Two recent mass shooting have brought the debate over guns to the forefront of the national conversation once again.
Karl Jegeris speaks on guns
And then earlier this week, a heavily armed man with more than 100 rounds of ammunition and body armor created panic when he walked through a Walmart in Springfield, Missouri.
In most cases, it is legal to open carry a gun here in South Dakota.
Rapid City Police Chief Karl Jegeris says that can cause misunderstandings or unnecessary alarm at times.
Jegeris says, "We do get calls from the public alerting us to someone carrying a firearm in a public space. And we have tempered our staff to be careful, to have balance in those responses because, on the one hand, there could be a public safety concern. And on the other hand, it could be someone simply exercising their right to carry."
Jegeris says they do field calls from citizens concerned about people with guns in public.
He says, "We have had a couple of incidents where a person has purposely open carrying kind of in a flaunting type of way to see what the public reaction would be. And sometimes they're seeking an argument with members of the public. Sometimes they're even seeking an argument with our officers And our officers are prepared to deal with that and to diffuse it as quickly as possible."
Jegeris says there are circumstances where, even though it's legal to carry, it may not be the best etiquette to open carry. Jegeris says it's important to remember that carrying a gun onto school property is never legal unless you are law enforcement or a school sentinel.