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Law strips North Carolinians of gun rights during emergencies

NC State Capitol BuildingWhen North Carolina Gov. Beverly Purdue declared a state of emergency in coastal North Carolina in response to Hurricane Earl, she also suspended concealed carry laws, effective self defense, and the rights of sportsmen in those areas.

N.C. General Statute 14-288.7 strips North Carolinians of the ability of citizens to carry firearms off their property during a declared emergency.

Paul Valone, co-founder of Grass Roots North Carolina, states:

According to § 14 288.1 (10), a state of emergency exists “whenever, during times of public crisis, disaster, rioting, catastrophe, or similar public emergency, public safety authorities are unable to maintain public order or afford adequate protection for lives or property, or whenever the occurrence of any such condition is imminent.”

Violation of the order is a Class I misdemeanor, punishable by up to 120 days in jail. Those impacted include concealed handgun permit-holders, sport-shooters, and anyone else carrying a firearm outside their home or business. Critics note that dove-hunting season begins on Saturday (September 4), potentially making criminals of thousands of hunters.

In other words, a store owner could not transport a firearm from his home to his commercial property to protect it from looting in the wake of a declared emergency. A concealed carry permit holder would become a criminal by merely possessing his normal carry arm while checking on friends and family members in the wake of a storm.

Attempts have been made in the NC legislature to amend the law, but each attempt has been blocked in committee by anti-gun politicians.

A lawsuit, Bateman et al v. Perdue et al, has been filed against the State because of the law, and the plantiffs are represented by Alan Gura, who won major guns rights cases  McDonald v. Chicago and D.C. v. Heller.

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