University Policy 91
Weapons on Campus

Administering Office: University Police
Approved by Executive Council: December 12, 2005
Posted: December 16, 2005
Revised: November 18, 2013
Policy Topic:  Governance and Administration
Administering Office:  Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance; University Police

I.  POLICY STATEMENT

It is the policy of Western Carolina University (the "University") to provide a safe and secure working and learning environment in furtherance of its mission and in compliance with North Carolina law pertaining to the possession of Weapons on its property.

II. SCOPE AND APPLICATION OF POLICY

This policy applies to all University students, employees, agents, contractors, and any other persons visiting University Property.

III. DEFINITIONS

"Handgun" means a firearm that has a short stock and is designed to be held and fired by the use of a single hand.

"Switchblade knife" means a knife containing a blade that opens automatically by the release of a spring or a similar contrivance.

"University Property" means any building or facility, campus, instructional site, grounds, recreational areas, athletic fields or any other property owned, leased, used or operated by the University and/or its Endowment Fund.

"University Vehicle" means any University owned or operated automobile, truck, bus, van, shuttle, golf cart or all-terrain vehicle.

"Weapon" means –

A gun, rifle, pistol, or other firearm of any kind;
A dynamite cartridge, bomb, grenade, mine, or other powerful explosive;
A BB gun, stun gun, air rifle or air pistol;
A bowie knife, dirk or dagger;
A slingshot or leaded cane;
A Switchblade Knife;
A blackjack or metallic knuckles;
Razors and razor blades (except solely for personal shaving);
Shuriken;
Firework; or
Any sharp-pointed or edged instrument except instructional supplies, unaltered nail files and clips and tools used solely for preparation of food, instruction, and maintenance

IV. GENERAL PROHIBITION AGAINST POSSESSION OF WEAPONS ON CAMPUS

In North Carolina it is unlawful for any person to knowingly possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, any Weapon on/in University Property or in a University Vehicle, except as specifically provided in Sections V, VI, and VII below.

It is also unlawful for any person to cause, encourage or aid a minor who is less than 18 years old to possess or carry, whether openly or concealed, any Weapon on/in University Property or in a University Vehicle.

V. EXCEPTIONS REGARDING CONCEALED HANDGUNS

A. University Employee's Residence

The general prohibition set forth in Section IV above does not apply to an employee of the University who resides on/in University Property when all of the following criteria are met: (1) the employee's residence is a detached, single-family dwelling in which only the employee and his/her immediate family reside; and (2) the Weapon is a Handgun; and (3) the Handgun is possessed in one of the following manners --

(i) if the employee has a valid concealed Handgun permit, the Handgun may be in the employee's residence or in a closed compartment or container within the employee's locked vehicle that is parked on University Property. Except for direct transfer between the residence and the vehicle, the Handgun must remain at all times either in the employee's residence or in the closed compartment of the employee's locked vehicle;

or

(ii) ) if the employee does not have a valid concealed Handgun permit, the Handgun may be in the employee's residence and may only be in the employee's vehicle when the vehicle is occupied by the employee as he/she is leaving University Property or returning to the residence from off campus. The employee may possess the Handgun outside of his/her residence when making a direct transfer of the Handgun from the residence to the employee's vehicle immediately prior to leaving University Property, or when making a direct transfer from the employee's vehicle to the residence upon return to campus.

B. Locked Vehicles

The general prohibition set forth in Section IV above does not apply to a person –

(i) who is exempt under North Carolina law (NCGS §14-415.25) because he/she is a law enforcement officer or a qualified retired law enforcement officer under state and federal law; or

(ii) who has a valid North Carolina concealed Handgun permit and has his/her Handgun in a closed compartment or container within that person's locked vehicle or in a locked container securely affixed to the vehicle.

A person may unlock his/her vehicle to enter or exit the vehicle; provided, however, that the Handgun must remain in the closed compartment at all times and the vehicle must be locked immediately after entering or exiting the vehicle.

VI. EXCEPTIONS REGARDING ARMED FORCES AND LAW ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL

The general prohibition set forth in Section IV above does not apply to armed forces personnel and sworn law enforcement officers, and others listed in North Carolina General Statutes §14-269(b).

VII. EXCEPTIONS REGARDING EDUCATIONAL AND CEREMONIAL PURPOSES

The general prohibition set forth in Section IV above does not apply to Weapons used solely for educational, theatrical or ceremonial purposes. Individuals who wish to possess or carry a Weapon on University Property for these excepted purposes must obtain the prior written approval first from the responsible faculty member or event sponsor, and then from the Chief of University Police.

VIII. POLICY REVIEW

This policy shall be reviewed and revised as necessary every four (4) years.

IX. RELATED POLICIES AND RESOURCES

EMERGENCY NUMBERS

  • Jackson County Emergency: 911
  • University Police Department / Emergency: 8-911
 

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