This week we are taking a look at Colorado. Colorado ranked only 37th on a 2015 Best States For Gun Owners list, which is a good indication of some of the bad news to come in this article. In Colorado there are stringent laws regarding magazine capacity, carrying rights, restricted weapons, restricted barrel lengths and other assorted laws such as the unlawful possession of a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances. This is also a state with child access prevention laws so having a secure weapon storage system if you have a handgun is important when a person under the age of 18 living with you or is frequently where they could access your handgun.
Child Protection Laws
As per Colorado Rev. Stat. 18-12-108.7, a person is criminally liable of a felony if they:
- Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly provides a handgun to any person under age 18;
- Knows of a juvenile’s unlawful possession of a handgun and fails to make reasonable efforts to prevent the juvenile’s conduct
- Is aware of a substantial risk that a juvenile will use a handgun to commit a felony and permits the juvenile to possess a handgun; or
- Is aware of a substantial risk that a juvenile will use a handgun to commit a felony and fails to make reasonable efforts to prevent the commission of the offense.
Additionally, anyone who sells, rents or transfers ownership to a juvenile without consent of his or her parent or guardian is liable for a misdemeanor (Colo. Rev. Stat. 18-12-108.7). If you have storage already for your firearms but don’t know if they are up to state standards you can contact your local Sheriff for guidelines and then have a specialized locksmith take a look. A fully licensed locksmith can equip your weapon storage system with higher quality or more technically advanced locks if you want extra security.
Colorado does not have any requirement to have a state permit to purchase any firearm whether it be a rifle, shotgun or handgun. However, all private sellers must process any purchase through a licensed firearms dealer, thus obligating the purchaser to a background check done by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (Colo. Rev. Stat. 18-12-112(1)a).
In order to carry a concealed weapon in Colorado you must obtain a permit from the Sheriff or county you live in. There are requirements such as minimum age, no previous convictions etc. There may also be other requirements that your local Sheriff or county office may have; such as proving you know how to handle a handgun safely. Concealed carry permits are valid for 5 years. The permit is good for carry everywhere except for places that are prohibited by Federal Law, such as a public building at which security personnel regularly screen for weapons upon entry; or onto real property of a public school. The gun owner may have the handgun in his or her vehicle in such instances.
It is important to note that carrying your handgun in your personal vehicle is allowed and not considered to be concealed carry and hence you do not need a concealed carry permit to do so. If you do not currently have a concealed permit you can have your firearm in your house, business or property owned by you. It is also legal to carry your handgun if you are engaging in legal hunting activities.
There are a number of miscellaneous laws that this article does not cover which can be found here. This same link also has additional information on restricted weapons and magazine capacities in Colorado. As always, this guide is just that; a guide, it is recommended you contact your local county for information pertaining to special situations and your specific situation. If you wish to take a closer look at the Colorado gun laws they can be viewed here. Like all laws these are subject to change. There may also be county and city laws not covered in this article that change your ability to carry, transport and otherwise possess your firearm.
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