Your Car Is Not Treated Like Your Home

In the Supreme Court case of McDonald v. Chicago (2010) the United States Supreme court held that the Second Amendment guaranteed the right of citizens to possess firearms in their houses. The case didn't extend the right to cars. California doesn't extend that right to cars and has very strict firearms laws. California Penal Code Section 12025 states in part that a person is guilty of carrying a concealed firearm, if he "carries concealed within a vehicle which is under his or her control or direction any pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person." Penal Code Section 12031 also says that a person is guilty of the separate crime of carrying a loaded firearm when he "carries a loaded gun on his or her person or in a vehicle while in any public place or on any public street in certain designated locations stated in the code. It is prudent to transport a gun in a car while the gun is unloaded, in a locked container, or in the trunk of the car. SUVs present an interesting dilemma with the absence of a trunk. It would be wise to carry the gun in a locked container in that scenario. As a Coachella Valley personal injury lawyer I have had clients who were involved in an auto accident that was caused by a negligent driver and ended up having to face criminal charges due to violating Penal Code Section 12025 discussed above. In those cases the police officer found the loaded pistol under the seat of my client's car while investigating the accident. The pistol was dislodged from under the seat as a result of the car crash. Your car is not treated like your home under the California Penal Code.