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Thread: Open Carry in Cary?

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    Visiting the Consolidated Area for Relocated Yankees this weekend.

    What's the general tone for OC in Cary? I read a few earlier posts - would love to hear some more.

    thanks!

    -s

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    Welcome to OCDO!

    I work in Durham, but haven't ventured into Cary recently, so I can't help you with any new information - I head back to Richmond as soon as my work week is over - sorry.

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    Sec. 22-51. Prohibition of the carrying and display of firearms and other weapons at certain public locations. (a)Firearms generally. No person shall possess firearms in town-owned buildings, on the grounds or parking areas of those buildings, or in town parks or recreation areas, including greenways, except nothing in this section shall prohibit a person from storing a firearm within a motor vehicle while the vehicle is on these grounds or areas. (b)Posting required. The director of public works or his designated representative is hereby authorized and instructed to post conspicuous signage at appropriate locations on or within each park, including greenways, and each building or portion of a building owned, leased as lessee, operated, occupied, managed or controlled by the town, as well as the appurtenant premises to such buildings, indicating that carrying a concealed handgun or possessing or displaying any firearm or any other deadly weapon, as defined in G.S. § 14-269(a), on the properties and locations described in this section is prohibited therein and thereon unless specifically permitted or authorized by state law or the provisions of the town's code of ordinances. (c)Location. Signs on buildings shall be visibly posted on the exterior of each entrance by which the general public can access the building. The director of public works or his designated representative shall exercise discretion in determining the number and appropriate location of signs to be placed on or within appurtenant premises and parks, including town greenways. (d)Applicability to other public locations. No person shall display any firearm or other deadly weapon as defined in G.S. § 14-269(a) while on any public street, alley, sidewalk or other public property within the town unless specifically permitted or authorized by law. (e)Exceptions. The following exceptions to the provisions of this section are authorized: (1)The chief of police, or designee, has authorized the public possession or display of a firearm, or other weapon, as part of an official program or event sponsored or sanctioned by the town; (2)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was the result of an individual(s) exercising his legitimate right to self defense or the defense of others as allowed by law; (3)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was conducted by a person(s) authorized by law to carry and display such items as part of their official or otherwise recognized lawful duties (e.g., law enforcement officers, military personnel, security guards, etc.); or (4)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was necessary for the temporary transport and securing of the item and was not otherwise in violation of existing statutes or ordinances (e.g., recent purchase and movement to vehicle for transport, securing of firearm by CCH permit holder in vehicle, found item to be turned in to authorities, firearm in approved vehicle gun rack, etc.). (f)Violation. The carrying of concealed handguns or the possession or display of any firearm or other dangerous weapon as defined in this section, in or upon any of the locations specified by this section, shall constitute a misdemeanor and subject any violator(s) so convicted to such penalties as may be imposed by the court. (Code 1982, § 13-9.1; Ord. No. 95-031, 12-14-1995; Ord. No. 01-010, 5-24-2001; Ord. No. 06-010, 6-22-2006) State law references: Local regulation of firearms, G.S. 14-409.40.

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    Ok, so if that's the Cary municipal code (and I assume it is), open carry is outright banned.

    Interesting that in Chapel Hill it appears to not be banned but ok so long as the overall length of the gun is at least 6".


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    No read the section - applies only to town owned buildings & parks - a NC expert can opine if Cary ios preempted as to parks.

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    Whoops, sure enough - thanks for the correction!


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    You are technically correct about the chapel hill code (I'm a UNC student) - however everyone I have talked to says it's just a bad idea to open carry here. I was also told that you can get in trouble carrying on franklin street; I assume because it's right along the line of the campus property which of course is off limits.

    Sec. 11-134. Prohibition on display of small handguns. (a)No person shall display, on any street, sidewalk, alley or other public property any handgun which is easily and ordinarily carried concealed. (b)For purposes of this article, the term "handgun which is easily and ordinarily carried concealed" shall mean any handgun or other firearm with an overall length of less than six (6) inches; provided, however, that in the case of a handgun or firearm that does not have a handgrip, this term shall mean any such handgun or firearm with an overall length of less than eight (8) inches.

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    c0ldfusi0nz wrote:
    ... however everyone I have talked to says it's just a bad idea to open carry here...
    The same thing was said about Northern VA, until people started doing it regularly - now there's seldom a raised eyebrow. Just out of curiosity, how many of those who say that it is a bad idea have actually tried it, or personally know someone who has and has experienced problems? I suspect it is just a statement based on assumptions of what may happen plus the effect of the anti-gun propoganda that is everywhere today. Just my $0.02.

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    Well it's a tricky subject because I don't know anyone with a handgun longer than 5", much less 6" and I don't know of anyone who would carry their shotgun or rifle around... though I'm getting my ccw permit in a matter of days thus I'm not that concerned about it.

