Gwinnett gun applications nearly doubled in 2012

LAWRENCEVILLE -- The number of firearms applications in Gwinnett last year exceeded even the expectations of a well-prepared probate court.

Lorraine Stafford, vital records supervisor with the county's probate court, said this week that her office usually orders about 7,000 firearms application files annually in preparation for the year's business.

"And we only (order that many) because we never know if something crazy's going to happen," Stafford said.

Something crazy happened.

Stafford said the county received a total of 8,610 applications for firearms permits in 2012, nearly doubling the 2011 total of just 4,700. The office saw more than 900 applicants in December alone.

Several factors are likely to have contributed.

Now-retired Probate Court Judge Walter Clarke said a new and improved permit ID card -- which boasts a photo, address and more -- introduced last year definitely boosted new applications.

"Previously it was just a little card that was laminated with a signature of the applicant," Clark said.

Shooting tragedies (and the subsequent gun control discussions) often spur more applications as well. Gwinnett probate court had a record week following the mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., and the astronomical December total of more than 900 applicants is likely tied to the reignited gun control debates that have followed.

Both Stafford and Clarke mentioned President Barack Obama's original election in 2008 as another high watermark for applications. There were 7,777 that year, Stafford said.


Don 2 years, 7 months ago

This is the only government fee that I enjoy paying every five years,

I just can not wait to get renew my permit in 2016 and get the new card

A government that is afraid of an armed society is a government to be afraid of!!


A_Gwinnetian 2 years, 7 months ago

Yay, Don! Now about those commercials... ;)


kevin 2 years, 7 months ago

The second amendment was to protect us first against a government gone wild against its citizens, then against criminals. In those days they didn't have AK47's. That is what you need against today's government gone wild, not a single shot lead ball.


wenmelt 2 years, 7 months ago

Applied for my permit in Dec. Cant wait to get it.


kevin 2 years, 7 months ago

I just hope that all these new gun owners have rec'd some form of gun training, and I do not mean just how to shoot, but when to shoot. I also hope they all read the online law and regs about when and where to carry a weapon (concealed). We can't have the place turn into the wild west.


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