New Gun Carry Law Takes Effect July 1 - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

New Gun Carry Law Takes Effect July 1

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House Bill 2 was signed into law by Governor Phil Bryant on March 4th stating people may openly carry guns in Mississippi without a concealed weapon permit.

However, private property owners can prohibit guns on their property. It's illegal to have a gun on school or college campuses.

"As long as you're 18 years and above and you've not been convicted of a felony or domestic abuse, you can legally carry a firearm on your side," says Major Robbie Suber with the Jones County Sheriff's Department.

According to House Bill 2 writer Representative Andy Gipson of District 77, 18 to 20 year olds can now carry a handgun in Mississippi but they can not purchase a handgun. the only way they can openly carry a gun is by having permission from the handgun owner.

There are other restrictions to the open carry law says Major Suber, "A property owner has the right to restrict gun carriers from coming in to their businesses if they choose to do so." Such as the mall, even though it's open to the public, malls are still considered private property and can restrict gun laws.

Charles Dykes owns Discount Pawn and has already posted signs stating "We do not allow open carry handguns in store."

"We just can't be selective on who we tell to come in and out with a gun, I have some guys I wouldn't mind coming in with a gun, some guys I would, so I'm just not going to let them come in for security." Dykes owns a gun and sales guns but is still concerned about the new law. "I'm going to be concerned if I see them outside, it will make me more concerned. sure wouldn't want to be a policeman," says Dykes.

"We're educating our personnel on affective ways to handle these situations what the laws actually stating," says Suber. The attorney general's office is holding conferences across the state to teach law enforcement officers about the new laws. "We may have to take a weapon from somebody but if they've not violated the laws then we'll give it back to them," says Suber.

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