Law change enacted regarding shooting from a motor vehicle

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 The law prohibiting shooting a gun that’s resting on a motor vehicle – or even resting the gun up against a motor vehicle - has been changed. I remember a hunter who got a summons for leaning his loaded gun up against his truck while he had lunch.

So we owe Representative Joel Stetkis a thank you for successfully amending this law, and to DIF&W for supporting this law change which was enacted by the legislature and signed into law by the governor.

In his testimony, Rep. Stetkis said, “I would like to eliminate the possibility of someone mistakenly breaking the law by simply setting a loaded firearm on the tailgate of their truck, leaning their shotgun against the tire of their vehicle, or setting their hunting rifle in the back seat of their car so they can tie their boots, take off a jacket, or go check their targets.”

Simply put, the change allows a hunter to rest a loaded firearm or crossbow on a motor vehicle that is not an ATV or snowmobile. It also allows you to shoot from the vehicle at a fixed target (such as at a shooting range) as long as you are not within the enclosed area or passenger compartment of a motor vehicle.

Here’s the exact language of the newly amended law.

 

§ 11212-A Hunting or shooting from a motor vehicle or motorboat

1 Definitions.   As used in this section, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings.

A.  "Loaded firearm or crossbow" means a firearm with a cartridge or shell in the chamber or in an attached magazine, clip or cylinder or a muzzle-loading firearm charged with powder, lead and a primed ignition device or mechanism or a cocked and armed crossbow.

B.  "Vehicle" means a motor vehicle or a trailer or other type of vehicle being hauled by a motor vehicle.

2 Prohibition; vehicles.   A person may not shoot while in or on a vehicle, have a loaded firearm or crossbow while in or on a vehicle or rest a loaded firearm or crossbow on a vehicle except as provided in subsection 3.

3 Exceptions.   The following exceptions apply to subsection 2.

A.  While hunting, a person who is not in or on a vehicle may rest a loaded firearm or crossbow that is under the person's control on the vehicle to shoot only when the vehicle is not in motion and the engine of the vehicle is not running.

B.  While hunting, a person who is on but not within an enclosed area or passenger compartment of an all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile may shoot a firearm or crossbow or rest a loaded firearm or crossbow that is under the person's control on the all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile to shoot only when the all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile is not in motion and the engine of the all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile is not running.

C.  While target shooting and not hunting, a person who is on but not within an enclosed area or passenger compartment of a vehicle may shoot a firearm or crossbow or rest a loaded firearm or crossbow that is under the person's control on the vehicle to shoot only when the vehicle is not in motion and the engine of the vehicle is not running.

D.  Notwithstanding paragraph A, a paraplegic or single or double amputee of the legs may shoot from a vehicle that is not in motion.

E.  A person who is 21 years of age or older and is not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm or is 18 years of age or older and under 21 years of age and is on active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States or the National Guard or is an honorably discharged veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States or the National Guard and is not otherwise prohibited from carrying a firearm may have in or on a vehicle a loaded pistol or revolver.

4 Prohibition; motorboats.   A person may not shoot while in or on a motorboat, except that:

A.  A person may hunt migratory waterfowl from a motorboat in accordance with federal regulations; and

B.  A person may shoot from a motorboat if that boat is not being propelled by its motor.

5 Possession of wild animals or wild birds.   A person may not possess a wild animal or wild bird taken in violation of subsections 2 or 3, except as otherwise provided in this Part.

6 Penalty.   A person who violates this section commits a Class E crime.

 

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