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Thread: Garden of the Gods Gun Ban Sign (pictures)

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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    It looks like a LONG time ago it was painted over (at least the ED.), but I know it has been this clear for 3 years. Maybe something scaped up against the ED. I'll be contacting a few people about this. If anyone wants join in, feel free. Maybe bring it up at a city council meeting?


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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    Here is the letter I sent to the city parks office:



    Hello,
    While visiting Colorado Springs recently, I made a trip to the Garden of the
    Gods. I heard that it was a wonderful place to visit while in town. I was
    dissapointed when, upon my arrival, I came accross the sign which bans the
    possesion of firearms. I was unable to visit the park, out of fear that I would
    be commiting a crime. I was carrying a firearm for my defense and security, and
    in accordance to Colorado law.
    After my visit to Colorado Springs was over, I was made aware that the Garden
    of the Gods is owned by the city of Colorado Springs, so full state preemption
    of firearms laws make the firearms prohibition rule invalid.

    Colorado Revised Statutes § 29-11.7-103 provides:

    A local government may not enact an ordinance, regulation, or other law that
    prohibits the sale, purchase, or possession of a firearm that a person may
    lawfully sell, purchase, or possess under state or federal law. Any such
    ordinance, regulation, or other law enacted by a local government prior to March
    18, 2003, is void and unenforceable.

    Some prohibitions are permitted, however:

    Colorado prohibits any person from possessing a loaded firearm in, or carrying
    or bringing a loaded firearm into, any facility of public transportation.
    Section 18-9-118.

    No person, regardless of a permit, may carry a concealed handgun into a public
    building at which security personnel and electronic screening devices are
    permanently in place at each entrance, each person entering the building is
    screened, and persons carrying weapons are required to leave them with security
    while in the building. Section 18-12-214(4).

    I am including pictures of the sign, which is located at the entrance near
    Manitou Springs.

    Please keep me updated regarding this matter.


  3. #3
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    PM sent. I'll call the City Manager's office.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    El Paso county sheriff--not sure who owns Garden, (I'll call city when they are open) but open carry is banned in all city parks. However, CCW holders may carry concealed in ANY city owned park. Privately owned facilities, of course, can ban firearms--if posted. I believer the city took over GOG last year. If so, the signs may be legacy from the prior owners, but preempted with respect to concealed carry. I think this likely is the case, but once the city offices open, I'll find out for sure. However, per the very friendly sheriff's office, no open carry in any city park. CC is fine.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    Gunslinger wrote:
    El Paso county sheriff--not sure who owns Garden, (I'll call city when they are open) but open carry is banned in all city parks. However, CCW holders may carry concealed in ANY city owned park. Privately owned facilities, of course, can ban firearms--if posted. I believer the city took over GOG last year. If so, the signs may be legacy from the prior owners, but preempted with respect to concealed carry. I think this likely is the case, but once the city offices open, I'll find out for sure. However, per the very friendly sheriff's office, no open carry in any city park. CC is fine.

    I am also under the impression that it is the remnant of a previous owner.

    I dissagree with the open carry ban in public parks. I do not think that is true.




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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    Here is the city code for parks in COS:



    http://66.113.195.234/CO/Colorado%20Springs/index.htm


    9.7.103: POSSESSION OR DISPLAY:

    A.It is unlawful for any person to sell, display, use, possess or carry any switchblade or gravity knife or blackjack. Any weapon is declared to be contraband and shall be destroyed.

    B.It is unlawful to knowingly display a firearm or other dangerous or deadly weapon, or any object resembling same which is intended by the actor to intimidate, threaten, alarm or frighten any person.

    C.For purposes of this section, "display" means any opening, or unfolding, manifestation, exhibition, ostentatious showing, or exhibition for effect meant to intimidate, threaten, alarm, or frighten any person.

    D.It shall be an affirmative defense that the actor displayed the weapon in self-defense, or to defend another person, or to defend the actor's premises or property. All other applicable State defenses apply. (1968 Code §8-14; Ord. 80-13; Ord. 97-132; Ord. 01-42; Ord. 03-105)
    Open carry is legal in parks, according to their ordinances.

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    I did a search of the Colorado Springs municipal code, and the only verbatim prohibition on open carry is no open carrying in public buildings. The parks code contains a prohibition on discharging a gun in a park without the standard excuses, but there's nothing about carrying openly or concealed.

