BREAKING: Florida Carry Inc. sues FSU, its president and police chief for preemption violation

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Lee’s note: Florida Carry Inc. has sued Florida State University, the college president and the campus police chief for violating the state preemption law, which mandates that only the state legislature can regulate arms.

Florida Carry Inc. is alleging in the civil suit that even though John Thrasher, President of Florida State University and FSU Police Chief David Perry “are well aware of the law and the binding decision of the court, they have chosen to continue illegally prohibiting the possession of firearms in people’s private vehicles.”

Here’s the press release:

September 8th, 2015

Tallahassee, Florida – In 2014 then-Senator Thrasher admonished Florida Carry during a legislative committee hearing for supporting a pro-Second Amendment bill that corrected an unconstitutional infringement on the right to bear arms rather than going to the FCILogocourts and bringing a lawsuit.

Today Florida Carry is taking his advice.

Florida Carry, Inc. joins FSU graduate student Bekah Hargrove of Florida Students for Concealed Carry in a lawsuit filed today seeking an emergency injunction against John Thrasher, now President of Florida State University, the university, and FSU Police Chief David Perry.

In 2013 the Florida First District Court of Appeals made it crystal clear, in the case of Florida Carry v. UNF, that Universities have no authority to regulate the lawful possession of firearms that are properly stored in private vehicles on campus. Despite the fact that FSU and President Thrasher are well aware of the law and the binding decision of the court, they have chosen to continue illegally prohibiting the possession of firearms in people’s private vehicles.

They even go so far as to use their own police force to publicly threaten criminal enforcement of their unlawful regulations.
A recent release published by the FSU Police Department instructs that: “Weapons and/or firearms are not permitted to be stored in a vehicle on the FSU campus at any time, including game days.”(Emphasis in original)

The “FSU Game Day Plan 2015 – New Info” publication goes on to flout the laws of Florida by stating that: “Weapons are prohibited on the Florida State University Campus at all times including football games. Fan may not store firearms or other weapons in their vehicles parked on campus while attending the game. Possession of a firearm or weapon on the FSU campus constitutes a felony and violators are subject to arrest pursuant to Florida Statute 790.115.

The FSU Student Code of Conduct also attempts to enforce these illegal policies by prohibiting all “On-campus possession or use of firearms…” without an exception for firearm possession in a private vehicle and even “Off-campus… or unauthorized possession or use of firearms…

“It has a chilling effect on the right to bear arms when law abiding

Sean Caranna, executive director Florida Carry, Inc.

Sean Caranna, executive director Florida Carry, Inc.

gun owners are lied to by public officials, especially ones who control their own police forces, and are told that they will be breaking a law by the possession of their legal firearms,” said Sean Caranna, Executive Director of Florida Carry, Inc. “These publications are a blatant attempt by FSU President Thrasher, and his anti-Second Amendment employees, to enforce illegal gun control with the threat of throwing good people in jail for the lawful exercise of their right to bear arms. We demand that public officials follow the law and will stand for nothing less.”

About: Florida Carry, Inc. is a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots organization dedicated to advancing the fundamental civil right of all Floridians to keep and bear arms for self-defense as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I Section 8 of the Florida Constitution. Florida Carry, Inc. was organized by a group of Florida second amendment advocates in order to better coordinate activities, effectively lobby the state legislature, and provide a legal entity capable of filing suit to demand compliance with state and federal law. Florida Carry stands only to represent our members and the over 7 million gun owners of Florida. We are not beholden to any national organization’s agenda that may compromise that mission. Florida Carry works tirelessly toward repealing and striking down ill-conceived gun control laws that have been proven to provide safe havens to criminals and be deadly to law abiding citizens.

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About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1777 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

6 Comments

  1. Congratulations to Florida Carry Inc. for standing up to the elitist snobbery of those who think that they may enforce their personal political views as though it is “the law”. Such bellicose behavior by public officials is completely unacceptable and deserves nothing but contempt by free citizens everywhere.

    I find it interesting that they are so smug that they believe that violating their personal feelings is a felony. It also is irony of the highest order that they will use the force of arms to prohibit the lawful carry of arms by citizens. Their comeuppance will not come too soon.

    Keep up the good work.

  2. There’s so many nonprofits out there, including a few pro-gun groups, that make you wonder what they do with donations and members’ dues. Not so with Florida Carry, Inc. These guys are active! And they really look out for their members.

  3. John Thrasher is a really good man and great president for FSU. That being said, he is wrong on this issue. Not only should properly licensed gun owners be allowed to carry guns for their personal protection in their autos, they should also be allowed to carry on their person. Haven’t we had a rash of incidents on campus involving would be rapists and muggers. A pistol in the hands of a trained and licensed concealed carry student is the best deterrent to personal attacks.

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