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Picture of man carrying rifle in JCPenney goes viral

By Courtney Orton | Posted - Jan 18th, 2013 @ 7:41pm


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RIVERDALE — The gun debate continues to rage, and one man has gained a lot of attention. A picture of him wearing a rifle inside the Riverdale JC Penney has gone viral.

The picture received more than 10,000 comments on the KSL Facebook page with people wondering who the man is and why he carried a rifle into a public store.

The man is Joseph Kelley, and he says he did it to show that weapons aren't that bad, but he didn't expect this type of reaction.

Cindy Yorgason took the picture while she was waiting in line to return an item at JC Penney on Thursday. She saw him and noticed other people looking at him, so she snapped a picture on her cell phone. She posted the picture on her Facebook page and people went crazy.

Yorgason says she never felt threatened by the man, but believes a place like JC Penney is an inappropriate place to bring a weapon.

"There are just other ways that are a better way to take a stance," Yorgason said.

Other people that commented on the picture had different opinions about the man carrying his rifle in public. Joe Herbalist says that the right to bear arms shall not be infringed. He also says that he is a peace abiding citizen.

Mike Ford says, "If he's going to carry his weapon around he needs to be mindful about not just his own safety, but others around him."

Kelley was not asked to leave the store, and he was not arrested. Riverdale police said that they never received one phone call about the man being in the store with a gun.

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