Gun-Rights Group's Demonstration Leads to Arrests

Incidents in Arlington, State Capitol, draw attention

By Scott Gordon
|  Tuesday, Nov 12, 2013  |  Updated 12:30 AM CDT
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Some members of Come and Take It Tarrant County, a subgroup of Open Carry Texas, were involved in a confrontation with state troopers at the Texas Capitol on Veterans Day.

Scott Gordon, NBC 5 News

Some members of Come and Take It Tarrant County, a subgroup of Open Carry Texas, were involved in a confrontation with state troopers at the Texas Capitol on Veterans Day.

Two gun rights activists were arrested Monday at the State Capitol -- just two days after a separate incident in Arlington involving a mother's gun control group.

In Arlington on Saturday, leaders of the group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America said four mothers were meeting at a Lincoln Square restaurant. They say they were surprised when members of a gun-rights group showed up in the parking lot outside with weapons in hand.

The activists said they were demonstrating their constitutional right to bear arms.

"Us here in Texas, we won't have this, man," said Kory Watkins of Mansfield, who leads the group Come and Take It Tarrant County. "'Shall not infringe' means one thing -- it (the right to bear arms) shall not be infringed."

The mothers said they were holed up in the restaurant for two hours until the activists left.

"I have five children, so I'm familiar with temper tantrums," said Shannon Watts, leader of the mothers' group, in an interview on MSNBC. "This does not faze us. It's not going to stop our conversations. This has to happen, and change will come. It's unfortunate that they feel the need to use guns to try to intimidate and bully."

Police were called but made no arrests, said Arlington police spokeswoman Tiara Richard.

On Veterans Day, some members of the same gun-rights group were involved in a confrontation with state troopers at the Texas Capitol.

Video posted by the group shows them marching up to the steps of the Capitol with what appeared to be pistols and long guns.

"This could get interesting really quick," one of them said.

State troopers approached.

"You all need to take the weapons off the grounds, please," a trooper said.

"No, sir, we're not breaking any laws," one of the men responded.

Troopers arrested two of the activists on trespassing charges.

Watkins said they were carrying toy guns and their arrests were improper.

"Thugs with badges," one of the activists is heard shouting on the video after the arrests.

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