FLORENCE, S.C. -- Florence County Sheriff's deputies are encountering an increasing number of people openly carrying a handgun, under the mistaken belief that the law has been changed to allow them to carry openly. The SC Legislature is currently debating changes in the way handguns are carried. Specifically, legislation under consideration would allow for the open carry of handguns in certain locations either with or without a concealed weapons permit.
Regardless, until or unless there is a change in the law, there is no open carry in South Carolina, subject to a few exceptions. The owner or person in control of real property can carry a handgun openly on the premises and authorize persons thereon to do so as well. In addition, the owner of a fixed place of business may also carry open in the business and authorize employees to do so. Finally, a licensed hunter or fisherman going directly to or from hunting or fishing can carry open also.
Absent one of the above described exceptions, the open carrying of handguns is currently prohibited in South Carolina. We want you to be aware of the law and what is allowed.