Concealed carry is a reality in Illinois.
The State Police sent out the first round of concealed carry permits last Friday. Around 5,000 residents received their license and about 45,000 more applications are waiting to be approved.
Local law enforcement has the right to review and challenge any application. So far, Jacksonville Police Chief Tony Grootens says his department has not been asked to review applications. Grootens says state police will probably come to his department if a local applicant didn’t clear a limited background check.
“If there’s something in that background that causes either suspicion or clarification they’re going to contact us for [that clarification] if that person lives here,” says Grootens.
He says his officers are getting trained on how to approach a person who may have a concealed firearm with a license.
“If you walk up on a vehicle and the person says ‘I have a license to carry this concealed weapon and I have one’ I want to know that,” says Grootens. “I want to know that immediately and that’s going to put you at ease or more at ease right then and there rather than we find it through other means like a search or something like that. It is going to be different but the state of Illinois has already offered training for the officers.”
Illinois was the last state in the nation to approve concealed carry. The measure was approved last year after the court ruled Illinois had to get a law on the books.