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Posted: 4/14/2008 4:07:32 AM EDT
Virginia Grants 60% More Permits For Guns
Concealed-Carry Surge Tied to Va. Tech Killings

By Tom Jackman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 12, 2008; Page B01


The number of Virginians who obtained a permit to carry a concealed weapon jumped 60 percent last year over 2006, an increase that many gun experts say was a reaction to the fatal shootings of 32 students and professors at Virginia Tech.

In Northern Virginia, the numbers were much the same. In Fairfax County, there were 2,471 concealed-carry permits issued in 2007, a 64 percent increase. In Prince William County, the number rose to 1,636, a nearly 59 percent gain. In Loudoun, the number of permits issued was 962, a 52 percent increase.

People applying for a concealed-weapon permit do not have to explain why they want one. But most experts think the Virginia Tech shootings, in which a heavily armed student met no resistance as he went from classroom to classroom firing, could explain the sudden increase in applications.

Some gun rights supporters noted that the university had lobbied against legislation that would have required colleges to honor concealed-carry permits.

"They wanted to create an environment where students and faculty can feel safe," said Joel Kliesen, manager of the Dominion Shooting Range in Richmond. "A lot of folks would rather be safe than feel safe."

The shooting incidents in turn create more publicity about gun-related issues and probably inspire more people to arm themselves, gun control supports said. Both gun-control activists and members of law enforcement noted that those people who take the time to get a permit are largely law-abiding and unlikely to commit a crime.

Gun stores report increased sales and increased participation in training classes. Completing a firearms safety class as well as a background check are prerequisites for obtaining a concealed weapons permit in Virginia. Permits are issued by the state's circuit courts and are good for five years, but they can be renewed if there is no good cause to refuse the renewal.

"More people are wanting guns," said Robert Jensen, a salesman at Virginia Arms in Manassas. "They're not believing the myth that guns cause crime. It's like saying flies cause trash. We've got more people doing competitive shooting and more people taking defensive training, and that's all around the gun industry."

The number of people approved to carry concealed weapons in Virginia has gone up and down in recent years. In 2002, a year after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the number of permits granted went up almost 100 percent, from about 15,000 to more than 30,000. But the annual number soon drifted down into the 20,000s until 2007, when it shot up to 43,927. The rise was first reported yesterday in the Virginian-Pilot newspaper.

State police said that more than 152,000 people currently hold valid concealed-carry permits. In addition to concealed carrying, openly carrying a weapon is legal in Virginia and is done regularly by gun rights activists.

"People are realizing that it's not just crazy people out there carrying guns, it's everyday people," said Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League. "The stigma that developed in the '80s and '90s about guns, that's died down tremendously."

Van Cleave pointed out that student groups that favor concealed-carry laws on college campuses have grown rapidly, first after Virginia Tech and then again after the shooting at Northern Illinois University in February. A student group at George Mason University in Fairfax is working for the right to carry concealed guns there.

James Plowman, the commonwealth's attorney of Loudoun County, noted that Virginia is "the opposite of D.C., where everybody who's carrying a gun is either a police officer or a criminal" because of laws largely prohibiting gun ownership. "That restriction hasn't really helped out their crime situation much. All you're doing is hamstringing the people who want to protect themselves."

Ladd Everitt, spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, said Virginia had not done enough to keep guns out of criminals' hands in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings. "I think what we should be more concerned about is the next Cho can still get guns," referring to Seung Hui Cho, the Virginia Tech gunman.

Kliesen said he saw greatly increased interest in guns for self-defense after the Harvey family was killed at home on New Year's Day 2006 in Richmond. "A lot of folks are realizing that, as much as the police would like to be there," Kliesen said, "the only person you can guarantee will be there if you're ever victimized by a criminal is . . . you."

Link Posted: 4/14/2008 10:46:02 AM EDT
SO - afrcom members: do you have your permit? If not, then why not?

