PA Bill Number: HB2977
Title: In firearms and other dangerous articles, providing for civil liability of firearm owner for loss or theft.
Description: In firearms and other dangerous articles, providing for civil liability of firearm owner for loss or theft. ...
Last Action: Referred to JUDICIARY
Last Action Date: Nov 30, 2020
Concealed-carry group sues Ohio State, says gun ban is too broad :: 07/07/2014
A concealed-carry group says in a lawsuit that Ohio State University’s code of conduct violates state law because it bans students from keeping guns in their cars on campus and carrying guns while representing the university off campus.
The national Students for Concealed Carry Foundation sued Ohio State in Franklin County Common Pleas Court yesterday.
The university’s Student Code of Conduct, which the lawsuit says is part of the state’s Administrative Code, prohibits having firearms and other “dangerous weapons” on campus, “even if otherwise permitted by law.”
The state law barring firearms from university campuses exempts firearms that are stored in the locked car of a holder of a concealed-carry permit. The lawsuit says the university’s code of conduct does not acknowledge that exception, violating state law.
The foundation, joined in the lawsuit by Ohioans for Concealed Carry, also says the code of conduct violates state law because it says that students cannot possess a firearm when they are off-campus and participating in any activity related to the university. Ohio State’s jurisdiction should end at the campus border, the lawsuit says.
The groups did not name any current or former OSU students as plaintiffs in the case.
The case hinges on the fact that the state is the only entity that can regulate or restrict firearms in Ohio, said Derek A. DeBrosse, a Columbus attorney representing the concealed-carry groups in the case.
“In a nutshell, the thrust of this case was the state of Ohio said, ‘We’re the only ones that can regulate firearms,’â€Šâ€Š” DeBrosse said. “What they’ve done is like a roundabout. Through the code of student regulations, they’ve violated state law.”
OSU officials did not comment on the legal particulars of the case. “We were recently served with the complaint in this action. We are reviewing it and will prepare an appropriate legal response,” wrote OSU spokesman Gary Lewis.
Lewis could not say yesterday whether any students have been disciplined under the university’s no-gun policy. The code of conduct says students could be disciplined — even expelled — for breaking that rule.
University student codes of conduct routinely exceed federal or state law. For example, several state universities in Ohio, including OSU, have banned tobacco use on their campuses.
The plaintiffs are not suing over the statewide ban on firearms on college campuses approved by state legislators, only the provisions against guns in cars and carrying guns while representing the university off campus.
Concealed-carry groups, including Buckeyes for Concealed Carry, the foundation’s OSU chapter, have asked top university officials to change their policy for several years. In 2012, then-OSU President E. Gordon Gee dismissed the notion of allowing guns on campus.
“People with concealed carry (licenses) are insistent they have to carry everywhere,” said Toby Hoover, founder of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence. “It’s one of those things that, I don’t know if there’s any common sense connected with it at all; they don’t want to be restricted by anybody.”