Last year, the Clinton Police Department processed 83 applications for pistol permits. That averaged to about 7 a month for 2012.
This past month, January of 2013, the department processed 16. That's more than double seen on average for each month of the preceding year.
"There's definitely been an increase since December," said Chief of Police Todd Lawrie. "We are on track to see our highest year ever."
Not only have applications increased in the last month, they have increased in the last several years. In 2005, there were a total of 15 permits processed. In 2011, there were 53 processed.
Since the December 14 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, there have been 21 applications for permits submitted to the CPD.
As the chief explained, one can apply for a temporary pistol permit through the police department in the town where you reside or work.
You fill out the application and include a certificate that you completed an approved course in handgun use and safety by a certified instructor, two fingerprint cards, copies of your license, and copy of naturalization papers, if applicable.
On the application, one must answer the following questions:
- Have you had a firearms permit or application for any jurisdiction in the U.S. denied, suspended or revoked?
- Have you been confined in a hospital for mental illness in the past 12 months by order of a Probate Court?
- Have you been discharged from custody within the past 20 years after having been found not guilty of a crime by reason of a mental eisease or defect?
- Have you ever been arrested for any crime in any jurisdiction?
- Have you ever been convicted under the laws of this state, federal law or the laws of another jurisdiction?
- Are you currently on probation, parole, work release, in an alcohol and/or drug treatment program or other pre-trial diversionary program? Are you released on person recognizance, a written promise to appear or a bail bond for a pending court case?
- Have you ever been the subject of a protective order or restraining order by a court in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person, regardless of the outcome?
- Were you ever discharged from the Armed Forces of the U.S. with a less than honorable discharge?
A background investigation is done by the CPD among other checks. If a temporary permit is issued, you go before the State of CT Department of Public Safety for the issuance of a five year permit.
Chief Lawrie said it's no doubt that issuing temporary permits places a burden on the department due to the amount of work involved such as records queries, verifications of information, personal interviews, employer and neighborhood checks and other checks.
The chief said his department denies about five percent of all applications, usually because the applicant forgot to disclose a long-ago arrest or incident that is on their record.
The cost of the application process is $66.50 to the state plus $70 to the CPD. Plus there are costs associated with your certified training and other smaller costs for copies of documents.