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People v. Reynolds: What Does it Mean to Carry a Concealed Weapon?

September 24, 2008 Criminal Law and Procedure

The Michigan Court of Appeals in People v. Reynolds discusses what it means to have a “concealed weapon.” Reynolds was charged with Carrying a Concealed Weapon under Michigan Law MCL 750.227. After a jury trial convicted him of that crime, he appealed. The Court of Appeals analyzed the elements and issues with carrying a concealed weapon law.

Takeaway from the Case

The important aspect of this case is the Court’s definition of a “concealed” weapon. A person can be charged with carrying a concealed weapon under MCL 750.227. A person may “open-carry” a firearm in Michigan. A person may not carry the weapon concealed unless the person also has a concealed pistol license (CPL).

What Does It Mean for a Weapon to be Concealed?

Legally speaking, “a weapon is is concealed if it is hidden from the ordinary observation of persons in the ordinary and usual associations of life. The issue of concealment depends on the particular circumstances present in each case. The question of whether the gun was concealed is for the trier of fact.”

This means it’s up to the jury (or judge in a bench trial).

What Happened in the Case

Defendant Reynolds was convicted in a jury trial. Reynolds was being chased by two police officers when he threw a gun away, which the cops later found. Reynolds argued there was no evidence of concealment. The Court said the jury is entitled to draw reasonable inferences from the circumstances. As this was a matter for the jury, the Court of Appeals was not going to overturn it.

Contact Sam

Call Sam Bernstein at 734-883-9584 or e-mail at bernstein@arborypsilaw.com.

Sam Bernstein is a Criminal Lawyer in Ann Arbor.

ArborYpsi Law is located at 4158 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48108.

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