It will soon be a crime to publicly carry an unloaded rifle in California cities. Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation Friday that makes it a misdemeanor punishable by six months in jail or a $1,000 fine.
Carrying loaded firearms in public is already against the law.
Democratic Assembly member Anthony Portantino says he authored the bill after gun advocates began showing up in restaurants and public places carrying unloaded long guns.
“You don’t need a shotgun to buy a cheeseburger on Main Street, California. You have no business being in the shopping center with your rifle or shotgun infringing on the rights of other families who are out on Main Street California just trying to have a peaceful night.”
The bill includes exemptions for hunters and rural Californians. It also allows carrying unloaded rifles from gun shows or licensed dealers.
The National Association of Gun Rights opposed the measure. It said the legislation was an attempt to prohibit something because it looks scary.