-we can send you info on a class near you in the near future. Just ask here.
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 11:00:15 AM EDT
I have a FL CCL that I use here in VA.  My wife will not allow me to buy more than one pistol a month so that is fine with me.  I do like the AR I just bought with a Flare Launcher though and was told I can buy as many rifles as I want.  

My wife is getting a VA CCW here in June does that count?  She wants a new gun that is not a Khar.  She says it just sucks.
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 11:24:02 AM EDT
Submitted my application a little while ago... I honestly don't remember when... so I have no idea as to whether or not I'm close to the 45-day mark.

Link Posted: 4/14/2008 11:27:35 AM EDT
My company has seen an increase this past month in the firearms safety classes that we do for people wanting permits. Our other class on concealed carry info has been especially popular as well.

I'm sure that it doesnt hurt either that we have the best price in town.  :)
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 11:57:32 AM EDT
I wish I knew what city you are in because I might just go for the fun of it.  I like training courses.
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 1:31:33 PM EDT
sorry, guess I should have said the city, We're in Richmond (Henrico County).
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 2:16:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CBR900:
SO - afrcom members: do you have your permit? If not, then why not?

-we can send you info on a class near you in the near future. Just ask here.



 I was going to take a class at Quantico, but... well, I really don't know what happened to all the classes, but it does not seem like thy are coming back.

Any recommendations in and around Loudoun?

Link Posted: 4/14/2008 2:22:01 PM EDT

James Plowman, the commonwealth's attorney of Loudoun County, noted that Virginia is "the opposite of D.C., where everybody who's carrying a gun is either a police officer or a criminal" because of laws largely prohibiting gun ownership. "That restriction hasn't really helped out their crime situation much. All you're doing is hamstringing the people who want to protect themselves."

Ladd Everitt, spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, said Virginia had not done enough to keep guns out of criminals' hands in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings. "I think what we should be more concerned about is the next Cho can still get guns," referring to Seung Hui Cho, the Virginia Tech gunman.

Kliesen said he saw greatly increased interest in guns for self-defense after the Harvey family was killed at home on New Year's Day 2006 in Richmond. "A lot of folks are realizing that, as much as the police would like to be there," Kliesen said, "the only person you can guarantee will be there if you're ever victimized by a criminal is . . . you."



Two out of three people that get it...  Some one needs to buy Ladd a clue.
Link Posted: 4/14/2008 2:31:49 PM EDT
You can come to Richmond and take ours if you'd like.
Link Posted: 4/15/2008 4:33:13 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/16/2008 4:01:19 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/16/2008 4:01:37 AM EDT by UNIT6639]
Well, someone better tell crooks and criminals that Va people's are 60 to 64% more likely to be armed and put one in them if they dont play their cards right!
Link Posted: 4/16/2008 8:14:17 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CBR900:
SO - afrcom members: do you have your permit? If not, then why not?

-we can send you info on a class near you in the near future. Just ask here.


Just dropped off the paperwork for mine this morning at the clerks office
Link Posted: 4/16/2008 8:29:56 AM EDT
height=8
Originally Posted By slanted:
height=8
Originally Posted By CBR900:
SO - afrcom members: do you have your permit? If not, then why not?

-we can send you info on a class near you in the near future. Just ask here.



hinking.gif  I was going to take a class at Quantico, but... well, I really don't know what happened to all the classes, but it does not seem like thy are coming back. hrough
Piedmont NRA Instructors


The classes were located in Chantilly near Rt 28 and Rt 50, the pistol range at Blue Ridge Arsenal, across the street, was used after the class to prove you could hit the target.

Anyway, I completed the course, filled out the form including any tattoos or scars, went to the Loudoun sheriff's office for the background check which took 30 minutes of waiting.  Took the provided paperwork to the courthouse in downtown Leesburg and filed and paid the 40 bucks.  Waited 40 odd days and got my permit.  Easy as pie.

By the way, that finger prints are now captured digitally where no ink is involved.
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