Mississippi’s gun laws examined after mother’s gun goes off at Merit Health

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – According to state law, the mom whose handgun discharged in Merit Health Hospital has a legal right to carry her gun in her bag unless a private property, like the hospital where it happened, says otherwise.

Gun experts say things like this can be prevented.

It all comes down to safety.

The law in place does not require that the user carries their gun in a holster, but we’re told it is highly-recommended.

“As can see the trigger mechanism fits in the holster and it prevents anything from coming in contact with the trigger at all,” said Cliff Cargill of NRA Firearms.

It’s a simple add-on, but one gun experts say could make a big difference in accidental shootings like the one that happened at Merit Health on Wednesday morning.

“It’s a wise investment to have a properly fit holster for that specific model, and be very careful because one size does not fit all,” said Cargill.

Investigators say the woman’s gun was inside her purse, although they didn’t specify what kind it was or whether or not she had a holster.

Cargill is a National Rifle Association Firearms Instructor and Training Coordinator, Range Master for Boondocks Firearms Training Academy.

“Most modern firearms, even if there is one in the chamber, they have internal safety mechanism that prevents the fire arm from discharging if it impacts the ground,  but safeties are mechanical vices and can fail,” said Cargill.

Last year, Senate Bill 2394 went into effect.

The law makes the state’s conceal carry permit rules a lot more relaxed.

You don’t have to have a permit to carry a pistol or revolver in a purse or briefcase.

It’s also not required that you use a holster, however, it is strongly recommended.

“The reason why you need a properly fit holster is because if you put it in a purse, or briefcase keys, change, maybe an ink pen can get in that trigger mechanism hers. If the purse or briefcase shifts somehow and there’s enough pressure put on the trigger it will discharge,” said Cargill.

The law was backed by the National Rifle Association and other gun supporting organizations.

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