Senator explains Alabama's gun law taking effect August 1 - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Sen. Scott Beason explains Alabama's new gun law set to take effect Aug. 1

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Alabama's new gun law is set to go into effect August 1, making it an "open-carry" state and changing the way permits are issued.

The law will allow people to store their firearms in vehicles while at work and removes discretion from county sheriffs when granting gun owners concealed carry permits. Many say it's hard to understand all the terms of the new legislation and there's a gray area, so we spoke with the law's original sponsor, Sen. Scott Beason, R-Gardendale, to get a better understanding.

"Unless you're legally barred from being able to get a pistol license, the sheriff has to issue you one," Sen. Scott Beason of Gardendale said. "We went from a may issue state to a shall issue state."

Gun owners will be allowed to keep their firearm in their vehicle at work as long as it is unseen, out of reach and locked.

"If you're hunting before or after work, you can keep that locked away and the business owner can't fire you for that if they find out you have it," Beason said.

Hoover Tactical says the law gives gun owners a better sense of what they can and can't do.

"I know plenty of people who don't carry on their person,  but they keep a gun in their car," Austin Cook, General Manager, Hoover Tactical and Firearms said. "They don't want a concealed carry permit, but previously they had to have one to keep a gun in their car."

We spoke with several police and sheriffs offices, some weren't willing to comment simply because they said the law is unclear and they're still trying to figure it out exactly what it all means in order to enforce it. 

In February, several local sheriffs spoke out against the gun bill saying it could be easier for the wrong people to get their hands on guns and puts officers in danger.

"It's just some guy who has never answered a call, who has never faced an armed criminal, who has never dealt with a family disturbance who has all of a sudden decided- let me tell you how to do it," Calhoun County Sheriff Larry Amerso said in February.

Under the law, permits can only be revoked if a violent crime is committed with a gun.




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