Legal Liability for Carry Gun Modifications

Interesting information from Attorneys about EDC Gun Modifications. By Attorney Andrew Branca, and USCCA Attorney Tom Grieve, along with videos.

By Attorney Andrew Branca / February 19, 2020

Can Gun Modifications Be Used Against Me in Court?

Any time anyone asks me “can X be used against me in court,” regardless of what “X” might be, my answer is always “Yes.” That’s because prosecutors have incredibly broad discretion in what they are allowed to argue in court.

It’s true that your defense attorney may be able to convince the trial judge to prohibit a prosecutor from arguing about one issue or another, in which case that issue is no longer available as a legal weapon with which the prosecutor can attack you.

But that decision itself is left to the broad discretion of the trial judge, and you never really know how they’ll rule, allowing the prosecution’s argument, or prohibiting it, until you’re already looking down the barrel of a trial. As a result, we have to be prepared now for that decision to go against us then.

YouTube Video on Carrying a Modified Hand Gun

YouTube Video from USCCA on Can I Modify My Firearm Gun?: Ask An Attorney

Is It Legal To Modify The Trigger Of My Firearm

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  1. You have the right to remain silent, You do not have to say anything until a lawyer is present.
  2. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. Anything will be used against you!
  3. You have the right to an attorney. See USCCA!
  4. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you. See USCCA!

Anything that they can use against you can be used against you. You do not have to modify your gun to have your gun used against you. Your ammo choice, your carrying the gun, your mind set can all be used against you. Anything you post on the internet can be used against you.
The question of shooting in self defense should be, I was in fear for my life or those around me and be willing to face the backlash of doing so.

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@Tom_Grieve is actually my role model in the type of attorney I wish to become as well as @MikeBKY.

Unfortunately, neither could represent me if God forbid found myself in another self-defense situation. USCCA would come kick my but. Although, USCCA didn’t have to pay for me an attorney because was not prosecuted, praise God. Other than than can’t discuss the case due to this still on ongoing investigation and right now my eyes are focused on going after the city and department of justice(FBI).

I will tell you guys end results . Pray for me! I have no choice but to represent myself due to being blocked from getting counsel.

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Pistols being made now don’t really need modifications… great triggers n sights/optics come straight from the factory now.

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@Randall318 From my family our prayers are with you brother.

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Likewise from me @AL34 and Gods got his six.

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Gods got you brother @Randall318 and prayers are powerful and everything will be well in your favor. Post the good news when it comes.

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@Todd30 Well people didn’t believe the information on EDC gun modification and the problems we could get into without seeing it in print, so I made a EDC mod post about just that from Attorneys and video talking about the issue, there was even a very good video from USCCA Attorney Tom Grieve. Have a good day.

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Like I always preach and I’m just looking out for people when I tell them don’t mess with your internal parts like triggers, Sears, firing pins, barrels etc. I have changed my sights and grips.

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Great post. Thank you.

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@Johnnyq60 Thank you brother, it means a lot to me, sight’s & grips sounds good brother :+1: :us: :us: :us:
@Robert_M3 Glad you liked it brother, Thank you :+1::us:

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It all comes down to how a jury is going to perceive the modifications. I agree with @Tom_Grieve that anything can and will be used against you. Don’t give the prosecution ammunition to use against you.

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@MikeBKY Back when I was putting classes on the ADA guest speaker said the same exact thing you’re saying. Thank you sir. :+1:

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Mike, I am not an attorney, and did not even stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night… But, do you know of a case where gun modifications were used successfully against someone who was involved in a legitimate self defense shooting?

I get the part that they “can” attempt to use anything against you, especially with a potentially gun ignorant or even biased jury and or judge.

A second question, what if you modify a gun to increase the trigger pull? Could that be used against you? (again, in a legitimate shooting) I am pretty sure Glock makes a ‘new york’ trigger spring or something that increases the Glock trigger pull, but what about a SA gun, like a 1911 that you had the trigger pull increased to say 5 pounds, from the stock of 3 or 4#?

