After local politicians prohibited firearms in the Crossroads of the World, officers are duplicating banners announcing Times Square’s gun-free status.
At a City Council meeting on Tuesday focused on securing sensitive locations after the Supreme Court destroyed the state’s concealed carry weapon legislation, Robert Barrows, the NYPD’s executive director of legal operations, held up one of the placards that screamed “GUN FREE ZONE.”
Following the Supreme Court’s June verdict, state lawmakers enacted and Gov. Hochul signed legislation restricting the carrying of concealed guns in high-risk areas such as Times Square, subways, buses, and bars. The new restrictions go into force on Thursday.
Following the decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, City Council members proposed a bill to redefine the Times Square area as a sensitive location this month.
Barrows stated that the state statute and city bill “recognize that Times Square is a congested, complex, and highly traveled place,” noting that more than 360,000 people—nearly the population of Cleveland—pass through it every day.
He also stated that the Police Department has been working to educate officers and the general public on events since the conservative Supreme Court’s verdict.
“There will be signage at every entry point in the zone,” Barrows added.
“This is only temporary.” As predicted, more permanent signage will be posted if this bill becomes law.
He stated that sign placement would commence on Thursday.
The placard further says that “licensed gun carriers and others may not enter with a gun unless otherwise explicitly allowed by law” and that breaking the restriction is a criminal offense.
Before the Supreme Court decision, which marked a historic expansion of federal gun rights into the public arena and overturned a law that had been in place for more than a century, New Yorkers had to demonstrate unique self-defense needs to get concealed carry handgun licenses.
The new state restrictions enacted in the aftermath of the judgment make concealing a crime in sensitive locations such as libraries, polling stations, schools, and entertainment venues.