Firearms by the numbers: A look at permit to carry figures in Minnesota


Want to know how many people have permits to carry a firearm in public in Minnesota?

The state's Department of Public Safety put out its annual permit to carry report Friday – breaking down how many permits were approved and issued in 2015, how many were denied, how many there are total, and much more.

Here's a look at some of the numbers that jumped out. (You can read the full report here – it's 408 pages.)

44,696 – Permits issued

The state issued 44,696 permits to carry in 2015 – up from the 2014 total of 41,493.

That's down though from 2013 when there were more than 60,000 permits issued. It could be a timing thing: Permits are valid for five years, and they were first issued in 2003, then valid for renewal in 2008 – 2013 would be the start of the next five-year period.

736 – Permits denied

The number of permits denied in 2015, according to the report.

Of those, 251 were denied because the applicant was deemed to be a "danger to self or others." That's the second-most often reason for denial, right behind "Other reasons" which was cited 258 times. (Note: There can be multiple reasons selected for why a permit was denied.)

In addition, 14 permits were suspended and five were revoked.

1,238 – crimes committed

The number of crimes committed by permit holders in 2015. Nearly three-quarters were DWIs or some other traffic offense.

1 for every 19 adults – Total permits

There are 217,909 valid permits in the state of Minnesota right now.

Minnesota's adult population (so over the age of 18) is about 4,174,736 – so there is about one permit to carry for every 19 adults. Worth noting however, you have to be 21 years of age or older to be eligible for a permit.

28,207 vs 181 – The most and the least

The county with the most valid permits: Hennepin County (also the state's most-populated county) with 28,207 permits to carry.

The county with the least: Traverse County. It's got a population of about 3,387, the smallest in the state, and 181 carry permits.

Minnesota's permit laws

Minnesota law requires you to get a permit if you want to carry a handgun in public (and are at least 21 years old). You apply at your local sheriff's office, and provide proof of firearms training – officials then check records from state and federal agencies to make sure you're qualified.

Minnesota's permits don't require a firearm to be concealed. They're valid for five years.

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