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Caught with or carrying a gun on military base??

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by blkcloud, Jan 12, 2012.

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  1. blkcloud

    blkcloud Active Member

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    Back in the summer I took my dad to see the blue angels museum in Pensecola.. We were in line getting on base and was behind a motorhome at the guard shack.. it took forever to get the motorhome pulled over on the side and for us to go on by.. reason.. when we pulled up I heard the guard radio someone and he said.. we have a motorhome here with a weapon on board.. What do they do in a case like this? there were signs everywhere at the entrance .... no weapons allowed.. but.. by the time you read the sign there was no where to turn around and leave.. espically if you were in a motorhome..thanks!
     
  2. John Galt

    John Galt TS Member

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    Keep your mouth shut and drive on in.
     
  3. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    Back in 2009 I had two shotguns that went with me on a vacation to Colorado with a stop in Sparta for the Grand on the way back. During my visit to Colorado I planned to visit an Air Force Museum on Petersen AFB. I called ahead to see how to handle this arriving at the base with weapons.

    It was arranged that we pre-cleared the paperwork to authorize a visit and then on arrival we (my wife was with me) stopped first at the Visitors Center which was just inside the Main Gate. The Main Gate guards were aware because of our pre-arrangments, that I had firearms with me. They directed me to the Visitors Center where we verified ids and filled out some form as to what we were on base for and how long we intended to stay. We then received a temporary visitors vehicle pass and directions to drive directly, following the directed route, to the Base Armory.

    At the Armory I checked in the two shotguns, which were required to have trigger locks on them with me holding the key. I received a receipt for the two guns and was then clear to go anywhere visitors were allowed on base. After the Museum visit was over we grabbed a quick lunch at the on-base McDonald's and checked out one or two of the other on-base static aircraft displays and sites. When we were ready to leave, I returned to the Armory, showed them my receipt and was given my guns. I then drove directly off base.

    It was actually more difficult to describe the process here than it was to actually do it. It took maybe five minutes at the Visitors Center and maybe a minute at the Armory.

    Just a little note, the pre-arranged tour was required for anyone without DOD identification (or other approved ID). Retired ID was acceptable but a pure civilian visitor had to make the pre-arrangment regardless of having firearms or not. The only exception was if it was a group that had military personal to sponsor the group. You still had to have your name on the roster of the group. You could not just "show up".

    The thing that made it easy was the pre-planned information so that the Front Gate guards were aware that I was coming on the date and time we arranged. I don't know what difficulties an unannounced visit may have brought.

    On this trip we also visited the Air Force Academy. Here the process was a little different because my daughter was with us and she had a friend who is married to one of the Airmen stationed at the Academy. In this case, asking ahead of the base police what to do, resulted in just having us transfer the guns to my daughter's friend's car. Again, trigger locks were required. We toured the base and visited her house. When we were leaving we just transferred the guns from her car to our van and I left the base. My daughter stayed with the friend for a while and later her friend dropped my daughter off at our campground.

    So the best thing to do is simply ask, in advance of your visit how to handle the situation. I found both bases to be very accommodating to traveling visitor who happened to have shotguns. I do not know what the situation might be with handguns. All those different state laws we passed through on our 5,000 mile trip got to be too confusing with what you had to do with a handgun. What was okay in one state was forbidden in the next and then the next state was different again.
     
  4. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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    Twenty years ago, I worked in an Air Force armory from time to time and as pyrdek stated, just call ahead and get the details of how that individual base works regarding firearms and visitors.

    Doesn't sound like the procedure has changed much. However, at the armory I worked at the policy allowed for the gun to be cleared much like at an airport. The SP verifies that the firearm is unloaded and then either a trigger lock went on it, or a locked hard case worked.

    We had a section of gun racks and drawers (all were metal) that were dedicated to civilian arms. There was also a section of the floor in the rear for guns stored in gun cases. No one would intentionally ding someone's gun, but SP are not used to dealing with high gloss 32" barrels, and unless things have drastically changed... Those aisles are not wide.

    Point, just call to see if you can check your firearm into the armory, and keep it in a HARD case. My NCOIC of the armory at the time did not allow soft cases because they were too difficult to store in the racks and unsuitable to store on the floor.

    As one that still frequents Army and Air Force bases, what I do know that still holds true is that each installation is different. The installation commander has vast authority to tailor his/her own little kingdom to liking.

    As far as sneaking a gun onto base... If caught, you will have it confiscated for a time; even if it is 48 hours for investigation, it could really throw a kink into a vacation itinerary.... at the minimum!

    And as far as the first post goes, if prior to arrival at the installation, the firearm(s) is not previously announced with arrangements worked out, it is still not a big deal if the visitor declared the firearms. Just takes more time to get the gears moving.

    There are still installations where civilians can shoot at the trap/skeet range and transport their shotguns to and from the range. It all varies... Just ask questions.
     
  5. birdogs

    birdogs TS Member

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    Many years ago when I was in Basic Training at Ft Dix (NJ), it was a court matrial offense to have live ammunition. A draftee from Puerto Rico in my company actually went to the stockade for having an M-1 clip of .30-06, ammo.
     
  6. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    No Nock has very good advice prydek

    If you find yourself at the gate- per the original question and cant turn around- make a declaration to the guard- that you didnt know and ask him to allow you to go inside and do a U turn- but make the declaration before he starts searching your vehicle---

    John Galt has good advice if you want to be convicted of a felony and go to prison

    Regards from Iowa

    Gene
     
  7. yakimaman

    yakimaman Well-Known Member

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    I was stationed at Malmstrom AFB in Great Falls MT in the early 80s - my 14 year old son would get on his bicycle with my sinle shot 22 rifle slung over his back and ride out the back gate to go plinking along the Missouri river - then he'd ride back home - all the Security Police at the gate checked was his ID card. Times have surely changed.

    rm
     
  8. John Galt

    John Galt TS Member

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    Thanks for the support Eugene. Once you've already entered the base you're already guilty so you are no more or less guilty if you stay 30 minutes instead of 30 seconds. There is no upside to confessing your guilt.
     
  9. John Galt

    John Galt TS Member

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    Thanks for the support Eugene. Once you've already entered the base you're already guilty so you are no more or less guilty if you stay 30 minutes instead of 30 seconds. There is no upside to confessing your guilt.
     
  10. ebsurveyor

    ebsurveyor Member

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    Back in the 60's I took guns on post many many times. In fact the turkey, deer, duck and quail hunting was good on Fort Sill.
     
  11. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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    Not true John Galt, Having use to staff the front gate off and on for four years... A person is not on base until they are cleared through security...

    I know that hasn't changed from my recent entries onto Air force and Army bases..

    Benning last March, Moody and Tyndall last July, and Eglin last November...


    Withhold the fact that one has a firearm from security police/forces and actually pass the security checkpoint, there is a problem... if caught...

    If one declares the firearm at the front gate and asks what to do... No problem... Worst case scenario is that one is refused admission onto the base and ordered to turn around...
     
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