Oklahoma Prepares for Open Carry - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Oklahoma Prepares for Open Carry


DURANT,OK--- Police departments across Oklahoma are preparing for changes to the state's gun laws. Starting tomorrow it will be legal to openly carry a handgun. Oklahoma will join 43 other states that already allow some form of open carry.

Open carry has been the talk of the town recently in Southern Oklahoma.

"Well I think it's a good idea because it might discourage maybe would be criminals from killing somebody or hurting somebody," said Durant resident Leonard Nail.

"I'm for open carry. I have my license to carry concealed but I just believe its better for everybody concerned as far as the criminals and what not . I think we ought to be able to protect ourselves," said Durant resident Dwaine Scott.

And while many Oklahomans are ready to start packing heat in public, they need to be aware of a few rules before they do. First, you need a valid handgun license. Second, all guns must be inside a belt or shoulder holster. Third, businesses are given the right to choose if they want to allow it.

"What we tell those local businesses is they probably want to post some sort of sign by the entrance to let people know there wish is not to let someone carry inside," Lt. Chris Marcy said. 

Open carry is banned from several places such as schools, sports arenas, airports, public meetings and bars. Restaurants where liquor is not their main money maker will be allowed to choose whether or not they will allow it. Mark Rawlings of Salita's Mexican Restaurant says he has no reservations about allowing the new law.

"We have people come in here everyday that have concealed licenses. Now those people who will be able to openly carry. We're going to allow it but we don't think it will be a big issue," Mark Rawlings said.

Currently 141,000 hand gun licenses have been issued in Oklahoma. For more information on open carry you can go to www.opencarry.org.