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Open Carry in Illinois Parks


boog

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I had a Utah class in Springfield this past weekend and 2 students (husband and wife) told me that they took a hunter safety class in Illinois and were told by their Instructors, who both are Illinois Conservation Police that OPEN CARRY is OK in Illinois Parks. They weren't specific if it was Illinois or Federal Parks. I said that I didn't think this was correct and I would want that in writing before I would do it. Does anyone know any conservation officers they could ask and get a letter stating that is legal?

Boog

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I have been reading everything I can find on CC and Open Carry and I have to admit that I am more confused now than when I started in regards to open carry.

 

It seems that State law does not forbid open carry. It's local laws, city, village what have you that bans it. Open carry would cause a you a lot of trouble though if you were traveling through the State as you would be traveling through some towns that banned it and therefore be breaking at least some kind of ordinance. I wouldn't do it, that's for sure.

 

 

So that leads me to believe that in a State park, only State law would apply.

 

Hence open carry is ok.

 

 

Of course I am not a lawyer and I may be completely wrong so don't take any of this as advice.

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I have been reading everything I can find on CC and Open Carry and I have to admit that I am more confused now than when I started in regards to open carry.

 

It seems that State law does not forbid open carry. It's local laws, city, village what have you that bans it. Open carry would cause a you a lot of trouble though if you were traveling through the State as you would be traveling through some towns that banned it and therefore be breaking at least some kind of ordinance. I wouldn't do it, that's for sure.

 

 

So that leads me to believe that in a State park, only State law would apply.

 

Hence open carry is ok.

 

 

Of course I am not a lawyer and I may be completely wrong so don't take any of this as advice.

 

 

Everything depends on the political climate of your area, I would never do it in million years up north here or if I was visiting down south.

 

The problem that you run into is the whole unincorporated property and what is "rural". There are so many gotchas that it is not a good idea to try in my opinion.

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I remember there was a similar discussion on this a few weeks ago~ http://illinoiscarry.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=20358&st=0&p=201042&hl=illinois%20state%20park&fromsearch=1entry201042

 

I'm with Chris. I wouldnt even try it. We need LTC, Black & white, no gray areas. There are catch-all laws for most, if not all the gray areas.

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The new national park law states carrying concealed or open in national parks must be in accordance

with state law in which state the park is in.

 

Illinois law prohibits the carrying of an uncased firearm when not on your own property, in your own business, or while hunting or fishing.

eta: or while at the dwelling of another who grants permission to carry.

 

Hence, no carry in a national park in Illinois either.

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The new national park law states carrying concealed or open in national parks must be in accordance

with state law in which state the park is in.

 

Illinois law prohibits the carrying of an uncased firearm when not on your own property, in your own business, or while hunting or fishing.

eta: or while at the dwelling of another who grants permission to carry.

 

Hence, no carry in a national park in Illinois either.

 

I wouldn't try it, but there are 2 national parks in Illinois. 1 The Lincoln Center in Springfield, and 2. The I&M Canal National Heritage Corridor. The Wildlife code seems to allow you to open carry while hunting or FISHING and you have a valid license. I would assume, that since fishing is allowed in the I & M Canal National Heritage Corridor, and if you had a valid Illinois fishing license, that it would be technically legal to carry while walking along the canal. You couldn't leave the canal property, and I am sure some bicyclist would call the cops. But after your arrest, I think you could win your case in court. IANAL though.

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On a side note and I don't mean to hijack this thread but can non-residents open carry in states that allow it? Like Wisconsin?

 

I couldn't tell you for sure but I believe so, they have a bunch of school zone stuff you have to be careful with along with different rules for being in a car. I'd go here:

 

http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum57/

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On a side note and I don't mean to hijack this thread but can non-residents open carry in states that allow it? Like Wisconsin?

 

I couldn't tell you for sure but I believe so, they have a bunch of school zone stuff you have to be careful with along with different rules for being in a car. I'd go here:

 

http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum57/

 

Seems to me "gunning up" & "de-gunning" from vehicular transportation is a PITA.

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It seems to me that state law absolutely forbids it. It must be either broken down or unloaded and enclosed in a case according to the IL compiled statutes. I believe that the ILCS would apply in a state park, and you might even then fall under the wildlife code which requires the case to be one specifically designed to house a firearm. So you would be under more laws.

 

I would not recommend trying it. If you want to container carry (fanny pack carry) then go for it. If you want to OC up in WI, like I did this weekend, while picking up trash at a park, then go for it, but I would say do not OC in IL. That is, unless you are on private property.

