Confusion Over Mississippi Gun Law

(DeSoto County, MS) Monte Dabbs says customers at his gun shop have been talking about Mississippi’s new gun law, but they’re not exactly rushing in to buy new guns.

”Business has been good, but not, I don’t think, due to this new law,” Dabbs said.

The law, which was to have taken effect July 1st, makes it legal for anyone to openly carry a gun with no special permit.

But late Friday, a Hinds County Circuit judge stopped the law from taking effect.

”There’s still a little confusion over where we are right now,” said DeSoto District Attorney John Champion, who, at first glance, believed the judge’s ruling might not have an effect statewide.

After a closer look, Champion thinks it does.

”Right now, I’m of the opinion that, after reviewing the order this morning, that the temporary injunction is statewide,” he said.

How? Because the judge’s ruling refers to people statewide, and Hinds Circuit Court does have jurisdiction over lawsuits against Mississippi government.

Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood wants answers too. He’s filed for an emergency hearing before the State Supreme Court to get clarification.

Until then, most prosecutors, like Hood and Champion, are urging people to heed the injunction, until the Supreme Court can clear it up.

“State holidays are Thursday and Friday, so I’d like to think at least by Wednesday we’ll have an answer at least temporarily,” Hood said.

Dabbs says gun owners will be watching.

“A firearm has become something more than something to hunt with,” he said. “It’s something, with the crime rate the way it is, something they want to protect their-self with.”

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