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    Jimmy:

    I used to open carry in N.C. quite a bit but avoided Cary. The reason why is because N.C.'s pre-emption is weak and poorly written. Cary has an ordinance which appears to ban open carry, and I could not figure out whether it is pre-empted under state law.

    The only real solution is to get full pre-remption in N.C.

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    On Chapel Hill's firearm 'display' ordinance: looks like both these are ok, with the subcompact just squeezing by:

    XD-40 Service (4" barrel): 7-1/2"
    XD-40 Subcompact (3" barrel): 6-1/4"

    The overall length is defined elsewhere in the ordinance, and I read it as muzzle to rearmost extension of the grip.


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    44Brent wrote:
    I used to open carry in N.C. quite a bit but avoided Cary. The reason why is because N.C.'s pre-emption is weak and poorly written. Cary has an ordinance which appears to ban open carry, and I could not figure out whether it is pre-empted under state law.

    The only real solution is to get full pre-remption in N.C.
    Generally, NC is preempted to require a license to OC, or to ban OC, by way of the NC Constitution. See State v. Fennell (1989) (the NC Court of Appeals upheld previous NC court decisions but also stating that the guarantee of an individual right to openly bear arms in the NC constitution was subject to minimum size requirements so as to be of military charachter, and not too concealable).

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    Mike wrote:
    No read the section - applies only to town owned buildings & parks - a NC expert can opine if Cary ios preempted as to parks.
    Not sure I agree, see the bolded text below:

    Sec. 22-51. Prohibition of the carrying and display of firearms and other weapons at certain public locations. (a)Firearms generally. No person shall possess firearms in town-owned buildings, on the grounds or parking areas of those buildings, or in town parks or recreation areas, including greenways, except nothing in this section shall prohibit a person from storing a firearm within a motor vehicle while the vehicle is on these grounds or areas. (b)Posting required. The director of public works or his designated representative is hereby authorized and instructed to post conspicuous signage at appropriate locations on or within each park, including greenways, and each building or portion of a building owned, leased as lessee, operated, occupied, managed or controlled by the town, as well as the appurtenant premises to such buildings, indicating that carrying a concealed handgun or possessing or displaying any firearm or any other deadly weapon, as defined in G.S. § 14-269(a), on the properties and locations described in this section is prohibited therein and thereon unless specifically permitted or authorized by state law or the provisions of the town's code of ordinances. (c)Location. Signs on buildings shall be visibly posted on the exterior of each entrance by which the general public can access the building. The director of public works or his designated representative shall exercise discretion in determining the number and appropriate location of signs to be placed on or within appurtenant premises and parks, including town greenways. (d)Applicability to other public locations. No person shall display any firearm or other deadly weapon as defined in G.S. § 14-269(a) while on any public street, alley, sidewalk or other public property within the town unless specifically permitted or authorized by law. (e)Exceptions. The following exceptions to the provisions of this section are authorized: (1)The chief of police, or designee, has authorized the public possession or display of a firearm, or other weapon, as part of an official program or event sponsored or sanctioned by the town; (2)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was the result of an individual(s) exercising his legitimate right to self defense or the defense of others as allowed by law; (3)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was conducted by a person(s) authorized by law to carry and display such items as part of their official or otherwise recognized lawful duties (e.g., law enforcement officers, military personnel, security guards, etc.); or (4)The possession or display of the firearm, or other weapon, was necessary for the temporary transport and securing of the item and was not otherwise in violation of existing statutes or ordinances (e.g., recent purchase and movement to vehicle for transport, securing of firearm by CCH permit holder in vehicle, found item to be turned in to authorities, firearm in approved vehicle gun rack, etc.). (f)Violation. The carrying of concealed handguns or the possession or display of any firearm or other dangerous weapon as defined in this section, in or upon any of the locations specified by this section, shall constitute a misdemeanor and subject any violator(s) so convicted to such penalties as may be imposed by the court. (Code 1982, § 13-9.1; Ord. No. 95-031, 12-14-1995; Ord. No. 01-010, 5-24-2001; Ord. No. 06-010, 6-22-2006) State law references: Local regulation of firearms, G.S. 14-409.40.

    Sounds like OC is banned in Cary to me.

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    OpFlash wrote:
    Mike wrote:
    No read the section - applies only to town owned buildings & parks - a NC expert can opine if Cary ios preempted as to parks.
    Not sure I agree, see the bolded text below: . . .(d)Applicability to other public locations. No person shall display any firearm or other deadly weapon as defined in G.S. § 14-269(a) while on any public street, alley, sidewalk or other public property within the town unless specifically permitted or authorized by law.
    Sounds like OC is banned in Cary to me.
    Good catch - I wonder what "display" means? Luckily as a gebneral rule, the NC SC says no general open carry bans, so para d is pretty much ina pplicable to open carry. A reminaing question is what about the spot bans on city property - are they rpeempted?

