CCL Reciprocity: Warning to those who travel and carry
Our friends at the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association have been diligently working to expose the threat the Federal Gun Free School Zone statute poses to millions of law-abiding concealed carry license holders who exercise the reciprocity provisions between states for concealed carry licenses.
If you carry concealed in states other than the one that ISSUED your concealed carry license be aware you are exposing yourself to a federal felony. See the following letter dated July 25, 2013 from the US Department of Justice. This letter was originally received and published by the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association:
To summarize this letter:
The Federal Gun Free School Zone Act makes it a felony to possess a firearm within 1000 feet of the edge of school property. Browsing maps of populated areas, one would observe that these school zones are virtually impossible to avoid when traveling any distance unless you are in a rural area. Private property is exempt from the Federal GFSZ act. The Federat GFSZA also has an exception allowing carry of a firearm by people who are "licensed to do so by the State in which the school zone is located".
According to the US Department of Justice letter, cited above, carrying concealed under reciprocity provisions does NOT meet the exception cited in the Federal GFSZA. In other words, if you use your Wisconsin Concealed Carry License to carry in another state you are NOT exempted from the Federal GFSZA while you carry in that state.
For this reason, Wisconsin Carry strongly recommends people who frequently carry concealed in other states obtain a non-resident permit issued by the state they carry in to insulate themselves from potential federal felony charges.
In addition, you should also be aware the Federal GFSZA makes it unlawful to discharge a firearm within a "school zone". Federal law makes NO exception for lawful discharge of a firearm. (It only makes an exception for on-duty law-enforcement officers).
People should be aware that discharging a firearm EVEN in self-defense within a school zone, even a school zone in a state you are lawfully licensed to carry, is a crime. Conviction of this crime would result in being a "prohibited person". With the exception of receiving a presidential pardon, you would lose your right to keep and bear arms for life.
Wisconsin Carry will continue to provide updates as we work with legislators and other state-based gun organizations to expose the danger of the Federal GFSZA to law-abiding carriers as we also work to change or alter this law.