Headline: Former Youngstown police officer sentenced for falsifying concealed-carry records

WKBN (CBS Youngstown) reported recently that a former Youngstown police officer has been sentenced for running what Mahoning County Sheriff Jerry Greene calls a “CCW certificate mill.”

From the article:

Phil Chance, Jr....was accused of taking money to provide concealed-carry permits. He never had the proper certification, so the permits were useless.


Chance is a former Youngstown police officer and the son of disgraced Mahoning County Sheriff Phil Chance, Sr., who went to prison on federal corruption charges...

Authorities say he falsified the documents nearly 270 times over a seven-year period, even giving licenses to people who never attended a single class.

“He was, essentially, for quite a few years, running basically a CCW certificate mill,” Greene said.

Although both Chance and his attorney begged for leniency, the judge ordered the defendant to spend six months in the county jail followed by six more months under house arrest.

Chance was also fined $7,500 and must pay nearly $7,000 in restitution to the Mahoning County Sheriff’s Office.

Instructors and students be advised - Ohio law still requires concealed handgun license classes to be 8 hours in length, and sheriffs are watching. If you take a class that fails to meet the required 8 hours of instruction, your certificate is not valid for purposes of obtaining an Ohio CHL. Further, if you apply for a CHL using an invalid training certificate, you could face criminal charges. Penalties could include suspension/revocation of your CHL, fines, jail, and a lifetime ban on possessing firearms.

As we've written previously, "There are many laws that Buckeye Firearms Association is working to change, but it is critical that we follow the laws that are on the books. It does not matter if we like or dislike a law. It does not matter if we think it's a good or a bad law. All that matters is that it is a law, and we follow it. When something like this happens, it paints all CHL holders, and all gun owners, in a bad light. It is unfortunate that the acts of a few people can damage such a large segment of society, but that is the political reality of such reckless behavior."

Ohio has a more extensive training requirement than many other states, and it is clear from these unfortunate incidents and others like them in the past, that there is demand for a Constitutional Carry or license-optional law in Ohio.

Chad D. Baus served as Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary from 2013-2019. He is co-founder of BFA-PAC, and served as its Vice Chairman for 15 years. He is the editor of BuckeyeFirearms.org, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website, and is also an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

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