It’s not exactly shocking that the number of concealed carry applications is soaring in Sacramento County, California. After all, the same thing is true from coast-to-coast at the moment. What is both surprising and troubling, however, is the fact that the majority of these new applicants are being denied, according to local news station CBS 13.
Concealed weapon permits are issued by county sheriffs, and some chose not to issue any at all. The State Auditor raised concerns in 2017 about inconsistent CCW programs among some of the largest counties that do issue the permits.
For instance, while you must show “good cause” to carry a firearm, the interpretation of “good cause” varies greatly by county.
Data obtained by CBS13 reveals so far this year, Sacramento County has denied roughly 70% of CCW applications while Placer County has denied fewer than 5% of the processed applications.
The Sacramento Sheriff’s Department would not reveal the reason for the vast number of denials stating, “When a CCW is denied, we do not give a specific reason as it creates an opportunity for people to craft their applications around screen out criteria.”
As the news station correctly points out, California’s concealed carry system gives sheriffs broad leeway to approve or deny permits based on their subjective determination of “good cause.” In counties like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Santa Clara, your right of self-defense and your right to bear arms aren’t considered good enough reasons to obtain a concealed carry license, but in Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones has been pretty good about recognizing the right. In fact, here’s how the anti-gun news outlet The Trace described Jones in a piece from 2016.