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SB 656: Missouri’s New Statute on Carrying Concealed Firearms and Standing Your Ground

Springfield criminal defense attorney Shane Cantin has written a well-balanced article that examines Missouri’s new legislation, SB 656, “Missouri Concealed Carry & Castle Doctrine: What You Need to Know.”

SB 656 does away with the requirement of training and a permit for carrying concealed firearms. The business of concealed carry classes and permits will still go on, though perhaps with smaller enrollments.   Missourians carrying their weapons to states that require permits will need a permit from Missouri to carry a firearm in those states.

Because of the lack of necessity of attending a class and obtaining a permit, it is possible that more people will wish to buy handguns to carry. My guess, though, is that most of the people who wish to own handguns already have purchased them, and the new law will not boost sales. As young people turn 19 and thus fall under the new law, they may purchase handguns, and some of these may enjoy the hobby of collecting and trading guns. Events, such as the Orlando shooting and the election of candidates perceived as anti-gun, often spur gun sales, more than changes in state law. I wonder about how many people who once start carrying concealed firearms continue to do so.

The modification of the castle doctrine to a stand-your-ground law expands the scope of justification as a defense to the use of lethal force. The duty to first retreat and the requirement of being in one’s home or on one’s property are eliminated. While there may be an increase in shootings due to more people being armed and feeling empowered to use guns to resolve disputes and more opportunity for accidental shootings, I am not expecting there to be any substantial economic effect from the new law. The vast majority of people who lawfully carry guns will not display or use them.






About Harry Styron

I'm a lawyer and mediator who lives in Branson, Missouri, whose professional interests involve real estate, nonprofits, and local government. As of 2022, I'm shrinking my legal practice so that I have more time to mediate real estate disputes. I'm happy to mediate using video platforms like Zoom and WebEx, or in person anywhere in Missouri.

3 responses »

  1. I hope you are right, Harry, but I fear that your scenario will not be the case. Since I have spent my life with one foot in the big city and one foot in the country, I am not concerned about the hunters, nor the country people raised around guns. I do believe the general political paranoia out there will result in many more guns in the city, and in suburbia, many purchased by people afraid of the bad guys on the six o’clock news whom they will never meet in their mundane work-a-day, in bed by 11 p.m. lives. And they are going to buy these guns, put them in holsters and purses, and never go to the range to learn how to correctly use them. After all, they’ve seen lots of guns pulled on TV, and in the movies, right? And I expect the collateral damage to go up significantly from bad shots, accidental shots, Junior getting Mommy’s gun, and the mix of short tempers, arguments, bullets and alcohol. Instead of punching someone’s lights out, they will get shot. Or the guy next to them will.

    I’m not so concerned with people merely having firearms, but that after the guy at the gun store show them how to load them, they will not practice. They will not, especially the women, understand that guns kick, and that kick can affect your aim, and you have to learn to compensate, and the only way to do that is practice. Shooting is like bowling in that regard; the first few rolls are likely to go awry, even if you are an experienced bowler.

    I honestly think that one of the requirements for firearms ownership should be reportable periodic range time. A deer hunter doesn’t pick up his gun on Nov. 14 and head to the woods. He or she usually has it out, cleaning it, aligning the sights, practicing on tin cans – warming up for the real thing.

    I have a friend who sells self-defense paraphernalia. To hear her talk, one shouldn’t go to the bathroom in one’s own home. without a stun gun or pepper spray. I know there are bad people out there, but I would like to see personal arms de-escalated, and more non-lethal means be provided and promoted and used by both law enforcement and civilians whenever possibile,

    Self defense is good. Defense of others is good as well. But you cannot provide due process to a corpse, and isn’t due process and respect what law is all about?

    • Thanks for commenting, Jo. I don’t have any answers and don’t wish to wade into a controversy here. I just wanted to link to Shane Cantin’s well-written summary of new legislation.

  2. Good Post Harry, I enjoy reading what you have to say! MoM

    On Mon, Oct 10, 2016 at 9:39 AM, Ozarks Law & Economy wrote:

    > Harry Styron posted: “Springfield criminal defense attorney Shane Cantin > has written a well-balanced article that examines Missouri’s new > legislation, SB 656, “Missouri Concealed Carry & Castle Doctrine: What You > Need to Know.” SB 656 does away with the requirement of t” >


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