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So why in the world would a Conservation Officer make the statement. And there is a national park in Southern Illinois. It's the Shawnee National Forest. Thousands of acres

boog

 

Details, Boog... That's a forest, not a park. There is a difference. For instance, I believe that they allow some logging in areas of the Nat'l Forest. I don't think you'll see much logging in State Parks.

 

Just sayin'.

 

Get the officer's name, call them and ask one on one.

 

AB

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"So why in the world would a Conservation Officer make the statement. And there is a national park in Southern Illinois. It's the Shawnee National Forest. Thousands of acres"

boog

 

It is my understanding that a "National Forest" was allready treated differently than a "National Park." Firearms were not prohibited in the "National Forest" at least in my memory. Jim.

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"So why in the world would a Conservation Officer make the statement. And there is a national park in Southern Illinois. It's the Shawnee National Forest. Thousands of acres"

boog

 

It is my understanding that a "National Forest" was allready treated differently than a "National Park." Firearms were not prohibited in the "National Forest" at least in my memory. Jim.

I am talking about open carry of a handgun. I would bet lots of money that if i was carrying a sidearm in Shawnee I would be arrested. And I am from Marion and still know lots of people there

boog

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It can get really confusing, as it depends upon which agency is managing what areas, and some areas overlap:

 

National Parks

National Forests

National Wilderness Areas

 

Depending upon which you are in, and in which state it is located, and by which agency it's managed, you may or may not be able to OC or CC.

 

Here's a primer to help cause further confusion:

 

Wilderness Management

 

Who manages wilderness?

 

Four land management agencies, under two departments-the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture-have been given the awesome responsibility of managing the diverse National Wilderness Preservation System. While each agency maintains its own specific management mission, all have been successful in finding ways to mesh their independent missions with wilderness management goals and objectives.

 

Common to all wilderness-managing agencies is the guidance and direction that is provided by the Wilderness Act. Although other wilderness legislation is followed when applicable, and each agency has its own wilderness policy, the Wilderness Act bonds theses agencies together in the planning, implementation, and monitoring of America's wilderness system.

 

The congressionally designated wildlands of this country have been entrusted to the Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and the National Park Service. All of these agencies strive to meet the challenge of managing the American legacy of wilderness for the use and enjoyment of the people today and in the future.

(emphases mine)

 

I used to spend a lot of time backpacking in wilderness areas in

CO, and learned it should be standard procedure to always find out which is the managing agency for any particular "area" and get the official word from that source on the carrying of firearms within that area.

 

Then throw state parks/forests into the mix and :ph34r:

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Does anyone know any conservation officers they could ask and get a letter stating that is legal?

Boog

 

A statement from a police officer is NEVER effective to make a statement of law. EVER. If you get arrested and you pull out a statement from an officer saying that whatever you did was ok, that letter has absolutely no effect. In order to rely on a statement of criminality of a particular act, the statement MUST be from an official charged with interpreting the laws in order for you to have a chance at claiming legal mistake.

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My Sheriff told me a few years ago that I could open carry right down the middle of the street if I wanted to. There was no law against open carry. HOWEVER, if any person should complain about a man with a gun, he would arrest me for disturbing the peace. That was the extent of the conversation.
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You might beat the rap but not the ride.

 

 

 

On a side note and I don't mean to hijack this thread but can non-residents open carry in states that allow it? Like Wisconsin?

 

Yes, you can. You can not carry in any government buildings, within 1000' of K-12 School properly and no handguns in places that serve alcohol (long guns ok).

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On a side note and I don't mean to hijack this thread but can non-residents open carry in states that allow it? Like Wisconsin?

 

It depends on the laws in each state - some do not require a license to open carry - I believe others do.

Check each state you plan to carry in - and check them often. Carry laws are continually changing.

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"So why in the world would a Conservation Officer make the statement. And there is a national park in Southern Illinois. It's the Shawnee National Forest. Thousands of acres"

boog

 

It is my understanding that a "National Forest" was allready treated differently than a "National Park." Firearms were not prohibited in the "National Forest" at least in my memory. Jim.

I am talking about open carry of a handgun. I would bet lots of money that if i was carrying a sidearm in Shawnee I would be arrested. And I am from Marion and still know lots of people there

boog

I recall someone talking to some Shawnee Forest person and being told open carry was permitted. Of course you might talk to a National Forest Conservation Officer and get another answer, and another one and get the same answer. I see them go by every once in a while maybe I'll ask one.

