LAS VEGAS (KSNV News3LV) — A Las Vegas mother of three carrying a handgun was handcuffed inside a public library and now she's suing.
It happened March 16 on the west side of the Las Vegas Valley and the incident is raising questions about gun laws here in Nevada.
It's a debate that involves a woman named Michelle Flores. She says it's safer to bring her gun inside the library than leave it in her car. The scene played out at the Rainbow Library at Cheyenne and Buffalo.
"Michelle Flores, a home-schooling mother of three, walked into the library and had a holstered firearm on her hip," explained Jeff Barr, Flores' attorney.
Flores and her three young children browsed the books for about an hour.
"As she was leaving, a security guard stopped her," explained Barr. "She was between the double doors and he said, 'hey you can't bring firearms in the library.' She said, 'I have a constitutional right to do so.'"
Barr gave News 3 the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Report.
The report states the officer agreed with Flores but let her know that the library had asked her to leave. He said by not leaving, she was subject to citation or arrest, and eventually she was put in handcuffs and cited for trespassing.
The Clark County Las Vegas Library District oversees all of the local libraries.
"The Library District was utterly in the wrong. It does not have the power to regulate firearms," said Barr.
Under Nevada law, you can openly carry a weapon into a library.
However, concealed weapons are not allowed, only if the library posts a sign.
The Rainbow Library has a sign posted on the glass doors.
The sign says "No Firearms Allowed" which contradicts state law.
News 3 asked people coming and going from the library what they think about guns in libraries.
"They're as much as a protection as they are a deterrent to people who come in and want to shoot things up," said Karen Perez.
"I don't find arming more people in public places would create a safer environment. I think it creates a more dangerous environment," said Chrisie Negrin.
Flores won't be checking out books anytime soon.
"She's been banned from the library for 12 months," explained Barr.
That is why Flores is suing the Library District. She wants to be allowed back in the library.
It's a complicated battle that will now play out in a courtroom.
An attorney for the Library District told News 3 she can't comment on pending litigation.
The case is expected to go before a judge Tuesday morning at the Regional Justice Center in downtown Las Vegas.