ASK A COP — Can you legally drive in Texas with a gun on the front passenger seat?

Published 1:05 pm Monday, November 29, 2021

Roger from Port Neches asks: Since Texas is now a open carry (weapon) state for ALL citizens who are not restricted by law from carrying a firearm, is it allowed by state law for me to drive my vehicle on the roadway of Texas with my weapon on the front passenger seat?

Answer: There seems to be some confusion on the new Constitutional carry that went into effect Sept. 1. If Federal and State laws haven’t prohibited a motorist from possessing a firearm in a motor vehicle, there are still guidelines that a motorist must take. HOLSTERS, HOLSTERS, HOLSTERS are a MUST if any motorist wants to openly display their weapon on the seat of a motor vehicle. Your weapon must be secured in a holster, whether it’s on your person or on the front seat. Weapons are NOT to be transported openly in vehicles without being in a holsters.

Mary Lou from Port Arthur asks: What information should I provide if I hit another vehicle on private property and the other vehicle is unoccupied? Do I have to stay? Should I leave my insurance information and name and phone number? Please provide me with the correct answer. I’ve heard quite a few different answers and now I’m not sure what the true answer is. Thanks for all you do keeping us safe. I back the blue.

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Answer: This is one law not many motorists know or refuse to comply. If you strike an unattended vehicle, the first thing you should do, if time permits, is attempt to find the driver of said vehicle. If you have no luck in finding the driver, leave in a conspicuous place or securely attach in a plainly visible way your NAME and ADDRESS, along with a brief statement of what happened. YES, failing to leave this information is a violation in Texas no matter if the vehicle is unattended on private property or a road. If you leave the scene without providing the above information and the damage to the unattended vehicle is $200 or more, you can be charged with a class B misdemeanor, which carries a penalty up to 180 days in jail and $2,000 fine if found guilty in court of law. If you are involved with a crash and the second vehicle is empty, stop and leave your information. See Texas Transportation Code 550.024

Angela from Beaumont asks: My husband works shift work and is often working doubles. His commute is almost 45 minutes each way. He is always drinking coffee and the 5-hour energy drinks to stay alert, but I don’t think this is safe. We always have small spats about him driving on the road tired. Is there a law about being drowsy under the wheel?

Answer: Unfortunately, there is no law against Drowsy Driving unless they are driving erratic or swerving in and out of a lane. You bring up an important situation of Drowsy Driving, because many motorists are drowsy driving and are fine upstanding members of our community. Drowsy Driving can be just as dangerous and Drunk Driving, because your reaction time and perception slows down. Studies have shown someone who has been awake for 24 hours without sleep is just as impaired as someone drinking alcohol and the Blood Alcohol Content or BBC is 0.08. We need to make better decisions. Either find a rest area or get out and take a walk. But nothing will be as effective as some good old uninterrupted SLEEP!

Join Me, Officer Rickey Antoine and the CREW: Stephen Buzzard Boots Mosley, Lelo mouth of Hwy 69/73 Washington and Tejas Lil Man Morning Star for Ask A Cop live,on KSAP 96.9 FM The Breeze every Tuesday from 1 to 2:30 p.m. as they discuss the “Ask A Cop” column. Call in your question live at 409-982-0247 or make a text comment at 409-748-6106. Email your questions to rickey.antoine@portarthurtx.gov, call 409-983-8673 and leave a voice mail or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public, you can always approach and “Ask A Cop!”