The following is a video transcript.
Hello, U.S. LawShield members. It’s Wilkes Ellsworth, your Independent Program Attorney for Ohio. I want to take this opportunity to quickly discuss the idea of carrying your firearm while trick-or-treating during the Halloween festivities this year. While there isn’t going to be any real change to the laws of carrying a firearm in Ohio simply because it’s Halloween, I never miss an opportunity to touch base with you, the members, to refresh your memory so that you can avoid problems during what should be a really fun time.
After all, you can never be too prepared in our world today, as no function, event, or place seems to be free of danger these days, including trick-or-treating in the neighborhood.
Open Carry State
Ohio is an open carry state and there are no rules forbidding firearm carry during Halloween. You certainly can still carry your concealed firearm with a permit if you have your CCW license to do so, or open carry if you do not have a license. No township, municipality, or city can infringe upon these rights simply because trick-or-treating is a children’s activity. Now, remember, all the same rules apply, and you must not use or brandish your weapon in a manner unwarranted by the situation. You must still have that all-important bonafide belief that you’re going to suffer potential death or great bodily harm before you use your weapon.
Stay Safe and Within the Law
You can protect yourself and others just as if it was any other day. I remember when my kids were still of an age to take part in trick-or-treating activities. Some of their fun took place in buildings or at schools, or maybe at the parks or in local businesses. Be aware of your surroundings. You may be prohibited from taking your gun into some of these places.
For instance, a city building at the local park, or maybe it’s a school function where all the kids are in their costumes and doing their show. The same rules apply for these prohibited places. Don’t forget that private businesses can restrict your carry even though you have a license to carry a concealed firearm. So, you must be careful if store owners taking part in a Halloween event have “no guns” signs posted.
On a side note, remember that children are obviously going to be out and about while trick-or-treating, so take extra precautions when carrying. Common sense and a grasp of the laws that you already know, will make for a safe and fun trick-or-treating experience for everyone.
If you have any questions about this topic, or any other, of course, please do not hesitate to call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to me. I am always available to answer your questions.