Tuesday, June 7th, deputies from the Santa Clarita Sheriff Station were conducting a crime suppression operation when they spotted a vehicle with expired tags “driving erratically” near Apple and Lyons Ave. Upon questioning the driver, deputies discovered he was on active parole. While looking through the passenger’s purse, deputies found a loaded handgun as well as some items that belonged to the driver.
Both were arrested and charged with several offenses. The female passenger was charged with concealed firearm inside a vehicle, carrying a loaded firearm, and carrying a loaded firearm without being the registered owner. The driver was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, concealed firearm in a vehicle, carrying a loaded firearm in a public place, and carrying a firearm without being the registered owner.
Both were taken to the Santa Clarita Sheriff Station to undergo booking and processing. It’s unknown at this time who the gun actually belonged to (could be nobody in the case of ghost guns) or what they planned on doing with it.
Regardless of who the gun belonged to, the State of California has strict rules regarding the transport of firearms in vehicles. The way to legally transport a handgun in California is to ensure the gun is unloaded and locked inside the trunk or inside a locked container. It must also be obvious and not concealed. Both the driver and the passenger(s) of the vehicle are responsible for ensuring these rules are followed otherwise they can both be charged, as in the case above. Last but not least, the gun owner must carry the firearm directly to and from the vehicle. They can’t dillydally.
To legally transport non-concealable firearms, such as rifles or shotguns, the gun must be unloaded but does not have to be held in a locked container. However, if the driver and the firearm are going to be within 1,000 yards of a school, they must be stored in a gun rack or locked container (as well as being unloaded).