A San Antonio man said he was unlawfully arrested for openly carrying an antique pistol on the grounds of the state capital last week.
Scott Smith, a local gun rights activist, was one of three men arrested by DPS troopers outside the capitol on Friday during an open carry rally.
"I was perfectly legal in what I was doing," Smith said. "I had no intentions of being arrested."
But that's exactly what happened to Smith Friday morning when he walked onto the state capitol grounds with an unloaded AR-15 slung across his back and a pistol holstered on his hip.
Smith was quickly surrounded by three DPS troopers who gave him a chance to put his guns away. When he refused, they arrested him for disorderly conduct.
Smith was at the capitol for an open carry rally. He and two other men were openly carrying replica black powder pistols.
Smith said under the state's concealed handgun license law, those guns aren't considered firearms and are exempt from the law and therefor can be carried openly.
But in an arrest affidavit, the trooper stated Smith was "seen walking at a fast pace" and "the presence and manner in which he was carrying the weapons alarmed" the trooper.
"It was on my hip, I had it locked down, and it wasn't threatening or alarming anybody," Smith said. "(Troopers) didn't seem alarmed to me, but that's the same charge they used on all 3 of us that were arrested that day."
Smith said he was just trying to start a dialogue and educate people about their rights. He said the only people breaking the law that day were the DPS troopers.
"They illegally detained and arrested me and they kept me against my rights," Smith said.
Smith was held in jail for about 12 hours and had all of his guns confiscated. He said it could take up to 2 years to get them back.
Even so, he said he'd do it all over again to stand up for his rights, something he plans to do next month at another Open Carry Texas rally scheduled to take place near the Alamo.
In the meantime, Smith plans to fight his Class B misdemeanor charge in court his first court date is set for September 27th.