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Why You Should Think Twice About Modifying Your Concealed Carry Gun

Updated: Jun 23, 2022

Posted: October 14, 2019

Author: Hunter Gilroy

Think Twice About Any Handgun Mods on Your Duty and CWFL (CCW) Pistol

Something that you might want to think twice about is modifying your concealed carry gun. While you might get some better shooting out of it, it could become a liability. Gun stuff is fun, and making things better is cool especially if you're the DIY sort. Any hobby is enhanced by the little upgrades that people like to make, but what people forget about concealed carry is that you WILL be held responsible for what you do. Bear in mind this isn't legal advice, just a discussion. If you need qualified legal advice, consult with a licensed, practicing attorney in your area. If you're involved in a self-defense shooting, you will not be feted as a hero. You will not be given a parade, garlands of roses, or a Roman Triumph. You might, in fact, be branded a villain, a killer, a matter how seemingly iron-clad your claim of self-defense might be.

Part of that is could be due to the gun itself.

Common handgun mods usually - though not always - address three key aspects of handguns. They are:

  • The Trigger

  • The Sights

  • The Appearance

Modifications can be used against you by a prosecutor or plaintiff's attorney in court. Now, we all know that the goal of reducing trigger pull weight and improving the sights is to improve your handgun shooting. Adding decoration is just something you do because you like it. However, a prosecutor or plaintiff's attorney might interpret it differently. Rest assured, if you have to use your gun in self-defense, your pistol will likely have to be surrendered into evidence. The state will analyze it, part of which will be testing the trigger pull weight and examining it for any other alterations from factory specifications. Depending on the nature of the modification, it can open the door to major liabilities in certain circumstances. Let's talk about that in a bit more depth.

Trigger Pull Weight And Intention

Trigger pull weight can actually matter in the right scenario. In many self-defense cases, it's had absolutely no bearing at all, but there have been some in which it did. Mas Ayoob's take on the matter in Personal Defense World lays out a few cases in which trigger pull weight was a factor. In four of the five cases, a lighter trigger pull was indicated as a contributing factor to a negligent or otherwise unintentional discharge of a firearm. The remaining cases, New York vs. Frank Magliato, the defendant was involved in a shooting, wherein he cocked his Colt Detective Special in a tense standoff with other people. He had his finger on the trigger, and the gun discharged, killing a man. Magliato claimed that the light trigger was to blame,