Open Carrying of Firearms in Florida

Criminal charges for Open Carrying of Weapons in Florida are charged under Florida Statute Section 790.053. The Clerk of Court in Hillsborough County, at the courthouse in Tampa, FL, uses the following code for the charge on the docket:


Under subsection (1) of Section 790.053, it is unlawful for any person to openly carry on or about his or her person any firearm or electric weapon or device.

It is not a violation of Section 790.053 for a person licensed to carry a concealed firearm as provided in s. 790.06(1), and who is lawfully carrying a firearm in a concealed manner, to briefly and openly display the firearm to the ordinary sight of another person, unless the firearm is intentionally displayed in an angry or threatening manner, not in necessary self-defense.

Under subsection (2), a person may openly carry, for purposes of lawful self-defense:

  • a self-defense chemical spray; or
  • a nonlethal stun gun or dart-firing stun gun or other nonlethal electric weapon or device that is designed solely for defensive purposes.

Under subsection (3), any person violating this section commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable by up to six (6) months in jail and a $500 fine, as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

Attorney for Open Carry Crimes in Tampa, FL

If you were charged with a violation of Florida law related to openly carrying a firearm under Section 790.053, F.S., then contact an experienced firearm defense attorney in Tampa, FL, at Sammis Law Firm.

Our attorneys represent people with a license to carry a concealed firearm as provided in s. 790.06(1). We also represent clients who are charged with carrying a concealed firearm.

If you were charged with a crime in Tampa, Hillsborough County, or the surrounding Tampa Bay areas, then contact us to discuss the case.

Call 813-250-0500.

Can You Seal or Expunge the Open Carrying of a Firearm Charge?

Can you seal or expunge a charge for open carrying of a weapon under Section 790.053? If the open carrying of a weapon under s. 790.053 is dropped or dismissed, then you might be eligible to expunge the record, but only if you have no other convictions in Florida that would disqualify you for this type of relief.

On the other hand, if you are “convicted” of open carrying of a weapon under s. 790.053, then you will never be eligible to seal or expunge that record.

In fact, although most misdemeanor convictions will not prevent you from sealing or expunging another qualified criminal history record, even a misdemeanor “conviction” for open carrying of a weapon under Section 790.053 is particularly serious because it will automatically prohibit you from ever being eligible to seal or expunge any other record in Florida.

For this reason, it is important to avoid a “conviction” by getting the court to withhold adjudication. If you get a withhold of adjudication and successfully complete probation, then you might be eligible to seal the record.

If you have questions about whether you can seal or expunge an arrest record after an arrest for weapon or firearm charges then contact the criminal defense attorneys at Sammis Law Firm in Tampa, FL.

This article was last updated on Friday, May 6, 2022.