Tag Archives: Illinois State Police

Guess how long some have to wait for a gun ID card in Illinois

According to MyFoxChicago, two gun rights groups are suing the Illinois State Police for not promptly renewing firearm owners’ identification cards.

The groups suing are the Illinois State Rifle Association and the Second Amendment Foundation. They filed on behalf of two men who have been waiting for their identification cards and concealed carry licenses since 2017.

From their report:

“The groups said the state police transferred nearly $30 million from funds used for the administration of the cards, background checks and concealed carry licenses into other accounts, which has caused the application and appeals process to slow and come to a halt.

Attorney David Sigale said he tried working with the police to move along the process, but he was left with no other option but to sue. “We’re just going to sit on your license application, your FOID appeal, your renewal, we’re just going to sit on it and passively deny people’s rights, and that’s what’s happening here,” Sigale said.

But Illinois State Police said in a statement that it does not have the authority to sweep funds. “In 2015 and 2018, $13.2 million was swept from the Firearms Service Fund into the general fund during the budget crisis,” ISP said. “Under the current fiscal year, funds have not been swept, allowing the Firearms Services Bureau to start filling 17 analyst vacancies, procure technology to offer better customer service and to begin building a new Appeals Bureau.”

The agency also has no deadline to respond to appeals and has been known to take months or years to issue a decision, according to the documents.

In a statement, Illinois State Police spokeswoman Beth Hundsdorfer said that last year, 90 percent of applicants saw their paperwork processed in less than 30 days. She said it took an average of 65 days to renew a FOID card in 2019.

The kicker? The men said they usually carry a handgun for self-defense but do not anymore because they fear prosecution for possessing a firearm without a license.

Meanwhile, criminals aren’t waiting for their ID cards: “Convicted felon charged in shooting of Chicago firefighter in Albany Park.”

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Happy New Year! Illinois governor pardons more than 11,000 marijuana convictions

Demorat Governor JB Pritzker

From MyFoxChicago: Illinois’ governor granted more than 11,000 pardons for low-level marijuana convictions on Tuesday, describing the step as a first wave of thousands of such expungements anticipated under the state’s new marijuana legalization law.

The expungement process is a key part of the law, which takes effect Wednesday and made Illinois the 11th state to legalize marijuana for people 21 or older. When they crafted the policy, Illinois lawmakers said they wanted to repair some of the damage caused by law enforcement’s efforts to combat sale and use of the drug, particularly in minority communities.

Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker announced the pardons at a church on Chicago’s South Side. He said clearing the misdemeanor offenses from individuals’ records will make it easier for them to get jobs, housing and financial aid for college.

State officials estimate that 116,000 convictions involving 30 grams or less of marijuana, including for possession of the drug, are eligible for pardons under the new law. Illinois State Police are responsible for identifying those convictions and sending the records to the state’s Prisoner Review Board, which then forwarded eligible cases to the governor’s office for pardons.

Pritzker’s pardons allow the state’s attorney general to ask courts to formally clear or seal the records.

“We are ending the 50-year-long war on cannabis,” Pritzker said in a statement. “We are restoring rights to many tens of thousands of Illinoisans. We are bringing regulation and safety to a previously unsafe and illegal market. And we are creating a new industry that puts equity at its very core.”

Other states that have begun permitting marijuana’s sale and use created procedures for people to expunge minor drug offenses, but Illinois officials wanted the process to be almost automatic for people with non-violent marijuana arrests or convictions on their records.

“We know that Black Illinois residents are far more likely to be arrested and convicted for marijuana possession than whites,” said Ben Ruddell, criminal justice policy director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois. “This is a good step forward as we begin the legal sales of recreational marijuana.”

Read the whole story here.

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Thousands in Illinois may still have firearms despite having FOIDs revoked

From MyFoxChicago: (AP) – Tens of thousands of Illinois residents whose gun licenses have been revoked could still be in possession of firearms, according to an analysis of state records by the Chicago Tribune.

