Evansville, Ind. (WEHT)– We are about one week away from a major gun law going into effect in Indiana. Beginning July 1st, Hoosiers 18 and older will be able to legally carry a handgun in public without a permit.
But what does that mean for permits already being processed? Eyewitness News reached out to several sheriff and prosecutor offices today. Warrick County officials told us that they had 219 uncompleted applications due to the applicant not finishing the form. Many told us that they do not have any upcoming policy changes.
Evansville Police say they will continue doing what they do best, keeping the community safe.
“We are police officers, and we are sworn to uphold the law 24/7. And we do not always get to pick or choose the laws that we are going to uphold. I still encourage people to get a permit. They do not have to but if you are going to carry into other states, you still need one,” said Sergeant Anna Gray with the Evansville Police Department.
Due to the law differing by state, many say it is still wise to fill out an application.
“As a Hoosier, you could still do something that is completely legal in Kentucky, but in Illinois, get in jail for doing the same thing. So if someone is carrying a firearm, they really have to pay attention to what the laws are in each state,” said Pierre Atlas, a Senior Lecturer at IUPUI.
Atlas has experience in gun culture and has studied trends from states with permitless carry laws.
“Frankly, where I think we will see the most danger of crimes rising is in crimes of passion. Perhaps an increase in road rage incidents with a gun, and perhaps more fights and accidental shootings,” he said.
The law also establishes a new crime, carrying a handgun unlawfully. Depending on the situation, this could be a misdemeanor or felony charge.