New York spring: Glock Trigger Spring NY 1 Olive | Best Glock Accessories | GlockStore.com

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@Fred_G I do not have any specific cases. Keep in mind the only cases that are “published” are from appellate courts and most cases are resolved without a trial or an appeal. The difficulty in this is that almost anything can be used to prove or disprove state of mind. The government will look at internet searches, social media groups and posts, items found in the home. It is then up to the jury to decide whether to accept the evidence.
As for your question about trigger pull, again, anything can potentially be used. The key to any modifications will always be to be able to explain to your lawyer what modifications you made and why you made them.

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Imagine the flying circus that could result if a person involved in a legitimate self defense incident used the only weapon at hand in that moment, and it turned out to be their competition pistol which had been heavily modified for speed, accuracy, recoil management, etc., etc…

The mind boggles!

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Hey @AL34 thanks for tagging me to your thread. I finally got time to watch the video’s. Here’s my take away.

I like what the guy in the 1st video is saying. “I” pull the trigger not the gun.

The 2nd video is all about “branding” I get where he is coming from and I practice that on my vehicles, no bumper stickers. Similar on my guns, I don’t need a slogan or a picture or even “We the people”

The last guy makes good point however I want to know what is an acceptable single action trigger pull? 10lbs? 3lbs? 7 lbs? Unless there is a deputy in the court room with a revolver my 1911 is going to come in way light compared to a Glock, SA, S&W or any other DAO, stryker fired or double action trigger available today.

My trigger pull is essentially stock but it breaks at exactly the same pull and exactly the same movement shot after shot and it “feels” better than stock. I am also on my 4th set of internals for that gun as I flat wore out 3 sets of hammers, sears, disconnectors etc. and more springs than I can count. My trigger breaks at 4.2lbs period. It doesn’t move at 4.1lbs or at 3.1lbs. That freaks people out, the trigger doesn’t move till the gun goes off. The reset is almost instantaneous and within the mechanical limits of the gun re-chambering a round. Once I was going so fast that I locked the gun up because I beat the trigger. I’ve only been able to do it once and it was the day I got my Tier1 certification.

30 years ago you could not buy a gun that looks like mine, it was a “custom shop gun”. Now I can get an RIA that looks almost exactly like mine for $600 (if I can find one).

Does it have the modifications I did for the reasons I did them? No.

The safety isn’t harder to get off than it is to get on like mine.

The beaver tail on a factory gun does not seat the gun deeper into your grip like mine does.

My EDC will feed empty cases from the magazine just by pulling the slide back 8 times. No factory gun that I have ever seen can do that.

Is the frame around the trigger faded back so that my trigger finger does not rub the frame when shooting like mine does? No.

I have Millet MK2 sights on my EDC. The company is out of business and you can’t find them anymore but I like that they give me an additional 5/8" of sight radius since they hang over the back of the slide.

If you take my pistol apart you will see hammer marks where I peened the frame rails down and while the slide doesn’t show it I squoze the slide to tighten it back up TWICE!! Then laboriously lapped the rails and slide with fitting bars.

There is NOTHING on my EDC that is “stock” but then again there are doggone few EDC’s running around with 1/2 a million rounds through them. No that’s not a boast or a lie or an exaggeration. For more than a couple of years I shot anywhere from 200 to more than 1K of pistol rounds every day, thank you U.S. Taxpayers!

I’ll take my chances in court. I may retire old girl as she is getting bit heavy but what I go to will be fitted to me and run the way I demand my sticks to run. FWIW I haven’t found a production stick that meets those requirements.

Cheers,

Craig6

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@Craig6 200K rounds? Is it broken in yet? :grinning: Pretty impressive round count! I run a couple of my guns pretty hard (when I can get ammo) but not quite at 200k. Yet. :grinning:

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Statement worthy of respect & appreciation, thank you sir.

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@Craig6 Glad you took a look at it, and your reply post just awesome. I can’t say much more than that. :+1: :us:

You have a good one brother.

Al34

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