Kern says she didn't mean to take pistol into state Capitol

By John Greiner Published: July 24, 2008
State Rep. Sally Kern says she's an "outdoors girl” who's done some shooting but didn't intend to bring her pistol into the state Capitol on Wednesday.

Kern, who made national headlines earlier this year when she said the homosexual agenda is the biggest threat facing this country, said she was in a hurry and didn't realize she had her pistol in her purse.

She got no farther than the Capitol security station with her pistol Wednesday.

"I was pulling up to park ... hurried out of my car.”

Kern, an Oklahoma City Republican, said she is "out of the habit of being at the Capitol” since the Legislature adjourned in May.

"I had a meeting at 10 a.m.,” she said.

Kern put her purse on the conveyor belt to be X-rayed by security equipment.

As it went through, one of the security people said, "Rep. Kern ... ,” and that was when she realized her pistol was in her purse, Kern said.

Not the first time
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Was it special treatment?
Asked how other people would be treated if they brought a pistol to the Capitol, Capt. Chris West said troopers have to weigh all the facts.

It's like a traffic stop. No traffic stop is the same, he said.

"We can't have a one-size-fits-all answer for this. I can assure you, when this happens, troopers and supervisors are involved.”

People have been hauled to jail for bringing a weapon, he said.

There have been some instances where others were turned away from the Capitol, but West said he doesn't know whether they were public officials, state employees or visitors.

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