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article imageUtah bill would make things easier for open gun carriers

By Alex Allen     Mar 17, 2014 in Politics
A new bill that is now headed to the Utah governor's desk would make it easier for gun owners in the state to openly carry their firearms.
While open carrying a firearm is currently legal in the state of Utah, some lawmakers fear the state's laws on the issue have not been clear enough to prevent peaceful open carriers from being slapped with disorderly conduct charges.
House Bill 0276, a bill that recently passed both the state House and Senate in Utah, is now headed to the desk of Utah Governor Gary Herbert for a signature. If Herbert signs the bill into law, gun owners who choose to openly carry their firearms will no longer have to worry about charges and confrontations with police officers for simply having their firearms openly displayed in public.
Proponents of HB 0276 believe the new law will help to prevent police officers from filing charges and making arrests as a result of "man with a gun calls" as most of the open carry confrontations come as a result of worried citizens who are perhaps unaware of the legality of open carry contacting local police when they see a person openly carrying a firearm.
This new legislation was proposed after pictures surfaced last year of a man in a JC Penny store with a rifle slung across his back. Of course this man is not the only one to assert his open carry rights in a somewhat controversial manor and Utah is not the only state that has been impacted by this issue. Last year, a veteran in Temple, Texas was forced to pay a $2,000 fine for "interfering with the duties of a police officer" after he was stopped while open carrying an AR-15 on a 10-mile hike with his son. Other videos, stories, and images of confrontations over legal open carry have surfaced in the past.
More about Open Carry, Firearms, 2nd amendment, Guns
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