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Michigan Supreme Court passes on libraries and guns case

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio
Capitol Area District Library, downtown Lansing branch (file photo)

The Michigan Supreme Court has decided not to hear an appeal of a case involving libraries and guns.

Lansing’s library system had banned openly carried firearms in its branches. But the Court of Appeals found that violated a state law preventing local units of government from banning weapons.

Today, the state Supreme Court decided to let the lower court decision stand.

Attorney Gary Bender represents the Capital Area District Library Authority. He thought there were important constitutional issues left unresolved by the lower court ruling.

“I guess the takeaway is the Supreme Court didn’t see this as a matter they should take up at this time,” says Bender.

Rob Harris is the media director for Michigan Open Carry, the group that challenged the library’s policy.  He says the Supreme Court’s decision “vindicates” their position that people should be allowed to openly carry firearms practically anywhere in Michigan.

Capital Area District Library branches have allowed patrons with openly carried firearms since last year’s ruling by the Court of Appeals.   The library system’s attorney says there have not been any problems.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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