Tam links to the case of a guy who carried a long gun, an AR-15 specifically, into Sky Harbor airport to get a cup of coffee. Apparently he muzzled a woman when he unslung the firearm, and is now facing charges for it, namely two counts of disorderly conduct with a weapon. The Arizona Revised Statutes defines Disorderly Conduct in this manner:
13-2904. Disorderly conduct; classification
A. A person commits disorderly conduct if, with intent to disturb the peace or quiet of a neighborhood, family or person, or with knowledge of doing so, such person:
- Engages in fighting, violent or seriously disruptive behavior; or
- Makes unreasonable noise; or
- Uses abusive or offensive language or gestures to any person present in a manner likely to provoke immediate physical retaliation by such person; or
- Makes any protracted commotion, utterance or display with the intent to prevent the transaction of the business of a lawful meeting, gathering or procession; or
- Refuses to obey a lawful order to disperse issued to maintain public safety in dangerous proximity to a fire, a hazard or any other emergency; or
- Recklessly handles, displays or discharges a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument.
B. Disorderly conduct under subsection A, paragraph 6 is a class 6 felony. Disorderly conduct under subsection A, paragraph 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 is a class 1 misdemeanor.
I’d say muzzling people at an airport qualifies as reckless handling, and I’d even go a step further and suggest carrying an AR-15 in an airport could also amount to reckless display, if it was carried in a manner that could be interpreted by a reasonable observer as being ready for use (e.g. at the low ready).
It’s interesting that a state with a strong cultural heritage of open carry has mechanisms in place to deal with the worst attention whoring aspects of rifle OC. I honestly don’t have a problem with these charges. Muzzling people is reckless behavior.