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Do I NEED a Concealed Handgun License to Carry a Loaded Handgun in my Car?

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There is some confusion over the question of whether you need a Concealed Handgun License (CHL) to carry a loaded handgun in your vehicle…so here is the skinny:

IN TEXAS, you MAY carry a loaded handgun in your vehicle WITHOUT A CHL If you are NOT:

  1. a convicted felon;
  2. a gang member (as defined under the Texas Penal Code);
  3. involved in criminal activity more serious than a traffic violation (class C Misdemeanor);
  4. the handgun is NOT in plain view; or,
  5. Otherwise prohibited by law from possessing a firearm.

In 2011 the statute was amended – and now in Texas you do not need a CHL to carry a loaded handgun in your vehicle, provided you don’t meet the above five elements.

So I can carry a loaded handgun in my glovebox or center console?

YES…IF…you are not doing anything else illegal (other than disobeying a class C traffic regulation), it is not in plain view, you are not a gang member, and not otherwise prohibited by law from possessing a handgun.

HOWEVER…if you are driving while intoxicated, in possession of marijuana, or controlled substances, you still can be charged with Unlawful Carrying of a Weapon.

AND IF you are a convicted felon, you can NEVER possess a handgun or other firearm in your vehicle.  Five years after you have been released from probation, parole or incarceration you may own a firearm in your home under Texas law (but not under Federal Law…but that is a discussion for a future post…)


Texas Penal Code

Sec. 46.02. UNLAWFUL CARRYING WEAPONS. (a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun, illegal knife, or club if the person is not:

(1) on the person’s own premises or premises under the person’s control; or

(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person’s control.

(a-1) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun in a motor vehicle or watercraft that is owned by the person or under the person’s control at any time in which:

(1) the handgun is in plain view; or

(2) the person is:

(A) engaged in criminal activity, other than a Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a law or ordinance regulating traffic or boating;

(B) prohibited by law from possessing a firearm; or

(C) a member of a criminal street gang, as defined by Section 71.01.

(a-2) For purposes of this section, “premises” includes real property and a recreational vehicle that is being used as living quarters, regardless of whether that use is temporary or permanent. In this subsection, “recreational vehicle” means a motor vehicle primarily designed as temporary living quarters or a vehicle that contains temporary living quarters and is designed to be towed by a motor vehicle. The term includes a travel trailer, camping trailer, truck camper, motor home, and horse trailer with living quarters.

(a-3) For purposes of this section, “watercraft” means any boat, motorboat, vessel, or personal watercraft, other than a seaplane on water, used or capable of being used for transportation on water.

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), an offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor.

(c) An offense under this section is a felony of the third degree if the offense is committed on any premises licensed or issued a permit by this state for the sale of alcoholic beverages.

ARRESTED ON WEAPONS CHARGES?

If you have been arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm,
These types of crimes are prosecuted with vigor in Texas, you need an aggressive criminal defense attorney
To fight for your freedom and make sure that justice is done.

Contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Tristan LeGrande IMMEDIATELY by calling 281-684-3500.

http://www.legrandelaw.com

http://www.houstondrugattorney.net

Houston Criminal defense attorney Tristan LeGrande