Judge to Hear Arguments on Open-Carry Gun Law

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Jackson, Miss. A Hinds County circuit judge will hear arguments about whether to extend his temporary block on a Mississippi open-carry gun law. Judge Winston Kidd is conducting a hearing Monday.

Earlier this year, legislators passed and Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 2, which says adults don't need a state-issued permit to carry a gun that's not concealed.

Supporters say this reinforces the right to bear arms that's in the Mississippi Constitution.

Kidd issued an order June 28 to temporarily block the bill from becoming law July 1.

Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith and others who sued to block the measure say it could put law enforcement officers and others in danger if people are carrying guns with no training.

However, sheriffs in Lauderdale and Clarke counties have previously said the restraining order has no impact in their counties anyway.

Lauderdale County Sheriff Billy Sollie said after meeting with his legal advisors, he concluded that people in his county are allowed to carry weapons without a permit, as long as they are not concealed. The sheriff has banned weapons inside the Lauderdale County Courthouse, Courthouse Annex, and the Lauderdale County Detention Facility.

Clarke County Sheriff Todd Kemp also said the open-carry law is also in effect in his county.