Some bar and restaurant owners shoot to keep guns out of their - FOX Carolina 21

Some restaurant owners shoot to keep guns out of their businesses

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Restaurant owners posting signs to ban concealed weapons (FOX Carolina/ April 3, 2014) Restaurant owners posting signs to ban concealed weapons (FOX Carolina/ April 3, 2014)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

David Blanton's hobby and passion is shooting pistols. He's a retired deputy, SLED certified, concealed weapons permit instructor in Boiling Springs and his company is Top Gun Shooting.

"We've had doctors and lawyers, and school teachers and nurses," Blanton said.

He aims to stay current with state gun laws, like now being able to carry a concealed weapon into a bar or restaurant that serves alcohol if you have a permit.

"Number one, you can not consume alcohol. Number two, you can not sit at the bar area if you have one," Blanton said.

He said the goal he's shooting for is safety when leaving a restaurant.

"Let's say you go into a restaurant for an anniversary dinner or something like that and you're coming back across that dark parking lot and someone attacks you. You have the opportunity to defend yourself and your spouse," Blanton said.

However, the law also states restaurant owners have the right to ban concealed weapons and can inform customers by posting a sign on entrances.

"The sign has to be 8 inches wide, 12 inches tall," Blanton said.

There's a concealed weapons ban posted on the entrance of the restaurant Smoke on the Water in Greenville.

"You just got to hope that people adhere to your request for them not to," Brian Sizemore said.

Sizemore is a bar manager at Chicora Alley in Greenville.

"Alcohol and guns do not mix, I've seen many things escalate," Sizemore said.

He said the owner will also soon put a sign banning concealed weapons.

"We do have security personnel on the late nights and even throughout the day," Sizemore said.

Gun advocates say carrying a concealed weapon is their second amendment right, but Sizemore said restaurant owners have rights too.

"It's our right to say no just as much as they feel they may have the right to bring it in," Sizemore said.

And those who support the law say a gun in the right hands can help save lives.

"Far more times it is good than bad," Blanton said.

Gun experts say if someone with a permit goes into a restaurant or bar that doesn't show a sign banning concealed weapons, legally that person can go inside. However, if an owner or a manager see that person and doesn't want the customer there with a gun a manager or owner can legally ask the customer to leave or to remove the gun from the business.

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