Yesterday, we wrote about an incident on I-55 between Bloomington and Chicago where a young woman was pulled over for a traffic violation.  As a CCW holder, she did everything she could to make the event as safe and non-threatening as possible for the Illinois State Trooper.  Late yesterday, I spoke at length to the coed and had a chance to ask for clarification on some things and there’s more to the story.

She was pulled over by a courteous ISP Trooper.  She informed him right out of the gate that she had a carry license and was packing.  He seemed unconcerned.  After he took her driver’s license and insurance info back to his squad for a minute or three, he returned.

He gave her back her paper and asked to see her gun.


He then explained that the governor signed a new gun law that limits handgun magazines to 15 rounds.  According to the CCW holder, he then said that the Illinois State Police were starting compliance checks when they encountered concealed carry license holders.  As such, he wanted to see her gun to ensure her compliance with the law.

The young lady, let’s call her Abby, replied that she knew of the new law.  She told him she also knew that she had 90 days to come into compliance with its provisions on magazines.  

Yes, she’s pretty sharp.

Mr. Trooper acknowledges that Abby is correct, but he says they still want to get familiar with this new compliance check program, and as such asked again to see her gun to assess her compliance with the new law.

A sharp young woman, she asked him how he would like that to happen.  

He asked if she could remove the holstered gun and hand it to him.  She did.  He unloaded the gun, checked the magazine for capacity then placed the gun, mag, loose round and the holster on her front seat and told her she could put it all back together once he left.

He did NOT issue her a citation or a written warning.

I emailed my contact at the Illinois State Police and asked if this was a rogue Trooper or if the ISP indeed is rolling out a new program to demand CCW firearms when they are encountered to check them for “compliance” with the magazine provisions.  

I’m working on a story and I’m seeking comments from the ISP officially either from you or if you could forward it to the correct individual.
Here’s the background after I spoke with the individual in question yesterday on my way to Pontiac:  A CCW motorist was stopped on I-55 this past weekend.  They disclosed the CCW and its presence on their person after the officer introduced himself and explained the reason for the stop.  After the initial infraction was dealt with, the Trooper asked to see the driver’s carry piece.  The driver asked “Why?”
The trooper said something to the effect of “We’re ramping up a compliance check program following the new gun law enacted in January.  We want to make sure people are complying with the new magazine capacity limits.”
The driver, very savvy about the new law, pointed out that the magazine provisions don’t take effect for 90 days after enactment.  To which the Trooper said they’re beginning this new compliance check program ahead of time.  Again, this is second hand but captures the gist of the conversation.
My query:  Is there a new program to have “compliance checks” (or something similar) on the side of roads for CCW holder magazine capacities, either currently or planned for rollout on or about April 10th?  Or, if ISP wants to parse it, *was* there a compliance check plan before the Macon County court ruled the new law unconstitutional last Friday?
Secondly, did I miss something in the new law that gave ISP authority to conduct inspections of CCW guns looking for out-of-compliance magazines without probable cause or RAS to suspect an out-of-compliance magazine?
Aside from twice demanding to see this person’s CCW gun (in a nice way) and what I believe is violating this CCW holder’s right to privacy and maybe other rights, the officer was professional and courteous.  I’m just trying to figure out if this was a rogue trooper or if this is a more formal policy ordered by the Governor’s office.

That was shortly at 9:06am this morning.  As of this writing, they haven’t replied.  I’ll update this if/when they reply.

Now, probably first and foremost, without probable cause, he shouldn’t have been asking to see her gun to check it for lint, much less a magazine capacity.  And without Reasonable Articulable Suspicion that a crime was afoot, he had no justification to not once, but twice ask to see her handgun.

Secondly, Pritzker’s new Illinois Gun Ban Act was ruled unconstitutional on Friday. (Stories 1 2 3)

And if all that wasn’t bad enough, the restrictions on magazines aren’t due to kick in until April 10th by my public school math – 90 days after Pritzker signed the bill into law.   (See the magazine section starting on page 95).


