Crowley, LA (KPEL News) - Louisiana Governor Jeff Landry signed the constitutional carry bill into law on Tuesday, March 5. Senate Bill 1 allows qualified adults to carry a concealed firearm without a permit and was passed along party lines during the special legislative session on crime that ended on February 29, 2024.

Acadia Parish Sheriff K.P. Gibson issued a statement, including cautions, detailing where a person can carry a handgun and suggestions for safely doing so.

Acadia Parish Sheriff KP Gibson
Facebook via Acadia Parish Sheriff's Office

The current law requiring a permit to concealed carry remains in effect until July 4, 2024, and any person carrying a concealed weapon without a permit is in violation of state law until that date. Sheriff Gibson says:

Our goal is to make you aware of these facts to avoid being in a situation where you could be charged with a crime.

In the press release, the south Louisiana sheriff acknowledges that he believes in citizens' rights:

I believe in the right for law abiding citizens to carry arms, but want everyone to understand their responsibility before doing so.

Gibson strongly suggests that people unfamiliar with firearms consider training, although the law doesn't require it:

I would also encourage anyone who has not used a firearm or is not comfortable with using a firearm to consider attending a training class to assist you with understanding of the weapon and skills.

Use of a gun without proper knowledge and training can be dangerous for the person carrying it, other people, and law enforcement. Caleb Morse, owner of Rustic Renegade in Lafayette, also encourages people to understand the particulars of the bill and how to safely exercise your right to constitutionally carry a gun.

Caleb Morse
Facebook via Rustic Renegade

Morse said in a Facebook post the day Governor Landry signed the bill into law:

#constitutionalcarry goes into effect on July 4. This is a big step for our state but the public needs to take some time to educate themselves on the ins and outs. #louisiana will better itself and we the people will make it happen.

He also remind people that Louisiana Senate Bill 1 allows people 18 and over who are not felons to carry within the state borders, but you will need a permit if you plan to concealed carry in states that offer reciprocity.

As for Sheriff Gibson, he outlines what a person should do if they are stopped by law enforcement while they are carrying a firearm:

I would also suggest that if you choose to conceal carry and have an interaction with a law enforcement officer such as a traffic stop or investigation, that you make the law enforcement officer aware that you are conceal carrying. This will make a safer interaction for both you and the law enforcement officer. Please don't grab the firearm to show the officer, simply verbally advise him for everyone's safety.

His release goes on to stress the importance of understanding when you can lawfully use your weapon to avoid facing criminal charges. He says education is key, and everyone needs to fully comprehend the responsibility that comes with constitutional carry.

Sheriff Gibson lists the places people are prohibited from carrying a firearm, concealed or open:

  • Any property that prohibits firearms under federal or state law
  • Police or Sheriff's Departments Courthouses / courtrooms (town courts, city courts, parish courts, etc.)
  • Places of worship ( unless authorized as part of a church security detail)
  • Airports
  • Louisiana Capital Building Meeting places that are part of a Political Subdivision of Government (City Council meetings, Police Jury meetings, etc.)
  • School Campus, School Bus or within 1,000 feet of School Property
  • Detention Centers or Jails
  • Places with a Class A General retail which allows to sell and consume alcohol on site (Bars, Events, Festivals, etc.)

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