    CRS 29-11.7-104, the preemption clause for regulating open carry, mentions "ordinance, regulation, or other law" as the basis for posting a sign prohibiting it. I'm willing to bet a park rule set forth by whatever body runs them is sufficient as a "regulation," so the sign being there is enough to ban open carry per state law. Of course, concealed carry in parks is legal everywhere and backed up by the Meyers decision from the state supreme court.

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    I can't open the sign that reeftech sent. What does it say? As far as open carry, the El Paso County Sheriff told me no open carry in any COS parks, period. Concealed carry is permitted per state law, and cannot be limited by the Springs or any other municipality. I kind of think the sign is a left over from when the GOG was privately owned. I called the Comish of Parks for the Springs but haven't heard back yet. IMO, concealed carry is not a problem, but I would hold off on open carry in any Springs park. The lady who told me at the sheriff handles concealed carry applications and is very knowledgeable.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Localities are preempted in CO - so even if a SPring ord. did ban OC, it would be invalid.

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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    The sign says, among other things, "Dogs must be on leash. Firearms prohibited."



    I emailed a councilperson about the sign next, and also mentioned that the sheriff's department believes open carry is not permitted in parks.

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    reefteach wrote:
    The sign says, among other things, "Dogs must be on leash. Firearms prohibited."



    I emailed a councilperson about the sign next, and also mentioned that the sheriff's department believes open carry is not permitted in parks.
    Ask the council person to identify any Colo. statute or City ordinance which bars OC in parks.

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Just one more to the puzzle: for SURE, the Garden is owned by the city of Colorado Springs. Was private, but deeded to the city long ago. That being said, concealed carry is entirely legal under state law. Open carry--I can only go by what the sheriff's office said. If Denver can ban open carry, COS certainly could in its parks, but the sign is still incorrect: firearms are permitted, at least concealed, and many transport them to the shooting range Rampart Range, above the Garden. Confusing and I'd want more info before OC, but I have no concern about CC, as I have in the past and will in the future. Guy from the Park Department hasn't called back, btw.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Gunslinger wrote:
    If Denver can ban open carry, COS certainly could in its parks,....
    It's my understanding that Denver got away with this due to their home rule provision - which does not, to the best of my understanding, exist in COS where the state pre-emption applies instead.

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    RockyMtnScotsman wrote:
    Gunslinger wrote:** *
    If Denver can ban open carry, COS certainly could in its parks,....
    It's my understanding that Denver got away with this due to their home rule provision - which does not, to the best of my understanding, exist in COS where the state pre-emption applies instead.
    Denver got away with it because the preemption law is contained in Title 29 of the Colorado Revised Statutes, which regulates municipal governments (both statutory and home-rule) functioning below the level of state government. Denver isn't a home-rule municipality; it's a consolidated city-and-county, which means that although it functions like a municipal government, it is technical a portion of state government as a county. The preemption doesn't restrict state law (instead, like other preemption laws, it reserves it to the state)... as such, Denver law carries the same legal weight as a regular state law, albeit only within the county limits of Denver. Normal, non-consolidated counties, such as Boulder County where I am, don't have the authority to pass laws like that, so they can't ban OC, and the preemption law keeps cities and towns within those counties from doing it either.

    There's only one other consolidated city-and-county in Colorado: Broomfield, which is just south of Boulder county and is likewise quite tiny. However, their laws are in conformity with the norm for the state and they have no all-inclusive laws restricting OC.

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    Interesting... thanks for the detailed explanation Denwego!

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Very interesting, thanx for the informative posting. I've been here for 2+ years, had a NH CCW so didn't need to get the CO one right away, but now have it. I know Denver is a one off with respect to OC, but under full state law for CC. Never got a call from the Parks Comm, so will call again and see what he has to say about Garden.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Colorado Springs Municipal Code--up to date

    Open carry

    "The person or persons reporting directly to City Council who have administrative or supervisory authority over any building or specific area owned or leased by the City, including the City Manager, Utilities Director Chief Executive Officer of Colorado Springs Utilities , City Attorney, City Clerk, City Auditor, Municipal Court Administrator, Presiding Judge of the Municipal Court, Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees and their designees, are hereby authorized to post signs at the public entrances to City owned or leased buildings informing the public that the open carrying of firearms is prohibited. (Note--concealed carry is allowed in these buildings unless there is a security/metal detector function set up. This is state law.)"

