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Thread: Open Carry in Arkansas

  1. #1

    Default Open Carry in Arkansas

    I'm going to preface this by reminding everyone: "Don't believe everything you read." I mention this to add: "Even if it is from a source that you tend to agree with." I'll go into that more farther down.

    Yesterday, I was listening to the local call-in-and-gripe afternoon show. That's a little harsh, because the guy isn't nasty; he's actually pretty fair. Anyway, he had received a call from a professor (and attorney) from the University of Arkansas Little Rock asking him if he had heard about the Arkansas Court of Appeals decision that concerned (in part) open-carry in Arkansas. The court had ruled that open-carry is the law in Arkansas. Act 746 (passed and signed a few years back under another administration) changed wording about carrying a firearm. It went under the radar of everyone, including the Democrat governor at the time.

    I'm not going to go into the details of the law because I don't have time right now, but the plain reading of the wording basically legalized open-carry. Because it didn't BLATANTLY say "open-carry is legal" (that's why it went under the radar) it's been argued about ever since. The then-Attorney General issued an opinion saying that it didn't legalize open-carry. The new Attorney General issued an opinion that said it does.

    There have been a couple of cases about it in local courts, but the Arkansas Court of Appeals issued a ruling about 2 weeks ago (it hasn't appeared in any news media until the Doc Washburn show on KARN yesterday. A guy's conviction was thrown out (including possession of illegal drugs) because there was no reasonable suspicion for him to be stopped. He had walked into and out of a store, with a handgun on his belt. Nothing else. The store owner called the cops, they pulled him over and searched him and his vehicle, found drugs, etc. The ruling included stating that open carrying a weapon is not illegal, and provided no cause for suspicion. This ruling covers the whole state.

    The professor/attorney also provided other information and explanations about the ruling (he had read the entire thing). He stated that it has no bearing on concealed carry. They are two different issues based on two totally different statutes. You might think, "If I can open-carry, then I can concealed-carry, right?" Nope. I even called in and asked, "What constitutes open-carry? If you carry inside the waistband, but you can see the clip?" He said that it has to be visible enough to identify it as a gun.

    This has officially cleared up the "ambiguous" language of the law here in Arkansas. It can still go to the Supreme Court, but we'll see.

    Open-carry is now legal in the State of Arkansas.

    Now, to my statement that I prefaced this post with. I did a search before posting this to maybe add a link so you guys can read more yourself. I found a page, which I will reluctantly link to because it has a copy of the Appeals Court decision. HOWEVER, everything before it on the page is wrong, at least, according to the attorney/law professor (who states that he is a conservative).

    Anyway, here is the link:

    BTW, I am not familiar with this site. I used the phrase "tend to agree with" in my opening in the general sense. This looks like a conservative-type website. They could be total whack-jobs for all I know.
    Last edited by JohnLeePettimore; 11-01-2018 at 02:39 PM.
    "The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." Capt. James T. Kirk

  2. #2
    Tool & Die Maker
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Genoa, IL

    Default seems Arkansas is reluctant to commit one way or the other. Although around the country open carry and conceal carry are separate issues where conceal carry requires a license, open carry may or may not require a license. In Mississippi if you can legally own a firearm you can open carry, conceal carry requires a license.

    Get this: In Florida, you can legally open carry a loaded firearm while engaged in, or going to and from, Fishing, Hunting, and Camping. With some planning and preparation, a law abiding person can open carry a firearm in public and stay in compliance with the law.

    Good government should be able to pass legislation the common man and police can clearly understand. During this campaign season I invite all the politicians to come out to the sportsmans club and visit the shooting range, talk to people shooting and watch people so they can legislate on a topic they know something about.
    Last edited by jim Glass; 11-02-2018 at 06:25 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    KY bluegrass region-the center of the universe


    Some of us are truly fortunate.

    Open carry has been the law in KY since 1792.

    You buy a belt, a gun comes with it.

    I lived in Tennessee for many years and you could hunt with a pistol but it was illegal to transport the pistol to or from ANYWHERE at ANY TIME! So the sport was legal, but taking the gear to the sport was illegal!

    When you walked out of the gun shop and took the pistol home after buying the pistol you were breaking the law.

    The only place one could carry a pistol legally was on his own property. I have known of cases where farmers were turned in, by people driving past, for carrying shotguns or rifles in their own fields. You would not think it, but TN is an incredibly draconian state.

    The CCW laws only changed in TN in the past couple of years.
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