Tags: no guns allowed | walmart

No Guns Allowed in Wal-Mart? Can I Bring My Firearm While Shopping?

By    |   Monday, 17 Nov 2014 04:44 PM

Some Wal-Mart stores have taken to posting "no guns allowed" signs that state Wal-Mart associates and vendors are prohibited from carrying firearms at some of their retail locations. However, gun owners are permitted to carry their guns in Wal-Mart stores as long as they have a legal carry permit consistent with state, federal, and local laws.

According to the Wall Street Journal,
Wal-Mart associates and customers can complain to store management if the presence of firearms makes them "feel uncomfortable in any situation where a customer brings a gun into the store, and store managers can ask customers to leave guns in the car."

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Wal-Mart's guns-allowed carry policies are long standing, but there have been recent events that have garnered national attention regarding carry laws. In one case, a loaded firearm was left in a South Carolina Wal-Mart bathroom, and in another, a young man was shot to death in an Ohio Wal-Mart. According to the Huffington Post, events like these may cause Wal-Mart to be "the next battleground in the fight over gun rights in retail chains" as gun control advocates push for more "no guns allowed" policies in retail stores.

As reported by NBC News, in August of 2014, a young man in an Ohio
Wal-Mart was holding an unloaded air rifle obtained in the sporting goods section of the store. By many accounts, he was holding the unboxed gun while chatting on his cell phone with his wife. Another patron in the store called the police and claimed the man was pointing the gun at Wal-Mart shoppers.

After responding to the call, an officer asked 22-year-old John Crawford to drop the gun, which police later said resembled a
black AR-15 assault rifle. When Crawford did not respond, one officer opened fire and fatally wounded the young man.

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The shooting of Crawford has raised questions as to why, in a state that allows for carry and in a retail store that has a guns-allowed policy, Crawford's holding of an air gun caused such concern.

The Daily Caller
reported that in the moment before he was shot, Crawford's wife heard him say that the gun was "not real." In response to the unfortunate incident, the Ohio
Wal-Mart has removed the air gun model from its shelves, ostensibly because of its realistic resemblance to an AR-15 rifle. Wal-Mart's guns-allowed carry policy however remains in force.

In addition to generating much discussion about gun control laws, the shooting incident in
Wal-Mart also inflamed race relations. According to the Washington Times, "The fatal shooting by a white police officer is under investigation by the Department of Justice to determine whether the officer violated the civil rights of Crawford, who is black."

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws of your state and destination before travel.

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Some Wal-Mart stores have taken to posting "no guns allowed" signs that state Wal-Mart associates and vendors are prohibited from carrying firearms at some of their retail locations.
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