California State Senate Approves Banning Open Carry Of Rifles

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California State Capitol in Sacramento (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

California State Capitol in Sacramento (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — California would prohibit the public display of rifles and shotguns under a bill approved by the state Senate.

The measure responds to gun rights advocates who took to openly carrying unloaded long guns to protest another bill that became law last year. The previous measure prohibits the display of unloaded handguns.

The ban was sought by the state police chiefs association, which said the displays are causing confusion and alarm for officers and unarmed citizens, who cannot tell if the guns are loaded.

AB1527 makes it a misdemeanor to carry an unloaded long gun in public, with exemptions for hunters and members of the military. The practice would still be allowed in some rural areas.

The bill passed the Senate 23-15 Monday and returns to the Assembly for final action.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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