Attorney offers tips for Kentucky gun owners as permitless concealed carry law goes into effect
Several laws passed during the 2019 legislative session take effect today, including a change allowing gun owners to carry a concealed firearm without needing a permit.
The NRA-backed Senate Bill 150 made it legal for anyone 21 or over who can legally buy a firearm to also be able to conceal it and carry it in public. It is already legal in Kentucky to carry a gun openly.
Kentucky State Police say if gun owners do not take training, it is now their own responsibility to learn how gun laws will apply to them.
If an interaction with police occurs, criminal defense attorney Abe Mashni has some advice.
"If you are lawfully carrying a firearm, [it's] probably not a bad idea to tell them that you are carrying it just to calm the fears and smooth those over. If you are giving them that courtesy of letting them know, they might see it later on, so it might just help calm the situation," said Mashni.
Mashni also says the law should result in a reduction in charges for carrying a gun, both on a person and in a glove compartment.
Troopers say the new law shouldn't have an effect on the way they interact with the public because they already have to treat every situation as if someone might be armed until they know otherwise.
Firearms are still not permitted in many schools, courthouses, daycare facilities, prisons or jails. Private businesses will make their own decision about whether to allow weapons on their property.
Gun owners can still get a concealed carry permit if they choose, which could be helpful if an owner wants to take their gun outside of Kentucky.