OKC Store Owner Says Open Carry Keeps Business Safer
OKLAHOMA CITY - After the Open Carry Law passed, many people compared Oklahoma to the Wild West, but one local business owner says it has actually curbed violence.
The owner of Express Discount Grocery openly carries his gun while serving customers. The store owner has always been security minded. He is also armed with a state-of-the-art surveillance system, security cameras, alarms and reflective mirrors.
Rashid Javed said business is booming since he has "insurance" on his hip.
"For me as a foreigner, it's a little different. In this part of the neighborhood they always say ‘Hey, this is my neighborhood,' and ‘You don't know what kind of area this is.' I was kind of tired of that," Javed said.
Javed said during a year of business, he filed dozens of police reports after receiving countless threats.
"[They said] 'Oh you don't know who I am. You don't know this, you don't know that. I'm going to put a bullet in your head.' Things like that. I am not kidding. That's why I have so many cameras around here."
With so many problems, why won't Javed just pack up?
"This my neighborhood. I will not. I do the business. I create jobs. I have two employees that are from this neighborhood and this is my neighborhood, not theirs," he said.
Most customers say they don't have a problem with Javed openly carrying a weapon.
"I'm not going to try and harm him and he is not going to try and harm me. I'm not tripping. I'm ok with him having a gun. It doesn't bother me," Mark Baker said.
Since Javed began openly carrying on November 1, he says he hasn't had one threat or robbery.