Floridians May in the Future Be Allowed to Carry Guns Freely Without a License
Recently, state representative for Howey-in-the-Hills, Anthony Sabatini, filed a bill in Florida named "constitutional carry" or HB 273, that would permit gun owners to be in possession of their weapons openly in public without the need for a license. This is possible at the moment in sixteen other states. It would permit a lawful gun owner to carry a weapon(s) openly without having a license in areas where concealed guns are presently allowed.
Rep. Sabatini is actually saying is that someone should be given the chance to exercise their Second Amendment right at no cost and if they want to defend themselves they shouldn’t have to ask permission from the state to do so. This bill so far is likely to be opposed by those proposing stricter gun laws if it finds its way to the Legislature.
Carlos Guillermo Smith representative for the Democrats in Orlando is appalled by the proposal and calls it downright dangerous. He sees the solution to gun violence today is to provide better gun use training, an increase in the use of background checks and preferably fewer guns in the community.
HB 273 also covers campus carry, or open carry, both of which have been ignored by the GOP controlled Legislature over the years.
Sabatini emphasizes that this is the 1st time in Florida’s history for a “constitutional carry” bill to be filed. He does admit that due to its controversial nature it would probably never become law in the near future. Furthermore, in the Capitol, the emphasis has been more on the tightening up of gun use, even though gun control bills that have been proposed by the Democrats haven’t progressed much.
In the wake of the Parkland shooting episode, the Legislature passed a bill that encompassed both school safety and weapon control measures, which also included a ban on the use of semi-automatics by anyone under 21 years old, a total ban on bump stocks and a 3 day wait period for any gun purchase. The NRA has filed a lawsuit with the federal court, objecting to the provisions. This hasn’t yet been heard while a significant group of Republicans who oppose these measures are trying their best to repeal or weaken them.
Sabatini’s bill still supports the prohibiting of carrying a firearm in a courtroom, on any college campus and at any legislative meeting. However, the penalty for being caught with a gun in such places would be a second-degree misdemeanor not a third-degree felony as it currently is. The reason for suggesting that penalties should be lowered is because many gun owners carry guns into places that have restrictions in place but they are not aware of this so if caught shouldn’t be penalized so sharply
. Constitutional carry laws are in force in North Dakota, Idaho and Wyoming for their own state residents, but North Dakota’s gun law still states a gun needs to be concealed. Sabatini’s bill would include any lawful gun owner.
At present, gun laws in Florida are reasonably strict. If you are caught in possession of a gun without a license you may regret it as you could end up doing prison time. However, there are plausible defenses for your action but you will need help from Miami’s highly respected criminal defense attorney, Albert Quirantes Esq. if you wish to reduce your chance of a prison term and a hefty fine. You can contact him at his law firm in Miami at 305-644-1800.
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