Since 1995, a law granting Texans the right to carry concealed firearms, making Texas the 31st state to legalize carrying concealed weapons. The Lone Star State also has one of the most stringent concealed carry licenses.
“As news reports indicate, there’s been a recent increase in the number of citizens purchasing firearms,” said Debra Pruitt, program manager for the licensing program, which will be held March 28, 2009, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Sportsman’s Outlet at 1710 FM 1960 Bypass East in Humble.
Rob Lovelace, lead instructor for the Lone Star College System’s Law Enforcement Academy, will be the instructor for the 12-hour training session, which meets or exceeds state requirements to obtain a concealed handgun license. The class is limited to 30 participants.
“The training includes both classroom and the shooting proficiency portion of the license requirements,” Lovelace said, “and the tuition includes $47 for materials and license fee and a $60 range fee (to be paid at the range the day of training) for a total of $107.
The safety training course is limited to students 21 and older. “This Concealed Handgun License allows you to go most places with a handgun on your person,” Lovelace explained,” and the training is designed to give students tools for dispute resolution as well as a clear understanding about when to use deadly force, when not to use deadly force and the consequences of these actions.
“With a license, you can make an informed choice to carry your handgun–and stay within the law,” the instructor added.
“Whether you are an experienced marksman or not, you can gain an understanding of the gun’s parameters and how to handle it in a safe manner,” Lovelace continued. “The proficiency part of the licensure course is the equivalent of your driving test for driving a car. It’s designed to be completed successfully–but we would encourage each student to get additional practice and to take more gun safety training after they complete their licensure course.”
Lovelace, who is currently a commissioned police officer with the Lone Star College System’s Police Department, said instructors were first licensed to teach the Concealed Handgun License course in 1995 and the first concealed handgun licenses were issued in 1996. Today, more than 30 states recognize the Texas license.
“This license allows you the choice to use the gun appropriately to ensure personal safety,” Lovelace pointed out, “and providing this course is a way for the Lone Star College System to provide a public service outside those open only to members of the law enforcement community.”
The Texas Department of Public Safety reports 288,909 active license holders and 1,639 certified instructors.
“We believe the increased level of training available to the public may increase safety and awareness of handgun storage and handling among the general population,” said Lovelace, who is recognized by the Texas commission as both a classroom and police firearms instructor. He also holds certification from the National Rifle Association as an instructor in handguns, rifle and shotgun as well as for the program, “Refuse to be a Victim.”
He has developed several classes for beginning shooters and has conducted Basic Handgun classes for several years. He is the LSCS Department Firearms Proficiency Officer and is responsible for firearms qualification for LSCS officers.
For additional information and to register, contact Debra Pruitt at 281.260.3598.
Lone Star College-North Harris is located at 2700 W.W. Thorne Drive, one-half mile south of FM 1960 E, between Aldine-Westfield and Hardy Roads. For more information about the college, call 281.618.5400 or visit: NorthHarris.LoneStar.edu.
Lone Star College System consists of five colleges, including CyFair, Kingwood, Montgomery, North Harris, and Tomball, six centers and Lone Star College-University Center. It is the largest college system in the Houston area, and third largest community college district in Texas. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.
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