A bill being considered in the Ohio legislature would reform the penalties for someone carrying a concealed handgun in currently designated “gun free” zones. Penalties under existing law are extreme.
A person who inadvertently enters such a prohibited zone in Ohio is subject to a felony charge, risking a maximum penalty of 12 months in prison and a $2,500 fine. A felony conviction removes the right to vote and the right to own firearms.
But that could change if a new bill under consideration is enacted. From wcbe.org:
The Republican-sponsored bill would let concealed carry license holders take their guns into gun-free zones including restaurants, schools and courthouses as long as they’re not caught. If they are caught and if they leave immediately they won’t face criminal charges.
Luke Entelis, with Everytown for Gun Safety, says this would put the burden on business owners and school employees to confront the gun owner.
C)(1) No person who has a valid license to carry a concealed handgun or who is a qualified military member and is discovered carrying a concealed handgun onto land or premises in violation of a sign posted pursuant to division (C)(3)(a) of section 2923.126 of the Revised Code or in violation of section 2923.12, 2923.121, 2923.122, or 2923.123 of the Revised Code shall do either of the following:
(a) Refuse or fail to leave the land or premises upon being requested to do so by the owner, lessee, or person in control of the land or premises or by the individual’s agent or employee;
(b) Return within thirty days to the same land or premises while knowingly in possession of a firearm in violation of a sign posted pursuant to division (C)(3)(a) of section 2923.126 of the Revised Code or in violation of section 2923.12, 2923.121, 2923.122, or 2923.123 of the Revised Code.