Confusion Over Open Carry Laws in Arkansas

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GREENBRIER, Ark – A YouTube video is raising questions about the confusion over open carry. 

A man was pulled over in May. He was never arrested but given a citation for having expired tags and carrying a weapon. 

But, just days ago, he was found “not guilty” for the gun charge. 

This was originally posted by the organization called “Conduit News.” 

It’s a site, that says, it’s for conservative news and politics.

The 22-minute video shows body cam video that lays out exactly what happened between him and the officers.

In the video, the officers say he was getting the bullets out of his gun as they approach the car. 

An officer picks up the gun and Ward complies. At one point, Ward asks the officers about open carry. 

Eventually, he was cited for carrying a weapon. 

In a courtroom this week, he was found “not guilty.” His attorney says it was because he was on a “journey.” 

“If you are open carrying and you have no unlawful purpose or intent, moving about is sufficient to qualify as a journey,” St. Rep. Charlie Collins, (R) Fayetteville said. 

Lawmakers like Representatives Charlie Collins and Bob Ballinger say the state code when it comes to open carry is black and white. 

“It’s not because the law is gray, the law is pretty cut and dry,” St. Rep. Bob Ballinger, (R) Berryville said. 

Ballinger says the confusion comes from officers enforcing exactly how the law is written.  

“In spite of their tough job, they need to be held accountable to do what they are supposed to do,” Ballinger said. 

Ward says he’s glad to have his gun back so he can continue to protect his family.

“We believe in the right to protect ourselves, protect our family, and if need be, to protect our community,” said Ward. 

We reached out to the Greenbrier Police Chief today. He was out of the office and couldn’t reply. 

A spokesperson for Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge sent the opinion that released in 2015.

Read the opinion HERE  

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