21 thoughts on “‘COMPLIANCE CHECKS’: More on ISP checking CCW holder magazines during contacts”
  1. Before April 10th they can go P up a rope on that question.
    And another reason for constitutional carry,

  2. The relative part of the IL Concealed Carry law states:

    (h) If an officer of a law enforcement agency initiates an investigative stop, including but not limited to a traffic stop, of a licensee or a non-resident carrying a concealed firearm under subsection (e) of Section 40 of this Act, upon the request of the officer the licensee or non-resident shall disclose to the officer that he or she is in possession of a concealed firearm under this Act, present the license upon the request of the officer if he or she is a licensee or present upon the request of the officer evidence under paragraph (2) of subsection (e) of Section 40 of this Act that he or she is a non-resident qualified to carry under that subsection, and identify the location of the concealed firearm. During a traffic stop, any passenger within the vehicle who is a licensee or a non-resident carrying under subsection (e) of Section 40 of this Act must comply with the requirements of this subsection (h).
    (Source: P.A. 98-63, eff. 7-9-13; 98-600, eff. 12-6-13.)

    In other words, cops have no rights to ask for anything except if you are currently carrying a concealed weapon, its location, and to see your CCL. Period. Full Stop. There is zero provision for asking to see your weapon, break it down, unload your magazines and count the rounds, etc. They do not have the right to take possession of your gun at any time short of arresting you and charging you with a crime. This compliance check bullshit they have cooked up is unconstitutional and unlawful. Until the GA changes the law – and don’t bet they won’t – it is strictly hands off your weapon. Public Acts 98-63, 98-600, nor Public Act 102-1116 (Illinois Protect Gang Bangers Act) authorize nothing of the sort.

    In fact, the only language in this law that even comes close is this:

    (h) The Department of the State Police shall also develop and implement a public notice and public outreach campaign to
    promote awareness about the provisions of this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly and to increase compliance with this Section

    If ISP thinks this gives them legal authority to harass CCWs in this manner, they need to be sued as well. This isn’t outreach.

    1. First – off, I agree with you 100% that this is bullshit.

      However, you might be looking at the FCCA as passed, and not the updated version that was passed the year after.
      430 ILCS 66/10
      “(h) … Upon the request of the officer, the licensee or non-resident shall also identify the location of the concealed firearm and permit the officer to safely secure the firearm for the duration of the investigative stop.”

      So yeah, fishing expeditions for laws not yet in effect (not to mention clearly unconstitutional) are crap – but they, by law, are allowed to take the gun and “secure it” for the duration of the stop. Which of course is a load of crap, since the safest place for it is leaving it the hell alone in its holster, console or case … but it’s a load of crap allowed by statute.

    2. Think you and John may have missed this part:

      Upon the request of the officer, the licensee or non-resident shall also identify the location of the concealed firearm and permit the officer to safely secure the firearm for theduration of the investigative stop.

      This language has been in the Illinois concealed carry act since day 1.

    3. Securing could very easily be defined as removing the magazine and ammo so that it’s not readily usable.

  3. Administrative handling of a firearm would not be what I would describe as something “safe” to be doing on the side of the road during a traffic stop.

  4. Also wanted to pass along that RTG Parts ( WILL honor the Illinois TROs. I sent over a copy of the Macon County TRO and my FOID after contacting them to see if they could help, and just bought a pile of magazines from them. They are more oriented towards H&K firearms but they have a good selection from Magpul, ETS and other aftermarket, too. They even have some drums, if you are so inclined.

  5. If I am asked this by ISP, I will state that I am very uncomfortable pulling my loaded gun out when I do not need to. I will point out the video camera recording the conversation, and then ask them to arrest me or give me my ticket. I will state on the camera that I will fully comply if they arrest me.

