Guns

Local
3:05 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

"Guns Everywhere" Law an Added Cost to City

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

The so-called “Guns Everywhere” bill went into effect this week.

It allows Georgians with a concealed carry permit to bring firearms into churches, libraries, restaurants and government buildings.

Early on, the law is already proving to be an added expense for Atlanta taxpayers.

City of Atlanta spokesman Carlos Campos confirms Mayor Kasim Reed is spending taxpayer money for private security at 24 city recreation centers.

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Local
6:15 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Georgia's New Gun Law Is In Effect

Credit Robert Aaron/WABE

Georgia's revised gun law, allowing guns to be carried in many places where they were previously prohibited, went into effect today.  It allows guns to be carried in airports, government buildings, bars, restaurants and even churches -- if the particular church agrees to "opt in" and allow guns.

Below is an infographic showing some of the changes and provisions in the new law. For more detailed discussions, we've assembled a compilation our earlier articles.

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Local
6:00 am
Mon June 30, 2014

New Gun Law Takes Effect Tuesday

Credit Courtesy: TSA

Starting tomorrow, the law opponents have referred to as the “guns everywhere” bill goes into effect. Among other things, the law allows permitted gun holders to carry firearms in bars, some churches and government buildings without security.

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Features
8:39 am
Wed June 11, 2014

1960s Freedom Movement in South Revisited

Charles E. Cobb Jr.
Credit John Abromowski / Brown University

It's been 50 years since "Freedom Summer" and the drive to register black voters across Mississippi.  The events and forces that shaped that movement are recounted in a new book by former civil rights organizer and veteran journalist Charles E. Cobb Jr., entitled, "This Nonviolent Stuff'll Get You Killed--How Guns Made the Civil Rights Movement Possible" (Basic Books, 2014).  Recently, the author spoke with WABE's Steve Goss... 

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Local
11:49 am
Mon June 2, 2014

Gun Rights Group Says Georgians Can Soon Carry Guns on School Campuses

A Georgia gun rights group says those with conceal carry permits can soon legally take their weapons into school safety zones as a result of a bill recently signed by Governor Nathan Deal. But last week, Attorney General Sam Olens and Governor Deal said another gun bill overrides provisions in that law that would allow for campus carry.

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Local
5:00 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Cities and Counties Examine New Security Measures After Gun Bill Signing

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Some local cities and counties are exploring whether to add metal detectors or police officers to government buildings without security. The effort comes after Governor Nathan Deal recently signed a bill allowing those with concealed weapons permits to carry guns into unsecured government buildings.

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Local
3:53 pm
Thu May 1, 2014

Atlanta's Episcopal Bishop, Responding to New State Law, Bans Guns in Parish Churches

Bishop Rob Wright of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta
Credit Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta

Georgia’s new gun law, HB 60, allows permit holders to carry concealed weapons into a church—but only if the church specifically allows it.  Some local religious leaders who oppose the law, however, are taking no chances.

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Local
5:58 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Opponents Speak Out Against Gun Bill Signing

Piyali Cole, Georgia Chapter Leader of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and other supporters speak in opposition to the signing of HB 60
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Today, Governor Nathan Deal signed a sweeping bill to expand gun rights in Georgia. Opponents have dubbed it the “guns everywhere bill” and protested the signing during a press conference held at a church near the Georgia Capitol.

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Politics
3:38 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Deal Signs Controversial Gun Bill

Gov. Nathan Deal Wednesday in Ellijay.
Credit Jonathan Shapiro/WABE

Gov. Nathan Deal Wednesday signed into law a sweeping gun bill attracting national attention.

House Speaker David Ralston introduced Deal at the bill signing ceremony in Ellijay. He did so before a friendly crowd of at least 200, several of whom were openly carrying.

“This is the apple capitol of Georgia and, yes, it’s a community where we cling to religion and guns,” said Ralston.

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Politics
6:00 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Kingston Reportedly Opposed To CDC Gun Violence Research

Georgia Republican U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston reportedly opposes a plan to fund gun violence research, a reversal of the Savannah congressman’s stance after the shootings at Sandy Hook.

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Local
6:20 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Gun Group Argues "Stand Your Ground" Lawsuit Invalid Due To Improper Procedure

Rev. Jesse Jackson, founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, speaks during a press conference to announce it planned to file a lawsuit challenging Georgia's "stand your ground" law.
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Will a lawsuit filed by the Rainbow Push Coalition and others challenging Georgia’s so called “Stand Your Ground” law be dismissed over a technicality?

Last month, a group hoping to intervene in the case asked a federal judge to dismiss it because it claimed Georgia’s Attorney General and Governor Nathan Deal were never served with the lawsuit. But attorneys filing the lawsuit responded this week and said they attempted to serve both state officials.

