CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The Charleston Police Department announced on Tuesday that they will shift their response to the brandishing of deadly weapons from their current education-focused model to one of more strict enforcement.
The decision comes “in light of recent events,” according to CPD. “We want to keep people in our community safe, we want to keep the protesters on all sides safe,” says City of Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds.
Reynolds also says tensions “have remained high” since the May 30th riots in Downtown Charleston and that “we’re asking people to leave their guns in their cars, leave them at home, leave them somewhere else, not at the protest itself.”
The Ordinance is found in Section 21-219 of the Charleston Code of Ordinances. It defines ‘brandish’ as “to wave or flourish menacingly, to display ostentatiously, threateningly, angrily, or aggressively” and ‘deadly weapon’ as “any device or object designed, made, or adapted to be used for the purpose of inflicting bodily injury or death, including firearms.”
Under the terms of the Ordinance, it is “unlawful for any person to brandish any deadly weapon to to any person or the public at large within the city limits.”
CPD says that those in non-compliance are subject to arrest. The ordinance notes that in addition to the “penalty as may be imposed by the court, the weapon shall be forfeited to the city, and be destroyed.”