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Ohio Supreme Court To Decide Whether Gun Owners Can Drink At Home

This is a discussion on Ohio Supreme Court To Decide Whether Gun Owners Can Drink At Home within the Home (And Away From Home) Defense Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Originally Posted by KevinRohrer I am familiar w/ this law. It says that no one shall possess a firearm if intoxicated. "Owning" is not "possessing". ...

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  1. #16
    Distinguished Member Array Rotorflyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinRohrer View Post
    I am familiar w/ this law. It says that no one shall possess a firearm if intoxicated. "Owning" is not "possessing".

    Here's a thought: If you are intoxicated in your home, don't play w/ guns. Pretty simple.

    Here's a Better thought, what one does in the privacy of their own home (barring injury to others) is no one's business, especially that of the government.
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  2. #17
    Senior Member Array KevinRohrer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rotorflyr View Post
    Here's a Better thought, what one does in the privacy of their own home (barring injury to others) is no one's business, especially that of the government.
    Let's apply some common-sense here. No one is going to know or care what one does in one's home (e.g. being drunk and playing w/ guns) unless they cause a problem to others that requires a government response to deal with the problem.

    So here is a real-life example of what I am talking about: Drunken (i.e. staggering drunk) homeowner gets into physical fight w/ adult son who also lives in the home. Son calls the Sheriff's Office to report the Assault. Deputies respond to the house and are invited inside. Drunken homeowner/assaulter then argues w/ the Deputies and picks-up a handgun. Should the Deputies be forced to stand there and await the drunk's impaired thought-processes to determine what he wants to do w/ that gun? His judgment is obviously impaired, and should not at that point be handling a firearm or operating motor vehicles.

    In this scenario (which happened to me), no one is saying the drunk does not have a Constitutional right to this or that. What the law says is that you may not be intoxicated and handle a firearm because of the dumb-a** things you might do w/ it, as an excessive alcohol intake WILL cause you do stupid, dangerous things you might not otherwise do that might endanger others. If you are dumb enough to put yourself in a situation where you have forced the police to come into your house, you do not have the sound judgment at that point to be playing w/ a firearm. This is nothing more than an extension of the DUI law.
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  3. #18
    Senior Member Array SFury's Avatar
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    In your situation though, KevinRohrer, it went beyond a point of no ones business, to someone needing outside assistance calling it in. There are laws that already address that situation. The homeowner would be arrested. What charges would be filed, would be up to the final decision of the DA, and the child that called the police. At the very least charges for assault or attempting to assault an officer could be made regardless of the child's wishes. Unless more socialist laws are passed preventing those charges from being filed that is.

    This new potential law violates the basic premise the nation was founded to stop. The government is meant to stay out of our homes unless, like in your scenario, we do something that truly warrants intrusion. That's why the 4th Amendment exists. This laws goes well beyond the definition of reasonable.
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  5. #19
    Senior Member Array KevinRohrer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rotorflyr View Post
    Here's a Better thought, what one does in the privacy of their own home (barring injury to others) is no one's business, especially that of the government.
    I absolutely agree with you. It is not the gov'mint's business what one does in his own home. However, no Constitutional right is absolute; there have to be a few common sense limitations. And one of those is when someone is intoxicated in his home w/ a firearm resulting in impaired judgment and he is engaging in behavior that puts others at immediate risk.

    Here is a real-life example that if it had occurred in the idiot's house, would have been just as wrong:

    Larry decides to get drunk and sit in a lawn chair in his front yard w/ a .270 Winchester randomly firing at nothing in particular; his home being located along a reasonably busy State Highway. As Larry was located in the country, he was not (except for being intoxicated w/ a firearm) doing anything wrong. Should I have waited at his property line until he perforated a neighbor's house, car, or person driving past? If Larry had been sober, he would not have acted in this manner; but his excessive alcohol intake had impaired his judgement.
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  6. #20
    Senior Member Array KevinRohrer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SFury View Post
    In your situation though, KevinRohrer, it went beyond a point of no ones business, to someone needing outside assistance calling it in. There are laws that already address that situation. The homeowner would be arrested. What charges would be filed, would be up to the final decision of the DA, and the child that called the police. At the very least charges for assault or attempting to assault an officer could be made regardless of the child's wishes. Unless more socialist laws are passed preventing those charges from being filed that is.

    Don't read anything into the situation that was not there. I didn't know who started the fight, and the drunk was not necessarily less injured than the other person. There was no arrest for assaulting an officer as he did not do that. As for the DA determining what to charge, only for Felonies, not Misdemeanors.

