Can You Openly Carry a Long Rifle at a Protest in Texas?

Our weekly check-in with the Texas Truth-O-Meter.

By Alain StephensJuly 13, 2016 10:55 am

What happened in Dallas last week reminded us it’s legal for Texans to openly carry rifles in public. Dallas Police Chief David Brown said at a recent press conference that up to 30 participants at the protest had AR-15s slung over their shoulders, wearing gas masks and camouflage fatigues “for effect.”

Three individuals who carried rifles in the open that evening were held shortly after the shootings. Two were then released. One was still held on an unrelated gun charge according to Brown.

So were those who openly carried long rifles and AR-15s during the protest doing so legally?

Politifact got into this topic in June 2014 after Mike Hashimoto, an editorial columnist for the Dallas Morning News, took exception to Texans strolling around with rifles in a commentary, describing them as “chuckleheads strapping on their long rifles and marching into the local Chipotle or Chili’s or Home Depot. Whatever point they may have about gun-owner rights or Texas law they drown in look-at-me stupidity.”

Hashimoto kicked Politifact into action with this claim: “Public display of a long rifle is perfectly legal in Texas.”

Is that a fact? Gardner Selby of the PolitiFact Texas fact-checking team has the answer.

Hear how the claim scored in the player above.