Publix asks customers not to openly carry guns in stores

Announcement comes after similar policies by stores in states where it's legal

PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. – A Florida-based supermarket chain has joined the growing list of stores requesting that customers not openly carry guns in states where it is legal to do so.

"Publix respectfully requests that only law enforcement officials openly carry firearms in our stores," the Lakeland-based grocer said Wednesday in a statement to Local 10 News.

Although Florida is not an open-carry state, Publix operates in states that allow the open carrying of a firearm in public, to some degree, including Alabama and North Carolina.

The policy comes on the heels of other U.S. retailers and stores asking customers not to openly carry guns in states where it is allowed, following recent mass shootings in California, Texas and Ohio.

CVS and Walgreens were among the stores to announce the new policies. Target has had such a policy since 2014.

About the Author:

Peter Burke

Peter Burke returned for a second stint of duty at Local 10 News in February 2014. He graduated from Florida State University and previously worked at Local 10 from 2005-08.