Q. Is it legal to be intoxicated while possessing a firearm?
A. No it is not. Consuming alcohol or drugs while possessing a firearm is not automatically illegal. "Under the influence" is the key.
18-12-106. Prohibited use of weapons.
(1) A person commits a class 2 misdemeanor if:
(d) The person has in his or her possession a firearm while the person is under the influence of intoxicating liquor or of a controlled substance, as defined in section 12-22-303 (7), C.R.S. Possession of a [permit to carry a handgun concealed] is no defense to a violation of this subsection (1).
This can apply in one’s home, as well as in public. If you have a firearm in your car and get arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs you can also be charged with violating this statute. It is important to note that while Colorado does not prohibit concealed carry in places that serve alcohol, drinking liquor while carrying can be a whole different issue. This statute does not incorporate a specific blood alcohol content (BAC) test, the way some driving under the influence laws do. Instead your intoxication is going to be measured by things like your ability to stand, talk, or whatever else the prosecutor introduces to show you were impaired by the alcohol or drugs. The point is that you can still be intoxicated even if your BAC is not at a specific level. Consuming any amount of alcohol (or controlled substances, including otherwise legally possessed prescription drugs) while possessing a firearm can end up being a problem. Being drunk while you own firearms is not enough to trigger this statute, the firearm has to be in your possession. Very generally speaking that means in your hand or immediately at hand.