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All Press Releases for January 10, 2014 »
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New concealed weapons law raising many questions in Illinois

The new conceal and carry weapons law in Illinois has led to many officials expressing concern over permitted or prohibited activities.
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    January 10, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Illinois recently became the last state in the country to pass conceal and carry laws. These laws will allow residents to carry concealed weapons as long as they receive a permit from the state. In order to be eligible under the law, applicants must comply with several requirements, including undergoing 16 hours of firearms training, as well as a background check.

The Illinois State Police, the agency that will process these requests, expects that more than 400,000 people will apply for one of these permits. They are required by law to have the application processed within 90 days. The ISP expects to begin issuing its first permits in mid-January.

Critics of the law feel that there is too much uncertainty over where individuals will be allowed to carry concealed weapons. The statute lists several places where people will be restricted from carrying firearms, including government buildings, schools, parks, child care facilities, airports, hospitals and sports arenas. Individuals are also not allowed to carry weapons on their persons on mass transit; however, they may carry their weapon in a bag or other type of container. Property owners are required to post signs if they do not allow concealed weapons on their premises.

There is also some concern from law enforcement about when some of these restrictions will apply. For example, individuals are not allowed to carry weapons in areas where large groups of people are assembled, such as parades or other large neighborhood gatherings. But, if these individuals are just traveling through the event to get home or to access their vehicles, they may be allowed to be carrying a weapon. It depends entirely upon the circumstances regarding what the individual is doing in that area at that time.

With this law being so confusing, it is expected that it will take some time for law enforcement to be able to figure out which activities are permitted under the statute.

Those who carry a concealed weapon without a permit could be charged with weapons violations. First-time offenders could see 180 days in jail, and repeat offenders could see this time increase to one year. High fines are also possible, and in some cases, some individuals with repeat violations will no longer be allowed to have concealed and carry and weapons permits.

If you have questions about the concealed weapons laws in Illinois, or if you have been charged with a weapons-related offense, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can answer your questions, and review your situation to learn of any possible defenses that could potentially be used in your case.

Article provided by Polinske & Associates, P.C.
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