WASHINGTON

DC Attorney General Won't Take Gun Law Appeal to Supreme Court

It will soon be easier for Washington, D.C. residents to get a concealed carry permit.

D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine announced Thursday he has decided not to appeal a federal appeals ruling that the city's restrictions on concealed carry permits violate residents' Second Amendment rights.

The District law had required anyone seeking a concealed carry permit to show a "good reason to fear injury" or another "proper reason."

A three-judge panel ruled that the condition was unconstitutional and the city then appealed to the full court to hear the case, but the court declined -- leaving the District with the only option of taking the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Racine decided not to further challenge the ruling.

"There are threshold requirements that certainly include a training, a criminal background check, confirmation of stability of mental health and other important factors the court’s decision does not touch," Racine said Thursday.

Since the District began issuing concealed carry permits as a result of an earlier court ruling, the Metropolitan Police Department has processed 668 applications and denied permits to 444 of those who applied.

Of those denied, 425 were based on the "good reason" requirement.

As of Oct. 5, there are only 123 civilians who have been issued concealed carry permits in D.C.

"If you do not currently have a carry permit and you carry a firearm in the District of Columbia, you will be arrested, you will be charged and you will be prosecuted," Police Chief Peter Newsham said Thursday.

Gun owners who had previously been denied conceal carry permits based on the "good reason" restriction can now re-apply. The police department has to waive the background check fees and fingerprint fees if applicants already paid for those the first time they applied.

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