    Parks--including Garden of the Gods

    "It is unlawful for any person to fire or discharge any firearm within any park. The discharge of firearms using only blank ammunition by members of any military company when on parade, or when engaged in an official ceremony, and under the command of the commanding officer, or as authorized by the Director through a temporary park permit, or the lawful discharge of any firearms by a peace officer, shall not be deemed a violation of this section. (Ord. 89-97; Ord. 01-42; Ord. 03-105) "

    This is all I could find within the City Code of Colorado Springs with respect to open carry. So...I would conclude, despite what the sheriff's department told me, there is NO prohibition on open carry--excepting the buildings listed above when posted, within COS or any of its parks, Garden of the Gods being one. I would not have any problem OCing in the Garden, although I prefer CC unless in the wild open spaces.

    The sign at Garden of the Gods, with respect to firearms, is without the force of law and is meaningless.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Gunslinger wrote:
    [SNIP]any building or specific area owned or leased by the City,

    This is all I could find within the City Code of Colorado Springs with respect to open carry. So...I would conclude, despite what the sheriff's department told me, there is NO prohibition on open carry--excepting the buildings listed above when posted, within COS or any of its parks, Garden of the Gods being one. I would not have any problem OCing in the Garden, although I prefer CC unless in the wild open spaces.

    The sign at Garden of the Gods, with respect to firearms, is without the force of law and is meaningless.
    Looks like the park could (emphasis on could) fall under the bolded part above, so you may want to be careful...

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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    jaredbelch wrote:
    Gunslinger wrote:
    [SNIP]any building or specific area owned or leased by the City,

    This is all I could find within the City Code of Colorado Springs with respect to open carry. So...I would conclude, despite what the sheriff's department told me, there is NO prohibition on open carry--excepting the buildings listed above when posted, within COS or any of its parks, Garden of the Gods being one. I would not have any problem OCing in the Garden, although I prefer CC unless in the wild open spaces.

    The sign at Garden of the Gods, with respect to firearms, is without the force of law and is meaningless.
    Looks like the park could (emphasis on could) fall under the bolded part above, so you may want to be careful...
    I don't think so. That section identifies a person who may post. Those people are:
    authorized to post signs at the public entrances to City owned or leased buildings
    We have that forfirearms here in Ohio. You can carry anywhere in any park, except for the buildings. Soif you have to use the bathroom, you will have to do it while on your hike. Sensible gun control at its best.

    BTW- We can also use highway rest areas too, as long as we don't go inside. Genius :?



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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    29-11.7-104. Regulation - carrying - posting.

    A local government may enact an ordinance, regulation, or other law that prohibits the open carrying of a firearm in a building or specific area within the local government's jurisdiction. If a local government enacts an ordinance, regulation, or other law that prohibits the open carrying of a firearm in a building or specific area, the local government shall post signs at the public entrances to the building or specific area informing persons that the open carrying of firearms is prohibited in the building or specific area.
    This permits the posting of buildings or specific areas by localities.



    http://cbi.state.co.us/ccw/Statutes/29-11.7-104.asp



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    Regular Member Anubis's Avatar
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    TheCO revised statute quoted above authorizes local governments to prohibit open carry. So if every entrance to the Garden of the Gods were posted something like "no open carry of firearms", then open carry would be illegal inside. The local government does not have the authority to ban concealed firearms, at least without metal detectors and guards at every entrance, so GoG's "Firearms are prohibited" alleges a power that is not authorized.

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    Anubis wrote:
    TheCO revised statute quoted above authorizes local governments to prohibit open carry. So if every entrance to the Garden of the Gods were posted something like "no open carry of firearms", then open carry would be illegal inside.
    No - posting is not dispositive - an ordiance or regulation banning open carry must firt be enacted by the locality - has anyone cited such ordiance or regulation?

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    Regular Member Anubis's Avatar
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    Mike, always so precise!

    You are right, I have not seen such a Colorado Springs Ordinance.

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    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    The only COS ordinances are the ones I posted. Nothing else is on topic. As I said, per current state and city law: that sign has no weight of law. I have also contacted the head of the CO Gun Owners asc on it, which I plan on joining. If anyone should have the real scoop, I would bet on him.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    Regular Member reefteach's Avatar
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    Agreed.

    1. The sign needs to come down.

    2. Open carry at the park is legal.

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