The failure of the system was underscored in February when a man killed five former colleagues and wounded five police officers in Aurora, Illinois, using a gun he kept despite the revocation of his Firearm Owner’s Identification card in 2014.

Local police departments are supposed to ensure that those whose licenses have been revoked surrender their permits within 48 hours and fill out a form stating their guns have been passed to a legal gun owner or the police.

But since 2015, nearly 27,000 Illinois residents whose FOID cards have been revoked haven’t updated authorities on what they have done with their firearms, the Tribune reported. That means authorities do not know whether 78% of those revoked cardholders still own guns.

“I will say the depth and breadth of the problem did take me back just a bit,” said acting Illinois State Police Director Brendan Kelly, who has made FOID revocation compliance a priority since he took office this year. “The only way we are going to be able to take a bite out of this problem is just laying it all out there: the good, the bad and the ugly.”

FOID cards can be revoked for a number of reasons: felony convictions or indictments; convictions involving domestic abuse; being subject to an order of protection; being deemed a mental health risk; dishonorable discharge from the military; or being found to be in the country illegally.

Local police departments are informed by state police when a card has been rescinded, but most don’t prioritize checking on the status of remaining weapons due to a lack of resources, officers or background information.

Failure to ensure compliance over so many years has created a substantial backlog that will require a coordinated, costly effort to resolve.

A bill pending in Springfield would raise cardholder fee from $10 for 10 years to subsidize a task force to follow up on revocations. The legislation would also mandate fingerprinting to obtain a FOID card, a step supporters say would significantly increase the chance of identifying an applicant’s criminal background.

Gun rights advocates say the measure would be an unconstitutional encroachment on Second Amendment rights and have vowed to challenge it in court if it passes into law.

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Illinois demorats introduce bill requiring gun buyers to reveal social media accounts

Rep. Dan Didech

Who gets to define “troubling” comments?

From MyFoxChicago: Illinois Democrats are introducing a bill forcing gun buyers to reveal their public social media accounts to police before they are given permission to get a firearm license.

The new legislation is sponsored by two state Democratic lawmakers, in an effort to block people from acquiring guns if they have made some troubling comments on social media.

State Rep. Daniel Didech, a Democrat who’s pushing the bill, told CBS 2 Chicago: “A lot of people who are having mental health issues will often post on their social media pages that they’re about to hurt themselves or others,” adding that these people need “the help they need.”

The bill’s proponents point to Nikolas Cruz, the Parkland High School shooter, saying he posted “very disturbing” images on social media before going on a rampage and killing 17 people last year. Robert Bowers, the Pittsburgh Synagogue shooter, also posted numerous troubling comments about the Jewish people on social media.

A similar bill was introduced last year in New York that would require people looking to buy a gun in the state to submit their social media profiles and search history prior to purchase. The bill was met with criticism, but it was approved by the new Board of Legislators last month, though it remains unclear when the lawmakers will vote on it.

The proposal in Illinois facing similar criticism, with Rebecca Glenberg of ACLU saying the bill doesn’t address what the police could do with the data, in addition to the First Amendment concerns.

“A person’s political beliefs, a person’s religious beliefs, things that should not play a part in whether someone gets a FOID card,” Glenberg told the station.

The Illinois State Rifle Association, meanwhile, said that everyone should be outraged by the intrusiveness of the bill. “When people look at this everyone who has a Facebook account or email account or Twitter account will be incensed or should be,” Richard Pearson said.

But Didech defended his measure to the station, saying his bill “gives Illinois State Police additional tools to make sure that dangerous weapons aren’t getting into the hands of dangerous people,” noting that his measure is also less intrusive than the one proposed in New York.

See also:

Demorat who wants social media history reviewed prior to gun ownership tweets “kill yourself” to political opponent

NY demorats push for social media review as part of firearm background check

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