- More than 30 people have reportedly been arrested at Disney World on gun-related charges since 2020.
- According to a new Orlando Sentinel report, that number is seemingly rising each year.
- Disney World has strict rules against firearms at its theme parks, resorts, and other properties.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
According to a new report from the Orlando Sentinel’s Gabrielle Russon, more than 30 people have been arrested for carrying guns at Disney World since 2020.
That number doesn’t include Disney parkgoers with concealed-carry permits who have brought their firearms into Disney’s resorts and other properties without being arrested, according to the publication.
Now, seemingly as a result of the pandemic, political unrest, and more, the number of gun-related arrests at the “Happiest Place on Earth” seems to be on the rise.
According to sheriff’s reports obtained by the Orlando Sentinel through public records requests, at least 20 people were arrested for bringing guns onto Disney property in 2020.
Though that number is extremely small compared to the millions who visit Disney World each year, as the publication points out, it’s still a large jump from the four gun-related arrests that happened at Disney World in 2016.
And by the end of 2021, the number of gun-related arrests at Disney World will likely exceed last year’s precedent. According to Russon’s report, at least 14 people have been arrested for concealing guns at the Orlando, Florida, theme park between January and April of this year, with approximately 75% of those happening at the Disney Springs shopping center.
The increasing number of gun-related arrests over the past five years, according to the Orlando Sentinel, is seemingly the result of rising gun sales in the US, which was spurred by the pandemic and recent political unrest.
As the publication points out, Disney World has also increased its security screenings in recent years, likely leading to more discoveries of guns.
According to Disney World’s website, all “persons, bags, parcels, clothing, and other items” are subject to security checks and screenings. Similarly, the theme park says it reserves the right “not to allow” any item it chooses in its theme parks.
“Firearms, ammunition, knives, and weapons of any kind are prohibited,” the Disney World website states.
However, the rules against firearms don’t necessarily equal arrests. According to the Orlando Sentinel, “visitors with concealed carry permits aren’t typically arrested if they bring guns to Disney.”
In October 2020, for example, a man brought an AR-15 and handgun to Disney World’s Polynesian Village Resort, reportedly out of fear of the Black Lives Matter protests happening in Florida at that time. According to the Orlando Sentinel, the man was not arrested, and Disney World stored his guns until the end of his vacation.
Representatives for Disney World did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.