PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – At Allegheny County Courthouse, it seems that just about everyone is suddenly applying for a permit to carry a concealed weapon. But if you’d like one, there’s some bad news. The earliest you can get one is November.
Amanda Seath and her daughter Coraline made the trip from Turtle Creek to the Allegheny County Courthouse for one purpose — to get a permit to carry a concealed handgun. They’re not alone. More than 6,000 people are waiting to do the same.
The sheriff’s office is scheduling applicants online in five minutes intervals, but even in processing 84 permits a day, they’re now backed up into November. Sheriff William Mullen attributes the surge in applications to civil unrest and uncertain times.
“People (are) afraid of what’s going on in the country. The unlawfulness. The violent protests. They’re just really worked up about that,” said Sheriff Mullen.
“It makes you think. Yeah. About unrest. You don’t know where anybody’s going any more. You don’t know if it’s safe,” Keith Vangura of Pleasant Hills said.
Like most people queuing up in the courtyard, Keith Vangura of Pleasant Hills cities a new uneasiness in the country for the sudden rise in both permit applications and gun sales in the region, which have also taken off. Others who did not want to speak on camera talked of concerns over the defunding of police departments, even though gun control advocates say these weapons won’t make you safer.
“Adding guns to the mix can lead to more violence and decrease your safety despite the false sense of security you’ll get from the weapon,” said Adam Garber of Ceasefire Pa.
Amanda Seath says she doesn’t believe she’ll ever need to use her gun but still —
“I want to be prepared. Never hurts to be prepared,” she said.
This weekend, the sheriff’s office will hold a drive-thru license to carry event at the Monroeville Municipal Building.
“The Sheriff’s Office is hoping the event is successful and more can be scheduled, but at the moment there are no others scheduled,” a Facebook post on the sheriff’s office page reads.