The recent acquittal of George Zimmerman in the killing of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin in Florida has raised questions for the other 22 states that have passed Stand Your Ground laws, including Wyoming.
After receiving threats and attacks concerning Senators’ patriotism and support of gun rights, Senate Majority Floor Leader Phil Nicholas decided that the Senate would not debate a pair of gun rights bills. One bill would allow local law enforcement to arrest federal officials enforcing federal gun laws in the state and the other gave the state power to keep local officials from developing their own gun regulations. Nicholas says the bills were poorly drafted and gave one example:
The Wyoming House has passed a bill that will allow hunters to use silencers and suppressors for various types of hunting in the state. Before passing the bill, the House removed an amendment that would not have allowed silencers when hunting for big game. But Speaker of the House Tom Lubnau argued that there are plenty of protections if someone violates the law and if they misuse a silencer or a suppressor the hunter can be punished.
While Wyoming Governor Matt Mead favors gun rights, he said that he is very concerned about a couple of gun rights bills making their way through the legislature.
One bill would allow school employees, parents of a student or their guardian, who hold a concealed weapon permit, to have guns in schools. Mead said that there are better ways to ensure school safety and he wants the state to look closer at those solutions.
The Wyoming House of Representatives has passed a series of gun rights bills. The House amended one bill that will allow guns in schools, allowing not only full-time school personnel to carry concealed firearms but parents and guardians, well. Everyone must have a concealed carry permit. Evansville Rep. Kendall Kroeker says it's a good day.
"One this that we've seen that has been the case with 100% of the shooting that have taken place on school campuses is that every single one of them was in a gun free zone," said Kroeker.
The Casper City Council has moved forward with an ordinance that would prohibit people from openly carrying guns into city meetings.
Councilmembers passed the measure 5-4 Tuesday in the second of three required readings. A final vote will be taken Dec. 20.
The ordinance, which would ban all dangerous weapons from city meetings, passed an initial vote 6-3 last month. On Tuesday, Councilman Bill Brauer changed his previous vote in support of the ordinance, saying "I think we have enough restrictions on people."