Conceal and Carry Permits
At that time, Missouri became the 45th state to allow people to carry concealed weapons.
Boone County residents like Larry O'Neal know the age of their guns and their permits.
"You can tell the gun is fairly worn, it's been carried a lot," said O'Neal of his personal firearm.
He says that he carries his weapon with him almost everywhere he goes. When Missouri made it legal, he applied for a conceal and carry permit.
"I think everyone has a right to self defense," said O'Neal. "You know our police; as good as they are a reactionary force, they come when you call them. And by the time they get there, a lot of times everything is over."
O'Neal plans to get his permit reissued soon, but he did not receive a reminder that it is about to expire.
"We are not, nor is Ashland or Hallsville, sending out letters to permit holders saying your permit expires on such and such a date and time," said Tom Reddin of the Boone County Sheriff's Department. "It's kind of like a driver's license - you've got it, it's your responsibility to know when it expires."
To renew the permit, all O'Neal needs to do is reapply and pay a $50 fee. But he has to do it in the last sixty days before his permit expires. If permit holders do not reapply 60 days prior to the expiration date, there is a ten dollar late fee for each additional late month. After six months, the permit is cancelled and the applicant must start the original application process from the start.
Reddin thinks most permit holders will renew.
"There isn't a month that goes by that either we or Ashland or Hallsville don't see a few applicants come in and submit applications to obtain conceal carry permits," said Reddin. "But it's single digits in a month."
Still, the county has 745 Boone County residents with permits to carry concealed weapons. The department of revenue says that in the entire state, 29,000 residents have permits.
With a conceal and carry permit, Boone County citizens can put a gun in the glove box, under a car seat, or even in a purse. They can also take weapons into any place that does not have a sign prohibiting them. For example, many government buildings, public meeting places, and churches do not allow weapons, even with a conceal and carry permit.
Major Reddin says permit holders can reapply at any municipality, but law enforcement prefers citizens apply at the same place they were issued the original permit.