When the first concealed-carry permit was issued in the state on December 18, 2013, there were predictions that Illinois would turn into the Wild West.
That, of course, hasn't happened. Friday's apparent murder-suicide involving a licensed concealed weapon owner is unusual.
There are now more than 120,000 concealed-carry licensees in Illinois and it is extremely rare to hear about a permit holder being involved in any violent crime, much less a murder. Friday's was the first of 2015 according to police officials, if not the first at all here since Illinois passed concealed carry.
The Illinois standards and requirements are rigorous.
- No violent criminal history, not even a misdemeanor.
- No pending warrants.
- No objections by local law enforcement.
- Full background check.
- 16 hours of firearms training by a state police-approved instructor.
So far, Illinois has revoked only a couple hundred concealed weapons permits for various infractions, 80 in Cook County.
And there hasn't been a notorious case here, such as the infamous George Zimmerman in Florida, one of the original concealed carry states.
In 2017 Zimmerman, with a legally-carried pistol, fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin while on a neighborhood watch.
The number of concealed gun permits in Illinois is actually far short of what had been predicted. With many experts saying 300,000 licenses would be likely, only about a third of that number has been granted permits. Nationally, more than 11 million people currently hold concealed carry permits.