Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library
Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 2021 ‘Open Carry in California.’ Guns in Public. San Francisco, CA: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 3 March
[Editor's note: The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence regularly updates its webpages with new data as US gun regulation evolves state by state. For the most up-to-date information on US gun laws, please refer to the Giffords URL below]
Open Carrying in California
California law prohibits any person from carrying a loaded firearm (open or concealed) on his or her person in most locations…
Although the open carrying of loaded firearms is generally prohibited, where the population of a county is less than 200,000 persons, the sheriff of the county or the chief of police of a city within that county may issue a license to carry a loaded, exposed handgun. This license is only valid in the county where it was issued. This license is identical to a California concealed weapons license in all other respects. See the discussion about CCW licenses in California for information about these licenses.
A 2011 California law generally prohibits any person from carrying an exposed and unloaded handgun upon his or her person in a public place, if the place is in an incorporated city or city and county, or if it is unlawful to discharge a weapon there. This prohibition is subject to a number of exceptions…