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Kentucky Runs Monthly Background Checks On It’s Concealed Carry Permit Holders


FRANKFORT, KENTUCKY — If you live in the state of Kentucky and have a permit to carry a concealed handgun, the Kentucky State Police are checking up on you, on average, once a month according to an article published by WAVE 3 News.  Their rationale is simple: if a person commits a felony after getting his or her concealed carry handgun, how else will the Kentucky State Police know about it and be able to revoke his or her permit?

It’s a fact that Barry Laws, the owner of a gun range in Kentucky, was happy to expound upon.

“If someone gets involved in a felony for some reason, then they can’t own a firearm, if they have domestic abuse they can’t own a firearm,” he said. “Unless you do these checks all the time, you wouldn’t know.”

According to statistics published by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), Kentucky performs nearly 3 million background checks a month.  That’s more than California and Texas combined.  Kentucky leads the nation in conducting monthly background checks using the NICS database because it is required to periodically check up on its concealed handgun licensees.

If at any time, a Kentucky concealed carrier pops for any of the following offenses, his license will be suspended by the Kentucky State Police — the issuing authority in the state of Kentucky.

  • Felony conviction and/or imprisonment
  • Indictment for any charge that carries with it imprisonment of up to a year’s time
  • Subject to a restraining order
  • Renouncing U.S. citizenship
  • Dishonorable discharge from the armed forces
  • Documented mental illness
  • Drug abuse or treatment for drug abuse
  • Misdemeanor or felony charges of domestic assault

It’s very surprising that a state known for being absolutely draconian about its gun laws — California — and another state absolutely known for its love of guns — Texas — would both pale in comparison to the sharp eye of the Kentucky State Police.  Well, if you live in Kentucky, there’s just one more reason to keep your nose clean if you’re a concealed carrier… Like you need it.

Categories: General, News, Politics
About James England | View all posts by James England

James England is a Marine Corps veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and has served as a defense contractor in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. His daily concealed carry…

James England is a Marine Corps veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and has served as a defense contractor in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. His daily concealed carry handgun is a Glock 36 in a Lenwood Holsters Specter IWB or his CZ-75D PCR in an Alien Gear MOD holster.

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  • ProfShadow

    They have it backwards. They should only run the check on someone if they are convicted of a felony (or whatever action negates the CCW, as listed in the article).

    Pretty expensive process that results in nearly zero results, it seems.

    There used to be a presumption of innocence and only upon (above situations) should someone lose their CCW.

    NOT that we should have to have a CCW…2nd Amendment and all…but recognizing the current realities. After all, we’re not Liberals, we have a handle on reality.

    • Bob Rogers

      how do know if someone did something that goes against CCW without doing a background check? that’s why they are doing the check.

      • ProfShadow

        They are REPEATEDLY doing the check on everyone who has a CCW, whether they were convicted of a crime or not.
        That’s a waste of resources. When they arrest/etc people that violate the terms they should just look up and see if they have a current CCW. Then suspend, etc., as appropriate.
        Checking everyone monthly is just foolish. Especially when the data shows that CCW holders are among the most law abiding people as a group.

        • Travis Decker


        • Dr Dave

          You are assuming that someone is not found guilty in ANOTHER state. The only way to determine if someone is on the list is to check it. I understand that if you are convicted of a crime it should flag the CCW permit but that would require a Federal CCW process which will never happen. So the only way to prevent bad guys from holding CCW permits is to look at the NICS system.
          As far as cost and expense it is actually free. Yes FFL’s have to pay for each run but agency to agency cooperation is free and is done from computer to computer at no charge.
          So although it seems pretty aggressive and surely makes it harder to uphold the true meaning of the 2nd Am it does make some sense.
          Under the current “accepted” laws of those states who use CCW as opposed to Constitutional Carry the right to concealed carry is a right that can be withdrawn if violated so if someone violates they are free to retain their CCW for in some states as long as 10 years (down here in FL it is 7). If you pass a CCW that is a long time to allow a felon to retain CCW ability
          I hate any restriction of gun possession but this does make sense once we agree to the whole concept of CCW
          Dr D

          • ProfShadow

            Interesting…thanks for filling me in on that part of it. Something I hadn’t considered.
            Well, you changed my opinion of it! (I know…on the opinion was changed? Did the world end? Is it the Second Coming?)

