New Law in California — “Leave It? Then Lock It!”

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Following a number of incidents in which firearms were stolen from police and other law enforcement vehicles and then used in crimes, the California legislature has passed a bill that Governor Jerry Brown signed into law on September 26, 2016.

The Orange County Register reported that an investigation of 134 state and local police agencies in Southern California alone showed 329 firearms were lost or stolen over the past five years.

The new law requires law enforcement officers – and concealed weapon permit holders – who leave firearms in unintended vehicles to lock them in a safe box that is permanently affixed and hidden or in the trunk.

Violation can result in a $1,000 fine.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jerry Hill (D-Leandro) said his bill will “ensure that the requirements for safe gun storage in vehicles are the same for everyone — law enforcement officers and civilians.”

The law, however, would not apply to a peace officer under circumstances requiring immediate aid or action within the scope of their official duties.

Do you secure your weapon in your vehicle?