Saturday, July 27, 2013
Can you carry a gun to football games after August 1? Alabama law says not without a permit
Although many fallacies and misconceptions surround the state's new gun laws, which will go into effect on August 1, one thing is clear: carrying guns into athletic events is illegal, even with a concealed carry permit. This applies to sporting events at any public or private school from elementary all the way to post-secondary. (Stephen Dethrage al.com) Full Story
firstname.lastname@example.org By Stephen Dethrage
July 27, 2013 at 12:19 PM
Alabama's laws on carrying firearms were overhauled in some areas and clarified in others by SB 286, a bill that was signed into law by Gov. Robert Bentley in May, and because of the length of the bill and it's legal language, most people have not read and understood the entirety of the law.
The reforms, now known as Act 2013-283, have generated a lot of conversation and questions, including a misconception that Alabamians can will be allowed to carry a gun into places like Bryant-Denny Stadium or Coleman Coliseum after Aug. 1, when the new law will go into effect.
While the law does limit the restrictions a property owner can put on gun owners who want to carry on their premises, exceptions are made for many places, such as jails or courthouses. The law expressly prohibits possessing a handgun at an athletic event without the explicit permission of someone with authority over the property. Here's the exact wording of Section 6 (b) of the law, with bold for emphasis:
In addition to any other place limited or prohibited by state or federal law, a person, including a person with a license issued under Section 13A-11-75, Code of Alabama 1975, may not knowingly possess or carry a firearm in any of the following places without the express permission of a person or entity with authority over the premises:
(1) Inside the building of a police, sheriff, or highway patrol station.
(2) Inside or on the premises of a prison, jail, halfway house, or other detention facility for those who have been charged with or convicted of a criminal or juvenile
(3) Inside or on the premises of a facility which provides inpatient or custodial care of those with psychiatric, mental, or emotional disorders.
(4) Inside the building of a courthouse or a courthouse annex.
(5) Inside any facility hosting an athletic event not related to or involving firearms which is sponsored by a private or public elementary or secondary school or any private or public institution of postsecondary education, unless the person has a permit issued under Section 13A-11-75(a)(1) or recognized under Section 13A-11-85.
(6) Inside any facility hosting a professional athletic event not related to or involving firearms, unless the person has a permit issued under Section 13A-11-75(a)(1) or recognized under Section 13A-11-85.
Section J of the Student Handbook of the University of Alabama and the weapons policy at Auburn University both also prohibit carrying guns on the grounds of the schools, but those rules would only apply to students, faculty and staff.
Act 2013-283 applies to everyone in the state, though, and prohibits Alabamians without a valid, sheriff-issued concealed carry permit from carrying handguns into athletic events on any level, whether it's the high school basketball championship playoffs, the Iron Bowl or a Birmingham Barons home game.
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