Caddo Parish gun proposal concerns hunting community

Caddo Parish gun proposal concerns hunting community

CADDO PARISH, LA (KSLA) - A proposed parish ordinance that could impact where it is legal to shoot firearms in Caddo Parish has many hunters worried. The proposal has been a hot topic within the hunting community and would ban the shooting of a certain guns within a mile of a subdivision.

Some believe it will take away their gun rights, like Hosie Thomas, the owner of a family-run butcher shop.

The skill of processing meat was passed down to Thomas from his father and now he's passing it on to his sons.

"I'm doing this solely for my children," he said.  But the recently proposed Caddo Parish ordinance has him fearing the worst for his business, that depends on processing deer meat for hunters. "We simply might have to close our doors," he said.

The ordinance sponsored by Commissioner David Cox would make it illegal to fire a .17 caliber gun within one mile of a subdivision. A subdivison is considered a neighborhood with 5 or more lots filed on record at the courthouse.

"I alone with some concerned people are proposing a 1,000 yard buffer around plated areas that is registered as subdivisions with the Caddo Court house and with in the 5 mile MPC," Commissioner Cox said in a statement. "This simply put, if you're in the woods near the city of Shreveport and there is a subdivision you need to be over 1,000 yards away before you are shooting," he said.

Thomas doesn't agree with the idea.

"The government is trying to tell us what to do on our property," Thomas said.

Caddo Commissioner Doug Dominick asked for the idea to be talked over in a committee first before it is voted on.

"I had some concerns when it was initially brought up about any possible adverse affects, that it may have on people hunting or using guns in the rural areas of the parish," he said and explained he has been flooded with calls and emails from constituents about the topic.

But Cox explained, his reason for the ordinance is purely for safety reasons. According to Cox, he's received complaints about people shooting high powered guns in woods close to neighborhoods that border the city.

"Some homeowners have heard shots fired then see the beams from the gun running along their house," Cox said.

"If we don't look into this ordinance and take a better look at it, and put teeth into it, somebody is going to get hurt," he said at the August 31 Caddo Commission work session.

Still, Thomas is concerned the idea will discourage hunters.

"This is how they get their food, they bring it into us and we take care of it," he said.

"I'm not saying you can't shoot or hunt in Caddo Parish," said Cox. "What I'm saying we need a little bit of consideration from those in the woods that border the city."

The ordinance will be discussed in the property standards committee after the commission's work session next Monday.

There are a few exceptions to this proposed ordinance, some of those include: shooting BB guns, shotguns or pellet guns.

To read a full list of exceptions, click here to read the full ordinance. 

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