    This is not a "new law"; provided the case deals w/ Ohio's Firearm While Intoxicated as it has been on the books for decades. The article cited was purposely vague, but am confident it deals with this law and not any new Red Flag law. As you can see, it has nothing to do w/ owning or possessing, just using or carrying it:

    2923.15 Using weapons while intoxicated.
    (A) No person, while under the influence of alcohol or any drug of abuse, shall carry or use any firearm or dangerous ordnance.
    (B) Whoever violates this section is guilty of using weapons while intoxicated, a misdemeanor of the first degree.
    Effective Date: 01-01-1974.

    This is an excellent tool for preventing someone from doing something stupid that they would later regret and would not do if not intoxicated.
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  7. #21
    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    Certainly not a problem in Florida. No such law against drinking while carrying.
    Wow! Good thing for you, OV.
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  8. #22
    VIP Member Array OldChap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinRohrer View Post
    I absolutely agree with you. It is not the gov'mint's business what one does in his own home. However, no Constitutional right is absolute; there have to be a few common sense limitations. And one of those is when someone is intoxicated in his home w/ a firearm resulting in impaired judgment and he is engaging in behavior that puts others at immediate risk.

    Here is a real-life example that if it had occurred in the idiot's house, would have been just as wrong:

    Larry decides to get drunk and sit in a lawn chair in his front yard w/ a .270 Winchester randomly firing at nothing in particular; his home being located along a reasonably busy State Highway. As Larry was located in the country, he was not (except for being intoxicated w/ a firearm) doing anything wrong. Should I have waited at his property line until he perforated a neighbor's house, car, or person driving past? If Larry had been sober, he would not have acted in this manner; but his excessive alcohol intake had impaired his judgement.
    Brother, with all due respect, if you had called your Game Wardens they would have handled that for you without you breaking a sweat.

    I have no earthly idea why you don't have breach of the peace and menacing laws in Ohio. Most states have such laws on the books and regularly enforce them. Do you not have state laws already on the books about someone being drunk and discharging a weapon across a highway or at neighbors homes? If you don't know about those, I'll be willing to bet the Game Wardens do.

    However, in this example, your proposed law before your Supreme Court wouldn't help at all because it isn't about someone outside on their property, it is about someone inside their home. Your previous example is covered by aggravated assault or domestic violence laws, are they not?
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  9. #23
    VIP Member Array SouthernBoyVA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Novarider View Post
    Considering laws against firearm usage while drinking I don't find it rediculous. Matter of fact I asked about drinking and home defense here.
    In Virginia it is perfectly legal to drink in a public venue, think restaurant, while armed as long as your sidearm is openly carried. If you conceal carry it becomes illegal to do this, unless you are the attorney general or a member of his staff. I have taken a small glass of wine and even a single shot scotch on occasion when armed but as a general rule I refrain from imbibing when carrying. Now in my home, as was said it's none of any government's business whether I drink or not and whether I do this when firearms are present or not.
    Last edited by SouthernBoyVA; November 22nd, 2019 at 09:41 AM.
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  10. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinRohrer View Post
    ...However, no Constitutional right is absolute; there have to be a few common sense limitations...
    Those "common sense" limitations must, themselves, be limited.

    "Government exists only to smooth the intercourse among its people" (or something very close to that). To that end, we have our Constitution, which attempts to limit the power of government. Essentially, the Constitution tells our government what it may not do.

    In your example of "drunken Larry" and his rifle, the government's intervention is permitted only because Larry is interfering with the lives and property of other people, and not merely because he's drunk and shooting at things.
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  11. #25
    Senior Member Array KevinRohrer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldChap View Post
    Brother, with all due respect, if you had called your Game Wardens they would have handled that for you without you breaking a sweat.

    I have no earthly idea why you don't have breach of the peace and menacing laws in Ohio. Most states have such laws on the books and regularly enforce them. Do you not have state laws already on the books about someone being drunk and discharging a weapon across a highway or at neighbors homes? If you don't know about those, I'll be willing to bet the Game Wardens do.

    However, in this example, your proposed law before your Supreme Court wouldn't help at all because it isn't about someone outside on their property, it is about someone inside their home. Your previous example is covered by aggravated assault or domestic violence laws, are they not?
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  12. #26
    Senior Member Array KevinRohrer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M1911A1 View Post
    Those "common sense" limitations must, themselves, be limited.

