Recent Wisconsin Supreme Court decision that may affect your gun rights.

Recent Wisconsin Supreme Court decision that may affect your gun rights.

In a recent decision rendered by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, the Court upheld a criminal conviction of a man (Grandberry) who was transporting a loaded handgun in his vehicle’s glove compartment without a concealed carry license. See State v. Grandberry, 2018 WI 29 (April 10, 2018).

The Court held that carrying a concealed and dangerous weapon such as a handgun without a license is a violation of the Concealed Carry Law, Wis. Stat. § 941.32(2). The defendant pointed out, though, that under Wisconsin’s Safe Transport Statute, it is permissible to transport a handgun in a car without a concealed carry license, so long as the person transporting the handgun is following all the other provisions of the law. Wis. Stat. § 167.31(2)(b)1. The defendant argued that the Safe Transport Statute was therefore in conflict with the Concealed Carry Statute.

The Court, however, held that the two laws were not in conflict. The Court found that Grandberry was not following all other provisions of the Safe Transport law, because in his vehicle his handgun was “within reach,” which the Safe Transport Statute prohibits. Interestingly, though the handgun in this case was in a closed glove compartment, the Court held that was considered “within reach” under the Safe Transport Statute. Because he was not following all other provisions of the law, the Safe Transport Statute did not authorize a handgun in his vehicle without a concealed carry license.

The Court went on to hold that it would not set forth an exhaustive list of all possible “nooks and crannies” of a motor vehicle that a person may transport a firearm within. Instead, the Court would define what areas are considered “within reach” on a case by case basis.

What we are left with after the Court’s decision in Grandberry is uncertainty as to which areas in a vehicle it is permissible to travel with a firearm without a concealed carry license, and which are prohibited.

If you get charged with violating Wisconsin’s Concealed Carry statute or the Safe Transport Statute, call Attorney Katie Bosworth today for a free consultation.