    I have heard, but not confirmed that Farm King will sell anybody anything affected by the bogus “AWB.” I personally know that Scheels in Springfield will sell to folks listed on the lawsuits. I do not know what their policy is now for non-plaintiffs. Let us support these businesses with our patronage, and thank them.

  6. I just sent an email to ISP. I asked it this new policy was true. Then I told them point blank I will not pull my loaded gun out for an officer who has already lied to me. I am EXTREMELY UNCOMFORTABLE pulling out me loaded gun in front of an armed officer who I know is not following the law. They can arrest me if they want. I have a video camera on the windshield which I can turn and I suggest everybody who carries get a camera for this purpose.

    1. Sorry for the double post above was on phone. I cannot explain the discrepancy between the link you have, but the one I provide is the actual statute as enacted.

    2. Thanks DS. That is very strange. Section H-1 doesn’t appear in the official PDF that is posted on the official ILGA site. I am sure its just an ‘oversight’ on their part.
      So they apparently either stuck this in after the PA was passed, or the PDF is from an older draft being presented as the actual law. Given the GAs history of shell bills, gut and replace and other slight of hand, I am suspicious how this all came to pass, and what other gems they might be hiding. Very confusing since if you cannot get good information about Public Acts from the ILGA website, its pretty hard to follow the law. I had never seen Section H-1 before, and I had read that law over time and again.

      (h-1) If a licensee carrying a firearm or a non-resident carrying a firearm in a vehicle under subsection (e) of Section 40 of this Act is contacted by a law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel, the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel may secure the firearm or direct that it be secured during the duration of the contact if the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel determines that it is necessary for the safety of any person present, including the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel. The licensee or nonresident shall submit to the order to secure the firearm. When the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel have determined that the licensee or non-resident is not a threat to the safety of any person present, including the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel, and if the licensee or non-resident is physically and mentally capable of possessing the firearm, the law enforcement officer or emergency services personnel shall return the firearm to the licensee or non-resident before releasing him or her from the scene and breaking contact. If the licensee or non-resident is transported for treatment to another location, the firearm shall be turned over to any peace officer. The peace officer shall provide a receipt which includes the make, model, caliber, and serial number of the firearm.

      Even so, as Freddy said, ‘secure the firearm’ is not inspecting in any way. They still have no legal right to break down, disassemble, remove rounds from magazines to count them, or any such action. Secure might be construed as ‘take possession of’ or ‘lock in squad car’ during an investigative stop, but nothing else. They must return the firearm in the same state it was taken possession of, unless the GA wants to codify a more extensive procedure for ‘securing’ a firearm from a lawful CCW. According to the law, they don’t even have the right to inquire about anything except if you are carrying, where the gun is, and to ask for your permit. If they transport you to the hospital, they can record the make, model, caliber and serial number of the firearm if transferred to a police officer. They cannot record that info under any other circumstance. ISP is reading things into the law that aren’t there, which they are not legally allowed to do. I suppose they will have also have to be sued so that they understand the boundaries the law provides.

    3. LC
      Just for clarification the text I copied and pasted was from paragraph h. It is also repeated in h-1. The two paragraphs apply to different interactions. Paragraph h is specific to law enforcement investigative actions. Paragraph h-1 is broader and applies to contact with law enforcement or emergency personnel. Under either paragraph law enforcement can temporarily take physical control of a firearm.

      Once in law enforcement control I am unaware of any law prohibiting them from examining the magazine. Whether that would constitute a unreasonable search is another question. However, I think you will find that in the situations covered by paragraph h an h-1, most law enforcement agencies will clear the weapon at some point prior to returning the firearm.

  7. If this is to continue, I guess one would have to have two carry pieces along. One of which would be in compliance. If the trooper asks to see your carry piece, that’s the one you hand him.

  8. I would be extremely uncomfortable with pulling my loaded gun out of my left front pocket while seated in my small vehicle. I am not sure I could even do it without opening the door. The gun will be where he/she cannot see it, and if I make a funny move, accidents could happen.

    What does “secure” mean?

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