- Associated Press - Sunday, March 6, 2016

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) - The fact that Iowa residents can complete training for a concealed weapons permit online is troubling to Black Hawk County Sheriff Tony Thompson.

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports (https://bit.ly/1W0FElN ) several of the websites advertise training videos that people can watch to complete their training without any need to touch a gun.

Thompson said the online training doesn’t seem very effective, but a state law that was changed in 2011 requires him to accept them for gun permit applications.

“If you can start a video and walk away and get a certificate, training means nothing,” Thompson said.

But the training does make it easier for people to get permits. Thompson said he works hard to balance efforts to protect the community with residents’ constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Andrew Cederdahl said he went through an online course so he could get a permit to legally keep his gun in his car for defense and trips to the shooting range.

“I was a bit surprised to learn it was possible to take online,” Cedardahl said.

Gary Peterson owns a company that offers in-depth gun training at workshops in Iowa and several other states. He said it’s not possible that the online videos cover all of the laws and responsibilities someone might encounter while carrying a gun.

“There are lots of laws that you will be responsible for,” he said. “If you screw up on one of them, you may unknowingly commit a felony and could spend years in jail because you wanted to save 20 bucks and do this quickie online class.”


Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, https://www.wcfcourier.com

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