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Old 02-05-2010, 07:32 PM   #1
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"Sawed Off" Shotgun law in Alabama

Here's a link to the story. (Hope it works).

http://decaturdaily.com/detail/52534.ht ... rom=&list_

Although I work in law enforcement, I am of course no lawyer. The Code of Alabama currently prohibits the possession of a shotgun with barrels of less than 18" in length, and an overall length of less that 26". Okay, fine.

Alabama does not prohibit fully automatic weapons or suppressors if purchased as Class 3 weapons (no prohibitions in the state criminal code).

Now, can't citizens purchase short barrelled shotguns (like the 14" barreled pumps used by some LEO's) via the Class 3 procedures in other states?

I think the intent was to allow that here in Alabama, not let just any Billy Joe Bob take a hacksaw to a shotgun and go on his merry way. Of course, that's not how some of the state lawmakers, media or some LEO officials are representing it.

I have no desire to own such a weapon, but the background checks and fees required for purchase of a Class 3 weapon certainly seems to be effective in keeping the riff-raff out.

If I've got it right, much ado about nothing (except the RTKBA).
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Old 02-05-2010, 09:15 PM   #2
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Re: "Sawed Off" Shotgun law in Alabama

Our local fishwrap is at it .... again.
Frankly I am a tad surprised that local law enforcement is up in arms about this. I have heard about this law to get SBR and SBS on the "OK" list for Alabama residents and if approved you'd still have to go through the standard NFA acquisition procedure.
I really have no great use for a 14" shotgun. I have a Mossberg 500 with an 18" which is plenty convenient and my others are hunting guns with 24" and 26" barrels.
I have always (on a philosophical level) hated the NFA laws. In 1934 when it was being debated by congress, it initially included handguns .... this provision was later dropped which somehow explains why SBRs and SBS are so "evil" while if a badguy wants a concealable weapon, handguns are .... well, there. Everywhere.
And yet, still, should a criminal really want a short shottie (such as pictured in the fishwrap story) it is easy enough to buy a legal one and cut it down.
The recent conviction by jury of a local assassin who murdered a policeman back in Dec, 2007 brought home again that policework is a very risky business and even people who seem to be well liked by their coworkers can in fact be murderous. I don't see how any law regarding the length of a barrel, or how many rounds a gun can fire, to be any guarantee. The only real "guarantee" seems to be good situation awareness, good training and experience. And even then it is sometimes not enough, since the evildoer will always have the advantage of knowing what his plans are in advance to the action.

I don't have a huge hankering for a class III weapon .... the only one I sorta think is cool is pictured as my avatar (and is a non-functioning dummy), and a working example would cost as much as a decent car. I just can't justify that expenditure.
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Old 02-05-2010, 09:21 PM   #3
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Re: "Sawed Off" Shotgun law in Alabama

Its more federal law, that sets the minimums and most states have adopted Federal guidelines as their own, to prevent "incidents" on shipping guns and the like, but its still best to look up Alabama

Here is a good link which links you directly to the various state agencies that would have dominion over your decision.

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Old 02-06-2010, 08:02 PM   #4
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Re: "Sawed Off" Shotgun law in Alabama

Yeah, Tommy, I was pleased with the verdict...not suprised, but pleased. Now let's see what the penalty phase of the trial will bring.

I'm with ya on the SBS/SBR regs. They make no sense. Like you, I've got no hankering for a full auto. Hell, couldn't afford to buy or shoot one, even if I did. I did own the "civilian legal" Auto Ordinance version of your avatar for a while. Even came with a violin case to put it in! But the barrel on that durned thing musta been 20" long, and the balance and feel of it was just terrible. Never could understand why a semi auto weapon firing a pistol cartridge can't have a 10" or 12" barrel (as the Thomspson originally did) apparently because it has a removable stock, and BATF (or somebody) decided it was a rifle, and not a pistol. (But if I could afford one, the Thompson would be my choice, too.)

Guntotin, I"ll do some research, but I'm pretty sure that state law can impose more restrictive limits on things regulated by the federal government, but not less. For instance, Alabama can't make full auto weapons over-the-counter legal for her citizens, but it could, like some states do, ban them, even though the feds say you can own one if you pass their litmus test.
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Old 06-01-2010, 10:26 AM   #5
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Re: "Sawed Off" Shotgun law in Alabama

"Possession" and "Manufacture" are covered by different Federal Statutes. You can OWN a sawed off with a Class III. But a Class III does not permit you to saw one off.

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