Facts About Concealed Carrying of Weapons (CCW)
From May 2007 to March 2011, at least 297 people were killed nationwide by concealed handgun permit holders. These victims include law enforcement officers, family members, friends, and strangers. 1
What is the current law in Illinois?
286 private citizens were killed by CCW permit holders.
18 mass shootings were committed by CCW killers.
25 murder-suicides were committed by CCW killers.
11 law enforcement officers were shot and killed by CCW permit holders.
Since 1961, Illinois has prohibited the carrying of concealed firearms
on the person in public. Illinois law currently allows individuals to
carry firearms on their own land, in their abode, or in their fixed
place of business. In addition, carrying firearms is permitted for
target shooting and hunting.
With the passage of HB 182 on August 25, 2009,
individuals with a valid Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card can
now legally carry concealed weapons onto other people’s property.
What is the history of CCW in Illinois?
Year after year, Illinois policymakers reject concealed carry legislation. Why? Because concealed carry endangers the public and is strongly opposed by Illinois voters.
2011 poll of Illinois voters, two of three Illinois voters (65%) were opposed to allowing individuals to carry loaded, concealed weapons. Of the voters opposed to CCW, most (87%) were strongly opposed.
Who else is opposed to CCW in Illinois?
Illinois State Police (ISP), Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart, Cook County State's Attorney, American Academy of Pediatrics – Illinois, League of Women Voters – Illinois, Voices for Illinois Children, National Council of Jewish Women, Northwest Municipal Conference, Children’s Memorial Hospital, and the Uhlich Children’s Advantage Network (UCAN).
Why are voters, policymakers, law
enforcement officials, the public health community, faith leaders, and
child advocates opposed to CCW?
- The evidence does NOT support the claim that CCW
laws reduce crime. Numerous academic studies by respected
researchers, including the University of Chicago and John Hopkins
University, have systematically criticized the methodology and faulty
conclusions of studies cited by gun rights advocates who claim CCW laws
reduce violence crime.2
Studies published by the Stanford Law Review and the Journal of
Trauma concluded that there is no statistical evidence that CCW laws,
like those introduced in Illinois, reduce crime.
- The studies found that the adoption of such laws
generally will increase crime.3 A
2005 National Academy of Sciences report found that there is no evidence
to support the claim that CCW laws have a causal link to crime rate
Investigations in Florida and Texas found large
numbers of criminals are CCW permit holders. An investigation by the
South Florida Sun Sentinel found that Florida CCW permit holders in the
first half of 2006 included more than 1,400 individuals who had pleaded
guilty or no contest to felonies, 216 individuals with outstanding
warrants, 128 people with active domestic violence injunctions against
them, and six registered sex offenders.5 Some
specific examples of individuals with criminal histories that the
Sun-Sentinel identified as obtaining Florida concealed handgun permits
- Garth F. Bailey, of Pembroke Pines, pleaded
no contest to manslaughter in 1988 for shooting his girlfriend
in the head while she was cooking breakfast. Eight years later,
the state gave him a concealed weapons permit.
- John P. Paxton, Jr., then a resident of
Deerfield Beach, pleaded guilty to aggravated child abuse in
1993 for grabbing his four-year-old nephew by the neck, then
choking and slapping him for flicking the lights on and off.
Eight years later, he was issued a concealed weapons permit.
- John M. Corporal, of Lake Worth, pleaded
guilty to aggravated assault in 1998 for putting a chrome
revolver against his roommate's head during an argument. In
2002, he pleaded guilty to grand theft. In February 2006, he was
issued a concealed weapons permit.
A Los Angeles Times investigation found that more than
400 criminals – including rapists and armed robbers – had been issued
CCW permits in Texas. Thousands of Texas CCW permit holders had been
arrested for criminal behavior or found to be mentally unstable. Many of
these criminals committed crimes after getting their CCW permits.6 From
1996 to 2000, Texas concealed handgun permit holders were arrested for
hundreds of weapon-related offenses, which included:
- 279 arrests for assault or aggravated assault with a
- 671 arrests for unlawfully carrying a weapon; and
arrests for deadly conduct/discharge firearm.