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Old July 24th, 2013, 04:12 PM #1
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"Possess" & "Receive" meaning in SB281

I haven't been able to find the answer to this question.

What do "possess" and "receive" mean when used in SB281?

For example, say I'm at the range and allow someone else to fire my gun. One meaning of "receive" could be that he takes the gun from my hand. One meaning of "possess" could be that he's now holding it in his hand.

After October 1, will it be legal to allow someone else to fire your gun (or to fire someone else's) without checking whether he has the permit, and has undergone the finger printing, background check, and so on?

I'm happy to take people to the range and to let folks at the range try my guns, but I don't like any of them well enough to be a test case!

Many thanks for any clarification.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 04:20 PM #2
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I doubt you need to have license to borrow a handgun.. (they actually have rent in the bill but it is specifically said. Leaving the premises.. something like that)

As long the owner is around...I personally think will not be a problem.. I.e. if I let my nephew, who is 16, shoot few rounds of my 22lr handgun.. of better yet.. my wife shoot any regulated funs I have while we are at the range.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 04:53 PM #3
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Receive deals with ownership.

Possession is what in your hands. That is why some machine gun rentals have an employee keeping onehand on the gun at all times when it is use by a client.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 05:01 PM #4
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The HQL is required to purchase a handgun, not shoot or own one.

The intent of the law was to restrict sales. Loans should still be fine, in any case it would be impossible to prevent or enforce.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 05:05 PM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rob-cubed View Post
The HQL is required to purchase a handgun, not shoot or own one.

The intent of the law was to restrict sales. Loans should still be fine, in any case it would be impossible to prevent or enforce.
The OP is asking about it in the context of banned rifles and shotguns.

Suffice it to say, my take on those terms is expansive... I will not be lending out any banned guns out of my presence past 10/1, just like I don't lend out > 20rd magazines out of my presence right now. Maybe COMAR will interpret it more narrowly, but I wouldn't bet on it.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 05:08 PM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigoes View Post
Receive deals with ownership.

Possession is what in your hands. That is why some machine gun rentals have an employee keeping onehand on the gun at all times when it is use by a client.
Lol. Latter part..
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Old July 24th, 2013, 06:13 PM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigoes View Post
Receive deals with ownership.

Possession is what in your hands. That is why some machine gun rentals have an employee keeping onehand on the gun at all times when it is use by a client.
I am not so sure about that. SB-281 creates a whole new set of provisions regulating the “receipt” of handguns in particular. Section 5-501 of the Public Safety Article has added a new provision for the newly created “Handgun Qualification License.”

(O) “Handgun Qualification License” means a license issued by the Secretary that authorizes a person to purchase, rent, or receive a handgun.

SB-281 then relies on this definition of the “Handgun Qualification License” in creating Section 117.1 to the Public Safety Article. Subsections (b) and (c) of newly enacted Section 117.1 broadly mandate that a person have such a “Handgun Qualification License” as a condition to acquiring such a handgun, providing:

(B) a dealer or any other person may not sell, rent, or transfer a regulated firearm handgun to a purchaser, lessee, or transferee unless the purchaser, lessee, or transferee presents to the dealer or other person a valid regulated firearm handgun qualification license issued to the purchaser, lessee, or transferee by the Secretary under this section.

(c) a person may purchase, rent, or receive a handgun only if the person:
(1) (i) possesses a valid handgun qualification license issued to the person by the Secretary in accordance with this section; * * * *

Section 5-143 of the Public Safety Article, which was not amended by SB-281, can be read to apply to transactions governed by new Section 5-117.1 so as to impose severe criminal penalties. Section 5-143 provides:

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this subtitle, a dealer or other person may not:
(1) knowingly participate in the illegal sale, rental, transfer, purchase, possession, or receipt of a regulated firearm in violation of this subtitle;
* * * *
Penalty
(b) A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to imprisonment not exceeding 5 years or a fine not exceeding $10,000 or both.

Interpretation Issues Associated with SB 281's Regulation of “Receipt” or “Receive”:

The terms “receipt” or “receive” in these provisions of SB-281 are not defined, either in the existing code or in SB-281 and there is, of course, no Maryland case law on these newly enacted provisions. The only arguably analogous provisions are the regulation of the “receipt” of firearms under federal law, 18 U.S.C. 922(h), which provides:

(h) It shall be unlawful for any individual, who to that individual's knowledge and while being employed for any person described in any paragraph of subsection (g) of this section, in the course of such employment--
(1) to receive, possess, or transport any firearm or ammunition in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce;
or
(2) to receive any firearm or ammunition which has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.

However, there are significant differences between “receive” as used in SB-281 and “received” as used in federal law. Subsection (g), referenced in Section 922(h), refers, of course, to persons who are disqualified from possessing any firearms because of criminal convictions or other disqualification. In this context, the term “receive” as used in subsection (h) “means to take possession of or to knowingly accept the same.” See, e.g., United States v. Turnmire, 574 F.2d 1156, 1157 (4th Cir. 1978). As Turnmire notes, other federal courts of appeals are in accord. (Id). As Turnmire thus explains, under federal law, “receipt “ may be inferred by mere possession, on the assumption that one cannot “possess” without have had first “received.” See Turnmire, 574 F.2d at 1157 (approving the instruction that “since one cannot possess something without having received it, (then) receipt of a firearm may be shown circumstantially by proving possession.”).

