Bill proposes changes to penalties for shooting a gun on school property in Alabama

ALABAMA (WHNT) — If Gov. Kay Ivey signs House Bill 34, the legislation would change the level of offense for any adult who fires a gun on school property.

Sponsored by Rep. Tracy Estes (R-Winfield), HB34 passed the House unanimously before moving to the Senate 31-0. Bill is now heading to Governor Ivey’s office.

Under current Alabama law, anyone who shoots a firearm in a unoccupied the school bus or building is guilty of a Class C felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Anyone who shoots at a school bus or a building with people inside is guilty of a Class B felonypunishable by 20 years in prison.

HB34 would add the following changes:

  • Anyone who fires or discharges a firearm during school hours or during extracurricular activities may be punished with a Class B felony.
  • In addition to the above parameters, anyone who fires or discharges a firearm on school property would be guilty of Class C felony.
  • If someone is deemed justified in their use of physical force, they would not be guilty.
  • Practicing for a performance by an organized group under a 501(c)(3) status, school-sanctioned event, or competition would also not apply.
  • Anyone under the age of 19 would not be in violation of this article.

According to, Sen. Will Barfoot (R-Pike Road) responded to a question from Sen. Rodger Smitherman, D-Birmingham, saying that while the bill doesn’t include anything about intent, he thinks it does. should be part of it. legislation, using examples of teachers or school resource officers accidentally discharging a firearm.

You can read the full bill and proposed changes here.

If enacted, HB34 will take effect on the first day of the third month following its adoption and approval by Governor Ivey.


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