Arizona

Jul 31, 2013 9:20 AM by Associated Press

Ariz. ruling says police can temporarily take guns

PHOENIX (AP) - A new Arizona court ruling says police can take temporary custody of a person's gun for officer-safety reasons even if the person's contact with police was voluntary.

A man appealing a firearms misconduct conviction argued that Phoenix police wrongfully took his gun after he agreed to talk with officers on a street in a high-crime area.

An Arizona law allows police to take temporary custody of firearms during encounters with people, and the Court of Appeals ruled that includes times when a person is not in custody and merely in consensual contact with police.

The ruling says that gives police flexibility while safeguarding the rights of lawfully armed individuals.

A dissenting judge argued that the law only applies when there's an "investigative" stop based on reasonable suspicion of criminal activity.

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