CCW at Disney Springs, Orlando FL

Hi there friends:

I would like to share something that happened to me today. I apologize for the length and bad redaction of this story but It might share some information about situations like the following:
I, as usual, carry pretty much everywhere I go since I got my permit (not long ago). I understand where I can and I cannot carry BY LAW. Today not being the exception, I took a family member, wife and little one, on a little tour through the city which included Disney Springs. I see the place as an outdoor shopping mall, so I didn’t check beforehand on their gun policy. When we got to the place and after passing the temperature check point, I saw a security guard with a K9 and for some reason I had the sudden feeling I was being watched. We continued walking along the stores and it came to mind to just give a quick search on my phone about guns at DS. For my surprise, I read about a guy (2019) who was carrying legally in the premises and got “caught” by one of these K9’s and had security and Sheriffs surrounding him outside a store, running warrant search and after some questions they escorted him out of the place not without reminding him about their gun policy and such. While scrolling down trough some similar cases, I passed near by another guard and dog and this time I saw the dog moving towards us. There was a lot of people so it wasn’t easy to pinpoint me specifically, but I got nervous for the situation. We managed to pass them without further alerting them , but now, feeling like a “criminal”? I am in the middle of a place I can get hassled and maybe arrested in public by simply CC my weapon legally and legitimate not knowing I could not carry there. We got back to the car (longest 5 minute walk in my life) and we left the place not wishing to ever come back for the next reason:
-What if? Places like this could be a playground for a whack nut who one day decided to kill someone for fun. I know I should’ve known better and skip places like this, but who would have given a though for just going to a shopping mall? Now, I understand they can enforce whatever they like in their property, but at least they should let law abiding citizens know about it by a sign of some sort.
I would love to read your thoughts and maybe get some insight from someone with more experience in the area.
Thank you!

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Truthfully, knowing your target on the range is far different than a mall or highly populated venue when there are several dozen people beyond the person of internet. If there are as many security guards, K-9s and Sheriff’s Deputies as mentioned, this might be one place I’d be ok going unarmed. On the other hand, places less secure…not so much. I simply wouldn’t go.

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I saw a sign/window sticker at a business recently, was to the left of the door and 1’ off the ground… I imagine very few people have seen it, almost seems like an attempt at entrapment.

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I always thought the same thing, what if there was a hostile in DW while we were there with nothing but a a roll of quarters in my pocket to defend myself.

My nephew in law worked there a few years ago in an upper level of security and he said with all the security measures they have there, there is no way anyone could go “mass shooter” in there.

He also went so far to say that there is no way you could even lose your kid or for that matter have your kid abducted.

There is intense security everywhere, cameras, thermal, tons of plain clothes, air sampling, and then the stuff he couldn’t even tell me about.

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You need to make yourself VERY well aquainted with the laws in your state. In my state any private (or Commercial) property owner or management can post a No CCW sign and you “have to” respect their wishes. BUT, because those signs are easy to miss there is no criminal penalty For carrying concealed in those place and they have no ability to detain you if you do. ALL they can do is ask you to leave and then you have to comply. If you do not, you risk being arrested/charged with Trespassing which is an actual crime.

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Ignorance is not an excuse - I’ve heard that from numerous police officers and attorneys (during conversations, not while being arrested :grin:).

There are a lot of different laws to know, but it’s definitely worth looking them up (uscca.com/laws is a great place to start), especially when you’re talking about the big theme parks.

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This may be true, however when the signs are hand written and hidden under the toilet bowl lid or the last line of a list at the mall hidden behind a door I’m not supposed to open does not make me ignorant!
Most states laws are very clear on where and when you can carry.
Furthermore and fortunately in my state such signs are BS. They carry no federal weight. The only thing they carry is a misdemeanor trespassing violation “IF” I don’t comply with a security officers request to leave the area!
For example the sign at Starbucks has no “force of law” in my state or to me except they don’t want my money, the hospital and the court house have very visible federally guided signs that warn of federal prosecution USC …

If that was at a shopping mall , I can’t wait to see the polling stations! November 3rd

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My thoughts exactly. It’s not like I would love to play rebel and make a scene about my rights in a place like this, of course I would comply and leave and never come back, it’s just that to me, doesn’t make sense to go through all the steps to get a CCW license and end up feeling like a criminal for doing the right thing.

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I agree and believe me, I careful looked up and I feel there is a little gap about information regarding DS, just because it is not and amusement park neither public property. I found out just reading the news about couple of people getting in trouble because of it. But yeah, I lacked common sense on that one.

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Now thats a different story and I feel good for the people who visit the place (cause I wont be back :joy:) I agree with you, even with the whole “scene” the place feels secure enough, I just dont trust people that much.

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Thank you so much for the info guys!

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Know the laws where you are going. In Illinois, other than the federally and state mandated “Gun free zones”, a business can get a no gun sticker. For it to carry the weight of law, it has to be a specific sticker, and must be placed at every public entrance. When I first started carrying, I had this discussion with several current and retired Illinois LEO’S. They all confirmed how the law was written, about the specified sticker and placement.

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All Disney Parks prohibit firearms. I learned this myself when I showed my permit and was told no one was allowed to carry on property including even off duty law enforcement. Disney actually doesn’t allow ON duty law enforcement to roam their areas while armed. They only allow them IF they call police.

At first, I was upset but frankly it’s their property and they certainly have a right to manage it as they choose. If it’s a point of contention, then you’re free to simply not go.

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Thanks for sharing that story and I’m glad it worked out the way it did, no harm no foul. It taught me to look at places that I enter more closely and check for any posted signs, such as no guns allowed. That’s a place we’re thinking about visiting when we are in FL. I’m also going to carefully read my reciprocity gun map and laws.

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You’re very right and I never said it did. Those signs usually have to be posted a certain way for them to be considered valid signs. Some states even dictate the exact size, picture, location of the signs.

However, in a court of law, saying I didn’t know is not going to get you out of a situation. That’s why we double check the laws to ensure we are doing the right thing. Certain places can go either way on carrying - shopping centers and churches come to mind first for me - and we need to do our due diligence before we enter an area or be prepared to deal with the consequences.

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We had a discussion about no cc signs in my CWP class. Basically it boiled down to" don’t be overly picky about the technicality of the sign, so long as it’s easily visible. Be a good ambassador for the cc community.

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