10 Investigates: Ignoring private business' "no guns allowed" sign is against rules, but not the law

11:38 PM, Jan 14, 2014   |    comments
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TAMPA, Florida - Retired Tampa Police officer Curtis Reeves broke the rules of the Cobb Grove 16 Theatre on Monday by bringing a gun into the building.  

But he wasn't breaking Florida's concealed weapons permit law.

Private businesses such as movie theaters, theme parks, and restaurants are allowed to refuse service to patrons carrying guns.  And signs outside the establishment often indicate anyone in possession of a gun - even if he or she has a concealed weapons permit - will be thrown out.

But in the eyes of the law, breaking a movie theater's policy on gun possession is no different than breaking its policy on "no outside food or drink."  While it may be against the rules, it's not illegal.

There are a number of places concealed weapons permit-holders are not allowed to ever bring weapons (FSS 790.06).  They include bars, sporting events, courthouses, and schools.

Florida has more than 1 million concealed weapons permit-holders, and a bill working its way through Tallahassee proposes to make the permitting process for concealed weapon-holders even easier.

Contact 10 Investigates reporter Noah Pransky via Facebook or through his updates on Twitter.

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