Everyone wants a Concealed Handgun Permit but what is a concealed handgun? One of the local gun shops recently asked me to tell them what constitutes a concealed handgun in Colorado. To be honest I thought I knew what it meant but I was not sure of what the statutes say it means. So first let’s learn some things about the law. First of all, I’m not an Attorney and anything I say here is for informational purposes not legal advice. I get a lot of good information from Attorneys that are knowledgeable about gun laws and the laws of self-defense and I try not to stretch the meaning of any of those laws. Second, most people including myself until recently do not realize that the statutes in Colorado are what the legislature intended for the law to mean. The actual meaning of the law is decided in the state appellate courts and the state supreme court. So without reading the appropriate case law, you may not really know what the law actally means.
C.R.S. § 18-12-105
A weapon is concealed on your person if it is placed out of sight so as not to be discernible or apparent by ordinary observation.1
1. People ex rel. O.R., App.2008, 220 P.3d 949, rehearing denied.
Read the case here.
If you go to the bottom of the page in the statute (C.R.S. § 18-12-105 ) you will see the annotations. This is where these cases are listed.
If the weapon is only partially concealed – for instance, by a holster — it is not concealed for purposes of 18-12-105 C.R.S. As long as a casual observer would recognize it as a weapon, you have not violated the law against carrying a concealed weapon.
However, the weapon does not have to be in your hand or something you are touching or wearing. It is considered concealed “on your person” if it is within easy reach.2
2. People in Interest of R. J. A., App.1976, 556 P.2d 491, 38 Colo.App. 346 (look this one up on your own)
When is concealed carry legal in Colorado?
You may legally carry a concealed weapon in Colorado if:
1. You are in your own dwelling or place of business or on property you own or that is under your control.
2. You are in a private automobile or other private means of conveyance and carrying the weapon for the lawful protection of your or someone else’s property while traveling.
3. You hold a valid written permit to carry a concealed weapon and are not carrying it in a place where concealed carry is prohibited by law (such as a public school or courthouse).
4. You are going on a legitimate hunting or fishing trip with a hunting or fishing knife.
5. You are a peace officer carrying a weapon in conformance with department policy.
6. You are an on-duty United States probation officer or pretrial services officer serving in Colorado under the authority of rules and regulations promulgated by the judicial conference of the United States.
7. You are carrying a knife with a blade that is less than 3 1/2″ long.
DISCLAIMER: Have Gun Will Train Colorado and Rick Sindeband does NOT give legal advice. You should seek competent legal advice if you own a firearm for self-defense. Discuss the legal ramifications of firearms and self-defense with a knowledgeable attorney who specializes in CRIMINAL LAW in your local jurisdiction. Law, both statutory and common, regarding self-defense varies widely from one area to the next and is constantly changing. Only accept legal advice on firearms and/or self-defense from the POLICE or OTHER LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES OR OFFICIALS if it is in writing on official letterhead signed by a sworn senior supervisory official of that department in his or her official capacity or a current official document of that department bearing the department’s insignia and signed by the current head of the department (Chief of Police, Sheriff, or Special Agent In Charge). Verbal (not in writing) advice from law enforcement personnel may be in error and will have NO standing in a court of law.