South Dakota counties report record gun permits issued - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

South Dakota counties report record gun permits issued

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Monday marks one month since a young man opened fire in a Newtown, Connecticut elementary school.

In the difficult days since, the topic of gun violence has been has been at the forefront of american discourse, with many lawmakers promising meaningful action to curb gun violence.

Meanwhile, guns and ammunition have been flying off the shelves, and in many South Dakota counties, new gun permits are at a ten-year high.

In Davison County, 481 pistol permits were issued in 2012, with 73 in December alone.

That's compared to 285 in 2002.

Brown County has already issued 82 permits this year.

KSFY News spoke with Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead this afternoon.

Sheriff Milstead tells us it's no different in Minnehaha County.  He says the county averages around 200 gun permits a month. But in the last thirty days, he says it's more than doubled, with more than 500 gun permits issued.

The sheriff attributes the surge in gun permits to the tragedy in newtown and the talk about gun control.

And while some may be concerned about congress passing stricter gun laws, others may have realized their existing permits may have expired.

Sheriff Milstead maintains most of the people who are applying for concealed weapon permits are honest, hard-working, law abiding citizens who just want to follow the law.

"Often times, they're not carrying guns concealed but they want to be law abiding, so they say 'I might have it in the trunk with me when i go hunting or i might put it in the glove box when we go out somewhere and i want to follow the law, so i get a concealed carry permit. they're doing it to follow the law, not break it. very seldom do we run into criminals who have taken the time to come down and get a permit," Sheriff Milstead said.

With so many people applying for gun permits some gun stores across the country are running low on supplies.

Sheriff Milstead admits it can be hard to get ammunition for civilians as well as law enforcement.

He doesn't see an impact on Minnehaha County yet, but expects the county's expenses for guns and ammunition to go up as the demand increases.

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