Concealed carry a non-issue in county

Concealed carry a non-issue in county

Since Illinois’ concealed carry law went into effect at the beginning of 2014, the law has not had much of an effect, if any, on Macoupin County law enforcement.

“We’ve had no incidents. Nothing yet at all,” said Macoupin County Sheriff Shawn Kahl.

Asked if his deputies have encountered many people carrying concealed weapons during routine traffic stops, Kahl said, “I don’t think we’ve confronted many at all. Most people getting [the licenses] are law-abiding citizens anyway, so we don’t have much contact with them. You’d think we’d have more problems, but we really don’t, and that’s a good thing. It makes all the criminals think twice.”

As for the concealed carry law itself, Kahl said, “I don’t have a problem with it, as long as everyone stays within the law and does what they’re supposed to do, and uses safety. Safety is the main thing when using weapons.”

According to information available on the Illinois State Police’s concealed carry licensing website, ccl4illinois.com, a total of 91,651 licenses were active in 2014 statewide, including 546 in Macoupin County. No applications were denied or licenses revoked in the county last year; statistics for this year are not yet available.

As of Feb. 23, there are 17 approved concealed carry instructors in Macoupin County. Contact information for each of the instructors is available at ccl4illinois.com/ccw/Public/instructors.aspx.

According to David Carter of Carter Consultation and Training in Carlinville, more than 75 people have taken his concealed carry course since it started being offered early last year, including 15 women. “There was a surge when it first started, but it’s kind of stabilized now,” Carter said.

As for whether or not there is a “typical” person taking the course, Carter said there is not. “It’s pretty much a wide cross-section of our society. We’ve got young, we’ve got old, men, women, all kinds of people.”