On Wednesday, Ohio lawmakers will hold a hearing on House Bill 178, legislation that would dismantle the state’s requirement of a permit in order to carry a hidden, loaded handgun in public.
HB 178 would allow a person to carry a hidden, loaded handgun in public without getting a permit, passing a background check or completing gun safety training. The Fraternal Order of Police and other Ohio law enforcement officials have come out against dismantling the permit requirement. So has a bipartisan group of lawmakers.
Research has shown that states that have enacted permitless carry have seen an increase in gun violence:
- In 2003, Alaska became the first state to enact a permitless carry law. Aggravated assaults committed with a firearm have increased incrementally since the law went into effect. Since 2003, the rate of aggravated assaults committed with a firearm in the state increased by 82 percent by 2017. That increase represents 526 more gun-related aggravated assaults committed in 2017 than in 2003.
- Since Arizona enacted a permitless carry law in 2010, the rate of aggravated assaults committed with a firearm in the state increased by 39 percent by 2017. That increase represents 1,797 more gun-related aggravated assaults committed in 2017 than in 2010.
- After Missouri enacted a permitless carry law in January 2017, the city of St. Louis experienced a nearly 25 percent increase in the rate of aggravated assaults with a gun in 2017 compared to 2016. That represents 484 more gun-related aggravated assaults in 2017 than in 2016.
More information about permitless carry is available here. Please reach out if you have questions ahead of Wednesday’s hearing or are interested in an interview.