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Politics
5:38 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

A Summary Of What's In Georgia's New Gun Law

A summary of the provisions of Georgia's new gun law, which is awaiting Gov. Deal's signature.
Credit Robert Aaron, WABE

Web Exclusive.

We have put together a summary of the key provisions of the new gun law that was passed in the waning hours of this year's General Assembly and which is now awaiting Gov. Deal's signature. The summary appears below as an image.

This is not an exhaustive summary of the bill's contents, and we are not lawyers. For more information and for the exact wording, please check the full text of the bill (HB 60) as passed by the Legislature (PDF).

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Politics
10:52 am
Thu March 27, 2014

Associations Raise Concerns About Gun Bill on Gov. Deal's Desk

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

The Georgia Municipal Association says a gun bill passed by state lawmakers could be costly for a number of Georgia cities. The Association is also worried the bill could leave cities open to lawsuits. The bill is also drawing some concern from law enforcement officials.

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Politics
6:13 am
Fri March 21, 2014

Bill Easing Gun Restrictions Heads to Governor Deal

Lawmakers celebrate the end of the 2014 legislative session. The gun bill was one of the bills to gain final passage on day 40.
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Unlike last year, House and Senate lawmakers this year reached a deal on legislation to expand gun rights in places like bars, churches, and some government buildings.  The bill now goes to Governor Deal’s desk.

The Georgia House agreed with the Senate Version of the bill during the last hour of legislative session. That led to this announcement by Senator Bill Heath:

“Mr. President I believe that the House has finally come along in representing Georgia’s gun owners and protecting themselves.”

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Local
5:00 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Gun Control Advocates Decry Revamped House Gun Bill

The Rev. Raphael Warnock of Ebenezer Baptist Church says faith leaders an adamantly against efforts to expand carry areas to churches Wednesday at Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta.
Credit Michell Eloy

Gun control advocates Wednesday rallied against legislative efforts to expand areas where people can carry firearms one day after the Georgia House of Representatives attempted to force the hand of the Senate on controversial gun legislation.  

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Politics
4:58 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Ga. House Tries To Force Vote On Gun Bill

HB 875 co-sponsor and Public Safety Chair Alan Powell, R-Hartwell.

The state House is trying to force the hand of their Senate colleagues on sweeping gun legislation.

In a surprise move Tuesday, the House removed a provision that would have reduced the penalty for gun permit holders if caught carrying on a college campus. Then, it attached that bill to a separate piece of legislation and sent it to the Senate for an immediate floor vote.

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Politics
4:09 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

House Approves Bill Easing Gun Restrictions in Bars, Churches, and Schools

State Rep. Dustin Hightower, R-Carrollton.
Credit Ga. House of Reps.

The Georgia House approved a controversial bill aimed at easing gun restrictions in a wide range of places, including bars, churches, college campuses, and Hartsfield Airport.

On the House floor, Rep. Dustin Hightower, R-Carrollton, said the bill is about basic constitutional rights. 

“We get asked over and over why do we constantly talk about gun rights and the Second Amendment and my answer is simple - because there are others who are constantly trying to take our rights away,” said Hightower.

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Politics
7:40 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Despite Past Issues, New Gun Bill Loosens Restrictions on College Campuses

HB 875 sponsor Rick Jasperse (right) with public safety committee chair and bill co-sponsor Alan Powell (center).

A bill seeking to loosen gun carry rules in Georgia's bars, churches, and college campuses cleared a House committee Thursday.

After two days of packed hearings and emotional testimony, the Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee voted in favor of House Bill 875. It would expand gun carry areas to bars, churches, and some government buildings. 

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Politics
6:30 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Rep. Cooke Calls for Allowing Firefighters to be Armed

One Georgia politicians believes firefighters should have the right to carry firearms.
Credit Rose Scott / WABE News

State Rep. Kevin Cooke (R-Carrollton) has introduced a bill that calls for allowing Georgia firefighters to carry guns on the job.

This comes less than a year after an emergency incident where a Gwinnett County man called the fire department claiming to have a heart attack.

Shortly after five firefighters entered the house, the caller held them hostage at gunpoint.

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Politics
3:53 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

New Gun Bill Won't Include Campus Carry

House Speaker David Ralston
Credit Ga. House of Reps.

State House Republicans are expected to introduce new gun legislation Monday, just days after the legislature's attorneys dealt a major blow to backers of expanding gun carry areas to state colleges and universities.

House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, insists the new bill will expand gun rights - it just won’t include campus carry.  

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Politics
3:34 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Legislative Lawyers: Campus Carry 'Opt In' Proposal 'Unconstitutional'

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

A controversial bill that would expand the list of areas where people with permits can carry guns has hit a major snag in the state General Assembly after the legislature’s lawyers said a key proposal could be unconstitutional.

The problem lies in the “opt in” measure, which would allow college presidents to decide whether permit holders could carry weapons on campus.

