Authorities: Rules to buy guns minimal in Colorado

By: Rob Hughes Email
By: Rob Hughes Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo (KKCO) KKOC wanted to know what are the steps to get a gun, and what are the laws in Colorado? Authorities say because we're an "open carry" state, the rules to buy a gun are pretty minimal. As a matter of fact, you can buy a gun here in Colorado a lot quicker than you might think.

Colorado is an "open carry" state. That means it's legal to openly carry a fire arm in public. In order to conceal a gun, you need a permit through the Sheriff's office. "What we do with it is fingerprint, we take a photo of you, we process your application with a training certificate you would get from a certified trainer here in the area," says Heather Benjamin, public information officer with the Mesa County Sheriff's Office. Your application then goes to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation for a background check. "It would include things like your criminal history, nationwide, things like that," adds Benjamin.

Background checks look into an applicants criminal past, and medical marijuana users aren't allowed to have a concealed weapons permit. The theater shooting suspect, James Holmes, bought some of his weapons at a retail store. He passed a background check to buy those weapons.

"For purchasing a firearm, there are two different age groups," says Lauren Truitt, Retail Events Coordinator with Cabela's in Grand Junction. Of course, you can also buy a gun from a retailer. "For a long gun, rifle, or shotgun, it's 18, and then for handguns, it's anyone 21 or older," says Truitt.

Retailers don't do the background checks themselves, they have customers fill out the forms and pass them along to authorities. "They do have to pass two different forms, one from the federal government, and one from here in Colorado," explains Truitt.

And it's up to those agencies whether a person can buy a gun. "Cabelas and most retail stores do not actually have any say one way or another if a person can actually buy a firearm."

You can also buy a gun online, but they won't sent it directly to your house. "Whoever you purchase that from will send it to a gun store, and then you have to do the paperwork to be able to purchase a firearm from the gun store. There's usually a small transfer fee, most gun stores are willing to do that, they just want to get you in the doors," says Linn Armstrong, a certified NRA instructor.

As soon as the background check is completed, the gun sale can go through, with no waiting period. "A person can fill the form out in that morning and leave that day, saying they got a yes on their background check," says Truitt.

A few places online you won't see guns for sale. On Craigslist, it is illegal to sell guns. It says it on their disclaimer. If you search guns on E-bay, you'll find out they only sell airsoft guns.

