Places Weapons Prohibited
There are certain places wherein firearms are prohibited in the state of Texas. This prohibition extends to people who are otherwise lawfully licensed to carry a concealed handgun. Disregard for the prohibition against weapons in certain areas is a third-degree felony. However, the person must intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly possess a firearm, illegal knife, club, or other prohibited weapon to be guilty of this offense.
The state of Texas prohibits weapons in the following places:
- Schools and other educational institutions;
- The grounds or buildings where school sponsored activities are occurring;
- At polling places on election day or during early voting;
- At court, or court offices, unless the weapon is possessed with written court authorization or other written regulations;
- On racetrack premises;
- Within the secured portion of the airport. The exception to this is when the firearm is checked as baggage, consistent with both federal and state laws, before the firearm enters the secured area;
- Within 1,000 feet of a location where an execution is to take place under Article 43.19 of the Code of Criminal Procedure on the day the execution is scheduled, provided the person has received prior notice being within 1,000 feet of the premises is prohibited. The exception to this is where a person is in lawful possession of a firearm in their residence or at their job, or in a car being driven on a public road within 1,000 feet of the premises.
Certain people are exempt from the prohibition on weapons in certain places. It bears repeating that those with a license to carry a concealed handgun are _not_ exempt from these rules. Exempt persons include:
- Those traveling to or from a person’s workplace as a member of the national guard;
- A member of the armed forces;
- A prison guard;
- A security officer of the Texas Private Security Board if they are in uniform and the firearm is in plain view;
- Security officers in uniform with the weapon in plain view, or out of uniform with the firearm concealed.
Third-degree felonies are punishable by a minimum of two years in prison, and a maximum of 10 years.
Call us at (817) 203-2220 for a complimentary strategy session. Our team of former prosecutors and Board Certified Criminal Lawyers are here to help. During this call we will:
- Discuss the facts of your case;
- Discuss the legal issues involved, including the direct and collateral consequences of the allegation; and
- Discuss the defenses that apply to your plan and in general terms discuss our approach to your case.
You can also contact us online:
Penal Code 46.03 PLACES WEAPONS PROHIBITED.
(a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly possesses or goes with a firearm, illegal knife, club, or prohibited weapon listed in Section 46.05(a):
(1) on the physical premises of a school or educational institution, any grounds or building on which an activity sponsored by a school or educational institution is being conducted, or a passenger transportation vehicle of a school or educational institution, whether the school or educational institution is public or private, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the institution;
(2) on the premises of a polling place on the day of an election or while early voting is in progress;
(3) on the premises of any government court or offices utilized by the court, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the court;
(4) on the premises of a racetrack;
(5) in or into a secured area of an airport; or
(6) within 1,000 feet of premises the location of which is designated by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice as a place of execution under Article 43.19, Code of Criminal Procedure, on a day that a sentence of death is set to be imposed on the designated premises and the person received notice that:
(A) going within 1,000 feet of the premises with a weapon listed under this subsection was prohibited; or
(B) possessing a weapon listed under this subsection within 1,000 feet of the premises was prohibited.
(b) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsections (a)(1)-(4) that the actor possessed a firearm while in the actual discharge of his official duties as a member of the armed forces or national guard or a guard employed by a penal institution, or an officer of the court.
(c) In this section:
(1) “Premises” has the meaning assigned by Section 46.035.
(2) “Secured area” means an area of an airport terminal building to which access is controlled by the inspection of persons and property under federal law.
(d) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a)(5) that the actor possessed a firearm or club while traveling to or from the actor’s place of assignment or in the actual discharge of duties as:
(1) a member of the armed forces or national guard;
(2) a guard employed by a penal institution; or
(3) a security officer commissioned by the Texas Private Security Board if:
(A) the actor is wearing a distinctive uniform; and
(B) the firearm or club is in plain view; or
(4) a security officer who holds a personal protection authorization under Chapter 1702, Occupations Code, provided that the officer is either:
(A) wearing the uniform of a security officer, including any uniform or apparel described by Section 1702.323(d), Occupations Code, and carrying the officer’s firearm in plain view; or
(B) not wearing the uniform of a security officer and carrying the officer’s firearm in a concealed manner.
(e) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a)(5) that the actor checked all firearms as baggage in accordance with federal or state law or regulations before entering a secured area.
(f) It is not a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor possessed a handgun and was licensed to carry a concealed handgun under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code.
(g) An offense under this section is a third degree felony.
(h) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a)(4) that the actor possessed a firearm or club while traveling to or from the actor’s place of assignment or in the actual discharge of duties as a security officer commissioned by the Texas Board of Private Investigators and Private Security Agencies, if:
(1) the actor is wearing a distinctive uniform; and
(2) the firearm or club is in plain view.
(i) It is an exception to the application of Subsection (a)(6) that the actor possessed a firearm or club:
(1) while in a vehicle being driven on a public road; or
(2) at the actor’s residence or place of employment.[/x_accordion_item][/x_accordion][/cs_column][/cs_row][/cs_section][/cs_content]