I know I haven’t blogged in a while, however I am now back and I have considered several additional issues that deserve addressing. Among the new issues I have considered was the CCW (Carry Concealed Weapon) permit process in the county of San Diego. In every county the sheriff is responsible for determining the issuance of such permits. It is generally rumored that the larger counties are more critical (and issue less licenses) than the smaller counties. Although, I have often heard this contention I have never personally investigated the statistics for such a proposition. Therefore, I will state that many people have that perception (myself included), but I will refrain from further exploration of that issue because it truly is not germane to the issue here, “how does one obtain a CCW”.
The first concern I would like to actually address is the “why” concern. Why would a person seek to obtain a CCW, and then we will proceed to the “how” does a person obtain such a permit. So why would a person want such a permit? When I first joined the District Attorney’s Office I personally considered obtaining a CCW, permit. Several of my classmates (people who joined the District Attorney’s Office with me) also considered obtaining such permits. I went as far as learning about the process and even going to a gun store and window shopping for a gun. Ultimately, I decided against obtaining the permit.
First, I have to say that I am not anti or pro gun. I am not an extremist in any measure when it comes to gun laws. I do not believe or argue that the Second Amendment should allow for unfettered access to guns for all law abiding citizens. Nor do I advocate for prohibitive gun laws that would prevent otherwise law abiding citizens, who have good cause from obtaining a “CCW” permit. So what does that mean? Well I believe that there should be some checks and balances to insure that unstable individuals are not permitted by the government to carry weapons concealed on their person. If a person has a history of making threats or being psychologically unstable the government should be very critical of their application. However, the majority of people in society do not fall into those two categories.
So why do people seek CCW permits? Some people seek them simply because they like guns and they feel it is their constitutional right to be able to carry a gun. Others seek out permits because they are business owners or are responsible for transporting cash as part of their employment. Some people want to obtain the permit out of fear for their personal safety. They may have been threatened, or live or work in an area where they believe they may be confronted by individuals who will seek to rob or harm them.
The San Diego Sheriffs Department will require an applicant to fall within several categories in order to have a CCW permit issued. The categories include: Protected Law Enforcement, Personal Protection ( with documented threats), Security and Business. These are the general categories of individuals that will be considered for the issuance of a permit. In addition, to falling into one of these categories the Sheriffs department will further consider if the applicant is of (1) good moral character; if the applicant can demonstrate (2) good cause for the issuance of the permit; and (3) proof of residency in the county of San Diego. In addition to meeting these requirements (submitted in your application with documentation), an applicant will further be required to go through an interview process and to successfully complete and pass a class.
What happens if a person decides to carry a concealed weapon without a permit? The carrying of a concealed weapon on your person without a permit is a misdemeanor in the state of California. However, if you have been previously convicted of a felony it is a felony for you to possess a gun concealed on your person or otherwise.