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Local
5:00 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Gainesville School Board Approves Long-Range Rifles for School Resource Officers

This is the type of long-range rifle Gainesville school resource officers will carry.
Credit Colt Defense LLC

The Gainesville School Board approved a plan Monday that will allow school resource officers at three of its schools to access long-range rifles.

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Local
3:37 pm
Mon December 16, 2013

Atlanta Leaders Organize Gun Buyback Inititiative As State Pols Look To Ease Restrictions

Gun buyback programs have been used by cities all over the country, such as this gun buyback program in Oakland, California, in 2012.
Credit flickr.com/photos/youthradio/8282036197

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and faith leaders are joining the NAACP in a gun buyback initiative.

“We decided to take action. More than just pray for it and go to sleep," said Rev. R.L. White, Jr., president of the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP. 

At a Monday press conference at Atlanta City Hall, Brown condemned what he called America’s culture of violence and called for fewer guns on the streets.

“When we first initiated this buyback effort, it was out of necessity, not politics,” said Brown.

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Local
5:00 am
Thu November 7, 2013

Gun Rights Group Seeks to Intervene in 'Stand Your Ground' Lawsuit

Credit GeorgiaCarry.Org

A Georgia group that advocates for the rights of gun owners wants to put a stop to a lawsuit challenging Georgia’s "Stand Your Ground" law. The lawsuit was just filed by the Georgia Push Coalition and two other plaintiffs.

GeorgiaCarry.Org filed a motion on Tuesday asking a federal judge to allow the organization to participate in the lawsuit. The gun rights group also filed another motion asking for the lawsuit to be dismissed Jerry Henry is executive director of GeorgiaCarry.Org.

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Atlanta Public Schools
3:49 pm
Wed August 21, 2013

Female Student Arrested For Carrying Gun At New Schools at Carver

A 15-year-old female student at the New Schools at Carver was arrested for having a handgun in her purse, which she said she was holding for another student.
Credit Google Street Views

Officials with the Atlanta Public Schools and the Atlanta Police Department say a 15-year old female student was arrested on Tuesday at the New Schools at Carver High located in south Atlanta.

The student was in possession of a gun. And it was a loaded gun, says APD major Keith Meadows.

“One of our school resources officers actually received an anonymous tip from a student at the school that another female was actually carrying a handgun in her purse."

Major Meadows is in charge of APS’ school detectives unit.

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Local
5:00 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Hartsfield-Jackson Takes Steps to Eliminate Guns in Carry-On Luggage

Airport officials display picture of one of the guns confiscated at security checkpoints.
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is discouraging passengers from bringing guns in their carry-on luggage. The effort comes as the airport is on track to have the most guns confiscated at security checkpoints in the nation for the second year in a row.

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Local
8:55 am
Thu August 1, 2013

Douglas County To Lift Ban on Guns in Parks

Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

Douglas County is planning to change an ordinance to allow firearms in its public parks.

The County says it’s making the change to comply with state law.

Tom Worthan is Douglas County’s Commission Chairman. He’s a member of the NRA, but disagrees with having guns in parks.

“I support the second amendment. I just think we’re going to extremes on certain issues within the  firearms, and I just want to make sure that our children are safe in our parks."

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Local
6:11 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Local Gun Control Activists Seek Support from Georgia Congressmen

Representatives Phil Gingrey and Tom Price were visited by local representatives of Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

Local gun control activists are calling on Georgia’s U.S. representatives to support a measure expanding background checks for gun buyers.

Under the bipartisan House bill, those purchasing firearms at gun shows, online or through newspaper ads would have to undergo background checks.

Supporters say the step is needed to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and those with serious mental illness. But those opposing it argue it violates second amendment and cite concerns over privacy rights. 

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Local
4:46 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Brady Campaign Sues Georgia Town over Mandatory Gun Law

Nelson City Council
Credit City of Nelson, GA

NELSON, Ga. (AP) — A group that supports gun control is suing a north Georgia town that passed a law requiring gun ownership.

The Washington-based Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against the town of Nelson.

The group claims the law is unconstitutional. It contends the Second Amendment doesn't require anyone to have a gun.

City leaders passed an ordinance April 1 requiring every head of household to have a gun and ammunition, but there are many exceptions.

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Local
4:15 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

NAACP Launches Gun Buyback Effort

Reverend R.L. White, Atlanta NAACP President, announces plans to begin a community-wide effort to buy back guns.
Credit Michelle Wirth/WABE News

The Atlanta Branch of the NAACP is hoping to partner with other local organizations to start a gun buyback program. The group says it’s starting the program because of federal inaction when it comes to gun control.

The program is called Project Rescue Atlanta and is aimed at preventing gun violence and other crime. Atlanta NAACP president Reverend R.L. White says the local effort is needed after  legislation to expand background checks for gun purchases recently failed in the U.S. Senate.

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