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(Gwinnett county, cobb county) my question is can I carry concealed. (just my preference) in most retail stores such as Best Buy, Home Depot, malls, KROGER, Publix and of course walmart if they have the signs that say we can’t carry. I forgot where I found information online. but is it true even with these signs on front doors of their store’s. its not abide by law. So since we are ccw holders we can still carry inside. After these shooting I definitely start carry more and not just for my safety’ but for others.
 

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The sign carries no legal weight under GA law.

If you are caught in a private business with a sign, leave when asked without argument or hesitation. You can get charged with criminal trespass if you refuse to leave when asked.
 

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Sledgehammer
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Peter,

Welcome to the forum. A few comments:

1. In Georgia, there is no such thing as a "CCW holder." There is a weapons carry licenseholder, and having the license allows one to carry openly or concealed. You probablay knew all that, so I'm just re-emphasizing that.

2. Most of the chain stores you listed do not routinely post their stores as being off limits. Some of them even have corporate policies prohibiting the local stores from doing so.

3. I think it's a bit of an over-simplification to say that signs carry no legal weight under GA law. I'm not aware of any authority that supports that conclusion. It is a popular conception, though, and I think it has some valid support -- just not actual authority. Consider a sign that says "no shirt, no shoes, no service." You walk into the restaurant wearing no shirt and no shoes and ask to be seated. Are they going to call the police or just ask you to leave? Now consider a sign that says "no guns" or just has a ghost-buster with a gun in it. You walk in openly carrying and ask to be seated. Are they going to call the police or just ask you to leave? Now consider a sign that says, "Absolutely no admission while carrying a firearm. Anyone who enters with a firearm will be considered a trespasser and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. John Doe, Owner." You see the sign, walk past it openly carrying, and ask to be seated. The hostess sees your gun and say, "Hey, didn't you see the sign?" You say, "I did, but you see signs carry no legal weight under GA law, so I have no obligation to pay it any heed." They call the police and you are arrested. The state charges you with trespassing. They call the hostess as a witness, and she testifies that you admitted to her that you had seen the sign but that you claimed the sign meant nothing. You testify on your own behalf, and reiterate that signs carry no legal weight. You admit on cross examination that you had read the sign. You ask the judge to give the jury an instruction that "signs carry no legal weight under GA law." The judge says, "OK, show me a statute or appellate opinion that says that and I will." You can't find any. The judge advises the jury that it is trespassing to enter premises after being told not to by the owner, and they can make their own determination if you were told not to enter by the owner. You are convicted. How do you rate your chances at the Court of Appeals?
 

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I know you ask specifically about carrying concealed, but you can also legally carry openly. At the places that you mentioned, Home Depot, Kroger and Walmart have been fine with carrying openly as well. I am usually carrying openly in these stores. I have never seen a sign at either of them. At Best Buy, malls and Publix, they are probably more likely to ask you to leave if they see it. But any sign they have posted is just their preference, not a legality issue.
 

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Sledgehammer
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Now consider the difference if you had responded to the hostess, "What sign?" And she said there's a sign on the door that says you can't come in with a gun. You say, "Sorry" and leave without incident.

I think both versions of the story are reasonably possible. There are several other factors that come into play in the version where you get convicted, but the bottom line is that the sign did have some significance and without it you would not have been convicted.

So I think signs might have weight, depending on the circumstances.
 

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Signs carry no legal weight as in you cannot get charged for "carrying a gun in a business with a sign".

Just like you can't get charged for "entering a gas station without shoes on".

Signs are merely a notice of the owners preference for conditions of service to their customer, not a legally restrictive notice.

Some states have a law in place where there are charges associated specifically with ignoring a posted sign. GA is not one of them.

But if you refuse to leave after corrected, then you can be charged with criminal trespass. That is not because of the sign, that is because someone with authority over private property asked you to leave and you refused to do so.
 

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At...Publix, they are probably more likely to ask you to leave if they see it.
Publix has been mentioned here many times as being neutral to open carry and obviously conceal carry. I've never had an issue OCing at Publix.
 

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Publix has been mentioned here many times as being neutral to open carry and obviously conceal carry. I've never had an issue OCing at Publix.
I have 2 Publix stores pretty close to me. At one of them, the management has been supportive of my carrying, even openly, in their store. At the other one, while nothing has been said, I can tell they lean towards anti-carrying. They will watch me very suspiciously the whole time I'm in the store. I've had mixed results at other Publix stores as well.
 

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A Publix manager once told me I could not open carry in the store. Corporate said to cover it and they would not care. That manager is apparently gone and I have open carried there since without incident. Best Buy, Kroger, and other paces except shopping malls have not been a problem open carrying, and conceal carry has never been a problem anywhere. Studio Movie Grill in Gwinnett did tell me not to open carry, so back to concealing there.
 

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A Publix manager once told me I could not open carry in the store. Corporate said to cover it and they would not care. That manager is apparently gone and I have open carried there without incident. Best Buy, Kroger, and other paces except shopping malls have not been a problem open carrying, and conceal carry has never been a problem anywhere. Studio Movie Grill in Gwinnett did tell me not to open carry, so back to concealing there.
 

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Signs are merely a notice of the owners preference
Notice is an element of the crime of criminal trespass.

Enters upon the land or premises of another person . . . after receiving, prior to such entry, notice from the owner, rightful occupant, or, upon proper identification, an authorized representative of the owner or rightful occupant that such entry is forbidden
 
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Nothing whatsoever in the statute says notice cannot come from a sign. Nothing requires you to refuse to leave after "being corrected," once you admit you noticed the notice on the sign and took no notice of the notice that you noticed.
 
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I conceal everywhere. Disregard anything but metal detectors. Never been an issue.
Nothing whatsoever in the statute says notice cannot come from a sign. Nothing requires you to refuse to leave after "being corrected," once you admit you noticed the notice on the sign and took no notice of the notice that you noticed.
I didn't see any sign ‍♂
 

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If you go in a mall, enter through the doors directly into one of the stores. There may be signs at the "mall" doors but the store doors will rarely have a sign.

Either way, I generally go ahead and enter first, to hold the door for my wife and have never seen any signs. I have heard they are there sometimes, but never seen any myself.

Nemo
 

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They will watch me very suspiciously the whole time I'm in the store.
That sounds very ................ creepy. Almost like a Joe Biden move. Next time just confront them. Tell them you feel very uncomfortable by their actions and if they don't stop it you're going to report them to corporate for stalking you. :love: :lol:
 

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Nothing whatsoever in the statute says notice cannot come from a sign. Nothing requires you to refuse to leave after "being corrected," once you admit you noticed the notice on the sign and took no notice of the notice that you noticed.
That would be very noticeable.
 

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Either way, I generally go ahead and enter first, to hold the door for my wife and have never seen any signs. I have heard they are there sometimes, but never seen any myself.
As he makes furtive glances in a feeble attempt to remain inconspicuous. :lol:
 

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I didn't see any sign ‍♂
Sign? What Sign?

Honestly, I have been to some place two or three times before I ever noticed a sign - it certainly wasn't prominent. Other places, the Mall of Georgia don't have signs (at least not at any of the doors I've used), even though the property owners have a policy against (I believe). I've seen open carriers there too without security stopping them.
 
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