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Location: Butte, MT
Joined: 01/02/2006
Posts: 234
Maine gun law

You're overthinking this. Your not getting penalized "for doing the right thing". Your getting penalized for transporting a firearm incorrectly.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3207
Maine gun law

Western, I'm a pretty conservative guy, but I wasn't trying to make a statement by bringing up 5th Amendment rights.

I too, have spent a lot of time with the justice system -- albeit a different system. I've had to be in a position where I had to decide guilt and assess punishment. In other cases, I've had to prefer charges against people and send them to court, where they've been convicted to spend years in prison.

I've seen people pay the price, have seen the damage criminal activity use causes to families of both victim and accused, etc. But as tough as I can be, I have tremendous respect for our justice system and believe that any offender is entitled to a good defense. Defense counsels I've worked wth are generally surprised to find me so supportive of what they do, even while I shred their arguments. I want the system to be pure, and not tainted by mistakes.

One of my guys once carjacked some people with a .300 Win Mag, and I put him in pre-trial confinement. But it really bothered me that during the confinement hearing, his attorney apologized for being in civilian clothes because "all of his uniforms were at the cleaners" and he didn't advise his client to stand when speaking to the judge. I hate a bad defense as much as I hate a bad prosecution.

Sage, I agree with you as well -- if you tell the cop about the bodies buried under the basement floor, you can't expect to be let off because you were up front about it. Your up-front admission and cooperation ought to be taken into account at sentencing time, but it doesn't erase the crime. I think that in this case, Annie's good will in that regard could vanish if the statute is clear and she went to court trying to wiggle her way out. If the law is clear about the magazine being in the gun regardless if it's locked, then the smart thing to do may be to be up front, apologize for misinterpreting the statute, and continue the cooperative trend that suggests you're an honest citizen that made a mistake, rather than someone trying to evade the law and escape accountability.

As someone who's dealt with a lot of cases, I practically want to jump across my desk and kiss the rare few who accept accountability, recognize their wrong, and come to me with a desire to fix it. That tells me they get it, feel bad, and want to correct future behavior. But if they come to me with a clear case and steadfast refusal to see how their own actions contributed, then I'm left to believe they'll make a similar mistake down the road.

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Location: Northeast Kingdom VT
Joined: 06/29/2008
Posts: 46
Maine gun law

sad Just a heads up: I am not being charged criminally or with a federal offense, they charged it as a misdomeaner offense. Again, I want to say, it was not illegal for me to have or carry the gun. If I didn't have a license to carry and conceal, it had to be unloaded, and not concealed, which it was There was also no need for me to inform the officer I had a gun, for a speeding voilation, which thats all it was until he ran my license and said I was under suspension in VT. Once I was seperated from my truck and it was being placed in the hands of 2 other people, Thats when I told the officer to retrieve it.
And again, I want to ask the question: What if I never said anything, and the tow truck guy took my gun, what would Maine be saying to me now??? Or if I had the gun in the back of the truck. There was no search and seizure of my truck, they were just having it towed, as they said I had no license, and was not leaving it on the road. My truck was never searched, nor was there probable cause for it. I asked him to retrieve it, and told him it wasn't loaded.

Location: Butte, MT
Joined: 01/02/2006
Posts: 234
Maine gun law
Annie Oakley wrote:
sad Just a heads up: I am not being charged criminally or with a federal offense, they charged it as a misdomeaner offense. Again, I want to say, it was not illegal for me to have or carry the gun. If I didn't have a license to carry and conceal, it had to be unloaded, and not concealed, which it was There was also no need for me to inform the officer I had a gun, for a speeding voilation, which thats all it was until he ran my license and said I was under suspension in VT. Once I was seperated from my truck and it was being placed in the hands of 2 other people, Thats when I told the officer to retrieve it.
And again, I want to ask the question: What if I never said anything, and the tow truck guy took my gun, what would Maine be saying to me now??? Or if I had the gun in the back of the truck. There was no search and seizure of my truck, they were just having it towed, as they said I had no license, and was not leaving it on the road. My truck was never searched, nor was there probable cause for it. I asked him to retrieve it, and told him it wasn't loaded.

If the police entered your vehicle and retrieved an item that is later used as evidence in criminal charges, that is search and siezure. It was at your request so there doesn't need to be any probable cause. 20 years ago the officer might have just told you how you were supposed to transport a handgun, placed it back under the seat and locked the doors. He might have just locked the doors and not even worried about it. These days guns, handguns especially, are a very sticky issue and police just don't have the leeway for discretion they once did. Judges still do, however.

At any rate, I believe I am now going to move on from this thread. We're all just kind of repeating ourselves at this point. I wish you good luck.

WesternHunter's picture
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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2363
Maine gun law

In any case I hope it all works in your favor Anne.

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