Pocketknife ban has Antlers residents up in arms - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Pocketknife ban has Antlers residents up in arms

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ANTLERS, OK -- It's a ban that has many in Antlers up in arms.

A new ordinance makes it illegal to carry a pocketknife within city limits.

But the law shouldn't last much longer because the mayor says it wasn't supposed to be approved in the first place.

In this week's issue of the Antlers American, in the legal notices on page 7b is the ordinance that has many on edge.

"I think it's a bunch of "BS" we can't carry pocketknives," Antlers resident Eddie Minton said.

Stacy Dennis lives in Antlers and says until now, he's kept a pocketknife on him at all times.

"I would venture to say 99% of people carry knives of different sorts," Dennis said.

Dennis heard about the ordinance from a relative but says he didn't believe it until he saw it spelled out in black and white.

"Initially I thought there's no way, I mean, that's got to be a mistake," he said. "I couldn't believe our city would pass such an ordinance."

Despite voting for it, Antlers Mayor Mike Burrage says when he saw the ordinance again for himself, he couldn't believe it either.

"We have no reason to outlaw pocketknives," Burrage said. "I actually laughed when I heard it."

Mayor Burrage says he read the ordinance out loud in a city council meeting earlier this month which he says inadvertently passed. Burrage admits it was a mistake.

"We dropped the ball on that one," he said.

Burrage says the new ordinance was supposed to loosen concealed weapons laws in Antlers.

"Our existing laws were actually stricter that Oklahoma state law, so a group of second amendment activists contacted us to have us change the law," Burrage explained.

The mayor says what many don't realize is that it's been illegal to carry a pocketknife in Antlers since 2009. He says the ordinance was supposed to change that.

"Obviously it had the opposite effect," he said.

Burrage says he fully expects the ordinance to be changed to the way the city originally wanted it during a public city council meeting Wednesday at noon at city hall.