            I appreciate the response.

            And yep..down in Florida here…the Gunshine State!

          • Mike Butler

            “FFL’s have to pay for each run…” Do you know something I don’t? Should I expect to get a bill for NICS checks I have called? How much? I know I had to pay hundreds of dollars to get the license and have to pay again to renew it, but…

          • Dr Dave

            Here in FL I think the fee is $5 each application but since I am not a dealer I can’t tell you precisely. I have a buddy who is and they said that they have an “open account” that is billed monthly at $5 each application
            Maybe I misunderstood but that is why they charge for transfers and registrations etc.

      • Brian G. Lowery

        The same way they know how to revoke a driver’s license from someone convicted of DUI without doing background checks on every licesned driver every month.

        • Dr Dave

          The driver’s system works because the states communicate together on state to state violations of driver’s licenses. Right now several states have NO requirements on gun holders at all. Unless/until we get Federal CCW there is no way for a crime in one state to be communicated to another state’s department of CCW to flag that person’s gun license.
          Dr D

      • Scott Tomaszycki

        You have someone who has done something wrong and THEN you check if they have a CCW that should be revoked, not the other way around.

  • Tyler M

    Here’s what I don’t get. The police charge someone and somehow DONT see they have a CHL? It would make sense if they actually did see it RIGHT? When they run your info, they can see the CHL. They would go into the system and revoke the damn thing right there and then! Not wait for the State Police to “stumble upon” a charge and then revoke it. They already have access to the system!

    • Bob Rogers

      yeah, good point.

    • Dr Dave

      SERIOUSLY so you want to be convicted and tried on the scene by a LEO?????
      No trial no defense process no nothing. LEO gets a call that you hit your wife he shows up and right then and there you lose your CCW???? Sure hope things never get that bad!
      In addition there is no process that the LEO can even KNOW you have a CCW unless you tell him/her. In MOST states CCW’s are not handled by the department of Transportation they are handled by a totally different department. Some are actually bizarre. In Florida for example our CCW are handled by of all things the Department of Agriculture. So the LEO can’t even access that info unless he requests it during an investigation.
      Then there is the whole issue of getting accused/convicted in one state and having CCW in other states they simply don’t “talk” to each other EXCEPT thru the NICS system that is why it was created to begin with.
      Dr D

  • gman68137

    Generally, this looks like a waste of gov’t time & money. As others below indicated, if someone is convicted or otherwise demonstrates they are a threat, why bother. Also, I don’t like the “Documented mental illness” part…if someone suffers from insomnia, (not all mental illnesses mean someone is a threat to others), can they be deemed mentally ill? Who gets to decide they can be deprived of something? If I accuse my neighbor of being mentally ill (make a police report indicating they are), is that sufficient to generate a documented case of mental illness? This needs to be looked into.

    • Dr Dave

      They are mentally if a court of law says so
      If you are determined to be mentally ill like some of the veterans are to allow them to be treated by the VA and to have their VA checks handled by their family then they are by definition precluded from having a gun
      But just because you are being treated for ANY illness including full blown psychosis you still retain your right to gun possession unless a court is asked to step in
      Maybe you need a court to decide you are mentally ill in order to get rehab or be admitted to a state Psychiatric institute then you are considered “mentally ill” for the purposes of gun possession but even if you voluntarily sign into a mental hospital you are not mentally ill in the eyes of the 2nd Am
      Dr D

  • Derek Howard

    I haven’t read all the comments but thought it’s worth mentioning that the state capital is spelled Frankfort.

  • Travis Decker

    Seems far more logical to have the court system run the names of those arrested or convicted instead of the state police running EVERYONE every month.

    Nearly 3 million background checks a month. How many of those resulted in someone having their license revoked?

  • “if a person commits a felony after getting his or her concealed carry
    handgun, how else will the Kentucky State Police know about it and be
    able to revoke his or her permit?”

    A waste of taxpayer money and police manpower. UPON CONVICTION, have the court notify the state police, and then have the state police confiscate the weapons..

