Author Topic: Governor Abbott signs law into effect ?  (Read 1728 times)

663084

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Governor Abbott signs law into effect ?
« on: June 16, 2015, 03:02:09 PM »
I saw local Houston television news on 6/14/15 that Gov. Abbot had signed the "Open Carry" laws into effect. Can an attorney please write an article confirming this bill was signed into law, explain any and all particulars of the law and notify us as to when this new law will go into effect. I and I am sure many others have seen,read and heard much regarding this, but very little out there is from an official and reliable source. You attention to this matter will be much appreciated by all members here. Thanks for keeping us all informed and safe, JT
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Guest »

TexasLawShield

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Re: Governor Abbott signs law into effect ?
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2015, 08:37:10 AM »
663084,

Open carry has been signed into law by Governor Abbott. Open carry of a handgun will be legal in Texas if all 3 of these factors are present:
1)   The person carrying a visible handgun is in actual physical possession of their CHL (which automatically becomes a HL)
2)   The handgun is being carried in a shoulder or belt holster;
3)   It is January 1, 2016 or later.

The general law prohibiting the carrying of a handgun, Texas Penal Code 46.02, remains unchanged and licensed open carry is will be a defense to the criminal charge of unlawful carry of a weapon under Texas Penal Code 46.15(b)(6).  This means that a police officer who observes a person carrying a handgun DOES HAVE reasonable suspicion to stop and probable cause to arrest a person who is openly carrying a handgun.  The burden is on the individual to prove that they are carrying a license and therefore protected by TPC 46.15(b)(6) and not subject to TPC 46.02.  The removed Dutton-Huffiens amendment would have prevented these stops and detentions based upon nothing more than seeing an individual with a holstered handgun.   Without the amendment the police have the lawful ability to detain and investigate every person observed visibly carrying a handgun for a possible crime under TPC 46.02.  It will be a crime for a license holder to display their handgun to another person in a public place when it is NOT in a holster, unless it has been unholstered in a justified use of force or deadly force situation.

Also, a person without a license can continue to carry a handgun in their motor vehicle or water craft as long as it is concealed, whereas a person with a license has the option of allowing their handgun to be visible in their motor vehicle as long as it remains in a belt or shoulder holster. There will be new training requirements for new licensees on firearms security and retention holsters, but there is no requirement that current licensees obtain this training.  

All of the current rules with regard to concealed carry remain the same.  There is no requirement that a concealed carried handgun be carried in a shoulder or belt holster.  

Any place where a person can currently conceal carry with a license they will be able to open carry, except one, the campus of an institute of higher learning.  In anticipation of campus carrying passing, there will be an explicit prohibition against carrying a visible handgun anywhere on a college campus, including the parking lots, sidewalks, walkways, etc.  Also with regard to campus carry, the president of an institution will have the ability to designate areas of the campus as “gun free zones” as long as it does not have the effect of a generalized ban.  The president is supposed to do this after consulting with the faculty, staff and students, and it must be approved by the board of regents.  Further, there will be plenty of time to figure this out because campus carry does not become legal on universities until August 1, 2016 and on community and junior colleges until August 1, 2017.

A very interesting piece of the open carry bill that does not get much attention is that the penalty for criminal trespass by a license holder will be a Class C misdemeanor if notice was done with a 30.06 sign, while remaining a Class A misdemeanor is a license holder is personally told to leave the premises and does not.  Also, a property owner wanting to prevent open carry on their property will also have to give a trespassing notice under the newly created 30.07 law.  This means that a property owner wanting to prohibit all license carry will have to post both a 30.06 and a 30.07 sign in both English and Spanish, in one inch high block letters.

You can see the full bill for open carry here:
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLook ... Bill=HB910
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Guest »