Open Carry and Reasonable Suspicion

A decade ago, I wrote a post about the circumstances under which police may stop a person who is carrying a gun openly. A lot has changed since then. The Supreme Court has strengthened the Second Amendment in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, 597 U.S. __ (2022). The General Assembly has … Read more

Open Carry

Do law-abiding North Carolina residents have a right to carry a gun openly in public? Generally, yes. Federal constitutional right? The Supreme Court has recently ruled that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to bear arms, including handguns, District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008), and that it protects that right from … Read more

Concealed Carry in Parks and on Playgrounds

Can a concealed carry permit holder carry a concealed handgun in a park? On a playground? The legislature has changed the law in this area twice in recent years and I get lots of questions about it. This post summarizes the basics. Concealed weapons generally are forbidden. Carrying a concealed weapon of any kind, including … Read more

News Roundup

Happy new year! It’s time for the first news roundup of 2023, but I’ll start with one item that dates back to 2022. The Associated Press reports here that “Adnan Syed, who was released from a Maryland prison this year after his case was the focus of the true-crime podcast ‘Serial,’ has been hired by … Read more


Case Summaries – Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals (July 2021)

This post summarizes published criminal and related decisions from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals released during July 2021 which may be of interest to state practitioners. Summaries are also emailed to subscribers of the SOG criminal law listserv. Previous summaries of Fourth Circuit decisions are available on the SOG website, here.


News Roundup

Protests in Portland, Oregon, turned deadly over the weekend when a man was shot on the street following a clash between supporters of President Donald Trump and people demonstrating against racial disparities in policing.  On Saturday, a group of Trump supporters drove vehicles in a caravan around Portland while flying flags and otherwise expressing their … Read more


Demonstrating With Guns: G.S. 14-277.2

Over the past couple weeks, North Carolina has joined the growing list of states in which armed demonstrators have gathered to express their opposition to virus-related restrictions on economic activity and social gatherings, or to more generally express their opposition to any restrictions on their Second Amendment rights. Dressed in patriotic or military-style gear, and … Read more

Lawful Gun Possession and Encounters with Police

During a Terry stop, an officer who has reasonable suspicion that a suspect is armed and dangerous may frisk the suspect and may confiscate any weapons that the officer finds. Does an officer have the same authority during a traffic stop? In other words, if an officer reasonably suspects that a driver is in possession … Read more

Second Amendment Update

Several federal circuit courts have decided Second Amendment cases over the past few months. This post summarizes them. The cases and the reasoning behind them are not all completely consistent, but collectively, the courts continue to interpret the Second Amendment as permitting substantial levels of gun control.

News Roundup

Late last week five Dallas police officers were shot and killed in an ambush attack while working at a protest against the officer-involved shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota that the News Roundup reported last week.  In addition to the officers who were killed, nine other officers and two civilians were injured.  The Dallas Morning News … Read more