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UUW statute

A person commits UUW when:

(4) Carries or possesses in any vehicle or concealed

 

on or about his person except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (4) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:

(i) are broken down in a non‑functioning state;

 

or

(ii) are not immediately accessible; or

(iii) are unloaded and enclosed in a case,

 

firearm carrying box, shipping box, or other container by a person who has been issued a currently valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card; or

and

(10) Carries or possesses on or about his person,

 

upon any public street, alley, or other public lands within the corporate limits of a city, village or incorporated town, except when an invitee thereon or therein, for the purpose of the display of such weapon or the lawful commerce in weapons, or except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business, any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (10) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:

(i) are broken down in a non‑functioning state;

 

or

(ii) are not immediately accessible; or

(iii) are unloaded and enclosed in a case,

 

IANAL, but I don't see anywhere that open carry in unincorporated areas is illegal. I can walk down my rural road with my loaded pistol (or AR-15 if I so desire), so long as it is not concealed and I am not in a vehicle. In fact I intend to do just that when we move out to the farm this summer. I'm looking forward to OC dog walks around the section.

If you can be certain the state park is not in an incorporated area, it should be legal under the UUW statutes. It might be possible to run afoul of the wildlife code, though. I would also bet that you would be arrested, gun confiscated, and charged with something, even if it was just disturbing the peace.

 

ETA: Again, IANAL, so it is possible I'm misreading the "any public street" section. From reading the rest of the code however, I'm pretty certain that the law refers to public streets, alleys, and other areas within an incorporated area, not ALL public streets. I think if they meant ALL public streets, there would be another "or" in there. ie "any public street, or any street, alley, or other..." Can anyone give this interpretation a yea or nea?

 

It also appears as though only PUBLIC lands within incorporated areas are prohibited, so in theory, I should be able to OC in Walmart once I'm out of the car, right? (And no, I'm not going to try it...)

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Don't forget the specific places also:

 

© Violations in specific places.

(1) A person who violates subsection 24‑1(a)(6) or

 

24‑1(a)(7) in any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, in residential property owned, operated or managed by a

public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income development, in a public park,

in a courthouse, on the real property comprising any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, on residential

property owned, operated or managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or

mixed‑income development, on the real property comprising any public park, on the real property comprising any courthouse, in any

conveyance owned, leased or contracted by a school to transport students to or from school or a school related activity, in any

conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a public transportation agency, or on any public way within 1,000 feet of the real

property comprising any school, public park, courthouse, public transportation facility, or residential property owned, operated, or

managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income development

commits a Class 2 felony and shall be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of not less than 3 years and not more than 7 years.

 

(1.5) A person who violates subsection 24‑1(a)(4),

 

24‑1(a)(9), or 24‑1(a)(10) in any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, in residential property owned, operated,

or managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income development,

in a public park, in a courthouse, on the real property comprising any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, on

residential property owned, operated, or managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a

scattered site or mixed‑income development, on the real property comprising any public park, on the real property comprising any

courthouse, in any conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a school to transport students to or from school or a school related

activity, in any conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a public transportation agency, or on any public way within 1,000 feet of

the real property comprising any school, public park, courthouse, public transportation facility, or residential property owned,

operated, or managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income

development commits a Class 3 felony.

 

(2) A person who violates subsection 24‑1(a)(1),

24‑1(a)(2), or 24‑1(a)(3) in any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, in residential property owned, operated or

managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income development, in a

public park, in a courthouse, on the real property comprising any school, regardless of the time of day or the time of year, on

residential property owned, operated or managed by a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered

site or mixed‑income development, on the real property comprising any public park, on the real property comprising any courthouse, in

any conveyance owned, leased or contracted by a school to transport students to or from school or a school related activity, in any

conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a public transportation agency, or on any public way within 1,000 feet of the real property

comprising any school, public park, courthouse, public transportation facility, or residential property owned, operated, or managed by

a public housing agency or leased by a public housing agency as part of a scattered site or mixed‑income development commits a Class

4 felony. "Courthouse" means any building that is used by the Circuit, Appellate, or Supreme Court of this State for the conduct of

official business.

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If you have specific questions please PM or email them to me directly as I will be having a conservation officer at hunter safety class possibly this weekend and I will be glad to ask them. If I do not get an answer I like I will call one that I have been friends with for 10 yrs. He has been with conservation police for 20+ yrs He will def know. I will try and get to the bottom of this one. I would like to know where these instructor were from so we can inform them of the right answer as well. Hope to have an answer soon to this one :sorcerer:
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