Saturday

Gun Rights Law Changes in Ohio

Whether you like guns or not, Ohio has a new self defense law and it's clear that guns are king.

The new gun rights law has been dubbed "the Castle Doctrine" after the notion that a home is a man's (or woman's) castle and you have the absolute right to defend it. The new law took effect September 9, 2008 and it's a game-changer.

New provisions:

- a homeowner who uses deadly force against an intruder is presumed innocent

- homeowners do not have to retreat and can use force greater than what they are confronted with (think: they got a knife? you can use your gun)

- the law applies to your motor vehicle as well as your home

- an owner who rightfully uses self-defense is immune to civil lawsuits from intruders or their families

- a handgun permit holder can pick up and drop off a child in a school safety zone, where firearms are generally prohibited

- a loaded handgun can be transported in a vehicle's unlocked glove compartment or center console

- a landlord cannot evict a permit-carrying tenant for keeping a firearm on the rented premises

- prosecutors can still criminally charge the owner if it's proven that illegal activity was going on in the home or vehicle at the time of the use of force

No matter what you may think of firearms, it's clear that Ohio's new self defense law, which some are also calling the "Gun Rights" law, is turning back the clock to the days of the Wild West.

Some may say it only means that you have the right to defend your home, and that concept is understandable, but has the Ohio legislature gone a bit too far? That all depends on whether you have a streak of "Dirty Harry" in your mentality, I suppose.

Most folks have no problem with the idea of self defense and rightfully so, but packing heat in a school yard is just a tad too much for those same folks. After all, if you can't carry a concealed Glock pistol inside the state capital building, how come you can carry it in the schoolyard?

Maybe this is one law that proves the strength of the NRA in the Ohio statehouse?

Burdge Law Office

Helping consumers protect themselves since 1978 (without using guns to do so)