Concealed weapons, the process revealed
HUGHESVILLE-“There was a run on handguns; we were left with only a half-dozen in our shop,” said Sherry Feigles after the 2012 shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School. When 2013 came to an end, Lycoming County, in that year alone, had issued 4,385 licenses to carry firearms, concealed carry permits. And the numbers continued strong with 3,416 permits in 2014 and 3,738 in 2015.
The Sheriff’s Department says applications for the permits spiked after the shootings in Paris and California, and increased again this month with the President talking about executive action on gun control.
Sherry Feigles and her sister, Pam Aderhold, own and operate Dixie’s Gun Shop in Hughesville and Sherry says handguns now account for more than 60 percent of sales at their large firearms store. Her husband, Jim Feigles has been involved with the gun shop for 35 years, and he says there has been another breakthrough in the firearms market. “More and more women have been buying handguns in the past three years, and I don’t see that changing in the near future,” he said. “They want small handguns for protection,” Sherry added, “and they are single, married, young, and seniors.”
According to the Feigles, customers coming to the shop want to know what is available and “how does it work.” The shopper is quickly put at ease, made comfortable as the Feigles’ explain the character of each gun and suggest what is best for the buyer’s use. For example, one female wanted a handgun for protection walking back from her night shift in a stark parking lot.
The Feigles will guide you through the selection until you know everything you want to know, and what you should know about the gun, reported an anonymous customer.
Once a decision is made, a state and a federal form are required to be completed which will be processed at the store, a procedure that will take about a half-hour, or less. “When you are cleared, you can walk out of the shop with your gun.”
But, there is more. The Feigles will push hard for training and provide all customers with a long list of shooting instructors, training practice centers, indoor and outdoor shooting ranges.
The next stop is with the Sheriff’s office to apply for the ‘concealed carry permit.’ The application is available online at the Lycoming County Government Web Site, or at the Sheriff’s office for the forms.
Officials recommend an in-person visit to the office where the procedure will be thoroughly explained. Two references are required, and a twenty dollar fee for the permit that is good for five-years. When cleared by the state, the Sheriff will send notification to be photographed before providing the permit to legally carry a gun.
These are the mandatory requirements to enable someone to carry a weapon, concealed, for self-protection purposes.
In 2015 there were 839,603 gun applications filed in Pennsylvania according to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.