  • Brian G. Lowery

    It’s bassackwards. They don’t check every licensed driver every month for DUI they just revoke the licenses of convicted DUI drivers. The same could be done here and we all know it.

    • Dr Dave

      Not true at all! Getting convicted in one state does NOT revoke your license in another state. The process doesn’t allow that
      One state can’t take away another state’s rights. If you are convicted in one state you might have an immediate revocation while in another it might take 2 times or even 3
      You are all assuming that these actions are all happening in the state of issuance and that no one travels to other states.
      Dr D

  • Soulofsomething

    This true? “If someone gets involved in a felony for some reason, then they can’t own a firearm, if they have domestic abuse they can’t own a firearm,” he said. His right to OWN guns is taken away? Not just the license to carry but to own any kind of firearm whether convicted or not? Does Kentucky confiscate the guns? And do what with them?

    • Dr Dave

      Depends on the felony but yes that is exactly what happens
      If you are a gun owner and are a convicted felon your own lawyer will tell you that you need to sell or give your guns to family members or friends otherwise they will be taken by the state. That is factual.
      I have watched some felons have literally VANS full of guns removed by Sheriff’s department members because they have no one to give them to
      Dr D

      • Soulofsomething

        Thanks, Dr D, for the clarification. Suppose I could accuse my poor husband of hitting me and then he’d have to give me his deer-hunting rifle? And what about the knife he uses to skin the animal? I’d get that, too? And his car–he could run over me. So many ways to kill, how can the politicians cover them all?

        • Dr Dave

          They actually can’t but the law only extended to guns and munitions. He can keep his car etc. BUT he can’t turn them over to you if you live in the same home. When we say is precluded they mean out of the same residence. SO he could give them to your cousin Tilley or his work buddy but unless you two are separated the shear fact of changing ownership is insufficient to make the location of them legal
          Even putting them in a Federal Gun Trust and taking his name off is insufficient if the trust is at the common house address
          There is a difference between a restraining order and gun ownership. A restraining order has an expiration date or can be resolved amicably. If a person losses his weapons due to a domestic regardless of the expiration unless he goes back to the judge and requests a nullification he loses his ability to own guns forever. It is all based on the idea that it is worse to allow a guilty man to go free to commit again then to wrongly accuse an innocent man and prevent his possibility of ever having an opportunity. Same for mental illness. If the court rules you mentally incapable to handle your affairs it is all but impossible to regain your right to own a gun again
          Dr D

      • Robert Pedigo

        It doesn’t matter what degree of felony, no felon may possess or own a firearm period in any state unless the convicting state issued them a full pardon with gun rights. That’s federal law which trumps state law.

        • Dr Dave

          The problem is many states don’t report every single felony to the NICS system so the system is inaccurate. Some states “selectively” send data so some felonies go on the list while others not
          The system is flawed and yet all the gun rights folks look at it as the Holy Grail to prevent gun violence
          Dr D

  • CG

    How on earth do they need to do 3 million a month in Kentucky?? The entire population is 4.4M. At any rate, it sounds like they’re just running a script, not checking these by hand or anything – probably more efficient to run the whole database rather than picking and choosing.

    • Dr Dave

      EXACTLY they are running a software script to recheck the CCW database which might very well be done several times a month to the total of 3M
      You are right CG they are not doing it manually they are simply plugging into NICS and re-checking all or a selected group based on some protocol more then once per renewal.
      Dr D

    • Anthony Kaiser

      Thank God somebody understands how computer database queries work. Analyst builds a query and it might run automatically on a set schedule. Costs nothing and the computer can do it overnight.

  • 2 smart 2b liberal

    rationale is simple: if a person commits a felony after getting his or
    her concealed carry handgun, how else will the Kentucky State Police
    know about it and be able to revoke his or her permit?

    a waste of money and manpower…. simple solution, SUSPEND IT UPON
    CONVICTION….. done…. tell the defendant it’s supended and carrying a
    weapon will be very very bad if they are caught….. done, money


  • David Phillips

    I agree with ProfShadow that the check should be run against people convicted of crimes that disqualify someone from having a CCW permit.
    Also … how many CCW permits have been revoked because of these automatic check?