Governor Mary Fallin has signed Senate Bill 1733 into law today. The bill permits those who are licensed, or already have been licensed, to carry a firearm under the Oklahoma Self Defense Act to openly carry a weapon or conceal it. It also allows property owners to openly carry a firearm on their property without a concealed carry permit for the purpose of self defense.
Applicants must take a firearms safety and training course and submit to a background check by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation in order to receive a license under the Oklahoma Self Defense Act. Those convicted of felonies and certain misdemeanors may not receive a handgun license.
Oklahoma now joins Utah, North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Indiana, Tennessee, Georgia, Mississippi, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Hawaii and Massachusetts as a "licensed open carry" state.
"As a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and a gun owner myself, I'm happy to sign this bill into law and grant law-abiding citizens the ability to openly carry firearms," Fallin said. "Senate Bill 1733 sends a strong message that Oklahoma values the rights of its citizens to defend themselves, their family and their property. It does so in a responsible way, by requiring those citizens who choose to ‘open carry' to undergo both firearms training and a background check."
Businesses may continue to prohibit firearms to be carried on their premises. The new law also prohibits carrying firearms on properties owned or leased by the city, state or federal government, at corrections facilities, in schools or college campuses, liquor stores and at sports arenas during sporting events.
Any person who intentionally or knowingly carries on his or her person any weapon in violation of the law shall, upon conviction, be guilty of a felony punishable by a fine not to exceed One Thousand Dollars or imprisonment in the custody of the Department of Corrections for a period not to exceed two years, or by both such fine and imprisonment. They shall also have the license revoked by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation after a hearing and determination that the person is in violation of the law.
Any person in this state who carries or wears any deadly weapons or dangerous instrument whatsoever with the intent or for the avowed purpose of unlawfully injuring another person, upon conviction, shall be guilty of a felony punishable by a fine not exceeding $5,000.00, by imprisonment in the custody of the Department of Corrections for a period not exceeding two years, or by both such fine and imprisonment. The mere possession of such a weapon or dangerous instrument, without more, however, shall not be sufficient to establish intent. If convicted under this section the person shall have the license permanently revoked and shall be liable for an administrative fine of$1,000.00 upon a hearing and determination by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.
The law will become effective on November 1 2012.
The bill was sponsored by Senator Anthony Sykes and Representative Jeff Hickman.
“I want to thank Senator Sykes and Representative Hickman, as well as the entire Legislature, for their commitment to protecting the Second Amendment rights of Oklahomans,” Fallin said.