At a recent town hall meeting, Milwaukee Chief of Police Ed Flynn claimed Wisconsin’s concealed carry law was fueling crime in his city and that the legislation is irresponsible.
As reported by TMJ4.com, Flynn argued that Wisconsin’s five-year-old concealed carry law has put numerous firearms into the hands of many criminals.
“According to Flynn, the ‘overwhelming majority’ of arrested felons in Milwaukee eventually take plea deals that become misdemeanors–and only convicted felons, or those convicted of three misdemeanors within five years, are barred from carrying a concealed weapon.”
“It’s an irresponsible law passed by irresponsible legislatures who are more interested in ideological points than saving lives,” Flynn told the town hall audience. “And I sure as hell would like some more community outreach about that…too many public officials are silent on it.”
But another town hall participant, Police Association President Michael Crivello, disagreed.
“I have never had a conversation with you, chief, relative to you displaying that we are arresting an overwhelming amount of people, or even one person, that has committed a crime while carrying a CCW,” Crivello responded, the story says.
MediaTrackers.org, a non-profit media watchdog group, found Flynn’s claims difficult to accept—or prove. Using the Wisconsin Department of Justice 2016 report on concealed carry in the state, MediaTracker.org discovered just 193 people had their permits revoked for either felony convictions or indictment of felonies last year.
“That’s about .064% of the more than 300,000 concealed carry licenses in all of Wisconsin. If a large number of guns under legally held concealed carry licenses are being used in crimes in Milwaukee, it would appear precious few licenses are being revoked from holders as a result,” MediaTracker.org concluded.
In a press release, Wisconsin State Senator David Craig (R- 28th District) suggested Flynn was looking to shift blame for “soft-on-crime” policies institutes by Flynn himself and the City of Milwaukee.
“Chief Flynn is playing politics instead of fixing problems under his direct control,” said Craig, whose District includes sections of suburban Milwaukee. “Criminals are not concerned with any laws, much less concealed carry laws. To further restrict the popular, successful CCW law and prevent citizens from protecting themselves from the very crime Chief Flynn has allowed to flourish is wrong and irresponsible.” —by Brian McCombie, Contributor, Texas & U.S. Law Shield blog