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Off Campus School Functions

960 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  GAGunOwner
Suppose I want to take my gun to some private business entity, private museum, park, zoo, or local area attraction that would certainly NOT be a "government building" under 16-11-127.

But I know that this place I'm going is a popular destination for school field trips. When I get there, there will be dozens of yellow school buses in the parking lot. Kids will outnumber the adults at this place.

Have I brought my weapon to a "school function" as defined by 16-11-127.1?
Is this kind of act on my part the legal equivalent of carrying my gun into a school building itself (meaning I better fit into one of the several exceptions, or I'm in trouble)?


(b) (1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (c) of this Code section,

it shall be unlawful for any person to carry to or to possess or have under such person's control while

within a school safety zone or at a school building, school function, or school property or on a bus or other transportation furnished by the school

any weapon or explosive compound, other than fireworks...

NOTE that the phrase "SCHOOL FUNCTION" is not defined in this law. So if it lacks a specific definition in statutory law, and if there is no definition supplied by caselaw (I haven't checked about that), then we should use the common-sense plain English definition of this phrase, just as if we looked up the words in a dictionary.
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"Transacting Lawful Business" exception?

Nope. That exception in the law does not apply to either school functions or the school property itself (it only covered passing through the 1000-foot zone, back when that zone was part of this law).

16-11-127.1 (d)(1) This Code section shall not prohibit any person who resides or works in a business or is in the ordinary course transacting lawful business
or any person who is a visitor of such resident located within a school safety zone
from carrying, possessing, or having under such person's control a weapon within a school safety zone;

provided, however, it shall be unlawful for any such person to carry, possess, or have under such person's control while at function
I think this is part of why there's a "not" between the "shall" and "be infringed" in both our State and Federal Constitutions.
All depends on the situation.

If you are going to chaperone children on a field trip, then yes it is a school function.

If you are simply going to something like a museum or an aquarium that is frequented by students, that does not make that place a school function. I believe that section of code was designed to prohibit carry from things such as sporting events, graduations, honors days, etc. that are on school property or are done off school property with the school.

Think about it. If you are in a restaurant, eating your food and minding your own business, you are fine. The restaurant is private property. If a school bus comes up with a load of athletes they have to feed, the restaurant remains a restaurant. It doesn't cease to be a private function on private property.

The same concept holds true for going to some other private or public property. So long as you are in the clear to be there without the kids, I don't see what the trouble would be.
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Who knows how it would ultimately play out in court? As far as an arrest it really depends on how smart and how anti-gun the cop that arrives on the scene is.

If you've got a LEO pretty knowledgeable about the "school law" and that also wants to make an arrest, you've got a bad combo. Could you get arrested, sure? Are there prosecutors out there that would make such a case? Probably somewhere because its "for the children."

Would the appellate courts be on your side? Probably not for a gun at a "school function" arrest.
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