Living with a felon and my weapons in my KY home?

From what I’ve been able to find so far, it seems legal to do it. The felon must absolutely not have any means to get into it. The safe would be bolted to a wood floor, a biometric key and the real key would be at a friends house. The articles all say that the law was written very vague and can be interpreted in any way the officer or D.A. or judge feels like. An officer in a bad mood would arrest the felon for being in possession of a weapon and strong text me for aiding an abetting.
Is there any sure-fire method of having both and be safe?

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Hello Timothy! Welcome to the USCCA Community! I would recommend reaching out to the parole or probation officer that your family member reports to and asking them, additionally, you can also contact your local police or the District Attorney in your county. They will be able to help. @MikeBKY might also be able to assist you with this question as well.

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Adding on to @James excellent reply, this might be a really good place to have a conversation with your local firearms-knowledgeable lawyer. If you get this wrong, you can be in for some very ugly legal consequences so you want to be quite sure of what is allowed. Having a LEO perspective, a prosecutor perspective and a defense lawyer perspective may help clarify the gray areas and help you assess your risks. Often the LEOs don’t know the more obscure details, and may not know what the prosecutor will be inclined to act on. Talking with a lawyer as well will help you make sure you’ve done the right things to protect yourself and your family from legal consequences and costs.

@MikeBKY may be able to shed some light on this as KY is where he practices.

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@Timothy50 welcome to the Community. Having a felon in a household in Kentucky definitely creates some issues with respect to having firearms. Below are a couple of links to the relevant statute KRS 527.040 and the case that causes the most concern, Johnson v. Com, 90 S.W.3d 39 (Ky 2002).

KRS 527.040 prohibits felons from possessing firearms. Possession of a firearm is a class D felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison unless the firearm is a handgun which is a class C felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. If the weapon is used in the commission of another crime, the penalty for that crime is enhanced up one degree, meaning a class D felony is enhanced to a class C felony.

The problem I am seeing with a felon residing in a home with a firearm comes from the Johnson case. The most relevant portion of the opinion is shown below but the gist of the case is that a felon who resides in a home with firearms is sufficient proof for a jury to find possession of a firearm.

In order to convict Johnson of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, the Commonwealth had the burden of proving (1) that he had previously been convicted of a felony, and (2) that he possessed a firearm. KRS 527.040. Johnson does not dispute the first element. Rather, he argues that the Commonwealth failed to prove the second element of possession.
Possession may be proven through either actual possession or constructive possession. United States v. Kitchen, 57 F.3d 516, 520 (7th Cir. 1995) (discussing a federal statute that makes it unlawful for a felon to possess a firearm). “Constructive possession exists when a person does not have actual possession but instead knowingly has the power and intention at a given time to exercise dominion and control of an object, either directly or through others.” Id., quoting United States v. Garrett, 903 F.2d 1105, 1110 (7th Cir. 1990), cert. denied, 498 U.S. 905, 111 S.Ct. 272, 112 L.Ed.2d 227 (1990). Based on our review of the evidence presented at trial, we conclude that the jury could have reasonably believed that Johnson had constructive possession of a firearm.
The Commonwealth’s evidence consisted of (1) proof that Johnson had resided in Walters’ house since 1993, (2) proof of Johnson’s prior conviction for first-degree possession of a controlled substance (a felony under KRS 218A.1415), (3) the three pistols found during the search of Walters’ home, and (4) the shotgun and ammunition found during the search. Johnson argues that it was unreasonable for the jury to rely on this evidence to find him guilty in light of the evidence presented by the defense.
Walters testified that the firearms in question were hers, that she purchased them legally, and that she was the registered owner of the firearms. Additionally, she testified that she consulted an attorney before purchasing the firearms in order to determine the legality of having the firearms in her home in light of the fact that Johnson was a convicted felon. Further, Johnson argues that he was not present in Walters’ home when he was arrested and that he had another residence and only occasionally stayed with Walters.
Of course, the jury was free to disregard Walters’ testimony and the other evidence put on by the defense. But in this case, even if fully believed, the defense’s evidence does not necessarily negate the Commonwealth’s proof.
“Constructive possession can be established by a showing that the firearm was seized at the defendant’s residence.” United States v. Boykin, 986 F.2d 270, 274 (8th Cir. 1993) (discussing the same federal statute discussed in Kitchen), Bert. denied, 510 U.S. 888, 114 S.Ct. 241, 126 L.Ed.2d 195 (1993). Thus, proof that Johnson resided or sometimes resided in Walters’ home was sufficient proof for the jury to find that Johnson had the power to exercise control over the firearms.See Kitchen, 57 F.3d at 521. Further, the fact that Johnson was not arrested in Walters’ home does not preclude a finding that Johnson had the power to exercise control over the firearms.

Johnson v. Commonwealth , 90 S.W.3d 39, 42-43 (Ky. 2003)


https://casetext.com/case/johnson-v-commonwealth-2001-sc-0245-tg-ky-11-21-2002

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Just has to be in the same residence? Despite method of securing it?

Seems like the first part I quoted would mean that if a person has access to my house (say… family member, babysitter, housekeeper) and they’re a felon, they could be found to have “constructive possession”… and method of securing it wouldn’t matter?

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You are correct. Access to the firearms is not necessary if the person resides there, even if just part time.

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sooo… if someone in the household becomes a felon who is restricted from having firearms, it effectively disarms the entire household?!? NO ONE in the household can have a firearm?

well that seriously sucks.

Nothing like punishing the uninvolved as a bonus :angry: :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:

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I was just about to call on @MikeBKY!

However, I see my friend is all ready in this on this! He’s the man that has and would know!

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I concur! The reason being is twice I’ve had my rights violated once by police officer in Walmart many, many years ago who actually was my friend. We went to church together where I worked at. Well she security up there still is to this day.

However, she detain me for 30 minutes because her phone nor mine had servie to look up the Louisiana laws in the middle of Walmart and the worst part she was off duty. We haven’t really spoke much sense. Contrary she did apologize but I was very irritated and I said,

"Ma’am how long have you been a police officer?

“She said five years but I do domestic!”

" I returned fire and I said no ma’am that’s not excusable. God bless you!" I walked away!

Then the recent time you are aware of but I had to go take a swab the police station in bossier City Louisiana. see if I was a money hungry person and me not being employed right now it does suck my friend attorney wanted to pursue thatlawsuit and give me money. But y’all know I’m too nice of a guy I’ll never be that type of lawyer plus y’all know I’ll be criminal

I guess I need to put this on the prayer part but I got two f’s this quarter! I can’t believe its theast the last week and if I can pull something out of my hat might not even be able to get financial aid no more so I’m a hard works down the drain excuse my grammar I’m just very upset even thinking about that now I love you all guys

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It does not technically punish anyone who may posses a firearm. They can possess them and they are not committing any crime.
On the other hand, the felon, even though he or she does not have access to the firearms, is in constructive possession. At a trial, I am sure the owner would be called and could testify that the person never accessed or even had access to the firearms. The Commonwealth would argue that it doesn’t matter and, as in Johnson, the jury would decide.
A prosecutor could arguably charge the owner with criminal facilitation (KRS 506.080), however, it would be a stretch. And, if the weapons were secured as @Timothy50 states in his question, it would appear to fall in the exemptions under KRS 506.100.
In the end, it comes down to both the felon and the homeowner needing to make decisions. These all be come questions of fact for a jury to decide.
And yes, it does suck. It makes living arrangement choices very difficult.

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Thanks for your expertise and insight, Mike.

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