.

    A. If any person carries about his person, hidden from common observation, (i) any pistol, revolver, or other weapon designed or intended to propel a missile of any kind by action of an explosion of any combustible material; (ii) any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, metal knucks, or blackjack; (iii) any flailing instrument consisting of two or more rigid parts connected in such a manner as to allow them to swing freely, which may be known as a nun chahka, nun chuck, nunchaku, shuriken, or fighting chain; (iv) any disc, of whatever configuration, having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart; or (v) any weapon of like kind as those enumerated in this subsection, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. A second violation of this section or a conviction under this section subsequent to any conviction under any substantially similar ordinance of any county, city, or town shall be punishable as a Class 6 felony, and a third or subsequent such violation shall be punishable as a Class 5 felony. For the purpose of this section, a weapon shall be deemed to be hidden from common observation when it is observable but is of such deceptive appearance as to disguise the weapon's true nature.
    As long as the weapon is recognizable as a weapon you are not concealed.

    As for carrying loaded, yes you can carry your weapon fully loaded, either concealed (when your permit arrives) or openly. You just can't be "loaded"!

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