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Open Carry in a Federal Building or Posted No Carry Business – Arizona

Recently, I received a question on another CCW site that I work with. I thought it was a good question and decided to post the question and answer here as it is very relevant to general AZ CCW information.Question: I have been told at two places I can’t open carry. Whole Foods Market – which has a clearly visible sign saying “No Firearms” or it may be weapons – but its on a moving door. At the Post Office, where I was told I can’t because its a federal building. I checked out opencarry.org, and went off the fact that they said there was no restrictions on open carry. Can you help me here? If you have a reference to a law code, that’d be great. I’d love to quote it next time I’m approached. Thanks!Doug Little’s Answer: Regarding your questions, Arizona is an open carry state. You can openly carry a firearm anywhere it is legal for you to carry a firearm. You might not want to exercise this right for a number of reasons, but more on that in a minute. Places that you CANNOT legally carry a firearm either openly or concealed, assuming that you have an AZ CCW Permit, are basically the following:*Federal Office Buildings (including Post Offices)*State Office Buildings*Private property that has either a sign prohibiting weapons/firearms or you have been told by the owner or representative of that private property that you cannot bring a firearm on the premises*Any establishment that sells alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises*Airports (inside the security checkpoint)*School grounds (some limited exceptions)*National parks*Game preserves*Some Indian Reservations (you need to check with each tribe as to whether they recognize the AZ CCW permit.)*Nuclear or Hydro-electric generating stations*Correctional facilities*Polling places on election day*Military bases*Wherever federal, state or local laws prohibit weaponsThis is a pretty complete list but there may be one or two others that I am not thinking of off the top of my head. I’d be pretty careful about trusting sites like OpenCarry.org or Packing.org. While they are pretty good, they are not always complete and AZ holds you responsible for knowing the law. You can get the specifics by reading the Arizona Revised Statutes 13-3102 “Misconduct involving weapons”.As far as open carry as a practice, I honestly don’t recommend it for several reasons. First, it makes you the first target if criminals are about to commit a crime that involves armed violence. You won’t have the option of laying low and trying to figure a way out. Second, it eliminates any tactical advantage from the element of surprise if something bad goes down. Third, it makes some people very nervous. When people see you are armed they may treat you differently (not necessarily in a good way). I have heard of people calling the cops or reporting you to management in a store and saying you were doing things you might not have been doing. Best case you might be asked to leave, worst case you might end up arrested. I am a big fan of ‘concealed’ carry for the reasons above. If no one knows you have a firearm, none of the disadvantages above would apply.

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