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House panel rejects open carry of handguns

By The Associated Press

This article was originally published February 26, 2013 at 7:06 a.m. Updated February 26, 2013 at 1:48 p.m.

— A watered-down proposal to allow the open carry of handguns in Arkansas has failed to clear a House panel.

The House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday voted 9-10 against the measure, which was amended to allow open carry only in unincorporated areas instead of the entire state. It also would protect concealed carry permit-holders who inadvertently display their weapons.

Republican Rep. Sue Scott of Rogers, the bill's sponsor, said she made the changes to attract more support. Rogers said she would make additional technical changes to the bill to address concerns raised by lawmakers.

Arkansas State Police Director Stan Witt said Tuesday he was concerned allowing open carry would threaten officer safety.

Republican House Speaker Davy Carter and Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe have said they're opposed to allowing open carry.

On Friday, Lt. Gov. Mark Darr signed legislation to make secret the list of concealed carry permit-holders.

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Displaying 1 - 2 of 2 total comments

Jackabbott says... February 26, 2013 at 10:04 a.m.

Let's also bring back Wyatt Earp, Matt Dillion, Rooster Cogburn and hanging Judge Parker to make it an even match.

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llllllll says... February 26, 2013 at 12:35 p.m.

I really don't know how it would work out but I bet that the bad guys planning to rob, say, a convenience store, muight just turn around and leave if they saw the clerk with a 40 cal se;mi auto strappep on. Crime deterred with no shots fired. Just a thought.

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