Stated simply, if the federal interpretation of “receive” were to be used under state law, SB-281 would shut down instructional shooting, family shooting activities, youth shooting and the mere temporary transfer of firearms at the range to friends and other persons who wish to learn about shooting activities. Few persons will temporarily loan an assault weapon, a magazine or handgun for temporary use at the range under these provisions for fear of enforcement. Otherwise innocent, law-abiding persons could risk arrest, criminal prosecution and imprisonment by overzealous or literal minded law-enforcement officials. SB 281 would become a legal trap for the unwary.

Such a strict construction of “receive” for purposes of the above provisions in State law, as amended by SB-281, would also expose innocent, law-abiding persons to the loss of all their firearms for life. As you know, under federal law, 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(20) and 18 U.S.C. 922(g), a person convicted of a state misdemeanor which is “punishable” by a sentence of greater than two years in prison becomes a disqualified “felon in possession” and loses the right to possess any modern firearms for the rest of his or her life. Any possession of such firearms after such a conviction for the state misdemeanor may also result in federal imprisonment of up to 10 years under 18 U.S.C. 924(a)(2). Violations of any of the SB-281 provisions noted above or a conviction under Section 5-143 easily satisfies these conditions for a permanent federal firearms possession disability.

Moreover, there are severe problems associated with extending the literal federal definition for “receipt” or “receive” to these provisions of state law. Under SB-281, a person who lawfully owns and possesses an “assault weapon” prior to October 1, 2013, may continue to own, possess, transport and lawfully use that weapon. Similarly the ban on sales and transfers and on the receipt of magazines with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds does not ban the continued possession or use of such magazines or even the receipt of such magazines in transactions taking place out-of-state. Persons who already own handguns are not required to obtain a Handgun Qualification License to keep and lawfully use his or her already-owned handguns. Yet, if the existing owner of such an assault weapon, or magazine or handgun were temporarily to loan his assault weapon, magazine or handgun to a spouse, other family members, a friend or even a student at a sanctioned training course, then the recipient of that assault weapon, magazine or handgun could be seen as “taking possession” and thus “receiving” these articles simply by that fact alone. Both that recipient and the existing owner could then be exposed to the severe criminal penalties imposed by SB 281 and/or charged as “participants” under Section 5-143.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 07:11 PM #8
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quote " Yet, if the existing owner of such an assault weapon, or magazine or handgun were temporarily to loan his assault weapon, magazine or handgun to a spouse, other family members, a friend or even a student at a sanctioned training course, then the recipient of that assault weapon, magazine or handgun could be seen as “taking possession” and thus “receiving” these articles simply by that fact alone. Both that recipient and the existing owner could then be exposed to the severe criminal penalties imposed by SB 281 and/or charged as “participants” under Section 5-143." End Quote

Sounds like the whole gun industry is doomed .... How can a parent teach, give safe instructions to their child and teach them how to protect themselves? 5 years in prison $10000 in fines etc plus if the child is also prosecuted their whole life is ruined. Sounds like someone will prepare a lawsuit to overturn this nightmare
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Old July 24th, 2013, 08:11 PM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erwos View Post
The OP is asking about it in the context of banned rifles and shotguns.
Actually, the OP was interested mainly in handguns, since he does not own any rifles or shotguns that will be banned after October 1.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 08:16 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esqappellate View Post
I am not so sure about that. SB-281 creates a whole new set of provisions regulating the “receipt” of handguns in particular. Section 5-501 of the Public Safety Article has added a new provision for the newly created “Handgun Qualification License.”

(O) “Handgun Qualification License” means a license issued by the Secretary that authorizes a person to purchase, rent, or receive a handgun.

SB-281 then relies on this definition of the “Handgun Qualification License” in creating Section 117.1 to the Public Safety Article. Subsections (b) and (c) of newly enacted Section 117.1 broadly mandate that a person have such a “Handgun Qualification License” as a condition to acquiring such a handgun, providing:

(B) a dealer or any other person may not sell, rent, or transfer a regulated firearm handgun to a purchaser, lessee, or transferee unless the purchaser, lessee, or transferee presents to the dealer or other person a valid regulated firearm handgun qualification license issued to the purchaser, lessee, or transferee by the Secretary under this section.

(c) a person may purchase, rent, or receive a handgun only if the person:
(1) (i) possesses a valid handgun qualification license issued to the person by the Secretary in accordance with this section; * * * *

Section 5-143 of the Public Safety Article, which was not amended by SB-281, can be read to apply to transactions governed by new Section 5-117.1 so as to impose severe criminal penalties. Section 5-143 provides:

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this subtitle, a dealer or other person may not:
(1) knowingly participate in the illegal sale, rental, transfer, purchase, possession, or receipt of a regulated firearm in violation of this subtitle;
* * * *

[major snip-a-roonie]
Esqappellate's concerns and the sections of the law he cites are exactly what I'm asking about. I gather that the answer is that there is--so far--no definitive answer. I'll stay tuned, but will avoid doing anything that could make me a test case.

Thanks.
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