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Old 05-30-2011, 10:35 PM   #1
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Can Police search your RV

A friend was asking me if I carried a weapon in my RV. It made me wonder if the police can search your RV if you were pulled over or not? Has anyone here had this happen to them?

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Old 05-30-2011, 10:44 PM   #2
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Not without your permission or a search warrant. They can speak with you and observe items in plain view. So, when speaking with an officer, do it thru the driver window. If you open the door, that may be taken as a sign that entry is welcomed. And by the way, what are you worried about????????

Of course, if you are re-entering the country from Mexico and they ask to come in and look around you better let them. Different rules at the border entry point. If you say NO, they direct you to another location and take your coach apart for a couple hours.

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Old 05-30-2011, 10:48 PM   #3
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My only concern would a weapon. Would it be classified as concealed?
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:14 PM   #4
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No easy answer: Depends on the State you are in, is the gun loaded?, is it in a fastened or locked container?, is it on your person?.
Some States are very liberal in their carry laws, some are very strict and just having a gun can land you in jail.
Federal Law permits transportation of a weapon when passing through various states. Discussed here: Interstate Firearms Transport

This site has the handgun laws for each state, and which accept carry permits from other states Handgunlaw.us

There have been several firearm discussions on this board, a search should give more info. A discussion on another board indicated some states consider an RV a home not a vehicle, some say it's a vehicle if it's moving. I don't know....
hope this helps
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:47 PM   #5
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Here's a couple of sites that may be of some interest:


Safety & Security: Guns and RVs

I don't consider it for others a "need-to-know" whether or not I have a weapon/firearm in my RV.
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Old 05-31-2011, 12:59 AM   #6
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In WA a PO CAN search your vehicle "for his protection" during a traffic stop. This has gone to the state supreme court.

I don't agree with it, but it is the law here.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:29 AM   #7
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Without hijacking the thread, here is a somewhat related question. If I am driving and DW is in back and opens an adult beverage can this be construed as an open container violation?

A guy I worked with left a tavern and went to sleep in his car. He was awakened by a Trooper who proceeded to charge him with a DWI since the keys were in his possession. He was always a PITA and had a big mouth so I would guess he earned it but it is the same type situation. The difference being your MH is your house at the time.

Neither one of us drink and drive BTW.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:48 AM   #8
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One of the best things you can do if stopped for any reason is be polite, honest and humble. Don't argue, it will get you no where. Limo's have bars in the back and M/H's come under the same category. As far as weapons go, you won't be searched unless there is some probable cause. Sure you can refuse a search, but that will just end up with the officer getting a warrant.
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Old 05-31-2011, 07:09 AM   #9
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As I understand it a motor home is considered a motor vehicle and they can search a vehicle without a search warrant, all they need is probable cause.
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Old 05-31-2011, 08:42 AM   #10
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What, do you think this is America? America disappeared about 30 years ago. Today they have a law for every law so they can do anything they want to. If they couldn't search your MH on a traffic stop every drug dealer would be driving a MH. All they need to say is you were acting strange (probable cause) and it's over.
A friend of mine kept his daily pills in one container to take through out the day. At lunch he pulled it out and took his diabetic pill. A cop saw this, walked over and confiscated the pill container. He then proceeded to handcuff my friend and take him to the station. They found 1 pain pill in the container and he was charged with having an illegal controlled substance even though he had a script for it. It seems that you have to keep any controlled substance in the script bottle "plainly" marked.
Once I was stopped on my motorcycle for not having my headlight on. I kept the bike running and the cop and I looked at the headlight. It was not on. I pressed the high beam switch and it came on. The cop was going to write me a ticket and all I said was "how am I supposed to know if the low beam burnt out in the daytime, give be a break" He then arrested me for resisting arrest. So much for freedom of speech.
Don't make me go on......
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Old 05-31-2011, 08:44 AM   #11
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I agree with the probable cause reply. Also, I believe your motor home is a home when it is fully set up, and a vehicle when moving from place to place.

All this would take a lawyer to figure out.

Edited: I posted at the same time as Billieg so a post script:

Those darn bikers!! They ride a motor cylce so they must be bad.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:08 AM   #12
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Be polite and respond,let them come in if they want, take your ticket that's what court is for---yes this is America.

Every story has two sides we cannot hear from the officers who were involved now can we? It might be interesting.

Last year six police officers were gunned down in assasination type killings in one month here in the Seattle area. IN California they name parts of freeways after slain CHP---there are too many miles of dedicated freeway for my taste.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:22 AM   #13
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Agree be polite, respectful and don't get a smart as* attitude. At the same time I would not necessarily agree to a search. Yes, they can get a warrant or send a K9 unit. Either of which is a delay and PITA for all involved. Still, guess I am just an old stiff neck, or is it red neck, that believes rights of to be both guarded and exercised. Otherwise they will simply be lost. As has happened to far to many already.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:51 AM   #14
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Border patrol requires probable cause to search. They will tell you they don't but it is a lie. They rely on intimidation to get you to consent. Do some youtube searches for some examples.

Others here are correct. Each state has different laws but you are not going to get pulled over and randomly searched. That is still illegal for now. Just take care of what business you have with being pulled over, be civil and go about your business.

As for adult beverages it also varies by state. Some have a "not accessible by driver" rule and others have no open containers at all. I know of at least one state that if the seal is broken and it is not in a secure container (storage bin, trunk etc) it is a violation.

I suggest the DW wait until stopped for the night.

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