The legality of carrying a gun on a college campus has been a subject of recent heated debate in Florida. In 2015, Florida Sen. Greg Evers and Rep. Greg Steube sponsored SB 68, or the Campus Carry Bill, which would allow students and visitors with concealed weapons permits to carry weapons on Florida campuses. An identical bill passed the Florida House, but the bill died in a Senate committee in March 2016.
For the time being, Florida’s ban on carrying a weapon on its campuses still stands. And the state imposes penalties upon anyone it convicts of carrying a gun on a school campus.
What are the penalties for carrying a gun on campus grounds?
Florida Statutes 1001.64(5) and 1001.706(7)(b) grant Florida College System institution boards of trustees (both community colleges and state colleges) and the Board of Governors the right to regulate various activities and issues, including carrying firearms.
Above and beyond that, the statutes are clear on the prohibition of guns on college campuses and other schools (i.e., elementary, middle, high school) grounds. Florida Statute 790.06(12)(a) states, “A license issued under this section does not authorize any person to openly carry a handgun or carry a concealed weapon or firearm into…any school, college, or professional athletic event not related to firearms [or] any elementary or secondary school facility or administration building.”
Violating this statute and carrying a gun on a college campus is a second-degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to:
- $500 fine
- 60 days in jail
- Any administrative penalties the college wishes to impose if the defendant is a student
Can I keep my gun in my vehicle on campus?
Yes, provided you are rightfully permitted to carry a gun. Florida Statute § 790.06(12)(b) reads: “A person licensed under this section shall not be prohibited from carrying or storing a firearm in a vehicle for lawful purposes.”
How do I defend against campus carry charges?
If you have been charged with a gun-related crime on a college campus in Florida, call the defense attorneys at Goldman Wetzel as soon as possible. We can help you defend against the charges and represent your best interests in court.
Contact us at 727-828-3900 to speak to one of our gun crime defense attorneys today.