You do need to take a class to get your concealed weapons permit. The application is available on the Mesa County Sheriff's website. Police say it's important to know what concealed weapons laws are in other states if you're traveling with your gun. The are numerous resources online to research gun laws in each state.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Harry Location: GJ on Jul 25, 2012 at 11:43 AM
    Rob, would really get his panties in a bind if he new the rules for private sales of firearms.
  • by Nun Location: Grand Valley on Jul 24, 2012 at 03:19 PM
    Just a little clarification needed here. True you cannot have a concealed carry and Medical Marijuana. You also cannot be on prescription drugs used to treat mental disorders and have a concealed carry permit. You cannot be addicted to alcohol (be an alcholic) and have a concealed carry permit. It is not "illegal" to advertise a gun on craigslist. It is simply against the user agreement.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 25, 2012 at 04:54 AM in reply to Nun
      You should also add it is legal in Colorado to carry a concealed loaded handgun in your vehicle for protection of self and property. I.e. center console glove box, in the door panel, wherever it is convenient to access at a moments notice.
  • by IdahoMan Location: Idaho on Jul 24, 2012 at 11:51 AM
    Being treated like a criminal and fingerprinted in order to get PERMISSION to exercise what is already your right to do so is wrong and offensive. That's why I call CCW "Gun-Owner 'Jim Crow' Laws". You can Open-Carry without a permit, and several states have done away with the permit-system. More need to follow. BTW, the best way to get a firearm is to buy one second-hand; you want to avoid paperwork so you do not get on a list.
  • by Link on Jul 24, 2012 at 08:00 AM
    http://news.investors.com/articleprint/619196/201207231853/aurora-colorado-theater-gun-free-zone.aspx
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 24, 2012 at 08:53 AM in reply to Link
      Maybe we need to advise our children not to go to any gun free zones such as Cinemark Holdings Inc., This is a clear advertisement for the killers to hunt for unarmed victim. Ie "They are Kill zones", this includes the public schools.
      • reply
        by Nun on Jul 24, 2012 at 03:09 PM in reply to
        I agree!
  • by Useful on Jul 24, 2012 at 07:02 AM
    For those looking for useful information, try: http://sofrep.com/9657/navy-seal-lessons-learned-aurora-colorado-survive/ Good advice.
  • by justice2 Location: gj on Jul 24, 2012 at 06:19 AM
    After you receive your concealed weapon permit from Mesa County, you get to purchase personal financial protection at a cost of $200.00 per year because the County was incompetent and released your personal info to the public. Then they called and said that it wasn't their fault. Why is incompetent and fraudelent behavior accepted when government is involved?
    • reply
      by Duh on Jul 24, 2012 at 07:04 AM in reply to justice2
      Because they are the government. Where does the 800lb gorilla sit? Anywhere he wants. (The only way to fix this is to put the gorilla on a diet.)
  • by Troy Location: Grand Junction on Jul 23, 2012 at 08:55 PM
    I have to laugh a little when I read your comments. Did any of you actually read the article or the minute ease of gun ownership was brought into question you start tossing insults around and act like you actually have a clue about life. Rob didn't put in this article his own views on gun ownership just the facts of what it takes to buy guns in Colorado. And for your judgmental views of 20s something rob who can't survive in the world ponder this...Rob is currently a member of the United States Army who protects your right to be arrogant opinionated duesh bags. Not to mention he owns guns. No one is questioning your right to own guns however after reading your comments I myself wonder if any of you are competent enough to own them. Everytime a shooting occurs its just another weapon the government uses against us all to take away our rights. So how about focusing your energy on educating the public instead of sounding like a bunch of gun toting rednecks.
    • reply
      by Oh on Jul 23, 2012 at 09:32 PM in reply to Troy
      It's nice to have someone defend Rob. If he didn't write the headline and the lead, then who did? He got the by-line. Just because someone is smashing your boyfriend for his silly statements, doesn't mean that you both are correct. If you and Rob are so interested in "educating the public" why doesn't he spend a little time thinking about what is writing and saying. But if you want to suggest that he's not very competent as a writer, and chalk the poor word choice up to stupidity, others might agree. (You both write like middle school kids.)
    • reply
      by Hey Troy on Jul 23, 2012 at 09:46 PM in reply to Troy
      You and your boyfriend might find this interesting.. http://smallbusiness.foxbusiness.com/marketing-sales/2012/07/23/small-business-apologizes-for-misinformed-aurora-tweet/ Look for the line about the "22 year old PR intern". Try harder next time.
  • by Simple Solution on Jul 23, 2012 at 08:00 PM
    One lunatic with three guns. A dark building with hundreds of UNARMED peaceful, unaware people. It is simple! Arm the hundreds of peaceful, unaware people. The answer is not less guns. The answer is more guns in responsible, law abiding, citizens hands. Do you really think anyone will go into a dark theater if most of the people in the room are armed? Israel encourages gun ownership. They know first hand about being helpless, unarmed victims. To the tune of 6,000,000 dead Jews. The obvious key is to quit being unarmed victims.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jul 24, 2012 at 10:04 AM in reply to Simple Solution
      That would be quite a scene if everybody pulled their guns in dark theater and started shooting at each other in confusion. Yeah, right. More guns.
      • reply
        by Simple Solution on Jul 24, 2012 at 05:41 PM in reply to
        Thats what you read? You just don't get it. Everyone would not be shooting at each other moron. They would have been shooting at the lunatic shooting at them. Yeah your solution of unarmed citizens worked soooooo well!
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Jul 24, 2012 at 07:01 PM in reply to Simple Solution
          You overestimate the ability of civilians to make right judgement when they're being shot at in dark room filled with smoke. I get it you that like guns and fear that mean government will take them away from you, but the reality is that in situation like this more shooting means more bodies.
    • reply
      by Simple Solution on Jul 25, 2012 at 06:02 AM in reply to Simple Solution
      To Anonymous. I do fear the government will take away many of our rights. This fear is based in reality since everyday we lose more and more of our rights. But honestly I am also afraid that people like you will take them away so you can impose your narrow minded, socialist values on me. And yes if I had to make the choice between being in a theater with LEGALLY armed citizens who have been trained and have CCW permits and a theater of unarmed citizens when a crazed gunman starts shooting yes I will go with the armed citizens. Your claim is based on your own fears of not being able to impose your belief system on other people. You would rather be a helpless victim than assume responsibility for your own safety.
  • by Say What! on Jul 23, 2012 at 06:41 PM
    Maybe the problem is 20 somethings. Rob are you 20 something? Here's a 24 year old who made the news. He didn't kill anyone, but he did cost us all a chunk of change. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SUBMARINE_FIRE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-07-23-14-26-28 Maybe guys like Rob can't help it. They're just too dumb and poorly trained to survive in modern complex society. (That is outside of a TV station or bar.)
  • by Say What! on Jul 23, 2012 at 06:18 PM
    What an asinine title! Rob, you are a class AA idiot. You want restrictive rules, move to California. (Maybe West Hollywood is your sort of place.) Or Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, or New Jersey. All Democrat run paradises. You'll like them. The rules in Colorado aren't "minimal" unless you are some freaking big government jerk. In Colorado you have to pass TWO background checks. (One Federal and one CBI.) But you don't need a special permit from some bureaucrat or a note from your mother. (Speaking of that, KKCO must be really bereft of adult supervision to let you on the air with this drivel!) In short, get lost kid and take your stupid Leftwing propaganda with you!!! (You'll like West Hollywood.)
    • reply
      by Ed on Jul 25, 2012 at 11:41 AM in reply to Say What!
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