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More gun carry permits denied by state

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The number of Hoosiers who had an application for a gun permit denied has nearly doubled in the past few years.

Last year, more than 2,000 residents statewide were denied when they applied for a permit to carry a gun.

Indiana State Police do background checks on everyone who applies for a gun permit, and officials say the most common reason they will deny an application is if someone forgets to or intentionally does not disclose a previous conviction when they apply.

The number of gun permit denials has increased in recent years as new technology allows state police to better find information residents left off their applications, and state police are checking the applications even more carefully now that more are coming in, Commander of Firearms Lt. Mike Rogers said.

Since December, thousands of state residents have applied for permits to carry a gun for personal protection.

In the past four years, the number of applications state police denied statewide has nearly doubled from 1,054 in 2009 to 2,028 in 2012.

Applicants can be denied a gun permit if they don’t fit the state’s definition of a “proper person,” Rogers said.

Under state law, the proper person to receive a permit must meet a certain number of requirements, including:

  • Not having a felony conviction
  • Not having a record of being an alcohol or drug abuser
  • Not having a propensity for violent or emotionally unstable behavior, among other restrictions

Some restrictions require paperwork to prove or disprove, Rogers said.

He said residents who are denied a gun permit will receive a letter in the mail letting them know why they weren’t approved, and they can choose to appeal the decision.

In the appeal process, residents can tell an administrative judge why they should get a permit and present information for their case.

For instance, if someone was denied for not writing down a conviction, the person can explain why or provide paperwork that says the conviction was expunged, Rogers said.

“If someone is denied, it isn’t the end all,” he said. “When we deny a license, the denial gives that person the opportunity to present information. The process isn’t quite that final.”

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