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    Mike, so now you can see why the pre-emption law needs to get fixed. It allows plenty of room for confusion.

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    This is something that totally confuses me. I grew up in Raleigh, and I now live in Morrisville, which may as well be Cary. I have a CCW permit, but I'm concerned about little BS open carry laws just in case my neighbors get freaked out when I'm carrying my shotgun to the car or taking off my holster.

    So, Cary, like Tombstone, says you can own a gun, you can carry a gun, you just can't carry a gun in town. How does that NOT directly conflict with the NC General Statue regarding the state's power to make firearms laws?

    Here's How:


    § 14‑409.40. Statewide uniformity of local regulation.

    (a) It is declared by the General Assembly that the regulation of firearms is properly an issue of general, statewide concern, and that the entire field of regulation of firearms is preempted from regulation by local governments except as provided by this section........

    (b) Unless otherwise permitted by statute, no county or municipality, by ordinance, resolution, or other enactment, shall regulate in any manner the possession, ownership, storage, transfer, sale, purchase, licensing, or registration of firearms, firearms ammunition, components of firearms, dealers in firearms, or dealers in handgun components or parts.

    (c) Notwithstanding subsection (b) of this section, a county or municipality, by zoning or other ordinance, may regulate or prohibit the sale of firearms at a location only if there is a lawful, general, similar regulation or prohibition of commercial activities at that location. Nothing in this subsection shall restrict the right of a county or municipality to adopt a general zoning plan that prohibits any commercial activity within a fixed distance of a school or other educational institution except with a special use permit issued for a commercial activity found not to pose a danger to the health, safety, or general welfare of persons attending the school or educational institution within the fixed distance.

    (d) No county or municipality, by zoning or other ordinance, shall regulate in any manner firearms shows with regulations more stringent than those applying to shows of other types of items.

    (e) A county or municipality may regulate the transport, carrying, or possession of firearms by employees of the local unit of government in the course of their employment with that local unit of government.

    (f) Nothing contained in this section prohibits municipalities or counties from application of their authority under G.S. 153A‑129, 160A‑189, 14‑269, 14‑269.2, 14‑269.3, 14‑269.4, 14‑277.2, 14‑415.11, 14‑415.23, including prohibiting the possession of firearms in public‑owned buildings, on the grounds or parking areas of those buildings, or in public parks or recreation areas, except nothing in this subsection shall prohibit a person from storing a firearm within a motor vehicle while the vehicle is on these grounds or areas. Nothing contained in this section prohibits municipalities or counties from exercising powers provided by law in declared states of emergency under Article 36A of this Chapter.
    I decided to look into the issue when I saw a man at a Wal-Mart in Cary wearing an ITW holster and the butt of a revolver poking above his waistband. No problems that I could see as far as creating a public terror.

    But, the NCGS also states:



    § 153A‑129. Firearms.

    A county may by ordinance regulate, restrict, or prohibit the discharge of firearms at any time or place except when used to take birds or animals pursuant to Chapter 113, Subchapter IV, when used in defense of person or property, or when used pursuant to lawful directions of law‑enforcement officers. A county may also regulate the display of firearms on the public roads, sidewalks, alleys, or other public property. This section does not limit a county's authority to take action under Chapter 14, Article 36A. (1973, c. 822, s. 1; 2006‑264, s. 16.)
    And then:

    160A‑189. Firearms.

    A city may by ordinance regulate, restrict, or prohibit the discharge of firearms at any time or place within the city except when used in defense of person or property or pursuant to lawful directions of law‑enforcement officers, and may regulate the display of firearms on the streets, sidewalks, alleys, or other public property. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit a city's authority to take action under Article 36A of Chapter 14 of the General Statutes(ed: this section deals with riots). (1971, c. 698, s. 1.)

    So, with those few disclaimers, "Nothing contained in this section prohibits municipalities or counties from application of their authority under G.S. 153A‑129, 160A‑189,"The state of North Carolinahas said that Cary, Chapel Hill, and all other cities, towns, villages, etc. DO have the power to say where and how you can openly display a firearm.

    Please don't kill the messenger here. I just don't want anyone to be misinformed.

  17. #17
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    So, with those few disclaimers, "Nothing contained in this section prohibits municipalities or counties from application of their authority under G.S. 153A‑129, 160A‑189,"The state of North Carolinahas said that Cary, Chapel Hill, and all other cities, towns, villages, etc. DO have the power to say where and how you can openly display a firearm.

    Please don't kill the messenger here. I just don't want anyone to be misinformed.
    The word display in this statute does not necessarily mean open carry in a holster - but regardless, as a state Constitutional matter, cited elsewhere in this database for NC, NC government agencies cannot outright ban open carry of military size handguns (not easily concealed) , nor require a license for it. That's why Chapel Hill has a 6 inch minimum open carry size.

    Thanks for the clarification on the loopehole in preemption on parks though.

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