    "Government exists only to smooth the intercourse among its people" (or something very close to that). To that end, we have our Constitution, which attempts to limit the power of government. Essentially, the Constitution tells our government what it may not do.

    In your example of "drunken Larry" and his rifle, the government's intervention is permitted only because Larry is interfering with the lives and property of other people, and not merely because he's drunk and shooting at things.
    Agree w/ your first two paragraphs. As for the third, because he is drunk his judgment is impaired and he is engaging in dangerous, illegal activity, which our law seeks to prevent before someone gets hurt.
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  13. #27
    Senior Member Array SFury's Avatar
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    Laws are simply pieces of paper. In the end, if someone wants to ignore it, they will. They do all the time here in the US. It's illegal to drink and drive, and that happens almost everywhere and every day. It's illegal to murder people, and that happens daily too. Then there is all the theft occurs too... the list goes on and on.

    This laws goes far beyond anything that should be on the books in the US. Anywhere really, but most specifically not in the US. This nation was founded so the people could be FREE FROM the government.
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  14. #28
    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernBoyVA View Post
    In Virginia it is perfectly legal to drink in a public venue, think restaurant, while armed as long as your sidearm is openly carried. If you conceal carry it becomes illegal to do this, unless you are the attorney general of a member of his staff. I have taken a small glass of wine and even a single shot scotch on occasion when armed but as a general rule I refrain from imbibing when carrying. Now in my home, as was said it's none of any government's business whether I drink or not and whether I do this when firearms are present or not.
    I heard from someone in the VCDL, it might have even been PVC, that there is a term for doing the following: You CC into a restaurant, you order a drink. Before the drink comes, you subtlety hike your concealment garment up over the gun so it is OC'ed. You have your drink, have the glass taken away, then re-conceal the gun. The term was something like, "The Virginia Slide," but I may have that wrong.

    One thing I worry about though, is Virginia law criminalizes the carrying of a legally concealed handgun while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. (18.2-308.012). This is a Class 1 misdemeanor offense punished by up to a year in jail, a $2,500 fine, and revocation of a concealed handgun permit. It might well make you a prohibited person for owning a gun, but I am not sure about that. The problem is that law does not define a blood alcohol content for "under the influence," like the driving laws do.

    I actually got one of the attorneys from Arsenal Attorneys who taught the SD law classes I took to research that for me. She said potentially, if they wanted to, they could charge you under that law if you had any provable blood alcohol content, however small. To me, that's a bit ominous.
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  15. #29
    VIP Member Array SouthernBoyVA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmf552 View Post
    I heard from someone in the VCDL, it might have even been PVC, that there is a term for doing the following: You CC into a restaurant, you order a drink. Before the drink comes, you subtlety hike your concealment garment up over the gun so it is OC'ed. You have your drink, have the glass taken away, then re-conceal the gun. The term was something like, "The Virginia Slide," but I may have that wrong.

    One thing I worry about though, is Virginia law criminalizes the carrying of a legally concealed handgun while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. (18.2-308.012). This is a Class 1 misdemeanor offense punished by up to a year in jail, a $2,500 fine, and revocation of a concealed handgun permit. It might well make you a prohibited person for owning a gun, but I am not sure about that. The problem is that law does not define a blood alcohol content for "under the influence," like the driving laws do.

    I actually got one of the attorneys from Arsenal Attorneys who taught the SD law classes I took to research that for me. She said potentially, if they wanted to, they could charge you under that law if you had any provable blood alcohol content, however small. To me, that's a bit ominous.
    Yes it is a bit, perhaps more than a bit ominous. As for "the slide", I have never heard that term but have done this myself. What I do is sit in a booth with my strong side to the wall of the booth. Then I uncover my sidearm. Before leaving, I cover up again. This is not illegal but I have gotten flak about doing this on another site in the past. As I said, I prefer not to imbibe when carrying. And it's not because I fear having my reflexes or judgement dimmed but rather for the negative message it may send if my sidearm is seen. One small glass of wine or one single shot of scotch is not going to have any noticeable or practical affect on me. But as you said, you just never know what could come of it. A zealous prosecutor who wants to make an example of you for doing something like this could make your life hell.
    Last edited by SouthernBoyVA; November 22nd, 2019 at 02:01 PM.
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  16. #30
    VIP Member Array jmf552's Avatar
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    @SouthernBoyVA : I was also thinking that when this might most likely come up is if, heaven forbid, you actually had to use your gun. That could have some additional ramifications.
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