The Gun-Free School Zones Act

The Gun-Free School Zones Act (GFSZA) prohibits any person from knowingly possessing a firearm that has moved in or otherwise affects interstate or foreign commerce at a place the individual knows, or has reasonable cause to believe, is a school zone. The GFSZA also prohibits any person from knowingly, or with reckless disregard for the safety of another, discharging or attempting to discharge a firearm that has moved in or otherwise affects interstate or foreign commerce at a place the person knows is a school zone. The GFSZA defines school zone as: 1) in, or on the grounds of, a public, parochial or private school; or 2) within a distance of 1,000 feet from the grounds of a public, parochial or private school.

Exceptions to the possession prohibition include:

  • Firearm possessors licensed by the state or locality to possess the gun, whose law requires that before the person obtains a license, state or local law enforcement verify that the person is qualified to receive the license

Arizona Conceal Carry Permit Minimum Requirements

  • Is a resident of this state or a United States citizen.
  • Is twenty-one years of age or older.
  • Is not under indictment for and has not been convicted in any jurisdiction of a felony unless that conviction has been expunged, set aside or vacated or the applicant’s rights have been restored and the applicant is currently not a prohibited possessor under state or federal law.
  • Does not suffer from mental illness and has not been adjudicated mentally incompetent or committed to a mental institution.
  • Is not unlawfully present in the United States.
  • Has ever demonstrated competence with a firearm as prescribed by subsection N of this section and provides adequate documentation that the person has satisfactorily completed a training program or demonstrated competence with a firearm in any state or political subdivision in the United States. For the purposes of this paragraph, “adequate documentation” means:

(a) A current or expired permit issued by the department of public safety pursuant to this section.

(b) An original or copy of a certificate, card or document that shows the applicant has ever completed any course or class prescribed by subsection N of this section or an affidavit from the instructor, school, club or organization that conducted or taught the course or class attesting to the applicant’s completion of the course or class.

(c) An original or a copy of a United States department of defense form 214 (DD-214) indicating an honorable discharge or general discharge under honorable conditions, a certificate of completion of basic training or any other document demonstrating proof of the applicant’s current or former service in the United States armed forces as prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 5 of this section.

(d) An original or a copy of a concealed weapon, firearm or handgun permit or a license as prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 6 of this section.

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CCW Benefits

  • Ability to carry a concealed weapon within 1,000 feet of a school. It is very unlikely that you will be able to travel through the Metropolitan Phoenix area without crossing within one of the 1,000 foot boundary of a school. You will need a permit to conceal carry throughout the valley. (Federal Law)
  • If you want to carry concealed in National Parks located in Arizona, such as the Grand Canyon, you need a permit. (Federal Law)
  • Reciprocity to conceal carry in 34 other states. If you plan on traveling and carrying concealed, then a permit is something you have to have. (Arizona Law)
  • You don’t need a background check when purchasing a weapon. Simply show your permit with your identification and you’re on your way. (Brady Bill)
  • You need a conceal carry permit to carry your weapon in a commercial establishment that serves alcohol. If the establishment is not posted you may carry a concealed weapon into the bar if you have a permit and you do not consume alcohol there. (Arizona Law)
  • In the conceal carry class you learn the laws and way to properly apply deadly force.

Arizona State Statutes

Effective Sep. 30, 2009, A.R.S. §12-781 will protect the transportation or storage of firearms in locked motor vehicles or in locked motorcycle compartments on public and private parking lots, provided the firearm is not visible from outside the vehicle or motorcycle. This statutory protection does not apply to employer owned vehicles, secured parking lots with controlled access. IF temporary firearm storage facilities are provided, or parking lots where specially designated alternate parking is provided for vehicles/motorcycles containing any firearms. This statutory protection does not apply to places where firearms are otherwise prohibited by law, e.g., state or federal property.

Effective Sep. 30, 2009, a CCW permittee, or a Sheriff’s volunteer posse or reserve member who has received approved firearms training and is approved by the Sheriff to carry concealed, in addition to other law enforcement personnel, may carry a concealed firearm in establishments that serve alcohol, UNLESS the establishment posts no firearms signs as specified by statute. However, a person in possession of a firearm may not consume alcohol in such establishments (class 3 misdemeanor). A.R.S. §§4-229, 4-244.31 & 4-246(C).